(14) Fw 190 at War, part I

Luftwaffe fighter aircraft asigned to home defence duties needed easily recognizable markings for quick air-to-air identification as much time was wasted in reforming after each attack. Painting white the rudders or vertical tail surfaces of aircraft flown by unit leaders and black/white stripes or chequered patterns on engine cowlings of Jagdgeschwader 1 aircraft were the first solutions for this issue, but in late 1943, Jagdgeschwader 11 and Jagdgeschwader 1 adopted coloured bands around the rear fuselage as a recognition marking. Some other units did the same in early 1944, however none original German documentation concerning the use of the bands in this period exists. The earliest official reference to them is dated 24 December 1944 and states that the bands should be 90cm-wide, in different colours or their combinations for each Geschwader. Another order dated 20 February 1945 described the bands for each Geschwader but only in generic colours rather than ‘official’ colours.

 The examples of bands carried on Fw 190 A

 Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-2; W.Nr. 0120 333, ‘White 8’, flown by Lt. Jakob Augustin of 7./JG 2, Théville, June 1942.  [Painted by Janusz Światłoń]

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-2; W.Nr. 0125 304, flown by Hptm. Johannes Seifert, Kommandeur of I./JG 26, St. Omer-Arques, May 1942.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-2; W.Nr. 0125 228, ‘Chevron L’, flown by Ofw. Erwin Leibold of Stab I./JG 26,  St. Omer-Arques, July 1942.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-3/U4; W.Nr. 0135 346, ‘Red 9’, flown by Fw. Oskar Sahre of 5.(F)/123, St. Pol, Spring 1943.

Focke Wulf Fw 190 A-4/U7; W.Nr. 0147 092, flown by Hptm. Wilhelm-Ferdinand Galland, Kommandeur of II./JG 26, France, Spring 1943.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-5Y; flown by Maj. Hans Phillip, Kommodore of JG 1, Jever, Summer 1943.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-5; W.Nr. 0150 1501, ‘White 4’, flown by Oblt. Walter Nowotny, Staffelkapitän of 1./JG 54, Eastern Front, Summer 1943.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-6; W.Nr. 550 182, ‘Black 7’, flown by Ofw. Josef Jennewein of 2./JG 51, Eastern Front, July 1943.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-7; W.Nr. 430 170, ‘Yellow 5’, flown by Lt. Hans Ehlers, Staffelkapitän of 3./JG 1, Dortmund-Brakel, January 1944.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-7; flown by Hptm. Rolf Hermichen, Kommandeur of I./JG 11, Rotenburg, March 1944.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8/R2; W.Nr. 682 181, ‘Yellow 2’, flown by Fw. Hubert Engst of 6./JG 300, Löbnitz, November 1944.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8; ‘White 2’, flown by Uffz. Julius Händel of 13./JG 54, Eastern Front, August/September 1944.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8/R2; ’Red 10’, flown by Ofw. Karl Rusack of 5./JG 300, Löbnitz, January 1945.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-9; ‘Blue 7’, Stab II.(Sturm)/JG 300, Löbnitz, March 1945.

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8; W.Nr. 170 661, ‘Brown 13’, flown by Lt. Gerhard Vogt, Staffelkapitän of 7./JG 26, France, June 1944.


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