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Bell X-5 turned Luft ’46 Me1101A-1 forum member Stewart Brouillette (CentexModelers) submitted this colorful and creative “what-if” build that is truly unique.

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I submit to you, the 1/40th scale “Revell History Makers” Bell X-5 with a twist. As some may know, the X-5 (the real one is in the AF Musem in Dayton, OH) was an experimental, variable geometry wing aircraft that was nearly a direct copy of the Messerschmitt P1101. Build at a secret base in Oberamagau, Germany, the P1101 was 80% finished when the allies captured the facility – and the plane.

The P1101 was brought to the US and damaged beyond repair by the guy unloading it. (I’m picturing the Southwest Air commercial: “Wanna get away?” Ed.) The biggest different between the P1101 and the X-5 was that the P1101 could not move the wing geometry in flight – only on the ground and only at three locked-in degrees of sweep. The X-5 could move the wings in flight, and the resulting tests paved the way for technology that led to such aircraft as the F-111, F-14, B-1B, and the Panavia Tornado.

My model was built as part of a club build with a theme of “Single Engine Jet, 1946-1973” I opted to approach the project as though the P1101 had gone into full development and production as the Messerschmitt Me1101A-1 “Goshawk”.

My “twists” were a painted-over canopy for that “desk model” look, scratch-built nose radar & ADF loop, converted drop tank and hard points from the scrap box, and Ruhrstahl X-4 air-to-air missiles (really were tested) made from two 1/48 scale 250lb bombs and scratched main fins and nose probe. The paint scheme is influenced by a couple of drawings from Peter Allen’s concept Luft ’46 profiles.

Also, the markings are from JG301, which was one of the “Wilde Sau” squadrons formed to explore new tactics against allied bombers.