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Messerschmitt Me 262B in Detail

Radar, armament and other night fighter equipment

n Photos by Graeme Adamson and Charles Hugo
Text by Martin Waligorski


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Dramatic view of the aircraft's nose adorned with large radar antennae. Modellers will find this view helpful when bending and positioning those photoetched antenna parts. On the subject of  photoetch, note that the real antenna braces are of  circular (small) or aerofoil (large braces) section. 


 

Photo: Graeme Adamsson
 


The author believes that the two extra diagonal braces holding the radar antennae were added by the British after a taxiing accident damaged the radar array. Anyway, they cannot be seen on the (somewhat blurry) wartime photos of the Red 8 and other 10./NJG11 machines.
 

Photo: Graeme Adamson
 


Red 8 had a full complement of four 30mm MK 108 cannon, but it is believed that some night fighter Me 262s flew with only two cannon to compensate for the extra weight of the radar equipment. The cannon are unfortunately no longer in the aircraft, but all the feeds, spent cartridge chutes and electrical wiring on the rear bulkhead are in place.

A noteworthy detail is also one of the two circular stiffening braces running along the top of the cannon bay.
 

Photo: Charles Hugo
 


Inner detail of the cannon bay cover (starboard side).
 

Photo: Charles Hugo
 


The distinctive and elegant triangular fin of the 262 is shown to advantage here. The ruder and elevator were mass-balanced, which was another one of Messerschmitt's "usuals".
 

Photo: Graeme Adamson
 


Besides the forward-looking radar equipment, the night fighter was to be equipped with a tail-warning FuG 218 Neptune radar. For some reason, this was never fitted to the operational aircraft and the only visible sign  of the original  intention was this antenna mounting pipe under the rudder.
 

Photo: Charles Hugo
 


The port rear fuselage of the night fighter variant featured four sets of flare chutes, as compared to two of the Me 262A or the B-1 trainer.

Note also the radio mast immediately behind the cockpit and the D/F loop mounted on a teardrop fairing.
 

Photo: Graeme Adamson
 


Details of the rear flare chutes and some stenciling.
 

Photo: Charles Hugo
 


The mass balance of the port elevator.
 

Photo: Charles Hugo
 

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