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Author Topic: Victory marks on Pokryshkin's P-39 "100"  (Read 85948 times)
66misos
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« on: June 27, 2012, 01:05:41 PM »

Hi,

I saw recently a document film "Two wars of Ivan Kozedub" (Две войны Ивана Кожедуба) on Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lN1MrJEvW0. As usually, there is a lot of shots just for "illustrative purpose", not strictly related to the subject. At 22:23-22:26 minute there is a short sequence showing unmasking plane with a lot of victory marks (stars). Here is a screenshot of it:



It seems to be some P-39.
Star seems to be red without white outline. Plus, stars are oriented horizontally, with the same number in the first 3 lines. The fourth line has (at least) 4 stars less than previous lines. When comparing panel lines and stars dimensions to Rechkalov's ones it seems to be 35-36 victory marks.
However, as far as I know Kozedub did not fly P-39.

I have an old hardcopy of hardcopy of Pokryshkin's P-39N "100" photo showing victory stars (unknown number) and part of serial no. 2900x:



So I checked on Internet Russian WWII Aces flown P-39 with the "enough" number of victories:

Pilot                        Victories       P-39 Victories    
Aleksandr I. Pokryshkin        59                  48
Nikolay Gulaev                   57                   41   
Grigori A. Rechkalov            56                  50   
Dimitriy B. Glinka                50                   41   

and then check their color profiles on the wp.scn.ru :

1.) Reckalov



Stars are red but with the white outline plus they are not oriented horizontally, but slightly rotated to the left. Plus the first line contains more stars than the second and the third line.


2.) Gulaev Nikolay Dmitrievich

Victory marks completely different.


3.) Dmitriy Borisovich Glinka

Too few victory marks, however layout could be.


And finally I found the AML Decals sheet on http://www.aml.cz/index.php/en/2012-04-25-17-22-02/item/119-amlc-8-014

AML Decals shows victory stars in a layout very similar to the screenshot picture but only 31 (not 35-36) of them and with the white outline (not plain red).


So finally it seems that Pokryshkin's P-39N "100" of serial no. 29004 could wear up to 36 plain red victory marks on the left gun bay cover.
Any comments/corrections/additions are welcome.

Regards,
       66misos


« Last Edit: July 13, 2012, 03:35:45 PM by 66misos » Logged

Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2012, 02:28:35 PM »

Hi Michal,
the stars of the plane of Reckalov look head-down, I think that a head-up decal could be adapted if cutten to stripes and relocated.
I'm very doubtful on the blue background of the stars; P-39s were often delivered with white background, and I think that Soviets repainted it with green paint.
Regards
Massimo
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KL
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2012, 02:45:18 AM »

Slightly better reproductions





From Pokrishkin's biography by his wife Mariya



http://amyat.narod.ru/memo/pokryshkina_mk/index.htm

HTH,
KL
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KL
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« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2012, 04:51:38 AM »

1945 Movie "Aleksandr Pokrishkin" can be viewd at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYYkq20C_cI
or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7QzeXEWmzn4&feature=related

few fragments in better rez can be seen at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeqT3fJ1TtA&feature=relmfu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieR-k25UcVY&feature=related

Pokrishkin about the P-39 after the war
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MTrHPMsigmQ&feature=related
« Last Edit: June 28, 2012, 05:16:38 AM by KL » Logged
KL
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« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2012, 05:34:32 AM »

Pokrishkin's P-39 may not have had any victory markings.  Supposedly Pokrishkin was against anything that would attract enemy's attention.

Following drawing was published in 1990 P-39 booklet by Bakurski



 
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learstang
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« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2012, 09:24:19 PM »

I'd read that also about Pokryshkin, that he wasn't in favour of "kill" markings.  Perhaps this was a machine painted for propaganda purposes?

Regards,

Jason
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KL
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« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2012, 06:15:09 AM »

I'd read that also about Pokryshkin, that he wasn't in favour of "kill" markings.  Perhaps this was a machine painted for propaganda purposes?

Personally, I am very sceptical about this.  Yes, most of the published photos were taken for propaganda purposes by official photo correspondents.  Yes, photos were routinely retoushed (like photoshop today).

