I am going to build the plane used by Hans Ulrich Rudel on the Eastern Front in 1944/45
The kit I am using is the Ju87G from Hasegava in scale 1:32,
As far as I can judge, the outline and exterior detail on this model is excellent and the rivet detail is very good. It’s a real pleasure to work with this kit.
As most kits, this one also starts with the cockpit. With help from the interior PE from Eduard the cockpit it is easily put together. Very few adjustments are needed.
The cockpit is painted in RLM66 (black grey).
To adjust the colours to the scale, about 10-15%
white are added to all colours used on this model.
The kit also includes figures of the pilot and the
gunner. This suits me fine because I have
decided to have the cockpit closed and the crew
inside – as opposed most of my other models
which have open cockpit.
As far as the exterior goes
there is little extra work that
needs doing except for the
gun pods and radiators.
For the radiators, I used the
exterior PE from Eduard.
For the gun pods, I added
some homemade wires and
bits and pieces and the gun
mounting brackets from
The spinner was adjusted
and lubricated so it will spin
freely with a little help from
a vent (hairdryer).
That way I can easily simulate
a spinning propeller when
needed (for example in a
I did not mount the guns on
the aircraft till the painting
and weathering was finished.
The crew (pilot and
gunner)was placed in the
cockpit, the canopy glued
and the window masking
was put in place.
This mask will stay on till
all the painting is finished.
The plane had a splinter
camouflage on the upper
surfaces (RLM71 Dark
Green and RLM70 Black
After a coat of primer
(Vallejo) and pre-shading
with a felt-tip pen, it was
time for the first coat of
Then the splinter
camouflage masking and
a coat with the darkest
The underside is then
painted RLM65 Light Blue
The last painting is the yellow markings on the wings and the fuselage. The markings on the wings are for easy spotting of own aircrafts by German anti-aircraft crews.
Big , ugly – and deadly
Equipped with a 37mm canon under each wing, the aging airframe of the Ju 87 Stuka found new life as an anti-tank aircraft on the Eastern Front in 1943
The change in German military fortunes after 1943 and the appearance of huge numbers of well armored Soviet tanks caused Junkers to adapt the existing Stuka design to combat this new threat.
The Henchel Hs 129B “Panzerknacker” (see Model of the Hs129 on another page) had proved a very potent ground attack weapon against the Soviet tanks, but the Wehrmacht needed more, and led by some legendary Stuka pilots, first of all, Hans Ulrich Rudel (see Diorama: Hans Ulrich Rudel
and his Stuka) who, after achieving success against Soviet tanks with the Stuka's 20 mm MG 151/20 cannons suggested using two 37mm Flak 18 (anti-aircraft) guns on the Stuka - and the results was the new Ju87G
The downside with the new design was that the guns weighed more than 800 kg in total and the weight of the guns, the extra armor and the increased drag made the G model slow (260-270 km/h) and with less manoeuverability than the other Stuka models - which already was slow and ungainly.
Especially in turns, it was almost impossible to prevent the Ju87G from wobbling from side to side. Furthermore, the Kanonenvoegel had to attack the tanks from a very low level, exposing it selves to heavy ground fire. The armored protection of the Soviet Ilyushin Il-2 Sturmovik was therefore copied.
The first flight of the Ju87G took place on 31 January 1943 and the first production Ju 87G-1s were delivered to front-line units in April 1943.
As mentioned, the Ju87G was a difficult plane to handle and only the most experienced pilots managed to master the Kanonenvoegel. But in the right hands, the Ju87G was a deadly weapon to even the heaviest armored Soviet tanks.
The two 37 mm cannons were mounted in under-wing gun pods and had a 6-round magazine of armor piercing Tungsten carbide ammunition. With these weapons, the Kanonenvogel proved spectacularly successful at the hands of Luftwaffe Stuka Aces such as Hans Ulrich Rudel.
At the end of the war, Rudel had logged 2,530 combat missions.
Flying the Ju87, his confirmed victories - those witnessed by two or more pilots - include 519 tanks, 800-1000 trucks and other vehicles, 150 flak and artillery positions. He also sank the battleship Marat, a destroyer, a cruiser and 70 landing crafts. During these operations, he was shot down 32 times by ground fire, but against all odds, he survived the war and died in 1982 at age 66.
At last, the weathering can be done.
These aircraft was used intensively from very primitive battle airstrips close behind the front. The airplanes were not only dirty, but dented and worn. This particular aircraft, however, is fairly new and has not been subjected to the same wear as many of the older aircraft at the eastern front.
After moderate weathering, the result looks like this:
All the above pictures show the Kanonenvoegel in factory
issued standard camouflage.
The problem was of course that when the snow began to fell
at the Eastern Front, these green painted planes was easy
spotted by the enemy, especially when operating at almost
It was the ground crew job to dress the planes in winter camo.
A water-based overpaint was used for the upper surfaces.
This paint was easy to remove when no longer needed, but it
added to the weight and particularly drag and was therefore
restricted or dropped in many parts of the Luftwaffe.
It seems however that the white winter camo was used on
more or less all ground attack aircrafts at the Eastern Front.
From old pictures, it seems that there was no (or little)
guidance in how to apply the winter camo, and the ground
crews took full advantage of this and made some very
interesting camouflages (see the model of Hs129 at
In this case, the ground crew painted white patches all over
the upper surface and fuselage sides.
The result seems to be a very efficient winter camouflage
Picture to the right:
Hans Ulrich Rudel's Kanonenfoegel in winter camouflage
The only sensible thing to do was to ask the
ground crew to paint the Kanonenvoegel in
the winter camouflage from 1945, which they of course did:
Above: Ground Crew applaying white winter camouglage on a Kanonenvoegel at the Eastern Front winter 1944/45
Please have a look at the old b/w-picture above (of Hans Ulrich Rudel in his Stuka) and compare it with the picture to the right.
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