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Copper Color for the Nacelle Lip on Beaufighters


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Hi Brits-  Another question...  I am makeing a Beaufighter 1/48 Tamiya.  They call out a 'copper' color for the lip of the Nacelle and the exhaust pipe.  A friend reccomended XF28 (I think) the Tamiya Dark Copper...

 

What color would you reccomend as I see a very dark gunmetal for this nacelle lip on a museum Beaufighter?

 

I would love you to educate me on this!  Thanks!

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There have been some excellent post on this by @dogsbody

In short, copper is not correct.   If I can find the relevant post, I'll link it in.

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I think one of the best solutions I've seen presented here was to first to paint the area Dark Earth.  Once dry, apply a lightly brushed coat of metallic grey.   I suppose you could use a graphite pencil, but may be be a bit dark - but I know there are copper coloured pencils too, so that might be another option.

 

regards,

Jack

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3 minutes ago, fubar57 said:

Article where the modeller used metallic grey and dark copper, scroll down about ¾ of page ...http://www.hyperscale.com/features/2001/swordfishir_1.htm


Interesting. That looks like a dirty titanium type colour. Not that they would have had titanium metal in production back then? 

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What I usually do on nacelles, exhausts, or any other piping or exterior metal parts: I give it a dark grey base colour (most some Revell I have at home) and then drybrush some copper or steel/silver, whatever one fancies.

Here's from the Trumpeter swordfish I did some time ago:

 

38367948rh.jpg

 

38367949nd.jpg

Works fine if you're after an more weathered look.

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Part of the answer depends upon which version and what timeframe. Late war Coastal Command TF X Beaufighter often had  the exhaust collector painted a heat resistant black. There is an excellent rendition here on BM of a heat stained exhaust collector on a, I believe, a Blenheim model, six ago or so using a blending of colors

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ok, I can blend the dark earth and testors gun metal metallizer...  

 

I am building an all black NF Beaufighter 'bambi' Tamiya 1/48 kit...  So not the costal command, and that would explain the black I see in the museum aircraft...

 

I have searched pics of early beaufighters and see what looks like the dark copper color...  and many models look like they use this tamiya reccomended color... (maybe thats why)...

 

 

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31 minutes ago, Tony Oliver said:


Interesting. That looks like a dirty titanium type colour. Not that they would have had titanium metal in production back then? 

The cowl ring was painted using an 4:1 mixture of metallic grey (Tamiya acrylic XF56) and dark copper (Tamiya acrylic XF28).

 

That Sordfish looks like 100% dark copper color...  I compared my sample to this picture and its very close...  but you know how computer colors are.  I would be happy with this color...

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47 minutes ago, Tokyo Raider said:

That Sordfish looks like 100% dark copper color...  I compared my sample to this picture and its very close...  but you know how computer colors are.  I would be happy with this color...

Sorry, I guess you mean the Swordfish on HS, not mine. Imagine this post deleted. 😉

Edited by Chief Cohiba
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The oft quoted copper or bronze colour for exhaust collector rings, headers and pipes is misleading and inaccurate.

The correct colours are those of heat tempered steel, and will vary from the natural steel colour of the coolest parts of the part through straw, brown, purple, dark & light blue in the hottest areas.

These are tints/discolouration of the base steel colour and best represented in this manner

Alclad do some good tints such as pale burnt metal and some of the hot metal shades which can be used to effectively represent this when airbrushed over a base steel coat.

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1 hour ago, Tokyo Raider said:

Hi Brits-  Another question...  I am makeing a Beaufighter 1/48 Tamiya.  They call out a 'copper' color for the lip of the Nacelle and the exhaust pipe.  A friend reccomended XF28 (I think) the Tamiya Dark Copper...

 

What color would you reccomend as I see a very dark gunmetal for this nacelle lip on a museum Beaufighter?

 

I would love you to educate me on this!  Thanks!

Remember, the Beaufighters cowl was inacuality made out of metal not copper. The color came from heat staining. The cowl with its "townend" ring was actually part of the exhaust system. And yes it was on later models painted black, mostly to reduce the hot red glow for night fighters and such. The black would chip and discolor. So using a steel metal color as a base add various orange and blues, lightly over it. Then tone it down with a bit of black/brown. That should work, I think. At least that's what I'm doing on my 1/32 Revell Beaufighter converted to a mk X.

Ron G 

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I used various Alclad shades including, IIRC, Steel, Light Burnt Metal and Jet Exhaust . I wanted the areas fairly dark and am pleased with the result although others may find it too dork:

spacer.png

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24 minutes ago, Seawinder said:

I used various Alclad shades including, IIRC, Steel, Light Burnt Metal and Jet Exhaust . I wanted the areas fairly dark and am pleased with the result although others may find it too dork:

spacer.png

That looks great and I appreciate all the help...  This will lead me to some experimentation!

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55 minutes ago, Seawinder said:

I used various Alclad shades including, IIRC, Steel, Light Burnt Metal and Jet Exhaust . I wanted the areas fairly dark and am pleased with the result although others may find it too dork:

Looks good to me!

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Bristol exhaust collector ring colour is an interesting subject. Newly built, or un-used, they would be a steel colour.

 

46345661462_6bbf39bfe0_b.jpg

 

31457116917_fe7dd133b3_b.jpg

 

Soon after the aircraft were built and the engines were run, the colour change started. 

 

48919735002_f74495d697_b.jpg

 

49527464873_d1babc6077_b.jpg

 

49495131047_36fea8b0e9_b.jpg

 

49494412868_a114212d76_b.jpg

 

 

So, in some cases, a copper colour can be seen. But on frontline aircraft, especially those used at night, the collector was over-painted with a black paint that was probably similar to stove enamel, for it's heat resistance. This would hide the glow of the collector ring.