But, to repaint a plane or add some personall markings just for one photo session - not likelly....  It was easier to manipulate negatives/photos.  Or, in Pokrishkin's case - it was easier to photograph him in front of Rechkalov's colourfull P-39.

KL
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KL
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« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2012, 07:14:59 AM »

In addition to the heavilly retoushed photo (most likely the only one known) and 1945 movie which shows other 16giap planes, two other sources definitelly help to understand how Pokrishkin's Airacobra looked:
  
Aleksei Zakalyuk, a pilot of Pokrishkin's 16giap, was also a skilfull painter.  Several paintings he made in early 1950es represent Pokrishkin's combats.  Paintings were later, in 1970es and 1980es, reproduced in Pokrishkin's memoirs.  








Red spinner seen on many later profiles probably originates from first painting.

In 1974, G. Golubyev, another 16 giap ace, publishes his memoirs (Pair with the "Hundredth")





Factory number 29004 and fuselage star with standard white and thin red outline are clearly visible .

HTH,
KL
« Last Edit: June 29, 2012, 07:18:07 AM by KL » Logged
66misos
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« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2012, 11:21:45 AM »

Thanks for your info.
I watched briefly all that links. There is a video showing Pokryshkin in P-39 on highway. However, there is either P-39 no. 50 with red stars in white circles (K. Sukhov, 16 GIAP, Spring 1945):


or P-39 without number. Plus another P-39 with 3 thin white stripes on upper wing (above guns?). I did not find there P-39 no. 13 or 100.

I met guys from AML Decals on the plastic kit show some time ago and I discussed Pokryshkin camo with them. I was told that Pokryshkin's mechanic confirmed that there were victory marks on P-39 no. 100. Unfortunately I do not know what is the source of this confirmation. Book, interview?

KL, I fully agree with you that it would not be very probable to paint 30+ victory stars on his arcraft only for some propaganda shot. But even less probable to paint them on someone's else aircraft.

However, when I look at (may be retouched) photo:

I can see:
- there IS something painted on the upper part of the gun bay cover, top line clearly visible, line bellow visible partially,
- there is no thin white line on the bottom of the red flash on the rudder,
- fuselage red star is without white,
- hard to say whether fuselage red star is on the original blue circle, or blue circle is repainted to green.

Plus other P-39s from 16th GIAP have red spinner.

This picture could represent mentioned above:

Only something should be painted on the gun bay cover.

That "something" (at least for me) could be victory marks, 35-36 red stars without white outline:


Regards,
     66misos


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KL
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« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2012, 05:14:59 PM »

Thanks for your info.
I watched briefly all that links. There is a video showing Pokryshkin in P-39 on highway. However, there is either P-39 no. 50 with red stars in white circles (K. Sukhov, 16 GIAP, Spring 1945):


or P-39 without number. Plus another P-39 with 3 thin white stripes on upper wing (above guns?). I did not find there P-39 no. 13 or 100.

Correct, no Pokrishkin's "100".  You must have noticed Pokrishkin in Rechkalov's P-39 cockpit wearing flying gear and that he did fly Suhov's plane.

However, when I look at (may be retouched) photo:

I can see:
- there IS something painted on the upper part of the gun bay cover, top line clearly visible, line bellow visible partially,
- there is no thin white line on the bottom of the red flash on the rudder,
- fuselage red star is without white,
- hard to say whether fuselage red star is on the original blue circle, or blue circle is repainted to green.

1.  Photo is definitely retouched!  No doubts about that.  I would not rely on it very much, but it's a personal choice  Wink
2.  Blue disc is extremely unlikely.  It's a myth, profile artist's fantasy!  Most Soviet Airacobras were made as a Land-Lease contract and they had white circles.  Only those diverted from USAF contracts would have blue discs.  Only few, if any, of those existed.

HTH,
KL
« Last Edit: June 29, 2012, 06:05:37 PM by KL » Logged
KL
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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2012, 04:53:09 AM »

Pokrishkin's P-39 "100" was discussed at scalemodels.ru forum in 2009 at http://scalemodels.ru/modules/forum/viewtopic_t_14131_start_0.html

Igor Zlobin, who had studied original 16 giap journals and other relevant docs in archives, provides following information:

И так по документам ЦАМО и анализам фотографий самолетов 16 ГвИАП:
На кубани в апреле-июне в 16 ГвИАП
1- не было красных пилоток
2-не было красных коков
3-обозначения побед на самолете покрышкина неприсутствуют.





