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Very helpful info re: the colour of Semtex  & the BS reference numbers!

 

Could I ask a related question - was the 'dark grey non slip' paint related to 507A in shade/tone? I guess its composition would have to differ to make it non slip, but seems very close in colour?

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4 hours ago, Ships doc said:

Very helpful info re: the colour of Semtex  & the BS reference numbers!

 

Could I ask a related question - was the 'dark grey non slip' paint related to 507A in shade/tone? I guess its composition would have to differ to make it non slip, but seems very close in colour?

 

That's a good question. The answer is "maybe". I'll need to dig out the document to give you the exact date but in a letter from the International Paint Company Ltd to (if I recall correctly) the Admiralty, they listed the colours they already supplied to the navy as of (again IIRC, TBC!) sometime in 1940, they listed around 6 or 7 colours and "Dark Grey" and "Home Fleet Grey" were listed separately therein which implies that there was one which did match 507A in colour and one which did not. They were similar in general appearance though, you are correct. One might ask "how manydark greys does one Navy need?" and indeed it seems the RN asked themselves the same question during 1942 which lead to the rationalised G&B series paints in May 1943. It seems likely though that this rationalisation did not specifically terminate the production of civilian supplied deck products in colours other than the G&B series.

 

Vague, I know!

 

4 hours ago, Ships doc said:

Very helpful info re: the colour of Semtex  & the BS reference numbers!

 

Could I ask a related question - was the 'dark grey non slip' paint related to 507A in shade/tone? I guess its composition would have to differ to make it non slip, but seems very close in colour?

 

That's a good question. The answer is "maybe". I'll need to dig out the document to give you the exact date but in a letter from the International Paint Company Ltd to (if I recall correctly) the Admiralty, they listed the colours they already supplied to the navy as of (again IIRC, TBC!) sometime in 1940, they listed around 6 or 7 colours and "Dark Grey" and "Home Fleet Grey" were listed separately therein which implies that there was one which did match 507A in colour and one which did not. They were similar in general appearance though, you are correct. One might ask "how many dark greys does one Navy need?" and indeed it seems the RN asked themselves the same question during 1942 which lead to the rationalised G&B series paints in May 1943. It seems likely though that this rationalisation did not specifically terminate the production of civilian supplied deck products in colours other than the G&B series.

 

Vague, I know!

 

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Thanks Jamie - interesting! I wonder if the people writing those letters ever thought there would be people discussing their contents 80 years later for the purposes of making very small ships :) 

 

Have you & @dickrd thought about putting this all together in a book? 

 

James 

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12 minutes ago, Ships doc said:

Thanks Jamie - interesting! I wonder if the people writing those letters ever thought there would be people discussing their contents 80 years later for the purposes of making very small ships :) 

 

Have you & @dickrd thought about putting this all together in a book? 

 

James 

 

That first musing is something I've thought myself. I'm sure it depends on what sort of person you are but I personally have found it fascinating to sit in the archives leafing through things people wrote all that time ago about a subject I'm interested in. Some of them have doodles on the paper. When one makes models of inanimate machines it can be easy to detach from the fact that it was real people with all their complexities and imperfections behind it all. 

 

As for a book, yes, it has been thought about. It's easy to contradict what has gone before and it's easy to prove it wrong even, but a lot more evidence is needed to join all the dots together and build a compelling conclusion. If any book does happen, it'll be Richard's name on the front rather than mine as the investment of time and effort is all his. He's back there again today I believe. I'd be privileged to draw some pictures to go in any future book or something like that but the work and the core knowledge is all Richard here. All I try to do is reduce down the hugely intricate web of pieces Richard now has laid out into something modellers can more easily understand and I can't claim it's altruistic. I did/do it partly to give people confidence enough to buy my goods rather than buy alternative offerings, and partly to cut down on emails we get which my wife can't answer for me; these tend to be people asking which paints to buy and where to apply them for subject x,y or z. I want my customers to feel supported and informed, but I could not maintain any reasonable level of customer service if I were still receiving enquiries not obviated by the stuff written to date. I more or less had to do that to justify why I changed my own model paint range - that's the prime reason I personally wrote anything at all in fact.

 

I could have stuck with the old range but I couldn't do that in good conscience after seeing what Richard had to show me. Thereafter I could have just released a new range which different from all accepted wisdom around and not tried to justify it - and were I the consumer I'd reasonably conclude that the new range didn't match the references which did exist and avoid it. I therefore felt compelled to write some papers to protect the sales figures we had and needed which I don't think Richard was enthusiastic about although he fully appreciated my need. Thus, I mostly drafted them and Richard et al then protected me from myself by critiquing what I had bashed out to prevent me misleading or going too far out on a limb beyond what the evidence could support. The full explanation behind all of this sufficient to make a good book really needs to come from Richard though.

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Thanks Jamie 

 

Not sure why but as I get older I seem to be more interested in the personalities & characters behind it all. 

 

As someone who has followed this for a while, I think you, Richard and others have done a huge amount of work in advancing our understanding of this, which goes beyond correcting past assumptions and is a body of work in its own right. As you say when doing any research there is always an extra step in getting a conclusion 'over the line'. What I particularly like about the approach you have presented is that you reference back to the original source material so the reader can make their own mind up. Also, given the nature of what you are studying there will always be uncertainties, however it's presented as logical conclusions from the best available evidence (the work on the PoW camo scheme is a great example of this).  

 

Good luck! 

 

James 

 

 

 

 

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On 12/8/2021 at 12:13 PM, Ships doc said:

 

 

Have you & @dickrd thought about putting this all together in a book?.....

 

.....As someone who has followed this for a while, I think you, Richard and others have done a huge amount of work in advancing our understanding of this, which goes beyond correcting past assumptions and is a body of work in its own right.

 

James 

 

Dear James,

 

Thank for your kind words.  I am slowly plugging away at it and some of the chapters are written. But to complete it will take a while yet. The problem is that I keep finding new and interesting things in the archives!

 

Jamie @Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies has put his finger on a key issue: should I set out the "intricate web of pieces" which results in a sort of reference tome (like say Kingsley or Howse on radar, or something as dense as a Friedman book) with all the nuances and uncertainties highlighted, but drawn together with my interpretation of it all, or should it be a more simplistic generalised guide effectively consisting of my interpretation only ?  I am currently doing the former which is why it does take time!

 

Best wishes,

 

Richard  

Edited by dickrd
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