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Hans-Ulrich Rudel

Victories : 11
-----------------------------
Country : Germany
Fought in : WW2
Fought for : Axis
Died : 18th December 1982


Awarded the Knights Cross of the Iron CrossAwarded Swords to the Knights CrossAwarded Diamonds to the Knights CrossOnly person to ever have been awarded the Golden Oak Leaves to the Knights CrossAwarded Oak Leaves to the Knights Cross
Knights
Cross
SwordsDiamondsGolden
Oak Leaves
Oak Leaves

Hans Rudel, born in July 1916, was the most decorated Nazi pilot. In 2,530 combat missions flying dive-bombers, mainly on the Russian front, Rudel was credited with destroying 519 tanks, 150 gun emplacements and 800 combat vehicles of various types. According to Luftwaffe records, he also sunk a Russian battleship, a cruiser, a destroyer, 70 smaller craft and numerous trains. For this he was awarded the Golden Oakleaves with Sword and Diamonds to the Knights Cross. He was the only recipient of this award. He was also the first German pilot to reach 1,000 sorties. Of his over 2530 sorties, some 400 were in the Focke-Wulf 190 fighter, in which he was credited with 11 air victories. He was so effective that Joseph Stalin himself put a price of 100,00 rubles on his head. He flew more than 600,000 km; fired over 1,000,000 machine gun rounds; dropped over 1,000,000kg of bombs; fired over 150,000 rounds of 20mm ammunition and over 5,000 rounds of 37mm ammunition. He hated to take home leave or sick leave and even after he had his leg amputated, he was back in the air within weeks. He did not limit his attacks to Russian tanks, trains, ships or aircraft. On more than one occasion when food was in short supply, he would bomb rivers and both the German airmen and Russian civilians would feast on the stunned fish that floated to the surface. Rudel was shot down several times, but escaped serious injury until April 1945, when he lost a leg in combat. Rudel flew the Ju87 B-2 Stuka dive bomber and, in all of its ugliness, the bomber was made famous by him. His accomplishments with an aircraft that was outdated and vulnerable were incredible. He was captured by Allied forces at the end of the war, and released from a POW camp in April 1946. He died 18th December 1982.

The signatures : Hans Rudel had arranged to be interviewed by a professor of military history, who was also an author, in 1982. Many similar interviews had been conducted with other military heroes, during which the interviewee had signed various photographs, blank sheets and bookplates for use in the author's publications, although many were never published as intended. Rudel was also due to sign such items. However, the interview had been arranged to be conducted at a Luftwaffe reunion, which Rudel could not attend due to ill health. However, a friend of Rudel's, a RCAF mechanic, took the items to him to be signed, which they duly were, although Rudel died before any interview could take place. Cranston Fine Arts purchased the signatures from the original collection. All signatures on prints are therefore 'mounted' signatures, placed in a mount with the print, rather than the print itself being signed.

Click here for artwork signed by this Ace!


Latest Axis Aviation Artwork !
 Austrian-born Walter Nowotny was one of Germany's highest scoring aces of WWII with 258 victories to his credit, three of them flying the Messerschmitt Me.262. He is depicted here flying White 8 of Kommando Nowotny based at Achmer, Germany in 1944. He was killed in action later that year following a fraught combat with US fighters during the Defence of the Reich.

White 8 - Walter Nowotny by Ivan Berryman.
 The highest scoring fighter pilot of all time with a confirmed tally of 352 victories, Erich Hartmann is depicted getting airborne from a snowy airstrip in Czechoslovakia, late in 1944 in a Bf109G-6 of 6./JG 52.

Erich Hartmann - The Ace of Aces by Ivan Berryman.
 The Junkers Ju.287 V1 bomber prototype was a typical example of Germany's research into advanced aerodynamics at the end of World War II. Featuring forward swept wings and four Jumo 004B-1 Orkan axial-flow turbojets, this extraordinary aircraft made several successful flights before the project was curtailed by the war's end. RS+RA is shown on a test flight, carrying a cine camera in front of the fin to record airflow by means of wool tufts glued to the wings and fuselage sides. The characteristics of forward swept wings are only now being re-evaluated, 70 years after Junkers' first tentative steps into the unknown.

A New Shape in the Sky by Ivan Berryman. (P)
 Messerschmitt Bf109E-7Bs belonging to III./JG27, during the Balkan Campaign of 1941.  The yellow and white painted areas were used as recognition markings, so that they were not fired upon by friendly ground units during their low-level sorties.

Messerschmitt Bf109E-7/Bs by Jerry Boucher.

Hans-Ulrich Rudel

Squadrons for : Hans-Ulrich Rudel
A list of all squadrons known to have been served with by Hans-Ulrich Rudel. A profile page is available by clicking the squadron name.
SquadronInfo

SG2

Country : Germany
County of Gloucester, City of Bristol (Auxiliary)

Nil time - Fear nothing

Click the name above to see prints featuring aircraft of SG2

SG2

Full profile not yet available.
Aircraft for : Hans-Ulrich Rudel
A list of all aircraft associated with Hans-Ulrich Rudel. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.
SquadronInfo

Fw190



Click the name above to see prints featuring Fw190 aircraft.

