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Brewster Model 239

Part 2


by Kalevi Keskinen & Kari Stenman



S u m m a r y

Publisher and Catalogue Details: SUOMEN ILMAVOIMIEN HISTORIA (FINNISH AIR FORCE HISTORY) No. 1B - Brewster Model 239 Part 2
by Kalevi Keskinen & Kari Stenman
ISBN: 952-99432-3-7
Media and Contents: Soft cover; B5 Format (7 x 10 inches); 96 pages plus covers
Price: 27 Euros from Kari Stenman Publishing
Review Type: FirstRead
Advantages: Excellent photographs with English text and subtitles and 25 profiles
Disadvantages: Individual aircraft histories only in Finnish
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Steven "Modeldad" Eisenman

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If imitation is a form of compliment, then the Finnish Air Force was complimenting the Brewster Model 239 “Buffalo”, long after every other user condemned it to the scrap heap.  In 1942, the Finnish State aircraft Factory undertook the production of a locally built copy of the Model 239 called the “Humu”.  While only one was produced, and was a bit of a failure due to an inadequate engine and weight issue, the project was not formally cancelled until September 1944. 

This is just one of the gems of information contained within the second part of the Suomen Ilmavoimien Historia monograph on the Brewster Model 239 in the Finnish Air Force. The information about the “Humu” is not only a gem for those with a historical interest, but also a gem for modelers.  There are a couple of color pictures of the restored “Humu” and a picture of the original aircraft.  It would appear that with some basic kit-bashing skills, one could add the Humu to one’s collection. 

But as I noted, the “Humu” is not the only gem in this book.  On pages 17 and 20 there are pictures of BW-363 and BW-365, which if modeled would cause a few comments about an inaccurate Brewster Model 239.  It seems that both of these aircraft had their engines replaced with the Russian M-63, a copy of the Cyclone.  As a result, these aircraft were fitted with a two bladed propeller. 

Other great modeling subjects are spread throughout this volume. For example, for those who enjoy doing winter white camouflage, there is an excellent overhead picture of a Model 239 with white blotches all over.  They appear to have been brush applied, and would be a great way to work on brushing skills; airbrush not needed. 

Of course for those whose interest is the continued narrative of the Model 239 in FAF service, Part 1B picks up where Part 1A left off in 1942 with LeLV 26, and continues on with HLeLv26 when LeLv 24’s Brewsters were handed over in May 1944. 

It is worth noting that when LeLv24 traded in their Brewsters for Bf 109Gs, the unit had used the Model 239 from June of 1941 to May 1944 and claimed 459 Russian aircraft shot down with a loss of only 15 Brewsters in combat. 

This volume concludes with the Lapland War where the Model 239 was used against the Germans.  While its role appears to be primarily one of reconnaissance, this did not stop the pilots from using their aircraft from attacking targets of opportunity, whether it was a group of Ju 87Ds or strafing ground troops. 

The book includes a list of the individual aerial combat victories of the Finnish pilots in their Brewster Model 239s.  There are also individual aircraft histories; but like the first part, sadly, they are only in Finnish. 

The excellent pictures throughout this volume provide a wealth of information.  There are a number of pictures of the Model 239 with the roundel markings and six that are in color, two of which are of the restored “Humu”. 

Finally, there is a map of Finland and surrounding areas with the locations of the FAF’s airfield; thus providing a geographic grounding for the narrative. 





As I noted in my review of Part I, for anyone interested in the Brewster Model 239 / Buffalo, this two part monograph is a must.  Part 1B, in particular, is a great source of modeling inspiration. 

Highly Recommended.

selection of pictures and color profiles in this book may be seen on the Kari Stenman Publishing web site.

Thanks to Kari Stenman  for the sample.

All Keri Stenman Publishing books are available direct from the publishers,
who now accept credit cards (Visa, Mastercard).

Review Copyright © 2005 by Steven "Modeldad" Eisenman
Page Created 06 December, 2005
Last updated 05 December, 2005

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