The story of the British Hawker Typhoon in WWII is one best told in two acts. Its early use beginning in 1941 met with very mixed service results against superior planes in the German Luftwaffe and production of the plane was nearly scrapped by the Royal Air Force. However, with a bit of re-purposing, the Typhoon’s speed was soon coupled with increasingly-heavy bomb payloads to become an effective fighter bomber against ground targets.
In 1943, the Typhoon really came into its own when armed with wing-mounted rockets and fuel tanks providing greater flight range. While of questionable effectiveness against tough-armored German tanks, a run from a squadron of Typhoons with rockets firing struck fear into German forces and devastated supply lines and production facilities in Western Europe. The Typhoon’s role in D-Day, Operation Goodwood, Operation Varsity and other engagements was both disruptive and deadly in support of ground campaigns all the way to the war’s end.
Flames of War offers a model of the Typhoon as well as a short online guide to painting their model. With my British ground forces fairly well built out with artillery, tanks, infantry and support weapons, adding some air support seemed to be the next natural step as well as another interesting modelling project.
I picked up my model online at a slight discount online and went straight to work. I painted the plane in a RAF grey and green camouflage pattern with yellow details to the nose and leading wing edges. Next, I added black and white “invasion stripes” which had been used on Typhoons since earlier in the war, although my plane was going to be flying over late war Normandy. The decals included with the kit finished off the plane with “V” markings, subtly allowing me to add my own initial to my completed plane. Finally, a little watery rusty brown wash brushed along the seams in the fuselage added a weathered look of many previously-flown missions.
With my existing American P-47 Thunderbolt, having the Typhoon in my miniature Allied arsenal is sure to add more depth and choice to my Late War Western Europe gaming. With the Typhoon hitting the table in the near future, my hope is its presence above the battlefield will rain rocket-fueled terror and distraction on my German opponents just as they did over Europe some 70 years ago.