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Very specific FW190 question: MG151 access hatches

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Hi guys,


Help appreciated, because it seems that my references are contradictory.


My question relates to the Fw190A-5/6/7/8, i.e. the ones with the MG151 in the outer wings.




I have always been taught in school that the upper wings were smooth, until the A-8/R2 came around which required the typical rectangular blisters. To ease production, all wings were equipped with the blisters soon after A-8 production started, whether they were fitted with MG151 or MK108.
This would mean that all A-6/7 would have smooth upper wings. The Bentley files (and an article by Eduard) agree with me, but most of my other references show blisters for these earlier versions.

Nonetheless I spotted an A-6 Nachtjäger with smooth wings and the A_8 at le Bourget is smooth as well, so I would lean towards my original idea, but there are just too many references that tell me other wise.

Can someone confirm that the blisters only appeared during A-8 production ?
Related to that: how common would an A-8 (or even more interestingly, an F-8) be with smooth upper wings ?



2. Now for the lower wings, and here it gets more confusing as even Arthur Bentley contradicts himself and the Eduard article doesn’t help anymore.

Again, I always thought that the underwing panels for the MG151 were roughly the same size as those for the MGFF (but of different design). When the A-8/R2 appeared a larger hatch was needed and to standardize the opening was kept large for aircraft fitted either with MG151 or MK108. For the MG151 a slightly larger hatch was fitted from then on. This is what Eduard would make me believe, but Arthur Bentley agrees with my idea (even though one of his drawings contradicts what he writes).
This would mean that an A-8 with smooth upper wings has a small lower hatch, and an A-8 with bulges would have a large lower hatch (as it was standardized for the R2).
Can anyone confirm or refute this thesis ?





Many thanks in advance,



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