Kampfgeschwader 40 photo gallery

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor attacking Allied Merchant Shipping 01-02

Photo’s 01-02: These two pictures show various Merchant shipping being attacked by unknown Fw 200C Condor’s.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor being serviced 01

Photo 01: An early Fw 200C1 or a C2 under construction. The distinguishing feature is the earlier style engine cowlings which contained the BMW 132H radial engine rated at 830 hp at 1100 metres. The C-l model introduced the ventral gondola offset to starboard on the Condor, which became such a common feature on all subsequent models.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor being serviced 02

Photo 02: An interesting comparison to the photograph at the top of the page, this picture shows an Fw 200C-3/U2 undergoing heavy maintenance, the later style stream-lined cowlings housing the BMW-Bramo 323R-2 Fafnir nine-cylinder radial engines being most apparent. Note the access hatches open in the nose and gondola.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor crew compartment 01

Photo 01: A scene inside the port fuselage of an Fw-200 during an over-water mission. Note the large 300 ltr fuel tank, one of five such tanks that could be installed in the fuselage for extended long-range missions. These unprotected tanks presented a major fire hazard, and made the aircraft vulnerable to return fire from ships or fighter aircraft. The aircrew member is seated in the second radio operator's take-off seat, he has his earphones plugged into the aircraft's communications system while studying map co-ordinates.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor forward HDL 151 turret 01

Photo 01: A very clean Fw 200C-3 or early C-4 Condor awaits its armament which has probably been removed for stripping and cleaning between operations. Note the positions of the four propellers - undoubtedly the ground crew took pride in the appearance of their aircraft.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor forward gondola 01

Photo 02:

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor on patrol Bay of Biscay 01-02

Photo’s 01-02: These two pictures show the same image but with varying clarity of Fw 200C Condor escorted by Ju-88 on patrol over the Bay of Biscay.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor overhead view 01

Photo 01: Excellent detail is given in this overhead view of an Fw 200 C-3 Condor. Of interest is the canopy, showing escape hatches, internal overhead (folded) blinds and sliding windows. Aft of the cockpit is the low drag Fw 19 dorsal gun turret minus its 7.9-mm MG 15 machine gun. The small three pronged erection just forward of the turret is a blast guard (to prevent the machine gun from firing into the cockpit). The wording 'Nur hier betreten' on the port irmer wing walk-way means 'Only walk here'. Note the five circular fuel filler points for the five internal fuselage tanks atop the fuselage adjacent to the teardrop shaped blister, which is one of two vents to clear the fuselage of fuel vapor.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor top gondola 01

Photo 01: Detail photograph of a low-drag Fw 19 hydraulically-operated turret with a single 7.9 mm. MG 15 machine gun in the A-Stand on an Fw 200 C-3. At the bottom of the picture can be seen a portion of the curved tubing forming part of the blast guard to prevent the machine gun from firing into the cockpit.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor ventral gondola 01

Photo 01: This Fw 200C-3 or early C-4, features the improved armament introduced on these models - notably the forward dorsal hydraulically-operated HDL 151 turret housing a single 15 mm M G 151 canon and another with a 300-round belt in the nose of the early style ventral gondola.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 being refueled 01

Photo 01: A KG 40 Fw 200 C-3 Condor receives fuel prior to its next mission.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 being serviced 01

Photo 01: A Focke-Wulf Fw-200 Condor of I./KG 40 in the process of being serviced in either France or Norway in 1940/41. Note the feathered propeller, lack of armament in the ventral gondola, removed for servicing, and the red oxide primer applied roughly to panel joints under the nose.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 being serviced 02

Photo 02: A Focke-Wulf Fw-200 Condor of I./KG 40 undergoing maintenance and engine checks.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 being serviced 03

Photo 03: Major Edgar Petersen acquired the first Condors for his specialist long range anti-shipping unit later to be known as l./KG 40.This example undergoing a tail wheel change has the early type Balkenkreuz with the aircraft's individual letter 'B' painted in red and outlined in white.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 being serviced 04

Photo 04: An Fw 200C3 of KG40 undergoing maintenance on the ramp. The C-3 embodied major strengthening to the main spar and fuselage in an attempt to curb the structural failures. This model also saw the introduction of the low drag Fw 19 hydraulically-operated forward dorsal turret with a single 7.9 mm machine gun.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 Bordeaux 1943 01

Photo 01: Focke-Wulf Fw 200C3 Condor seen in the background just prior to its mission. It’s crew members using a pair of dividers to determine how long it will take them to reach their target. As the other crew members warm up the engines before climbing on aboard. Flights where often very long and tedious even with or without some excitement on the way.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 crew entry door 01

Photo 01: The crew entry door on a 7./KG 40 Condor betrays its airliner origins.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 crews 01-05

