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Model and photos by  Gerd Busse


Messerschmitt Me 264 V1, Special Hobby, 1/72



The original:

During WWII, the four engined Me 264 was designed in such a way that it could reach the east coast of the US. This requirement resulted in an aircraft with a high aerodynamic quality which means a slender stream line fuselage and wings with a high aspect ratio allowing the aircraft to fly at a low power.

Actually, only one prototype was built, the Me 264 V1 (RE+EN) WerkNr. 264000001, which made its maiden flight on Dec 23rd, 1942 in Augsburg with factory pilot Karl Bauer at the controls. After its second test flight the aircraft was flown to Lechfeld on Jan 22nd 1943. Thereafter the four engines Jumo 211 were replaced by BMW 801 with which the first test flight was performed on April 16th, 1944. During an allied bomb raid on July18th, 1944 the aircraft was damaged beyond repair. This way the project Me 264 came to its end (data taken from articles published by Griehl and Green).



The model:

Luckily, the mistakes of this model produced by Special Hobby in 2002 can be eliminated if one is aware of them ahead.



To avoid a tail sitter the nose section of the model should be filled with as much lead as possible.

Both vertical and horizontal stabilizer of the model should be cut from the parts contained in the box according to the pictures where the shaded areas indicate the material that needs to be removed. The four missing circular windows are made according to the drawing


Vertical stabiliser


Horizontal stabiliser

Fuselage top



  Wing span of the model is 59.1 cm corresponding to 42.55 m of the original in the scale 1/72. However, factory data of the V1 give 38.8 m corresponding to 53.9 cm wing span of the model. Therefore 2.6 cm were cut from each wing tip.

Despite their small sizes, aileron control rods and balance weights contribute significantly to the realistic appearance of the model.


Landing gear:



The tires are too small by some tenths of mm. The nose wheel is too thin by 0.5 mm.

Generally, the landing gear assembly of the model looks too much simplified. For corrections the book by Sengfelder was very helpful.

On the model, inner and outer tubes of the oleo leg of undercarriage have about the same diameter. Therefore the inner tube has been replaced by a shiny metallic cylinder with a smaller diameter..

Hydraulic brake lines and scissor units are not included in the kit. Scissors (two for each oleo leg) taken from the kit of a Ju 88 are not the optimum, but better than nothing at all.

The forward strut of the main landing gear is also not in the kit. If this is attached, both the wheel well and the inner gear door need to be corrected as well (see pictures).

Before glueing both halves of the nose wheel, a 0.5 mm thickness sheet (plastic or lead) should be put in between to provide a better match with the original wheel width.








The tires are flattened, and those of the main landing gear have an outward angle of 4 degrees so that the distance of the tires is larger at the bottom than at the upper end.



Due to the highly transparent cockpit area, some detailing is advisable, i.e. rudder pedals /Extratech No. 72120) and bomber seat belts (Eduard No 72307). The cables in front were applied according to photos (Sengfelder). This detailing can be clearly seen tbrough the glazed cockpit cover.




  The V1 was initially equipped with Jumo 211 engines of the Ju 88. The asymmetry of the lower fairing was independent of whether the engine was mounted on the right or left wing. Seen from the front, the bump is always on the left side. Actually, this model was provided with the home-made engines of the author (meanwhile available at RaiRo, Germany). The sides of the engines were provided with glass covered circular holes giving the pilots a direct view on instruments (e.g. propeller angle).

Left: Comparison of home-made engine (at right) with the one of the kit.

Below: Engines seen "during flight", circular glass-covered holes clearly visible.



Location of the "Balkenkreuz":

According to RLM rules the cross underneath each wing is in the middle between the wing tip and the outside of the engine cowling; the letters are in the middles in between. On the upper sides of the wings, the distance is 2 meters from the wing tip.




Gunze paint is used for camouflage: blue RLM 65 (underneath) and greens RLM 70 and RLM 71 for the splinter pattern on upper surfaces.


Very special thanks go to Mr. Wolfgang Mühlbauer. Without the factory drawings provided generously by him it would not have been possible to build such a realistic model from this kit.


Griehl, M.: Die Entwicklungsgeschichte der Me 264 – Teil 1. FLUGZEUG 2/96. S. 19-23. Teil 2. FLUGZEUG 3/96. S. 19-23. Teil 3. FLUGZEUG 4/96. S. 18-22

Sengfelder, G.: Flugzeugfahrwerke. Fahrwerke der Flugzeuge der ehemaligen deutschen Luftwaffe. Motorbuch Verlag Stuttgart (1979). ISBN 3-87943-676-