Big Wing - The Airbus of The Early 30s

Discussion in 'Aircraft & Aviation' started by Bengt F, Oct 12, 2007.

  1. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Detailed Photos Found!

    Hi all,

    My Junkers G.38 build has come to a temporary stand-still. It has been difficult to locate pictures of how the rows of windows were arranged on the second plane, the Junkers G.38ce. This is the second aircraft that was built, which had two extended passenger decks.

    However, now I think I have found reasonably good photos, at least good enough to move ahead with the model project with some confidence. On my book shelf, I had a Sciffer Military History profile publication, called "JUNKERS Ju 290 - Ju 390 etc." by Heinz J. Nowarra. In it, there are several, very detailed and revealing period photos of the two Ju G.38 types.

    The first two shows the original Ju G.38a, just before it´s maiden flight in Dessau on the 6th of November 1929.
    Note the big 'skirts' covering the landing gear and wheels, which were later removed since they contributed very little to reduced airflow but instead proved to be an obstruction during take-off and landing:


    This photo very clearly shows what the nose of the Ju G.38ce looked like after it had been christened "Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg". I have marked the retractable diesel engine radiators, the round radio antenna, the landing gear shock-absorbing system, and the typical 'off-set' Junkers-type flaps in red:


    This is the photo I have been looking for. The high resolution and big print of this photo across a whole page in the book reveals that there were in fact no extra windows added. The typical black Lufthansa decór between the windows just makes it look as though there were more windows. So, now I can go ahead with the design of the fuselage.
    Note all the interesting details, such as (from the left): the lamp and small triangle-shaped table at the very front of the VIP forward passenger cabin (what a place to sit during flight!), the high masts for the wire antennas on top of the fuselage and wings, the air intake and vents for the Jumo diesel engines, the Junkers-type of set-back arms for the flaps (just as on the Junkers Ju-52/3m model, which were to follow the Ju G.38 type) and the push-pull hydraulic lever arrangement for the ailerons, the type designation on the middle rudder, the black striping on the leading edge of the rudders and elevators, among other things:


    This is an exciting project, and this photo will greatly help in the further detailing. More photos of the actual model to follow shortly.

    All the best,
    /Bengt :thumb:
  2. I must admit I like many of the german WWii planes. But I can't bring myself to put the Swaztika on them. Even though I know it is historically accurate I just can't do it. So I stick to models which had a civilian application. No criticism intended here. I just have a hang up with it since it stood for such atrocities. Kudo's to their designes though. Very nice build nice and clean
  3. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Swastikas or Not


    What I am trying to do in this thread is to replicate a historically accurate appearance of the Junkers G.38ce "Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg" Lufthansa airliner aircraft, based on an original card model by Schreiber-Bogen, as faithfully as possible.

    This is in no way a political statement of any kind, just an accurate historical representation, WITH the German nationalist swastikas. I want to replicate the look of the Junkers G.38ce at it´s peak years, when it was commanded by the experienced captain Otto Brauer, who resented the Nazis, by the way. Hugo Junkers certainly didn´t want them there in 1933. The same thing with captain Hugo Eckener, who commanded the great "Graf Zeppelin" airship - he didn´t want the swastikas on the tail fins either but what could they do? Not much, in a fascist/nationalist one-party state. There are lots of examples.

    In Sweden, we lived very close to occupied Norway and Denmark in the beginning of the 40s, not more than sixtyfive years ago. My parents, who lived close to the Norwegian border during the Nazi occupation, have memories of Norwegian resistance and actual refugees. They have passed on their utter disgust for the Nazis and the terrible German war machine to my generation and I am passing it on to my daughters.
    To summarize, I am in no way fond of or interested Nazi ideologies or their logos - I just want to create an accurate representation of the scale model subject that I happened to choose - it´s as simple as that.