Manufacturer : Fokke-Wulf
Production Began : 1940
Retired : 1945

Fw190

The Focke-Wulf 190 development project began in 1937. Conceived as a hedge against total dependence on the Messerchmitt 109, the 190 was designed by Kurt Tank utilizing a radial engine. This was against generally accepted design criteria in Germany, and many historians believe that the decision to produce a radial engine fighter was largely due to the limited manufacturing capacity for in-line, water-cooled engines which were widely used on all other Luftwaffe aircraft. Despite these concerns, Tanks design was brilliant, and the 190 would become one of the top fighter aircraft of WWII. The first prototype flew in mid-1939. The aircraft had excellent flying characteristics, a wonderful rate of acceleration, and was heavily armed. By late 1940 the new fighter was ordered into production. Nicknamed the butcher bird, by Luftwaffe pilots, early 190s were quite successful in the bomber interceptor role, but at this stage of the war many Allied bombing raids lacked fighter escort. As the war dragged on, Allied bombers were increasingly accompanied by fighters, including the very effective P-51 Mustang. The Allies learned from experience that the 190s performance fell off sharply at altitudes above 20,000 feet. As a result, most Allied bombing missions were shifted to higher altitudes when fighter opposition was likely. Kurt Tank had recognized this shortcoming and began working on a high-altitude version of the 190 utilizing an in-line, water-cooled engine. Utilizing a Jumo 12-cylinder engine rated at 1770-HP, and capable of 2,240-HP for short bursts with its methanol injection system, the 190D, or Long Nose or Dora as it was called, had a top speed of 426-MPH at 22,000 feet. Armament was improved with two fuselage and two wing mounted 20mm cannon. To accommodate the changes in power plants the Dora had a longer, more streamlined fuselage, with 24 inches added to the nose, and an additional 19 inches added aft of the cockpit to compensate for the altered center of gravity. By mid 1944 the Dora began to reach fighter squadrons in quantity. Although the aircraft had all the right attributes to serve admirably in the high altitude interceptor role, it was not generally focused on such missions. Instead many 190Ds were assigned to protect airfields where Me-262 jet fighters were based. This was due to the latter aircrafts extreme vulnerability to Allied attack during takeoff and landing. The 190Ds also played a major role in Operation Bodenplatte, the New Years Day raid in 1945 which destroyed approximately 500 Allied aircraft on the ground. The High Command was impressed with the 190Ds record on this raid, and ordered most future production of the Doras to be equipped as fighter-bombers. In retrospect this was a strategic error, and this capable aircraft was not fully utilized in the role for which it was intended.

Ju87



Click the name above to see prints featuring Ju87 aircraft.

Manufacturer : Junkers
Production Began : 1936
Retired : 1945
Number Built : 6500

Ju87

By 1935 the German Luftwaffe was developing its first monoplane divebomber which entered production in 1936 as the Ju87 Stuka. The Stuka was to evolve into arguably the most successful single engine Axis divebomber of WW II. Utilizing a nearly vertical dive position the Stuka was stunningly accurate in the days when horizontal bombing was a relatively inaccurate science. The Ju87 was built for functionality and ruggedness. A fixed landing gear and exceptionally strong wing design were incorporated and no attempt was made to minimize protrusions. The Stuka was not designed for speed; it was an aerodynamic nightmare. The Stuka also incorporated a siren which when activated during a dive was designed to inflict psychological damage on the enemy below. The Ju87 was used with tremendous success in the Blitzkrieg attacks on Norway, Poland, Belgium, France, Holland, Yugoslavia, and Greece. Virtually unchallenged in the air during these Blitzkriegs the Stukas took a devastating toll on Allied ground and mechanized forces. Shipping was also vulnerable to the pinpoint attacks of the Stuka, and the Ju87 destroyed more Allied shipping than all other German aircraft put together during WW II. During Hitlers air attacks on Britain the Stukas reputation for invulnerability was shattered. Facing British Hurricanes and Spitfires the slower and less maneuverable Ju87s were destroyed in large numbers, eventually forcing their withdrawal from that conflict. Germanys attempt to develop an improved twin engine divebomber resulted in the introduction of the Messerschmitt 210 which was an unmitigated disaster. As a result, the Stuka remained in production longer than expected and the aircraft played a major role in Germanys surprise attack on Russia. In the first day of combat alone Stukas were credited with the destruction of over 700 Russian aircraft with minimal losses. One of Germanys top aces of WW II was Hans-Ulrich Rudel. Rudel flew over 2,500 combat missions in Ju87s, and was shot down on twelve occasions. Rudel was credited with destroying 519 tanks, 800 vehicles, 150 artillery pieces, one Russian battleship, one cruiser and one destroyer. Rudel was also credited with shooting down nine Russian aircraft in air-to-air combat.

Known Victory Claims - Hans-Ulrich Rudel

DATE

PILOT

UNIT

JG

CLAIMED

LOCATION

TIME

FRONT

23/09/1944Obstlt. Hans-Ulrich RudelStabSG 2Il-537 481: 800-1000m14.25Eastern Front
14/10/1944Obstlt. Hans-Ulrich RudelStabSG 2Il-2mH.9881: 600m15.1Eastern Front

Known Claims : 2

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