JaPo | Messerschmitt Me 262 Production & Arado Ar 234 Final Operations

Reviewed by Floyd S. Werner, Jr.

Messerschmitt Me 262 Production & Arado Ar 234 Final Operations
Written by David E. Brown, Tomas Poruba, Jan Vladar

JaPo has been putting out some of the best researched books in recent memory. Their findings are without a doubt some of the best supported with data and logical conclusions. Their latest offering in the Luftwaffe over Czech Territory-1945 series deals with the Me 262, in particular the photo recon versions, and the Ar 234.

The softbound book contains 150 pages with over 220 photos and 15 color profiles. The high quality pages are filled with a plethora of information. The development of the Aufklarer version of the Me 262 is discussed. Not just the actual aircraft but the production centers and the various manufacturing facilities. Did you know there were two different versions of the photo recon variant? I didn’t.

The photos included in the book are a combination of color and black and white. The quality of the photos is of the highest quality. The color photos include an Ar 234C, one that confirms the colors of 81/82, and a series of a crashed Auflarer Me 262 that I’ve seen before but never so nicely rendered. The photos are impressive. Not only do you get the typical photos but the photos of the assembly plants and recovered remnants. All add to the value of this volume. Sure there are some Watson Wizard photos but the majority of the photos are before Watson’s boys took over.

Here is a fact I did not know, the NASM Me 262 had a replacement nose when it was in storage. It had a photo recon nose fitted by the time the NASM got the aircraft. There are a bunch of photographs from this machine prior to restoration.

Besides the photo recon Me 262s and Ar 234s there are other aircraft included in the book. These aircraft are featured in the previous volumes. New information has come to light and the authors have updated the information with photos, drawings and color profiles. One is a Me 262 “Yellow 3” from JG7, the other is a Bf 109K-4 “Red 7” from JG27 and the Me 262V11. The aircraft are quite colorful and the profiles are beautifully executed.

The camouflage of the Aufklarer Me 262 is quite unique and the authors have included some splendid four view drawings of many of the aircraft included in the text. The removable nose section makes for some unique looking camouflage.

The Ar 234C-3 is discussed and the something I’ve never noticed is that there is a difference between the prototype and the production versions. You’ll have to buy the book to find out what it is. There are plenty of new photos throughout the book not just in this section. There is a really nice little gem on the back cover from Kommando Beonow with the night fighting variant profile.

This latest offering from JaPo is everything that I’ve come to expect from them. The flawless research, informative read, beautiful photos, excellent profiles and historical significance all make this an excellent value. What more could you ask for out of a historical research project? Great job JaPo.

Highly recommended.

You can obtain your copy by contacting them at their website at www.japo.eu. Let them know you heard about it here.

© Floyd S. Werner, Jr. 2013

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This review was published on Sunday, October 13 2013; Last modified on Sunday, October 13 2013