Help support TMP

"1/300 German bomber lettering" Topic

40 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the WWII Aviation Product Reviews Message Board

Back to the WWII Aviation Painting Guides Message Board

1,682 hits since 28 Jun 2010
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

BlackSmoke Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 7:36 a.m. PST

Does anyone know of any letter decals that would be suitable for 1/300 German bombers? I've looked high and low and never found anything! There's ample stuff for fighters on both sides*, but all I have for bombers are the Balkenkreuz.

* I have been using I-94(I think that's the manufacturer?) 'Decal Details' BR-113 sheets for my BoB Hurricanes. I started from the top left which states 56 Sqn 'UM'. Alas, it turns out that 56 Sqn was a Spitfire squadron with 'US' as the code. 'UM' was 152 Sqn, also Spitfires, so a word of warning to anyone about to apply these decals to their Hurricanes. If you want authenticity, then check out the codes first.

bobblanchett28 Jun 2010 7:49 a.m. PST

the closest available seems to be I-94
L(bwyr)-100 sets
Dave Winfree usually has two or so of the colours on hand with others on way via reprint.
email him before you order to check what he has on hand.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 8:27 a.m. PST

Scale Specialties have a couple of excellent sheets for specific B of B Luftwaffe bomber units.

Timmo uk28 Jun 2010 9:15 a.m. PST

Yup the I-94 sheet mentioned above has an error. If you are really pedantic some of the other British codes are the wrong sizes for their respective squadrons but that didn't bother me since the originals had a mix of styles.

However, the good news is that Dave at I-94 tells me that he will be doing some lettering for German WW2 planes.

As Dom mentions there are a couple of beautiful sheets available from Scale Specialities for German bombers but they are endlessly frustrating in that you can do individual aircraft or perhaps a pair or even three from a unit but if you want a squadron there aren't the variations to allow that. What makes it more annoying is that it would have been very easy to add the individual letters to resolve the issue.

He writes wishing there were more decals sheets like the one Dom did for Raiden that allow for whole units:


Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 9:19 a.m. PST

Sadly I know exactly how many that sold, rather hinting at why there aren't more….

Personal logo Wyatt the Odd Supporting Member of TMP Fezian28 Jun 2010 9:22 a.m. PST

You'll want to talk to Norm Harms at Scale Specialties. He has the proper codes for given units. And, in the case of British aircraft, they're the accurate color too.


Timmo uk28 Jun 2010 9:39 a.m. PST


Unusual choice of unit perhaps is the reason for poor sales? Mind you I live in a bubble and stuff that I think I'd die to get hold of nobody else cares a hoot for.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 10:24 a.m. PST

I live in a bubble and stuff that I think I'd die to get hold of nobody else cares a hoot for.

Pretty much everyone does, hence my request list scheme dying on its ass when I tried it everyone has wants, and most of them are different to everyone else's Genda's Blade are probably in the top 10 of well-known aircraft units of WW2, and almost certainly the most famous Japanese one, yet they rate "unusual choice" and laughable sales….

You could well be right about "unusual choice" at that, but if so it raises the question "is there actually such a thing as a "usual" choice…?" Beyond 617 squadron, and maybe LentoLaivue 24 for true airheads, I don't think there actually is, which poses a rather significant problem….

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 10:34 a.m. PST

"is there actually such a thing as a "usual" choice…?"

Of course there is – 345th Bomb Group, the Air Apaches. thumbs up

(Sorry Dom, I HAD to do that. Of course, I'm one of the nut jobs who bought the Genda's Blade set, and I bought it just for and because of the decals.)

Pajaro Muerto28 Jun 2010 10:47 a.m. PST

Dom, your BoB fighter Geschwader decal sheet has saved me tons of micro brush strokes :)

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 11:04 a.m. PST

Back to the OP:

For my He-111, Do-17, and Ju-88 planes I've used the Scale Specialties decals. They're absolutely superb. I've done 12 of each of those types, and while all 12 are not from the same squadron nobody has ever said "Oi! The planes in that formation are from 2 different Kampfgruppen!"

For my Ju-87 and Bf-110 planes I used I-94 letters and numbers (the smallest size ones, from the -101 sheets IIRC) with national insignias and "crooked crosses" from Dom. Yeah, it's kind of difficult putting 5 different decals on each side of the fuselage, but they look great when finished (credit to the decals, not necessarily my painting).