    All the best,
    Bengt :thumb:
  4. I was in no way impying you were being insensitive. I fully understand your point of view and take no issue with it. i was simply relating my own personal hangups. I have no criticism for aynone seeking historical accuracy. I find your work of excellent quality. If everyone felt like me there would be no historically accurate models. I just find the Swastika difficult to look at. I went to aerospace museum here the other day and while I admired the aircraft on display and the Natzi's contribution to Aviation I did feel a sense of disloyalty inside at the price that was paid to achieve it. I guess that is why I posted this-- to clear my consience--. I am not trying to spark any kind of political debate here so please all of you history buffs "Continue on" pay no attention to my rantings.
  5. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Hi timhinds,

    I can understand that you find the swastika difficult to look at and I really respect that. So do I, in some circumstances and settings; about twenty-five years ago, I visited the former Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp, outside Krakow in Oswiecim, Poland. I will never ever forget what I witnessed there - it is impossible to eradicate such a traumatic and contradictory experience (the perfect stillness of the museum and the hell that once existed there) and I am glad that I have seen the evidence, when some blind revisionists try to make us forget and say to our faces that the holocaust never happened. Then it is our duty to speak up.

    Apart from that, and ongoing political discussions around the world, I do feel that when modeling, I myself do not have to take a political point of view with what I do.
    The way I see it, card modelibg is an art form, like sculpting or painting - it´s something you create with your hands, for your own, and hopefully, other´s enjoyment.

    As you may know by now, I have a great interest in WW I type of aircraft and the aeroplanes of the early pioneers of aviation, with occasional pic-nics into the 'golden' era of aviation (the 20s and 30s) - this thread is one example of this. So, my main interest does not lie in the war time subjects, at least not WW II. However, I find that I more than often marvel at the skill of how some expert modelers replicate the intricate details and above all, the wheathering, of well-worn bomber planes, subs and tanks of WW II (for example at the IPIS shows). I very seldom think twice about all the swastikas, hammers & sickles or Maltese crosses I see there.
    Think about this: how about modeling the famous Fokker Dr.I triplane of the "Red Baron" von Richthoven without the graphically interesting Maltese/iron or Balken crosses - that wouldn´t be fun, would it?

    I´m glad you see my point - I fully respect yours.

    Your friend in arms (scissors and hobby knife),
    Bengt :thumb:
  6. jaffro

    jaffro Long term member

    Can't say how glad I am to see this project back on track! Congratulations on finding the missing reference material. I'd been wondering why this project had halted, I figured you had just been distracted by a certain ocean liner. :D

    Before reading this thread I had never heard of this aircraft and have thoroughly enjoyed your mini history lesson alongside the build (mini is just a bit of an understatement :) ). In fact, seeing this thread before starting my interceptor is what inspired me to look for more reference shots other than just the ones of the finished model on the download page. Finding extra reference, and seeing some of the excellent work you and other members have done in build threads on this forum, helped inspire me to add more detail to my model(s). You also gave me the idea to add a little background history of the actual model subject, although I didn't go to too much trouble there, my next build will be different though although the subject doesn't actually exist.

    I'm looking forward to seeing more of your "History lesson" and of course the fantastic build of this interesting plane.

  7. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    So Many Distractions - . .

    Thanks, Nick,

    I apreciate your kind words very much. Yes, I am very glad to have found some decent reference material - there has been so many blurry photos along the way that I didn´t know how to continue. You are so accurate about one of the current "distractions" - that happens now and then. It´s comforting for the easily distracted modeler to know there is no 'delivery deadline'!
    I have started another very interesting WW I build, too, by the way - a very strange-looking 'bird' it is - I am almost half-way through and I will post some photos of this beautiful Kampfflieger design very soon now:
  8. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Distractions Indeed . . .

    Sorry about that, Nick,

    It´s getting late here in Sweden (past midnight) - I happened to accidentally push the wrong button and it´s seems so impossible to edit the posts nowadays.

    Here´s the link to that other plane thread:

    I think I´ll get back to modeling now . .

    The very best to all from the darkness in Stockholm,
    Bengt :thumb:
  9. milenio3

    milenio3 Active Member

    Hola Compadre Bengt!!