 

49560931598_6981b7f7f5_b.jpg

 

49138076471_ba1b570ba3_b.jpg

 

27815960087_dde07bbb83_b.jpg

 

 

Photographic research should always be done before relying on kit supplied painting instructions. You'd think the with 60+ years of plastic scale modelling, the kit makers could get it right.

 

 

 

Chris

 

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24 minutes ago, rossm said:

A post from the late (and sadly missed) Edgar gives details to go with the drawings above - https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/32192-bristol-engine-collector-rings/&tab=comments#comment-346017

 

 

I have a low-grade digital copy of that Ian Huntley article saved onto my computer. Someone sent it to me back when, but I don't have the original email anymore. It was one of those small bits of info lost in the hard drive crash of February 2017. If anyone wants a copy, PM me your email.

 

 

Chris

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well.  I painted mine last night in tamiya XF28 Dark copper...  Then recoiled in terror!  Not sure if its mislabled...  It looks like a bright orange like the regular tamiya copper color...  I messed it up anyway and had some papertowel overspray protection some how get into the wet paint...  So it has to be resanded today and repainted...

 

I think the rubber black add is a great idea!  This needs to be toned down considerably...  I then think I will go more gun metal with this color and lighten it wil burned metal color...  I dug out some Testors 'exhaust' color from my storage bin of colors and I think I will now try model master gun metal base cote and then touch it up with the 'exhaust' color over top in the high heat discoloration areas.

 

Looks like this beaufighter will be an experiment...  but the kit call out of copper is just too bright, and my dark copper is not much better...

 

 

17 hours ago, woody37 said:

This was done using Tamiya dark copper and a bit of rubber black mixed in

 

spacer.png

 

 

this looks lovely...  my xf28 alone was too bright...

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Here's how I did the exhaust ring on my Blenheim.

I first painted the ring itself Tamiya 'Metallic Grey', blending it into Tamiya 'Dark Iron' for the exhaust pipe. Then I masked the forward lip, and fogged heavily thinned Tamiya 'Dark earth' on the main body of the ring , biased towards the rear, and blending into the 'Dark Iron' of the exhaust pipe.  Copper just doesn't look right (IMHO)

 

Image43 Image45

 

 

Image13

 

 

RAFBristolBlenheimWWIIColour

 

Edited by Tail-Dragon
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Some extra info that might be of interest.    As per a Bristol's commercial brochure on the Mercury and Pegasus engines, the collector rings were indeed made from pressed steel which was then nickel plated both inside and outside.

 

The use of white stove enamel on Coastal Command aircraft exhaust collector rings and the possible use of a black version on night bombers has been mentioned before on this forum but the below should be new.

 

For many years I corresponded with two gentlemen who were both ex RAF ground crew, one an 18 Sqn airframe rigger and one a 13 Sqn airframe fitter, both working on Blenheims.   One recalled how the collector rings would become so hot that they actually glowed in the dark and that in order to obliterate/reduce that glare they used to apply a special paint to the rings and exhausts for night ops.   He recalled it was "pinkish" in colour.  The other gentlemen had similar recollections and even recalled it was quite expensive stuff, costing a pound for a pound!

 

Below is a snip out of an unpublished photo of a 13 Sqn Blenheim taken on the eve of the 1000 Bomber Raid in which they participated as intruders.  They had their Sky unders overpainted in black and though the photo is of poor quality one can see the colour of the collector ring and exhaust is too uniform to be heat discolored metal and my guess is this machine had the anti-glow paint applied.

 

black-blenheim-2-2.jpg

 

Some years ago then I acquired a copy of On Target Special No2, Britain Alone, June 1940 to December 1941 by Paul Lucas and got a positive confirmation of that special paint!

 

Quote 

 

High Temperature Paint No. 41.

 

... The third method, which is probably the least well known, was to paint the exhausts with a special heat resisting paint which eliminated the glow almost entirely.

Like so much of the RAF's camouflage effort, this material was developed by the RAE at Farnborough who christened it High Temperature Paint (HTP) No 41.

The exact composition of this material is not clear at the time of writing but it is known that it was supplied as a two part powder and solution finish containing Sodium Silicate

and Red Iron Oxide pigment which had to be mixed immediately prior to application. When freshly applied the mixture was a pink (!) colour which, when baked on by running the 

engine turned a dark red colour, thought to be similar to, but somewhat darker than the red colour used in the national markings.  The use of HTP No 41 by the RAF was approved

at a conference held at the RAE on 29 November 1940...

 

Unquote

 

So for those modellers hesitant to tackle the difficult painting job to reproduce heat discoloured metal this dark and probably very matt red might be an option, provided their model was on night ops of course.

 

Cheers,

Walter

Edited by Walter Lindekens
Date corrected to 1940.
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On 4/23/2020 at 12:02 PM, Tokyo Raider said:

That looks great and I appreciate all the help...  This will lead me to some experimentation!

Hey Tokyo Raider

 You should check out my build of the old (1974) 1/32 Revell Bristol Beaufighter that I'm converting to a mk X Canadian torpedo carrying bird over on the LSM site. I did it there because I can post pictures directly from my phone (no photo sharing site needed). It might give you some insight.

Ron G 

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In SAM Vol. 39 Issue 11, Paul Lucas had this article about HTP No. 41 paint:

 

49815445132_f5868d0b9d_b.jpg

 

 

 

 

Chris

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What a great thread, loads of useful info.

 

Cheers

 

Dennis

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