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 11:08 a.m. PST

I'll second Pajaro Muerto! The decals from Dom's Geschwader sheet grace all of my Bf-109s and Fw=190s. Don't take my word for how good those decals look – ask The Wyatt, he's seen (and shot down) my planes.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member28 Jun 2010 12:16 p.m. PST

Sorry Dom, I HAD to do that.

Forgiven – your answer may have made me die a little inside, but it did rather prove my point…. :-p

BlackSmoke Inactive Member29 Jun 2010 4:34 a.m. PST

Third for Dom's Geschwader sheet! Also for the I-94 BoB codes. As for unit markings I'd quite happily buy sheets of pre-made generic bomber unit markings like the BoB ones from I-94. I'm not overly concerned that one unit maybe weren't in the area of another and such, but as long as the codes were authentic or generic enough to not matter, I'd put them on. Like highlandcatfrog (thanks for the help, by the way) points out…no-one's ever pointed out that the UM code on my Hurries is wrong (though it won't stop me changing them)!

Historicalgamer Inactive Member29 Jun 2010 4:46 a.m. PST

I would love sets of unit markings for all nationalities.
I would also love the small blue markings on the Italian planes, and squadron insignias and nose art for all forces.

I would also like a few Royal Thai elephants and Dutch "non-neutrality" markings.

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member29 Jun 2010 8:50 a.m. PST

You're certainly welcome GoodWood! I've always felt that more decals=more better, and it's good to know I'm not the only one nutty enough to put squadron codes on everything.

Check out the Scale Specialties sheets Wyatt linked to. I've used 2 of each of them and they really do make the bombers look good. I've also gone through the P-47 sheet, 2 of the B-17 sheets, I'll be starting on the B-24 sheet within the next few days, and their new sheet for the 4th FG should arrive today.

Hey Dom, you know from my emails that I might be a little crazy, but I've got my finger poised over the "Send payment now" button in case you ever do another squadron sheet (for ANYTHING!). thumbs up

Timmo uk30 Jun 2010 5:48 a.m. PST

Arrrrgh , when did SS do the 4th FG sheet, I can't find out any info on it? I'm just doing the 4th now and fear it may be too late.

Funny cos the 4th FG might be classed as a 'usual' choice [see above]. Dom did some decals for Majic, I-94 do some and now this SS sheet so everybody has covered it!

I, on the other hand, really want the 78th FG.

I agree more decals the better. All my stuff has full sqd codes and I've even gone to the bother of having stuff custom printed for me ZG26 BoB and Jasta 13 circa May/June1918.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 7:39 a.m. PST

78th…? Yes, they should be a doddle to get to fit…. :-( The SS 4th sheet is brand new – I've not seen it yet, but there's a mention on their site of 18th June release….

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 9:01 a.m. PST

Dom has it right, the Scale Specialties sheet was just released. Mine arrived yesterday. It covers 3 P-47s and 6 P-51Bs, including Gentile's Shangri-La. Very nice.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 9:04 a.m. PST

I really wish I'd abandoned this topic a dozen posts ago – I now find myself looking at 352nd FG Mustangs, which can only end badly….

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 9:08 a.m. PST

PS – Shall have to keep my eyes peeled for the new SS sheet – Shangri-La's a great choice, and a fine example of a pilot using checkerboard in a thoughtful manner, not wrapping it around the bloody nose in a way that makes small-scale decalling nigh-on impossible….

Timmo uk30 Jun 2010 9:38 a.m. PST


78FG yup I thought impossible but a they are apparently 'in-the-pipeline'. Only way to do it would be to design them to fit one brand of casting even then Its going to be very tricky. I'm not holding my breath to see if they get done any time soon.

If you do 352FG I will order the sheet. While we're at it since there seems to be an agreement (and quite rightly) that the german fighter numbers you offer are a great generic sheet is there any chance of a supporting sheet to cover say a II/III and IV gruppe ie adding the bars or 'wiggle' that goes aft of the national marking?

Re 4FG that's a relief as I've done my P51Ds as late '45. Still might get the sheet sometime.

