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FAA F4U-4 Colour Schemes - progress at last!


mike romeo
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Chaps and chapesses,

I have recently bought a Hobby Boss Easy build Corsair F4U-4 and I had the idea of completing it as a late WWII FAA machine. If I wanted to be very subtle, I could build it in GSB as a BPF machine, but I quite fancied something in the ETO - perhaps as used in the invasion of Norway in late 1945.

So, TSS would be a good guess, I'd have thought. However, when did the EDSG / Sky scheme come in for FAA machines? Was this something that could have happened when the war was on*, or was it a reaction to peacetime? If the former, it might look a bit different on a Corsair!

Any thoughts?

regards,

Martin

* Yep, I know: my what-if, my rules, but I'd like to make it not too "unbelievable", if you get my drift.

Edited by mike romeo
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Thank you for that. Most of the profiles are either TSS or GSB as in our universe. However, I'm particularly interested in what the assembled folks would think of a EDSG / sky Corsair as a wartime scheme (as subsequently really worn by Sea Furies / Fireflies post-war). Low / high demarcation? Vaguely plausible as an ETO aircraft at war's end?

Give me your thoughts.

regards,

Martin

Edited by mike romeo
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It was late wartime experience, and Ian Huntley has written of single-tone EDSG Fireflies returning from the Pacific, that lead to the postwar abandoning of TSS and the appearance of low demarcation EDSG over Sky. It was another year after that before the high demarcation scheme appeared, so that's a little late for end-1945. There is however no sign that Lend-Lease aircraft were being repainted even in European waters - as shown by Wildcats and the night-fighter Hellcats. So the likeliest scheme for your scenario would be SBG with European-style roundels, but perhaps the adoption of CAG numbers rather than the previous codes.

So it rather depends how far you want to stretch your WHIF.

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If you search for Seafire XV discussions, there was a thread where the date of change was discussed (including the short lived EDSG/Sky with low demarcation). There was a Seafire XV with a high demarcation scheme (on the fuselage at least!) and BPF roundels.

Although even European based Cosair IVs were Gloss Sea Blue.

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I'm not sure the FAA used the later -4 Corsair series. Did they?

No. But this is a what-if.

And there is the story of the FAA pilot (Norman Hanson?) who was cadging some spares from a USN Pacific base and was offered a batch of F4U-4s which were returning to the states for refurbishment despite having fewer hours than the Corsair IIs on the FAA guy's squadron. He felt he'd better decline as his Admiral might have noticed the arrival of glossy sea blue Corsairs. NB the reference to colour and the fact that the USN aircraft had seen enough hours to be returned to the States makes me suspect the FAA guy misidentified SBG F4U-1/FG-1s as F4U-4s.

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Ha! I just realised that its a Whif and me for being silly and not reading thoroughly :banghead:

I read that story. I think it was mentioned in the book by Norman Hanson, 'Carrier Pilot' only recently read (for the 3rd time!)by me. A very inspiring account.

Have fin with your plans. It could be quite inspiring!

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The US Marines used F4U-4s in Korea. So why not a FAA Korea scheme? If the Sea Fury never came into service, Lt Carmichael would no doubt have downed that Mig-15 in a Corsair.

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Hmm. Remember that the reason all the lend-lease stuff got pushed off the side at the end of WW2 is that the UK government could not afford to pay for it (which it was contractually bound to do if it kept it past the end of the war).

Had the war gone on longer it is a logical extrapolation to have the F4U-4 in FAA service, either in the BPF or arguably elsewhere in the Fleet, but "FAA 1946" in wartime mode would have been in the low demarcation scheme to replace the EDSG / Dark Slate Grey scheme.

Of course, if you want to build a high-demarcation F4U-4 you're entirely at liberty to do so, but if you also want a story that weaves it into a realistic alternative history then you either need to unpick the whole of Lend-Lease, or you should be looking for a reason why the FAA kept just a handful of machines (which it could have afforded). Something like dissimilar combat training, perhaps, e.g. an early equivalent of FRADU or Top Gun?

For Korea, how about an exchange scheme? FAA and the USMC swap two Sea Furies for Corsairs , to enable their units to improve their general appreciation of the other type, and facilitate operating the two types together. Then you or someone else can also do a USMC Sea Fury in lovely GSB with big loud stars and bars on it.

Edited by Work In Progress
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I'm jumping in here with little knowlege, but you who know better will put the correct info into place.

What about the Corsair the Germans captured when it crashed in Norway? I believe it was FAA. The Germans had a problem transporting it because the pilot refused to tell them how the wings folded.

Was it in TSS? I dont know where my photos of it are but it didnt look normal TSS [nor DSB], it did look overall a mid-tone, with a very light tone under the wings. AFAIU the Germans never repainted it all, just added yellow to wing tips, tail and engine cowling.

If I could only remember which books.........

