Focke-Wulf Ta 154: Luftwaffe Reich Defence Day and Night Interceptor Book Review
|Date of Review||January 2022||Title||Focke-Wulf Ta 154: Luftwaffe Reich Defence Day and Night Interceptor|
|Format||224 pages, hardbound||MSRP (USD)||$49.95|
Despite failure to achieve widespread production and service, Focke-Wulf’s Ta 154 “Moskito” – Nazi German’s reply to Britain’s legendary de Havilland Mosquito – remains a favorite of WWII aircraft modelers.
Now Dietmar Hermann tells the terrific tale in a handy hardback from Crécy – available in North America from Specialty Press.
Focke-Wulf Ta 154: Luftwaffe Reich Defence Day and Night Interceptor – significantly revised and expanded, Crécy says, from the author’s 2006 German-language study – spans eleven chapters across 224 lavishly illustrated pages.
But prepare yourself: along the way, Hermann explodes some entrenched Moskito myths and misconceptions.
Kurt Tank’s Ta 154 aimed at fulfilling day-fighter, night-fighter, and Zerstörer roles. The Luftwaffe also considered one- and two-seat versions. And projected enhancements explored heavier armament, metal fuselage elements, ejection seats, and raised cockpit and canopy.
With “far better” acceleration and maneuverability than the Heinkel He 219’s – “regarded as the best German night fighter among Luftwaffe pilots”, Hermann avers – the Ta 154 A-0 ultimately proved an excellent gun platform.
Unfortunately, Focke-Wulf hadn’t manufactured a wooden aircraft since 1933’s Fw 56 Stösser. And some Ta 154 design facets – its wing of non-strategic, “layered and plywood” components, for instance – proved daunting.
But endemic glue failures? Hermann calls those “fairy tales”.
Propulsion problems and relentless Allied air attacks also plagued development. And with the 7 August 1944 program cancellation, Kurt Tank’s Moskito saw just limited service.
Hermann deftly distills all. And hobbyists will love it.
Fact-checking dimensions of your model’s main- and nose-gear wheels? See page 71. Seeking specifics on the aircraft’s wooden wing construction? Jump ahead six pages. How about cockpit minutiae? Pages 88-91 take care of those.
Hundreds of illustrations augment the account: period photos, archival images, tech-manual excerpts, and close-up shots.
Color profiles also provide authoritative camouflage & markings schemes. And captions, sidebars, recollections, anecdotes, and appendices further supplement the study.
But what scale are those line drawings?
What a ripping read. If you thought you knew key aspects of the Ta 154 saga, this seminal study might surprise you.
My sincere thanks to Specialty Press for this review sample!