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 9:50 a.m. PST

78 Definitely need tailoring to a specific model, but frankly they'll be a nightmare to apply decals on tight curves is always problematic, wrap-around worse….

352 Will see what refs I can get; the excellent Osprey's going for silly money these days, but I found a bookshop who claim to have it in stock at rrp will see if I get a book or an embarrassed note….

II, III, IV Gruppen To be honest I've been planning to do them for a while, but between work, real life and general rubbishness I've gotten sod all new out since February, so it depends how things go. It'd make sense to try and get a few sheets out at once, as releasing "a" new sheet leads to orders for "a" sheet, which are never a pleasure, especially when you're subsidising postage on half of them….

4 Must admit I'm keen to see them; pity it's only 3 Jugs (4's a minimum really for gaming I'd have thought, 8 ideal) but Norm does lovely work….

Timmo uk30 Jun 2010 10:41 a.m. PST


Worth keeping an eye on ebay for the 352FG Osprey. I never pay more than £5.00 GBP for any Osprey. However there must be on line references, for example…




Sorry thread well and truly hi-jacked but in the hope we all get more decals available to us.

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 11:03 a.m. PST

The sheet that Norm does for the 56th FG also has 2 Jugs from the 4th, so between the 2 sheets I've got decals for 5 4th FG Jugs.

<ears perk up>

352nd FG, Dom?

<tail wags>

II, III, IV Gruppen?

<tail wags vigorously. Arf!>

<waves hand in front of Dom's face>

You WANT to do the 58th Shinbu-Tai.
And the 68th Sentai.
And some IJA and IJN bomber units.
And the 91st BG.
And the 303rd BG.
And the 20th FG.
And the 3rd BG.
And the 38th BG.
And the 345th BG.
And the 475th FG.
And some 20th AF B-29s.
And VG-84.
And VG-5.
And 22 Squadron RAF.
And 30 Squadron RAAF.

<Waves hand again. Remember, you WANT to make all of these decals.>

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 11:07 a.m. PST

I've got three of those four already bookmarked thanks (the Mark Styling one's new to me, and very nice….), but the Osprey would make life a lot simpler – can't beat a nice big set of profiles and often accompanying photos of the same aircraft all in one place….

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 11:11 a.m. PST

Aww, just when you were doing so well Steve….

Seriously, that raises my original question again – are there any "obvious" units at all, or just long lists of people's pet favourites, any of which you'd be lucky to sell a dozen of…?

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 11:16 a.m. PST

Hey Dom, check out the book "Warpath Across the Pacific" by Lawrence Hickey. 48 color profiles, hundreds of pictures (many in color), all the info you need on serial numbers, tail markings, etc.

Expensive, but worth every penny. Of course, it is about the Air Apaches…

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 11:33 a.m. PST

Actually, I was trying to (mostly) list the obvious ones.

91st BG lost more B-17s than any other Group; some good nose art pictures on their site (under photo history):

303rd BG has a great site with LOTS of nose art pictures:

20th FG was IIRC the first P-38 Group in the 8th AF.

3rd BG was the first unit whose planes were converted to dedicated "strafers"; they made skip bombing famous at the Battle of the Bismarck Sea.

38th BG was the second one converted to strafers; they stayed with the B-25 throughout the war, had very colorful squadron-specific nose art, and have some good pictures on their website:

345th BG, the Air Apaches, are probably the most well known and colorful U.S. Medium Bomb Group.

475th FG was the home of Bong and McGuire.

20th AF B-29s were the ones conducting the fire bomb and atomic raids on Japan.

68th Sentai was a well known unit of Tonys in New Guinea, with a number of aces.

And the others I listed? Well, you got me there! grin

Timmo uk30 Jun 2010 12:53 p.m. PST

I always thought a generic Hellcat sheet would be a good choice. American interest taps big market. Decals are all white and simple and relatively easy to artwork. Sheet could be quite generic. Numbers then some options on squadron symbols and importantly nobody does it yet.

112 RAF squadron flying Shark mouth P40 is a fairly iconic unit. Ditto ZG76 Me110s again cos of the shark mouth.

I know I'm going to stray into personal wants now but:

With the new Raiden Ju88 a BoB unit. National markings at correct size plus enough letters.

