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The Focke Wulf Fw 190 Radial Engine Versions

The Focke Wulf Fw 190 Radial Engine Versions Book Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review August 2014 Title The Focke Wulf Fw 190 Radial Engine Versions
Author Richard A Franks Publisher Valiant Wings Publishing
Published 2014 ISBN 9780957586642
Format 224 pages, softcover MSRP (BP) £18.95


Two years ago, Valiant Wings Publishing released their title on the Fw 190D and Ta 152 which provided great coverage of the subjects focusing on those aspects that modelers are looking for - details. Here we have the seventh title in their Airframe and Miniature series, the radial-engined Fw 190 series. Take a look at their coverage:

  • Airframe Chapters
    • Evolution: Prototypes and A Series
    • The F and G Series
    • Conversions: Projects and New-builds
    • Camouflage and Markings
    • Colour Profiles
  • Miniature Chapters
    • Fw 190A to G Kits
    • Building a Selection
    • Building a Collection
    • In Detail: The Fw 190A to G
  • Bibliography

It is no surprise that the page count is almost doubled from their Fw 190D/Ta 152 title given the range of prototypes, production variants and subvariants in this family of Butcher Birds. As with the other titles in this series, the author walks you through a concise history of the Fw 190 with a focus on the differences between each of the prototypes, experiments, and production models. The title is well illustrated with period imagery as well as profiles and scrap drawings to illustrate those details important to the modeler.

The color and markings section provides a nice collection of color profiles illustrating a selection of subjects which give you a taste of the variety of schemes worn by this aircraft family. The kit discussion looks at each of the Fw 190 kits produced by the time of this publication with the eye on the details and issues in each box. The real magic happens when you get into the Building a Collection section where you look at detailed diagrams depicting a production model, say the Fw 190A-5, and then walk through each of the subvariants to see what makes the Fw 190A-5/R6 different from an Fw 190A-5/U2 or even the Fw 190A-5/U2 (Neptun). For a modeler, this section provides the essential checklist of details to watch for as you're building a given subject. Nice!

The In Detail section provides a nice selection of period and contemporary images showing you waht many of those details look like as well as excerpts out of Focke Wulf technical manuals showing how key features are assembled and their functions.

If you're looking for an in-depth look at the history and operations of the Fw 190 series, there are many titles out there that provide that sort of coverage, but if you're wanting to model the Fw 190 in detail with a focus on accuracy and you want to do that with only one book, this is the title you need for your modeling library!

Definitely recommended!

My sincere thanks to Valiant Wings Publishing for this review copy.