Photo’s 01-05: This series of colour photographs was taken for propaganda purposes and was published in a wartime book on the Luftwaffe called 'Fliegende Front'. The photographs show Fw-200 aircraft and crews of KG 40 based at Bordeaux-Merignac in the summer of 1941.All the aircraft have had their 'World in a Ring' unit emblems painted out, probably as part of a censorship precaution. In the photograph a crew receives its briefing, whilst Photo 02 crew members don three variations of flying helmet, the summer-weight LKp S 101, winter-weight LKp W 100 (or LKp W 101) and the lightweight summer version, LKp N 101. All wear the same K So/34 one-piece cotton flying suit with the SWp 734 10-30 Schwimmweste (life vest) and note how some crew wear their flying suits over their fleece-lined boots. Also visible lying on the ground around the crew are fuel hoses. Photo 03 shows the nose gunners position.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 emblem 01

Photo 01: Close-up of KG 40's famous 'world in a ring' emblem, reflecting the nature of its long-range maritime operations. When reproduced on either side of the aircraft it was 'handed' so that the ring pointed down and forward. The emblem was in continuous use until very late in the war.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 engine maintenance 01

Photo 01: A Focke-Wulf Fw 200C3 Condor undergoing engine maintenance on its four BMW-Bramo 323R-2 Fafnir nine-cylinder radial engines at Bordeaux-Merignac. Rated at 1,000 hp at sea level and 1,200 hp at take-off with the aid of methanol-water injection, the C-3 model offered much improved performance over previous sub-types.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 forward HDL 151 turret 01

The forward fuselage of a Fw 200C-4 Condor shows the distinguishing features of this much-produced model: namely the upper dorsal hydraulically operated HDL 151 turret housing a single 15-mm MG 151 cannon with a 500-round belt with a spare 300-round belt. Although the increase in fire power was appreciated, it did come with a penalty, notably a reduction in top speed by 26-29 k/ph (not all C-4s were fitted with this turret - some reverted to the earlier Fw 19 type). The other distinguishing feature is the Lotfe 7D bombsight, which considerably improved the Condor's bombing accuracy. Also of note is the redesigned and more streamlined glazing in the ventral gondola first seen in some C-3 Condors.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 loading SC-250 bombs 01-02

Photo’s 01-04: These two pictures show the preparation of loading by use of a hydraulic jack some SC 250 bombs outboard of the engines of a Fw 200 Condor of KG 40. Note the use of wooden blocks under the bomb on the hydraulic jack to enable the bomb to be attached to the shackles in these outboard positions. Note also the high racking Luftwaffe officer watching the loading process in the photograph to the right.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 Norway 01

Photo 01: An alternative to pre-heating the engines prior to starting in cold conditions was to position the aircraft beneath a specially constructed temporary building. Apart from assisting maintenance in cold weather, this building also enabled the work to be carried out with a degree of comfort both by day and night. This Fw 200 belonged to KG 40 based in Norway.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 waist position 01

Photo 01: Gunner's view from the starboard waist position of a Fw-200 Condor on patrol low over the sea. Note the saddle magazine for the 7.9 mm MG 15 machine gun.

KG40 attack British convoy 1941 01

Photo 01: A photograph taken from a Fw-200 Condor of I./KG 40 in October 1941 of a British convoy. By the time this photograph was taken, offensive operations by the Condor had to be restricted to shadowing convoys etc. due to the increasing numbers of merchant ships being equipped with anti-aircraft guns, in the summer of 1941 and the introduction of catapult merchant ships (CAM) by the Royal Navy. This latter development involved a Hurricane being catapulted from the forward bows of the merchant ship when the enemy aircraft was sighted. Its major drawback was the fact that the Hurricane had to be ditched in the sea alongside an Allied vessel in order for the pilot to be hopefully - picked up after the engagement. Nevertheless the Condors suffered with the first loss to the CAM ships on 3 August 1941 when an aircraft of l./KG 40 was shot down by Lt. Everett flying from HMS Maplin.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor KG40 attack on MS Starstone W Donegal 1940 01

Photo 01: The 5,702 tonne merchant ship 'Starstone' lies damaged and burning west of Donegal on 31 October 1940 after being attacked by a lone Fw 200 of l./KG 40 flown by an unidentified Feldwebel.

KG40 attack and sinking of MS Tunisia 1941 01-02

Photo’s 01-02: Two views of what is believed to be the merchant vessel 'Tunisia' under attack and eventually sunk by Focke-Wulf Fw-200 Condors of KG 40 on 4 August 1941.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor attacking Allied Merchant Shipping 01-02

Photo's 01-02: These two pictures show various Merchant shipping being attacked by unknown Fw 200C Condor's.

Map of Luftwaffe Bases Mediterranean 1942-44

Map showing range of Fw-200 Condor from France to Atlantic

Map Images showing the bases and operational ranges of the Fw-200 Condor.