Ditto a BoB Ju87 Stuka unit as again Raiden have one on the way.

Both above still pose issue in that I'd much rather use one decal for the national marking and the letters but in designing the decals this way cuts down on the flexibility although I suppose it not too much to expect people to chop it about as needed.

B17 units are are very tricky, IMHO, as I feel we all have our own personal favourites mine being 381st and 94th for what its worth.

Is this worth a new thread: Top ten iconic WW2 units?

Pajaro Muerto30 Jun 2010 1:26 p.m. PST

I second Timmo's suggestion on Hellcats. Those stenciled numbers are a pain to assemble, and since they're all white anyways… Plus Raiden and C-in-C have fairly new and fancy excellent Hellcat miniatures, they could be at least a modest seller.

I'd buy one :)

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 4:28 p.m. PST

The trouble there Steve is that if your "short" list has 10 US sheets for openers, we're not talking obvious so much as a substantial range, and huge man hours, while "some IJA and IJN bomber units" speaks for itself in terms of both "obvious" and "limited"….

112 is actually something I've played around with (I have a Raiden P-40 in sand and brown stuck to my desk lamp….) but have yet to come up with a satisfactory shark mouth. Maybe one day.

Hellcats are an interesting thought though – they couldn't be too generic because of the wing and tail markings, but still….

Dom, abandoning thread….

highlandcatfrog Inactive Member30 Jun 2010 6:15 p.m. PST

Hey, now you know why nobody lets me make important decisions. grin

bobblanchett01 Jul 2010 1:32 a.m. PST

you buuuugers you scared dom away ;)

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member01 Jul 2010 1:50 a.m. PST

Brief PS – My order for the 352nd book just got refunded – back to plan a….

BlackSmoke Inactive Member01 Jul 2010 5:24 a.m. PST

Does anyone in the UK stock SS decals? Or do I have to ship from the States? Those bomber sheets are just the ticket!

Personal logo Doms Decals Sponsoring Member of TMP Inactive Member01 Jul 2010 5:41 a.m. PST

No UK stockist that I know of I used to carry them but gave up when the exchange rate collapsed I have a few B-24 sheets left but the Germans are long gone.

Timmo uk01 Jul 2010 6:18 a.m. PST


Stick 1/285 into ebay and a UK stockist comes up. Might say only x number available but as long as I have been aware of SS sheets these have been on ebay so there must be a turn over of stock. They are very beautiful decals.


Norman Harms Inactive Member19 Jan 2011 10:35 p.m. PST

First let me thank those of you who have many kind comments concerning our decals for various applications but especially those aimed at the 1/300 scale aircraft. Feedback is necessaary for us to judge how well we are doing and assists in the planning stages for "what next".

Second, this will serve to make notice that our Korean War offerings are on their way and will be in hand somewhere around the middle of February. Information for these will be found on our main web site page along with links to the operations art work viewing positions (AND some other relavent facts which should be viewed by all).

Apart from ourselves, our decals can be obtained on a regular basis from I-94 Enterprises (who will be introducing the Korean ones at "Cold Wars" in March – we will introduce them at the Toy Soldier Show in Irvine California on 6. March 2011. But more inportant to our UK customers, we do have a stockist in Scotland and they can be reached at "". Just tell them I sent you.

We are more than happy to talk to our customers, as said feedback is necessary for us.

Best wishes,
for Scale Specialties
Norman E. Harms, DirOps

this link will get you into the decal section:

Norman Harms Inactive Member04 Mar 2011 4:24 p.m. PST

As an update, please be advised that the Korean War era decals have just been released and an article and photos has been placed on TMP by Wyatt the Odd; it's on the aircraft (modern) board and the new decal board herein.

The next public outing will be Memorial Day weekend at the KublaCon convention in San Francisco. Other than that, contact us directly.

Norman Harms Inactive Member08 Sep 2011 5:07 p.m. PST

As a further update – B-29 (1/300's) WW II and Korean War versions were just released this past Labor Day at Pacificon, Santa Clara. Display models were not completed in time for display (I'd rather have the decals first) but are being worked on at the moment. As soon as they have been completed, photographed and properly titled, data/photos will be up on Scale Specialties web site,

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.