I'm bringing you yet another interview, this time with Martin Ferkl who was responsible for marking options selection for the Bf 109G-6 1/48 ProfiPACK. Read the interview below and also find out some more details about the upcoming, and also discussed, Bf 109G 1/48 Royal Class, which is planned to be released in July 2014.
Amongst many other things, it was your task to pick the marking options that will appear on the decal sheet of the new Bf 109G-6 1/48 ProfiPACK. What were the main criteria for choosing the final ones?
Modelers generally like to build colorful scale kits, and aircraft that were flown by fighter aces. So each time, I try to pick interesting machines; be it because of the fate of the pilot or the history of the machine itself, and any notable markings. The marking scheme options should also appeal to modelers who don't yet have any 109s in their display cabinets, as well as as those experienced builders, who have been modeling for many years. That's why our selection consists of very famous and also slightly neglected marking options.
Final marking options selection for Bf 109G-6 1/48 ProfiPACK
Was there any intersting marking option that you wanted to include on the decal sheet, but had to be left out in the end?
Yes, there was. This happens with each scale kit we produce, as we make our selection from a wide range of machines, known here as the ‚long-list‘. Speaking of this specific ProfiPACK release, the machine flown by Kurt Gabler from JG 300 didn't make it into the final selection.
Will this machine appear in some future releases of this Bf 109G kit?
Definitely. A huge opportunity is also presented to us by the way of the upcoming Royal Class edition. We are also considering several thematic Limited Editions.
How does the Bf 109G appeal to you personally? You are known to have passion for mostly Japanese machines. Professionaly speaking, it probably doesn't make a lot of difference to you, but it is a definite change for your normal interest. When you compare your work while selecting markings for the Bf 109G and Spitfire Mk. IX releases, did the Bf 109 present you with other possibilities?
The Zero, Spitfire, and Bf 109; these were all built in huge numbers, so the range of markings to pick from is quite wide. With that, I don't see any difference from that perspective. Bf 109s were, however, the most colourful of all of these types, so I can create a set of markings for individual scale kit editions much more easily. On the other hand, they are also the most intricate in terms of the actual schemes themselves.
Try to briefly outline your experiences with aviation history and journalism from before your time at Eduard.
Even though I published my first articles in "Letectvi a kosmonautika" (Aeronautics and Cosmonautics), the biggest opportunity was given to me by REVI. Most of my articles were released in this magazine. Under the banner of this publisher, I was also able to publish three monographies about Japanese aircraft. I also managed the scale kits section of the magazine, so this whole experience was very valuable for me, and I'm grateful to Petr Stachura, the owner of REVI, for letting me be a part of it. Unfortunately, I currently don't have much time for writing articles anymore.
Martin Ferkl at his workdesk
On what are you working at the moment?
Currently, we're compiling marking option materials for the Bf 109G Royal Class; sixteen machines in total. The kit will include versions G-2, G-4, G-6 and G-14. As well as this kit, we're also working on other projects, which are planned for the upcoming months. I'm currently spending a lot of time with Czechoslovak MiG-21s, versions PF/PFM/R, as we're getting closer to the release date of this kit as a Limited Editon with an included photo publication. It is worth mentioning, that we have external associates, who help us prepare our kits. These people dedicate lot of their time to a specific aircraft, so in many cases, we rely on their knowledge.
Can you tell us some curiosities regarding the Bf 109G Royal Class edition?
We're trying to base our selection of markings around famous figther aces - Hartmann, Barkhorn, Trautloft, Bär. Gustav fans will also enjoy a scheme with desert camo. We also haven't forgotten the Bf 109G in service in Finland, Hungary, Switzerland and Romania, and also pilots of the Slovak state in their fight against the Soviet Union. Royal Class also allows us space for some lesser known aircraft, like those of KG 55. The final mix of markings should satisfy every fan of the Messerschmitt, or WWII fighters generally.
Which upcoming Eduard project are you looking forward to the most?
In Autumn, we'll begin the design of another aircraft kit. With this project, we'll have a chance to create not only the plastic parts themselves from the very beginning, but also a range of accessory sets, which will give modelers the opportunity to shift the final look of their kit by one or more levels. That will be a real challenge. Another favourite project is the 1/48 SSW D.III, which in my opinion is one of the most beautiful WWI aircraft. And then, there are also 72nd scale kits, scaled down from our quarter-scale versions. As a modeler, I'm very much looking forward to those, as my display cabinet is quite small.