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Nick Millman

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Nick Millman last won the day on September 26 2013

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    Over the hill and far away . . .

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  1. Hi Kari The Bell camouflage drawings for the Airacobra specify Dupont paints 71-013 Dark Green, 71-009 Dark Earth and 71-021 Sky Type S Grey and FWIW the Dupont Dark Earth 71-009 was described as a synthetic enamel (i.e. not cellulose) when applied by the Glenn Martin company to a wing in 1943 for surface irregularities tests. Regards Nick
  2. Hi Fernando Thanks. Re second para - no, I meant how aircraft in the US scheme of OD over NG were expediently modified by the addition of brown camouflage segments on the upper surfaces to imitate the RAF TLS. Some of the US Ks operated in China appear like that. As the OD degraded that might have given rise to the descriptions of "desert" colours for those aircraft - the impression of two browns rather than green and brown. BS_w's comment suggests that in addition to Ks in US and US-applied RAF Desert schemes they were possibly delivered in "expedient" TLS as well. There are some Curtiss photographs that suggest there was some wrangling over the colour of the Dark Earth in both TLS and Desert schemes on the K which I suspect might have been concerned with their relative contrasts. I intend to explore that in greater detail at the blog but have not yet done so. Originally Dupont 71-009 was intended for TLS and 71-035 for the Desert scheme. 71-009 was also used on the P-400 and was described by Martin as a synthetic enamel during surface irregularities tests on a wing in 1943 which might suggest that by then it had been deemed obsolete. Regards Nick
  3. They might be argued but AFAIK there is no tangible evidence, documentary or archeological, of a light grey or even a "consensus" as to its actual hue. There is however tangible evidence from several different sources of a Sky "surrogate" under surface colour. Above BS-w provides very significant evidence about later marks "converted" at the factory to a quasi Temperate Land scheme by the addition of "brown" paint to US finished aircraft. That probably explains the dark under surface appearance of some Ks. The British had agreed to this expedient in the US but it was later overruled by the Air Ministry. The same conversion was made to some P-40E pool aircraft in Australia using Field Drab which was an acceptable substitute for Dark Earth. The result was a rather low contrast upper surface scheme with dark looking under surfaces, in some cases subsequently over-painted with RAAF Sky Blue to a wavy demarcation. Nick
  4. In the "lift-up" photo the wing is in shadow and the blue looks darker than it really is. It appears to be Azure Blue painted over an original Sky finish. A colour photo of a Kittyhawk I survivor shared recently by LDSModeller suggests that the interior green was similar to export Hudsons, a "surrogate" RAF cockpit Grey Green, slightly more blueish in appearance. Nick
  5. The factory finish of the Airacobra in Temperate Land scheme (TLS) included the sweep up of the under surface colour under the tailplanes. This can be viewed as a fairly reliable identifying feature for aircraft retaining British TLS. Aircraft re-painted after delivery in Day Fighter scheme had the upper surface colour continued under the tailplane, usually with the addition of the Sky fuselage band. It is apparent that aircraft so finished were also sent to Russia. But there were exceptions/curiosities as unwanted British P-400 production morphed into the US P-39D, incuding at least one two "P-39D" aircraft in US finish of Olive Drab (OD) over Neutral Gray (NG) in US markings with British serial numbers still evident and without the usual US serial across the fin and rudder. Whether that was a factory paint job or a re-paint is unknown but (close examination of the serials and the fact that) some subsequent serials were in TLS which is puzzling suggests a re-paint. Both aircraft have US stars with the red central disc over-painted. Nick Updated - should have re-examined the photo before posting!
  6. I didn't post any documents in that thread or this one and the ones that you posted are no longer shown there. In that linked thread Edgar Brooks also refers to examining those very same documents at Kew so they are not exclusive to you. I don't think that I have ever posted those various trials schematics although I did refer to them in this thread by examining the copies in my own files. Nick
  7. Hi Mark That photograph (together with others of wrecked/abandoned Vildebeests) was published in the wartime Asahi Newspaper book "Anatomy of Enemy Aircraft" in February 1943. So the provenance of the photo is Japanese but I don't think that it was taken at Hong Kong. It could be that it was a photograph confiscated from Allied personnel or records following their capture. I'll try to get the caption translated. Regards Nick
