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'A gaping silken dragon,/Puffed by the wind, suffices us for God./We, not the City, are the Empire's soul:/A rotten tree lives only in its rind.'

Saturday, 8 June 2013


With some industrial levels of sanding this evening, the Arado 196 has moved forward in the production process. I blogged yesterday that I was quite taken with the idea of finishing it in light blue overall, as one of the Arado 196s embarked on auxiliary cruisers in the early years of the war. This led to a very useful comment from a chap who has an excellent blog called, FalkeEins. A few years ago, FalkeEins exhibited a photograph of an Arado 196 in overall hellblau. The photo is, apparently, of an aircraft that was embarked on the 'Orion', and there are a few interesting things about it. Firstly, although the Arado is pretty well marked up with fuselage and wing crosses, there is no swastika on the tailplane. Secondly, the floats appear to be in a much darker finish than the rest of the aircraft. The photo might, I suspect, have been taken prior to the 'Orion' leaving for her deadly cruise in the Indian Ocean and beyond, as the photo in Dabrwoski and Koos' book shows a heavily damaged Arado which looks like this:

As you can see, this Arado carries no markings at all, and looking at the damage, perhaps it isn't too big a leap to suggest that this was why the 'Orion' ended up with a Nakijima E8N on board - the only German navy vessel to have operated a Japanese aircraft. And I think I will finish my Arado in the markings-less state, as befits what was a German version of a 'Q' ship.

Finally, while looking round the web for images of Arados, I came across this site , which provides a fair amount of information about the auxiliary cruisers, and includes a nice shot of the 'Komet' with an Arado on board.

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