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Luftwaffe Colours Vol. Five Section 4


Jet Fighters and Rocket Interceptors

by J. Richard Smith and Eddie J. Creek


Classic Publications


S u m m a r y

Publisher and Details: Classic Publications
Luftwaffe Colours Vol 5 Section 4
Jet Fighters and Rocket Interceptors 1944-1945
ISBN: 1903223520
Media: Soft cardboard cover; 302mm x 226mm in portrait format; 96 pages plus covers; more than 180 photographs; 24 colour profiles; maps, appendices
Price: Available for GBP£16.99 from Ian Allen Publishing's website
Review Type: First Read
Advantages: Vast collection of photographs, inspirational artwork, informative text.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Rob Baumgartner

Jagdwaffe Volume 5, Section 4 is available online from Squadron.com




Rocket interceptors and jet fighters hold a special fascination amongst Luftwaffe enthusiasts.

Those that reached frontline pilots during 1944 – 1945 are the subject of this latest Classic Publications book. It completes the last volume in this current series and fittingly, it’s devoted to these highly enigmatic aircraft.

There are 96 pages containing nearly 200 black and white photographs. A further eleven are seen in colour. Reproduction is excellent and the large format of the book really helps here.

Many of the images will be familiar to the hard core devotee but this is to be expected. The pool of photographs is limited and it is a credit to the authors for collecting the vast number that did make it into print.

The captions are informative and do much to enhance the text rather than repeat it.

One of the highlights of the book is the twenty eight colour profiles of the aircraft concerned. These are dispersed throughout the book and much praise is due for the manner in which Thomas Tullis and Eddie Creek have rendered these. Unit emblems are not forgotten and these are also illustrated to the same high standard.

Considering the series is titled “Luftwaffe Colours”, I did find it a little puzzling that there was no artwork covering the typical uppersurface camouflage patterns of the various aircraft involved…official or otherwise.

The book is divided into eight chapters. An introduction to both the rocket and jet engine is covered in the first two sections. The former covers the years 1926 – 1939 with the later seeing the period 1935 - 1941.

The Erprobungskommando from 1942 – 1944 is discussed in the next chapter and here the authors talk about the development of these aircraft under operational conditions. The text is very easy to read and always manages to keep the student interested.

Inevitably the sections on combat must follow and the period of April – November 1944 is related in the following pages. Both aircraft are featured and here is where we get a blow by blow account of the victories and losses scored in these fledgling machines.

Before continuing with any further exploits, there is a chapter on the Volksjäger. The He 162 was seen as an attractive proposition at the time.

Compared to the Me 262, its simple construction meant it could be built in fewer man hours, less fuel was required as it only had one engine, and being smaller with less weight it was expected to have a similar performance. All that glittered was not gold however…

The next instalment sees the fighting recommence with December 1944 – February 1945 being the next phase under the spotlight. March 1945 is singled out for a chapter by itself, and leads to the final section covering April and May of the same year.

To finish off the book, the controversial subject of camouflage and markings makes a welcome appearance. Discussion here centres on the late war finishes, Stab and Staffel colours, werknummers, and even a table showing the latter’s relationship to the various manufacturers.





This is quite a comprehensive package that gives the reader a broad understanding of the role these aircraft played in the Second World War.

The collection of photographs is impressive and the artwork provides plenty of inspiration for the modeller. A representative collection of upper surface schemes for these aircraft would have been more in keeping with the title but it seems we can’t have everything.

This is a fitting conclusion to what has been a fascinating series, and one that will delight all Luftwaffe fans.

Highly Recommended

Thanks to Simon from DLS Publishing and to Ian Allen Publishing for the review sample

Review Copyright © 2005 by Rob Baumgartner
This Page Created on 12 October, 2005
Last updated 11 October, 2005

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