Now when photo is dated (spring 1943!!!), other details make sense :
- Red tail tips were introduced in 16 giap in summer 1943
- Stars with wide white and thin red outline were introduced in Sept 1943.

IMHO, Pokrishkin's P-39 29004 case is closed... There were no victory marks on this plane.

KL
« Last Edit: June 30, 2012, 05:13:38 AM by KL » Logged
66misos
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« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2012, 01:21:35 PM »

Hi KL,

thanks for your mail. I browsed also that russian pages - a lot of interesting info.
I still did do not give up regarding Pokryshkin's victory marks  Wink

However, while browsing russian pages, I found article of Alexander F. Klubov from 16. GvIAP http://airaces.narod.ru/all1/klubov.htm, that could teoretically address my first picture above - 35-36 victory stars on P-39 gun bay cover, although Klubov's victory stars distinguish between individual (red/white outline stars) and group (white stars) victories:





HOWEVER,
1.) you wrote
Quote
На кубани в апреле-июне в 16 ГвИАП
1- не было красных пилоток
2-не было красных коков
3-обозначения побед на самолете покрышкина неприсутствуют.

2.) accorging to the http://airaces.narod.ru/all1/pokrish1.htm by the end of the June 1943 Pokryshkin won 27.
He won 35 victories on October 7, 1943, resp. 36 victories on November 5, 1943, e.g. definitely after the period you mentioned (april-jun 1943).





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66misos
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« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2012, 02:03:37 PM »

I found this picture on the scalemodel.ru:



where from bottom to top are (if I read correctly) P-39 K15 "130", spring 1934, P-39 N-0 (S/N 29004) Summer 1943 and P-39 N-5 September 1943.

On the www.sukhoi.ru/forum there a reply (March 2006) to this picture:

Эти иллюстрации принадлежат "перу" все того же Игоря Злобина (там внизу и подпись есть) - вернется в мае, спросите у него, откуда это он рисовал. Кстати - он с Вами земляк
Да - и нос средней машины весь в звездюльках...

translated:
These images belong to the "pen" of the same Igor Zlobin (down there and the signature is).

KL, I think this is the same Igor Zlobin you mentioned in your post from Jun 29:
Quote
Igor Zlobin, who had studied original 16 giap journals and other relevant docs in archives...

The middle P-39 on that picture has something painted on the nose, and opinions in the discussion on that forum are similliar to mine:
- Да - и нос средней машины весь в звездюльках (e.g. Yes - the nose and the middle machine is in the stars)
- Вообще-то да - если хорошо приглядется именно на спорном борте 29004 есть звезды (e.g Actually, yes - if you look closely there are stars on controversial 29 004).

So I continue to search  Wink

Regards,
    66misos

« Last Edit: July 11, 2012, 01:37:37 PM by 66misos » Logged

66misos
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« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2012, 04:01:02 PM »

Sorry, I forgot to add link to the picture on the sukhoi forum.
Here it is:   http://www.sukhoi.ru/forum/showthread.php?t=45563&page=4

    66misos
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KL
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« Reply #14 on: July 03, 2012, 10:22:49 PM »

I found this picture on the scalemodel.ru:


...
On the www.sukhoi.ru/forum there a reply (March 2006) ...

sukhoi.ru forum thread was a discussion between a bunch of computer artists looking for attractive skins.  Nobody there worked with primary sources.  Instead, they reffered to info available in popular literature and internet sources.  There was even a reference to Pilawskii's colour table...  Lips Sealed

Your picture is displayed at the museum in Novosibirsk.  Profiles are made by same Zlobin.  If posted in 2006, profiles are quite old.
Zlobin took part in 2009 discussion at scalemodels.ru and he presented corrected profile of the P-39 No 29004 with no viktory marks.

IMHO, the most relevant info is what Pokrishkin himself wrote - if he said no viktory marks, there were no victory marks, regardless of a poor retouched photo.

KL
 
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