The Werk Nummer & Losses Database

AN OPEN LETTER FROM MR. O'CONNELL

 

Fellow Messerschmitt 262 enthusiasts,

It is my pleasure to be able to share with you the results of over 20 years of compiling werknummern and actual losses of the Messerschmitt 262 during its brief history in World War II. 

It is also a great pleasure for me to be able to see this on-going work presented on such a professionally designed web site, as has been crafted by the Stormbirds webmaster, Chuck Petrie.   My most sincere thanks are all that I can offer to him for his countless hours of  pursuing this idea and molding it into the finely crafted work you see before you today.  I am sure that the international community of Luftwaffe enthusiasts, as well as myself, would like to thank him for this extremely generous effort so that all may benefit from this listing.

This work initially was started through my interest in modeling Luftwaffe aircraft, but I eventually found myself pursuing more researching than building, and the scraps of notes became pages, then simple data bases on the early computers, and finally, after a succession of computers and data base formats, to its present form.

Along the way, it became a nagging question to me that many printed works persistently described that only a relative few of the Me 262's had been involved in combat, as the data I had collected seemed to indicate otherwise.  It became my goal to attempt to discover just how many actually had been built and lost, both due to accidents and to combat losses.  It has been reported that perhaps only 3% of the actual Luftwaffe records may still exist, and it soon became obvious to me that a record of  werknummern alone would not be sufficient in order to arrive at any reliable conclusion about the numbers built and used, therefore a combination of both werknummern AND losses would be necessary, in the eventual hope that the losses would one day be able to be accounted for by an actual werknummer.

It is my hope, that aside from an initial reference for those inquiring into the history of the Me 262, that those who have far more extensive research facilities than my own will feel free to contribute to this on-going work (of course being suitably noted as the reference), and that collectively, we can all obtain a much better understanding of the actual number of these aircraft that were built and the individual histories of the aircraft, than has yet been available.

This is not intended to be a replacement for the printed work, as what you see here is almost entirely a compilation of printed works, and your support of these dedicated authors is greatly encouraged, by purchasing their hard won data as presented in their books. Without the individual effort of the authors referenced, this work would not be possible.

This collection was originally intended for my own personal use, and as such, frankly I did not bother referencing the aircraft extensively, as a particular aircraft may have been noted in many published works.  However, with the decision to present the list here, I have attempted to note those references that may most likely be found in an individual's personal library, and I heartily suggest you add the volumes listed to your personal reference selection, for far greater in-depth coverage than can be presented here.  With time, the reference section will be extensively expanded.

Where conflicting information was discovered, all data has been presented, most notably in brackets, i.e. (xxx).  Further individual research is encouraged, in order to eventually smooth over or remove any disparity in the information presented.

The user of this list may be initially greatly surprised to note that there are over 1,500 individual entries.  Although the greatest care has been taken in an attempt to offer only what is believed to be individual aircraft, with a work of this size, and the extremely large number of unidentified aircraft presented, it would frankly be impossible to state with certainty that they are all unique airframes.  In time, with the collective help of the international community, this list will grow, and at the same time, become far more definitive than currently offered.  Your personal input is greatly valued, and will collectively add to a further better understanding of this historic aircraft.

I offer my very best regards to my fellow enthusiasts, and I sincerely look forward to your contributions.

 

Dan O'Connell

Klamath Falls, Oregon, USA

October 25, 1999  

 

SPECIAL THANKS

It would be quite impossible to assemble a list of this size without help, and in fact this list would not have been possible without the constant encouragement of Dave Brown, of Experten Decals, Nova Scotia, Canada.  His enduring patience to my endless questions and his seemingly bottomless source of knowledge on all aspects of the Luftwaffe allowed me to keep going after I thought I had exhausted all the sources, only to offer even more data than I thought existed.  Dave, my never ending thanks.

A more recent acquaintance, and I am the more fortunate for it, and a seemingly endless source of  impeccably researched information, is Richard Eger, of Delaware, USA.  I am continually astonished at Richard's 45 years of research and his ability to bring out new and important information.  His groundbreaking Me 262 Production Block research, also presented here on Stormbirds, should be viewed as unrivaled in the werknummer assignment, and manufacture of the Me 262.

Additionally, in alphabetical order by country, my most sincere thanks to:

Australia

  • Dave Brown, of the Australian Connection Web Site, for information on 500200, Black X, and the Fassberg 5.

  • Craig Chidley, of Aero Works, excellent source of modeling supplies, models, and a huge inventory of aviation publications.

Belgium

  • Luc Vervoort, historian in all combat losses over Belgium.

Canada

  • Steve Slade, specialist in the Ju 88 G-6 night fighter.

  • Dave Wadman, of Experten Decals, another endless source of Luftwaffe information.

France

  • Vincent Meslet, outstanding aviation painter.

Germany

  • Bert Hartmann, of the Luftwaffe Archiv Web Site, and Kahla production center expert.

  • Manfred Malitz, Luftwaffe historian, and specialist on JG 300.

  • Karl Rentschler, Luftwaffe historian.

United States

  • Walt Morgan, who has been a wonderful source of new information.

  • Gordon Permann, Luftwaffe historian.

  • Jim Sterling, thanks for sharing your incredible photo collection.  

 

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