    Very very nice that you continued this thread. Looking at your model, I can say it is like the "gradfather" of the Junker Ju87 "Stuka", for the many things they have in common.

    Thank you very much for such a great thread, and the history lessons.
  10. Alcides

    Alcides Member

  11. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Exploded View of Junkers G38

    Wow, Luis - amazing!

    THANK YOU! Where did you find that? That drawing is incredibly helpful - now I can even see where the seats are placed all over the interior of the plane.
    And the decks/floors of the interior will be a lot easier to place with the help of this image. The quality is outstanding - I have downloaded it and I will sharpen it a bit and print it as big as I can (A3+) on matte photo card.

    I will use it for the build from now on.

    I am very grateful for this.
    Bengt :thumb:
  12. Alcides

    Alcides Member


    I'm very happy the drawing is useful to you. bounce7

    And about where I found it, well you know sometime surf the net is a wast of times but sometimes you find some gold.

    I was reading some posts in this forum:

    Air Warfare Forum :: Index

    when in a post I red about a cutaway drawing for some plane. I went to the site only to discover a lot of cutaways drawings by this French artist Hubert Cance ( I'm saving them for future reference :twisted:).

    Here you have the full list: d'Gallery

    and when I found the cutaway for the Junkers G.38 Who cames to my mind? :idea: Beng modeling the Big Wing.

  13. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Precious Find

    Thanks Luis,

    You have really struck a gold mine here - 93 amazing artist´s cut-away drawings by Hubert Cance. So many fine airplanes - many of the Junkers, the 'Spirit of St. Louis', the Ford Tri-motor, the Fokker Dr.I (albeit with very thick tires), the Fokker 'Spinne', the GeeBee R-1, the Bugatti P 100 racer - many of them are 'planned' card model builds of mine.
    The quality is so very good that it is possible to make big prints out of them.

    Furthermore, if you want to build card models with longerons, formers, spars and ribs (see the "Paper on balsa" thread), these drawings are very helpful if you would like to stick to the original design.

    Bengt :thumb:
  14. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Junkers G.38 Wings, etc

    Hi all,

    I have now begun shaping the big wings - this has been a gradual work over some time, because the grain of the 230 gram/m2 paper happens to run diagonally across the leading edge and the leading edge should be very rounded almost all the way out to the tips - with no sharp bends or cracks. The paper have slowly given way to pressure and the angle of the bend has increased - I´m almost there now. I have pushed the box spars and ribs into the wing tips and the leading edge hasn´t cracked up. I will add a few more ribs and eventually glue it down.

    This is what the monster will look like with the wings in place - notice also that I have painted the leading edges of the rudders and elevators in 'Lufthansa-style' black.
    The same has been applied to the areas around the leading edge wing windows - they are shown upside down here, due to the thick landing gear wires:


    This is a newer version of the fuselage; it has, which I recently have discovered, too many windows, and the second round top window is too far forward - it should be placed after the last pair of windows (over the wash room). I have printed the backside of this fuselage dark gray, to avoid having to spray-paint the inside. I will now make some new parts (the middle two of the fuselage parts) with the original number of windows but with a somewhat lower placing of the last two. I will also apply the black decór rectangles around and between the windows as per the period photo of my previous post above.

    The front in a close-up; I have been cutting out a new cockpit with a gray backside-printed interior and I have been working with the windows of the nose - I will make another print and try again with those, because they should be a little higher. I will aslo try to paint the black edges around the windows in Photoshop instead of by hand, and insert the name logo and 'weapon shield' insignia below the windows. I will hint an interior, by adding a small horse shoe-shaped table and a tiny lamp, as in the period photo. The 'LUFTHANSA' logo is to be moved to a spot just under the leading edges of the wings:


    With the help of the large cutaway drawing (by artist Hubert Cance) that Luis found, I will start to work on the fuselage interior - I will scratch-build an interior structure with dark gray longerons (wooden or balsa sticks) so that the floorboards (and also the landing gear structure) have something to attach to. Some small window tables and passenger seats will complete the interior. After that, there´s the outer detailing, such as set-back ailerons and flaps, round and upright antennas, antenna wires, a Lufthansa flag, pitot tube, engine air intakes, and the landing gear with shock absorbers, dark gray rubber wheels, tail wheel assembly, and covers. We´ll get there - slowly but surely.