Focke-Wulf Fw 200C Condor 7./KG40 attack on the liner Duchess of York 01-02

Photo 01-02: Result of an attack by 7./KG 40 on 11 July 1943. The photographs show the burning liner Duchess of York, attacked by Oblt Ludwig Progner, Hptm Helmut Liman and Oblt Egan Scherret.

The convoy had been detected by the Luftwaffe and three Condors from 7./KG40 commanded by Hptm Helmut Liman, Oblt Ludwig Progner and Oblt Egon Scherret had been sent to investigate. At 2010 hrs they commenced their attacks, each aircraft dropping four 250 kg bombs from high altitude and with extreme accuracy. Pit Off Peter Dyson was a passenger on the Duchess of York:

“There was a series of explosions, all the lights went out and the mirrors shattered. I was unhurt and soon scrambled up and out onto the promenade deck, to see the ship ablaze from amidships to the stern. We had been hit by a string of three bombs dropped by Condors. Both the other ships were also ablaze, the convoy had been wiped out. We discovered years later that we were off the coast of Portugal and thought to be out of range of the Condors, but it was supposed that these had been based in ‘neutral' Spain, though whether that was actually so I never heard. The other troopship was the California, many of the passengers on which were civilians, including a lot of young Irish nuns bound for missions in Africa. After the war I discovered that an old school friend was killed on the California, he was in the colonial service. The third ship was a "fast cargo-liner" and she survived, the fires were extinguished and a destroyer towed her into Casablanca a few days later.

Although I have forgotten many of the details of my service life, the events of the next few weeks are as clear as ever and I could write many pages about them. Briefly, I was picked up by a lifeboat and transferred via scrambling nets to a Royal Navy frigate which picked up several hundred survivors. After two days we docked at Casablanca and we survivors were taken over by the US army and housed in a tented transit camp.”

The convoy responded with a heavy barrage of anti-aircraft fire but the Duchess of York was immediately enveloped in flames. The California then had a near miss which tore a 100 ft long hole in her starboard side above the waterline. Soon afterwards the California was attacked a second time, being hit by two bombs, one of which hit in No 2 hold and the other between the funnel and the bridge; a third bomb went into the sea but blew a hole in the starboard side in the vicinity of No 7 hold.

According to the Captain's report, the California's engines were undamaged in the attack but the steering gear was put out of action and all communication with the bridge was lost except for the engine room telegraph. However, the real threat was from fire for, as he reported, "the whole vessel appeared to be blazing". After the second hit, he ordered the engines to be stopped and the boats lowered. Though at first it was hoped that it might still be possible to save the ship, the fire and heat were so terrific that it was obvious that the situation was hopeless and the order to abandon ship was given. Of 30 lifeboats on the ship, 17 got away safely as well as a number of rafts. 45 crew and 21 passengers were eventually reported missing and one man subsequently died in hospital. It was a similar story on the Duchess of York: 27 passengers and crew lost their lives.

The attack, from just under 5,000 metres, was a spectacular success, lasting a little less than 30 minutes during which time six attacking runs were made and 14 bombs were said to have been dropped - 4 were direct hits and 10 were near misses. The hulk of the Duchess of York was still afloat the following morning and was photographed by the Condor commanded by Hptm Paul Husslein of III./KG 40 who was possibly responsible for damaging the only surviving ship from the convoy, the Port Fairy, that same day.

 Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport, Mérignac, France Map

IL-2 Sturmovik 'Cliff's of Dover' - COD game skins

    Book References: +

  • Gunston, Bill. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Combat Aircraft of World War II, Salamander Books, London, 1977.
  • Kay, Anthony L and Smith, J R. German Aircraft of the Second World War, Putnam, London, 2002 (Rev Ed).
  • Mondey, David. The Hamlyn Concise Guide to Axis Aircraft of World War II, Bounty Books, London, 2006.

    Magazine References: +

  • Airfix Magazines (English) - http://www.airfix.com/
  • Avions (French) - http://www.aerostories.org/~aerobiblio/rubrique10.html
  • FlyPast (English) - http://www.flypast.com/
  • Flugzeug Publikations GmbH (German) - http://vdmedien.com/flugzeug-publikations-gmbh-hersteller_verlag-vdm-heinz-nickel-33.html
  • Flugzeug Classic (German) - http://www.flugzeugclassic.de/
  • Klassiker (German) - http://shop.flugrevue.de/abo/klassiker-der-luftfahrt
  • Le Fana de L'Aviation (French) - http://boutique.editions-lariviere.fr/site/abonnement-le-fana-de-l-aviation-626-4-6.html
  • Le Fana de L'Aviation (French) - http://www.pdfmagazines.org/tags/Le+Fana+De+L+Aviation/
  • Osprey (English) - http://www.ospreypublishing.com/
  • Revi Magazines (Czech) - http://www.revi.cz/

    Web References: +

  • Wikipedia.org - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heinkel_He_219

This webpage was updated 5th January 2017