Aires 1/48 Marseille's 50th victory








Peter Marshall


15 Resin parts


Maybe it's just me but I've always felt that there aren't enough figures available in 48th.  There are certainly more about these days though with stuff from ICM, Preiser, Hasegawa etc but this is a  bit different, representing as it does a specific pilot at a specific moment (I know, Corée have done Marseille, Hartmann (both several times), Mutherich and Pohs by a 109 tail but not in 48th, alright? Gee, this review writing is harder than it looks, all these interruptions.  By me.)

For those of you unaware of Hans-Joachim Marseille (hey, there may be some!) he was the highest scoring ace against the western allies with 158 kills (154 of them fighters), 7 over the channel and the other 151 over Africa with JG27.   A gifted pilot considered by many to be the best deflection shot around and an astonishingly accurate marksman (for instance, 6 kills in 12 minutes with only 10 canon shells (it jammed) and 350 MG rounds used) he died after bailing out of a new G-2 that had developed engine trouble and filled the cockpit with smoke.  He struck the tail and never opened his chute.  He was 2 months short of 23 years of age.


Anyway, what do you get for your hard earned?  Two figures in pale yellow resin, seven pieces making up a ground crew member painting the 2 kills from the relevant mission (21 Feb 1942, if you must know, though you have to provide the brush) and eight making Marseille himself (with large smile).  The castings are crisp and well detailed and shouldn't present any assembly problems which is just as well as there are no instructions.  Which does lead to my one gripe, I would have liked some painting instructions.  I know there's a colour photo on the box but what are the actual colours?  Ho hum, more research into Luftwaffe clothing in the desert theatre, the stuff this hobby gets you doing....  Any info gratefully received .

I'm currently reading "German Fighter Ace Hans-Joachim Marseille by Franz Kurowski" ISBN 0-88740-517-7 and there's the picture this little set is based upon (I assume) in there and it certainly looks very similar.  One thing worth noting is that while Marseille's sidearm is provided it isn't visible on the box picture.  It is however quite noticeable in the actual photo, on his left hip only partly obscured by his arm.  I wonder why Aires didn't put it on for the box illustration (especially as there are no instru .. oh don't lets do that again).

Also apparent from this picture is that the rudder being marked is a different colour to the rest of the tail, so when you send me all that stuff about clothing colours if you've got any details on the markings and colour scheme of his Yellow 14 at this time that would also be appreciated :-)
(Your editor would like to mention at this point that it would be RLM 79 over RLM 78 with a mid fuselage demarcation line and a white nose and fuselage band. The wing tips are also white above and below. The white bits are a standard Med theater marking. Judging from the photo, the rudder is red, but orthochromatic film would have yellow appear this dark as well..)


Nice set, interesting subject, go well with a nice new 109F (hope the ICM 109s are nice), what more do you want?  I see F4002 is a couple of Russian aces (not named), I can only hope we get some more.  How about Hartmann and "Bimmel", his
crew chief?  Rudel and his gunner?  Bader and Tuck?  The possibilities are endless, and I for one would buy them all.  Hope someone from Aires reads this.......

Advantages:                          Unusual (and worthy, though that's a bit subjective!) subject, will make an interesting diorama (are the new ICM 109Fs going to include the correct tropical variant?)

Disadvantages:                       They're figures.  I'm not good with figures.  Might be difficult to prevent it looking a bit cartoonish, the way I'll make it.  More colour details would have been nice.


Thanks to Hannants for relieving me of yet more of my money in exchange for the goods.

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