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Gents,

Many thanks for the suggestions. I could of course do a GSB Corsair V in BPF colour scheme, but this seems unimaginative - even for me. What I'm currently thinking is the low demarcation EDSG / Sky scheme with normal late war roundels. As this Corsair is part of the putative invasion of Norway. (Rapid advances in Italy after Kesselring's death in late 1944 made the "Southern Redoubt" unavailable). So, I'm envisaging substantial Nazi forces ending up in Norway, leading to the need for an invasion of that country even after Germany itself was overrun.

Allied airpower during the invasion was primarily sea-based and still numerically superior to the German forces available, so friendly fire would have been a concern. Some form of invasion stripes perhaps? I'm thinking a black stripe flanked by two white ones (think D-day stripes, with1 less black and white stripe) and only on the lower half of the airframe (ie protecting from friendly ground fire).

Further discussion welcome . . .

regards,

Martin

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  • 5 weeks later...

OK, so slight change of backstory. Atomic bombs not ready for 1945, so Operation Olympic goes ahead in late 1945. FAA has taken on charge a number of F4U-4s as Corsair Mk Vs in TSS. When they arrive (in the UK!) they are swiftly repainted EDSG / Sky in line with combat appreciations from the BPF. Subsequently shipped out to the Pacific Fleet, and this aircraft operated from HMS Implacable during the initial Op Olympic airstrikes.

DSCF4782_zps898f3795.jpg

DSCF4783_zps79dc0e9c.jpg

Yes, I know: I still have weathering, a satin coat and some detail parts to add but I like the look of it in gloss so I thought I'd post it 'as is'. :)

regards,

Martin

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  • 1 month later...

No. But this is a what-if.

And there is the story of the FAA pilot (Norman Hanson?) who was cadging some spares from a USN Pacific base and was offered a batch of F4U-4s which were returning to the states for refurbishment despite having fewer hours than the Corsair IIs on the FAA guy's squadron. He felt he'd better decline as his Admiral might have noticed the arrival of glossy sea blue Corsairs. NB the reference to colour and the fact that the USN aircraft had seen enough hours to be returned to the States makes me suspect the FAA guy misidentified SBG F4U-1/FG-1s as F4U-4s.

It was Major Ronnie Hay Royal Marines and he did say that the USN Corsairs that he was offered were shiny and new with 4 bladed propellers! He was offered a couple of squadrons worth for some crates of Scotch Whiskey!! He did say that he would be unable to fool the Admiral on his carrier as the current Mk.II`s were camouflaged and very worn,.......however,.......if they had decided to repaint them in a simplified version of the TSS,......then the swap over could well have been a possibility??

Thus the scheme on this very nice Corsair icould well have been a distinct possibility if there was enough British paint on the carrier,........nice model by the way,.....it looks great!

Cheers

Tony O

Edited by tonyot
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  • 1 month later...

It was Major Ronnie Hay Royal Marines and he did say that the USN Corsairs that he was offered were shiny and new with 4 bladed propellers! He was offered a couple of squadrons worth for some crates of Scotch Whiskey!! He did say that he would be unable to fool the Admiral on his carrier as the current Mk.II`s were camouflaged and very worn,.......however,.......if they had decided to repaint them in a simplified version of the TSS,......then the swap over could well have been a possibility??

Thus the scheme on this very nice Corsair icould well have been a distinct possibility if there was enough British paint on the carrier,........nice model by the way,.....it looks great!

Cheers

Tony O

Hi Tony,

Apologies as I didn't see your e-mail till now. Been a bit busy since I was building the Corsair so didn't get round to posting pictures of it completed. Here it is:

DSCF5025_zps4b2668fb.jpg

DSCF5022_zps73f92229.jpg

You may notice that the markings are slightly different to those shown previously. Funny story - not! I had a bit of a problem with the decals while masking the wing walk strips (I think you can guess what happened) and I needed to completely strip the paint and re-decal! The same episode included as a side-splitter the fact I cracked the one piece canopy, which is why the canopy is positioned open, despite the paucity of interior.

regards,

Martin

Edited by mike romeo
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Nice. My Hobbyboss Corsair got the low demarcation scheme too, but standard markings. Course, it had a cut down fuselage and a Centaurus engine from a Brigand...

Pictures, Lee; we need pictures!

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They were posted up at whatifmodelers.com some years back and I can't link directly - the older forum software means you have to be a member to view uploaded pictures although off-site hosted pix are viewable by non-members.

http://www.whatifmodelers.com/index.php/topic,23415.msg339733/highlight,corsair.html

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Hi Tony,

Apologies as I didn't see your e-mail till now. Been a bit busy since I was building the Corsair so didn't get round to posting pictures of it completed. Here it is:

DSCF5025_zps4b2668fb.jpg

DSCF5022_zps73f92229.jpg

You may notice that the markings are slightly different to those shown previously. Funny story - not! I had a bit of a problem with the decals while masking the wing walk strips (I think you can guess what happened) and I needed to completely strip the paint and re-decal! The same episode included as a side-splitter the fact I cracked the one piece canopy, which is why the canopy is positioned open, despite the paucity of interior.

regards,

Martin

Oh dear,....we`ve all been there soI feel your pain!!

Cheers

Tony

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