    More later.
    All the best,
    Bengt :thumb:
  15. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Tupolev ANT-20 "Maxim Gorkij" Giant Airliner

    Hi again,

    In the 30s, the Soviet Union (Russia) also built a giant metal airliner, the Tupolev ANT-20 "Maxim Gorkij", which was very similar in design to the Junkers G.38ce. Note for example the rooms inside the wings below. It had six engines.

    Hubert Cance has made a beautiful cutaway drawing of this plane, too:

    A Google picture search resulted in these interesting photos: "MAxim Gorkij"&oe=ISO-8859-1&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

  16. morewings

    morewings New Member

  17. paperbeam

    paperbeam Member

    Looking great Bengt!:thumb:

    I especially like your skill in cutting out the cockpit canopy as I (and I'm sure many others do) find it quite difficult to trim out small multiple sections and still leave the framework intact...:rolleyes:

    It's great that we have the internet and all the reference material is freely available. I remember the "old days" of taking up to a week of travelling to and from various libraries to find (or sometimes not at all) the correct information one was seeking. Now all you have to do is punch a few keys and...voila!


    Ping-Pong Ball Cannon and Old West models (free samples) at: paperbeam - virtual paper models
  18. Lex

    Lex Dollmaker

    An >extremely< sharp ex-acto blade is a must, I suppose :D
  19. I just stumbled on this thread for the first time, nice one Bengt!,BTW your photo's have a special quality, what kind of camera and light are you using?
    This Hubert Cance is an amazing artist, I found his drawing of the Bugatti earlier, but this site is awsum...
    Cheers, Billy
  20. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Giants Meet at Cologne Airport in 1931

    Hallo Roman,

    Thank you for that marvellous picture - I have seen a similar picture before but not of this high quality. Very interesting. I looked at the home page and it seems the photo is taken at the Free Rheinland festivities and sports flying competitions in July, 1931. On this occasion, the prototype Ju G.38a D-2000, the largest all-metal land plane in the world, (later christened "Deutschland") was shown to the public and spectators and prominent guests were offered round-trip flights of Cologne for the day. It was apparently also the first occasion where the two giants met, although the LZ-127 "Graf Zeppelin" airship had visited Cologne twice before. The "Graf", under Hugo Eckener´s command became known world-wide in 1929, when it was the first flying object to circum-navigate the entire globe. Also in 1931, The German Luft Hansa AG started a regular air line from Berlin to London and Paris, using the first Junkers G.38a "Deutschland".

    Hi Terry and Lex,
    The small windows of the canopy and fwd fuselage are cut out using the thinnest scalpel blade available (a fresh one, of course) - the Swann & Morton E11. I first made all the folds of the framework (using backside scoring) and then cut out the windows - it would otherwise have been impossible to fold the parts afterwards without damaging the windows.

    Hi Billy,
    Thank for the kind words - I am glad you like the thread. Yes, Hubert Cance is an amazing artist. He has made some fine cutaway paintings of spacecraft, too (for example the space shuttle), and several other drawings/paintings portraying cars, motorcycles, trains, ships, etc etc. The cutaway drawings of the aircraft are in very high resolution - I have downloaded many of them for modeling purposes.
    The camera I am using is a Nikon D200 digital system SLR with a macro lewns but for web purposes (at a relatively low resolution) any good digital camera will do. It is what you do AFTER the picture is taken (in Photoshop) that detirmines the quality of the photo. I always use available light (room lighting + halogen work bench lamp) and adjust the white point, colors, saturation, sharpness, etc of each picture in Photoshop before I post them.

    All the best,
    bengt :thumb:

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