  8. Mark You are presuming too much. The documents which I have quoted from and referred to in this thread are copies in my own collection from original Air Ministry and RAE documents photographed at the National Archives where they are publicly accessible. They were not sourced from your posts (which can be proven). The fact that you have posted your own copies of the same public documents does not give you exclusive rights over their content. Nick
  9. Hi Mark The letter from Air Ministry to RAE of 16 Aug 1938 might contain the answer. It requires further trials of the Temperate Land scheme as prepared for Aden (and the LT2 and LT3 schemes in India, Far East and Iraq as mentioned above) but suggests modifying the scheme by using a lighter colour than Dark Earth "being more appropriate to Aden" with the retention of the Dark Green. But then the words "India and Far East" are added to that paragraph. I'll send you the original document as I can't post it here. Nick
  10. I'm still not sure which post or document you are referring to. In the past I have posted the actual documents here as other members will know but I can no longer post images in my comments. The two paragraphs in my post to Mark H (if that is what you mean) refer to two documents with the second paragraph referring to the Air Ministry to RAE on 16 August 1938 which required the trialling of schemes LT2 and LT3 in India, the Far East and Iraq. That was in response to Mark H's query about Tropical schemes. Regarding the second issue I do not have Ian Huntley's article to hand but I do recall he was quoting from someone who was actually present at the time. Nick
  11. You mean that recipients of the incorrect orders in AMOs and the DTD Technical Circular somehow knew they were incorrect from common sense even before they were corrected and therefore ignored or queried them? Seems a bit unlikely. Do you have any evidence for that? Or maybe you mean that I have no common sense? Nick
  12. I don't know what exactly you are referring to here but really I'm not. I know perfectly well what the difference between the RAE research and Air Ministry orders are. Please spell out exactly where I have distorted them by quoting what I have written. Nick
  13. It's no good referring to parts of your comment that I didn't even respond to and projecting to make me the bad guy. You wrote (and I quoted in my response):- "TBH I'm not certain that yellow colour primers/paints were generally used on British assembled airframes at this time. I'll ask the conservator at the aviation museum I do work for as he's a dab hand with this stuff." And I replied:- "They weren't. As already mentioned the Yellow UP was intended for application to magnesium alloys and sometimes used on sea-going aircraft. The commonly used primers were grey. That comes from official documentation, not from some "dab hand" conservator who, however "dab" a "hand" will not have examined every aircraft produced in British factories but only a few surviving airframes." If you had read the thread then you must have been deliberately disregarding my earlier post about primers when you wrote that. Which seemed rude. Which prompted my unfortunate reply. Which aroused such indignation from you. You can't get to the one without the other I'm afraid, but in hindsight I should not have written that last peeved sentence. I had no reason to believe your conservator friend was not a dab hand at whatever stuff he dabs his hand in. Nick
  14. Hi Mark The earlier Tropical Land schemes trialled were LT3 'Tropical Camouflage Doping Scheme (for Landplane) consisting of Dark Earth and Dark Red Sand on the upper wing, top of fuselage and tailplane surfaces with Dark Sand and Red Sand on the lower wing and fuselage sides and LT4 'Tropical Camouflage Doping Scheme (for Landplane)' consisting of six colours with Dark Earth, Dark Red Sand and Dark Sea Green on the upper surfaces and Dark Sand, Red Sand and Light Sea Green on the lower wing and lower fuselage sides. The schematics for LT3 were sent to Aden and the Middle East whilst LT4 was sent to the Middle East. In September 1938 the LT3 schematic was prepared for India, Far East and Iraq together with LT2 which consisted of upper surfaces of Dark Sand and Light Earth with lower wings and fuselage sides in Light Earth and Light Sand. This was pretty quickly overtaken by events with the official adoption of C3A in 1939 (the schematics for which are dated December 1938). Nick
  15. We've been round the houses on this one before. It cannot be proven (yet) that no aircraft ever had Dark Green and Mid-Stone incorrectly applied in the belief that it was an authorised Tropical Land scheme suitable to the nature of the country, etc. The error was also included in addendum No.3 to DTD Technical Circular No.183 Para 6 (2). The fact remains that it had already been communicated as an official scheme in both AMOs and a DTD Technical Circular before it was corrected. And IIRC an informant of Ian Huntley who was there was quoted as confirming its use in the Nile Delta region before the warfare in the Western Desert began. That and the appearance of the high contrast Vildebeests in the photographs create the ambiguity. I used "apparently" to mean that the issue of subsequent corrections make it apparent that it was an error, not to cast doubt on that fact. Poor choice of word on my part. Nick
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