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Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies

HMS Rodney 1942

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Another scheme we've worked on lately has been HMS Rodney. Some of the model kit painting guides have made me want to cry (see Trumpeter's 1/700 box art below), whilst the internet is flooded with "colourised" photographs which add to the confusion. Furthermore, whilst Rodney wore the same shape of pattern from 1942 until she was dismantled, the actual colours seem to have changed as the original paints used were rationalised to a simpler colour palette in the 1943 revision to the "B & G series" paints. That, also, doesn't help.

 

Trumpeter box art

5b614b7c32f3b.jpg?v=1533987403

 

Trumpeter painting instructions:

5614d2dc35d8c.jpg

Or this - I don't know where this came from but it appears on Google when searching images for "Rodney 1942"!

drawing5.jpg

 

Ficticious "colourised" photograph:

b35e9331aa17788b4736e53896b8aa32.jpg

 

 

Rodney is fairly well photographed leaving Liverpool in 1942 wearing her brand new scheme in immaculate condition, and furthermore was filmed in colour during Operation Pedestal, itself a very rare thing in the Royal Navy - strictly speaking filming was disallowed except by official war correspondents, but a blind eye was turned to some officers with a pre-existing hobby for filming however the films had to be submitted for rather heavy censorship. Anyway, the Op Pedestal footage is a bit washed out, and like much cinefilm is over or underexposed in places, however the footage does demolish many suggested colour schemes in circulation.

 

HMS_Rodney_1_1942_Op_Pedestal_large.jpg?

 

HMS_Rodney_2_1942_Op_Pedestal_large.jpg?

 

HMS_Rodney_3_1942_Op_Pedestal_large.png?

 

Furthermore, Rodney was subject to several contemporary paintings. Some post war paintings also exist. One particularly notable painting however is by Stephen Bone who saw Rodney first hand. Bone was an official war artist, which is good, but his credentials are further enhanced because before that appointment he worked at the Camouflage Directorate at Leamington Spa - where the Royal Navy camouflage paints were developed and where the Admiralty tasked with developing bespoke camouflage designs for individual cruisers, capital ships and aircraft carriers as well as the standardised designs for destroyers and smaller ships - so Bone knew what colours he was seeing.

 

2830c3c6-86aa-43b9-8ccd-b77ac37a43ec.jpg

 

 

 

ca876b48-7e9c-4e12-aae1-2b9b4564d88c.png

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3 hours ago, Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies said:

Another scheme we've worked on lately has been HMS Rodney. Some of the model kit painting guides have made me want to cry (see Trumpeter's 1/700 box art below), whilst the internet is flooded with "colourised" photographs which add to the confusion. Furthermore, whilst Rodney wore the same shape of pattern from 1942 until she was dismantled, the actual colours seem to have changed as the original paints used were rationalised to a simpler colour palette in the 1943 revision to the "B & G series" paints. That, also, doesn't help.

 

 

Or this - I don't know where this came from but it appears on Google when searching images for "Rodney 1942"!

drawing5.jpg

 

 

This painting is taken from the inside back cover ( page 81 ) of the AJ Press book on the HMS Nelson/ Rodney book number 14. ISBN 8372370214, copyright 1999 and is supposed to be from May 1942.

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The colour mentioned in the book for this scheme is White, 507C Light Grey, MS2 Medium Green, MS1 Bottle Green and B5 Dark blue.

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29 minutes ago, Mick4350 said:

The colour mentioned in the book for this scheme is White, 507C Light Grey, MS2 Medium Green, MS1 Bottle Green and B5 Dark blue.

 

Thanks, and wow - that's, umm, interesting. I'm almost curious as to how the author arrived at those combinations of real colour names, visualisations thereof and the descriptions which mean the colours aren't just bad printing. The MS and B paints had no text descriptors - they were simply M.S.1., M.S.2., etc in all documention I've seen. Where  the MS paints in particular have been described generally in contemporary documentation they have simply been called "greys".

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2 hours ago, Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies said:

 

Thanks, and wow - that's, umm, interesting. I'm almost curious as to how the author arrived at those combinations of real colour names, visualisations thereof and the descriptions which mean the colours aren't just bad printing. The MS and B paints had no text descriptors - they were simply M.S.1., M.S.2., etc in all documention I've seen. Where  the MS paints in particular have been described generally in contemporary documentation they have simply been called "greys".

I did a google translation for the 1942 colours mentioned, bialy, jasnoszary, szary sredni, ciemnozielony and ciemnoniebieski or in humbrol paints White was unlisted, 507C is H64, MS2 is H92, MS1 is H92 and B5 is H77. It follows on saying that is 1943 the deck was painted in spots ( a rarity ) in 507C, B5, MS2 and MS1. The colour charts were by Dariusz Skulski.

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Hi Tony,

 

In short, no. Rodney's scheme was entirely different from Nelson's and infact it's a good way to tell the two ships apart in film and photographs where Rodney's catapult on X turret can't be seen clearly.

 

This is the scheme Nelson was wearing during Op Pedestal when that colour footage of Rodney above was taken. There are a couple of fleeting glimpses of Rodney in colour too, but from further away:

nelson-battleship-1942-05-07-after-refit

 

One of undernamed (Mr Carroll) on the above started working on Nelson a couple of weeks ago. Some progress has been made. I will shortly modify the Rodney line drawing to become Nelson and start on that one. :)

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