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TSR.2 white paint, matt finish?


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Posted (edited)

Perhaps this will be of interest to anyone building either of the Airfix TSR.2 s.

 

Brian Lawrence of LDM had personal experience of the aircraft through working at Weybridge and Boscombe Down 'from Project Office to cancellation'.

 

The instructions for the LDM kit of TSR.2, issued in 1986, contain the following notes.

 

"Spray model, and details, all over with cellulose white primer...... This white primer is virtually indistinguishable from the anti- radiation finish so a top coat of this can now be applied overall."

 

"A coat of matt clear varnish is recommended over the complete model. (The finish was very matt, almost chalky to the touch.)"

 

Matt

 

Edited by Farmer matt
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At risk of starting an argument, I disagree with the latter statement that the paint finish on TSR 2 was very matt.

 

Examination of XR220, that still retains its original acrylic paint finish to DTD 900/4740, shows that it has a very smooth satin/low gloss finish. It's certainly not a full gloss, but the paint finish is now nearly 60 years old.

 

Period photos of XR219 often show a distinct shine. Part and parcel of the Anti-Flash White scheme was that it was intended to reflect as much of the incident light generated by a nuclear explosion as possible. In addition, a gloss finish was thought to be easier to clean of fallout. 

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@Paul Lucas, I would actually tend to agree with those comments, and discussion is more than welcome.

However, it is surprising that the point is emphasised, when perhaps just 'use matt paint' could have covered experience of a weathered finish.

Perhaps it was a reaction to a feeling that the preserved airframes are overly glossy?

Certainly the older XR219 got the more deterioated the paintwork seems. There is I suppose also the possibility that because it was only a test article, XR219 was simply painted 'white' rather than ' anti radiation white'.

Hopefully someone will be able to shed some light on the matter.

 

Matt

 

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@Farmer matt, DTD 900/4740 was an Anti-Flash finish. It is listed as such in the Defence List of Paints, Varnishes, Lacquers and Related Products. This same finish was also employed by the Royal Navy on the Buccaneer S.1 when it first entered service in the overall White scheme.

 

DTD 900/4740 was manufactured by ICI where the White, Pale Red and Pale Blue were part of their 'F.152' Acrylic range. All three colours were provisioned for the RAF Vocabulary of Stores under the following reference numbers.

F.152-R.802 White 33B/2202441.

F.152-R.803 Pale Red 33B/2202442.

F.152-R.804 Pale Blue 33B/2202443.

 

The paint specification number 'DTD 900/4740 S' is clearly visible where it is stencilled upon XR220's airframe in Pale Blue so there can be no doubt that this is the finish that was applied.

 

As far as I know, XR220 is the only remaining airframe that still carries a genuine Anti-Flash White finish.

 

Unless someone knows otherwise.

 

I covered the subject of British Anti-Flash finishes in some detail in the September and October 2021 issues of Scale Aircraft Modelling.

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Lovely photo.

Having looked again at many published photos, I do wonder if some of the 'shine' is in fact a result of detail being bleached-out in the exposure, rather than any glossiness. If areas of a photo are over-exposed the detail can be lost and not retrievable in processing, especially with white. (Unlike under-exposure where detail can often be brought out in processing).

Also, I would assume the nose cone is impregnated or treated rather than painted? It does appear consistently glossier.

I would perhaps suggest that 'satin' would be a more appropriate description than matt for the main airframe.

From a modelling perspective, I was personally surprised at the smoothness of a well applied white primer coat

As for the touch texture of the real thing, perhaps I will have to duck the barriers at Cosford one day, and sneak a touch.

 

Matt

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  • Farmer matt changed the title to TSR.2 white paint, matt finish?

@canberra kid Thanks for that.

Interesting that the colour is referred to as 'high speed' rather than 'anti-flash'. And confirms my thought on the nosecone.

It does not appear in the plan note, but would the S after the numbers on the XR220 stencil quoted by @Paul Lucas equate to satin?

 

Matt

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1 hour ago, Farmer matt said:

@canberra kid Thanks for that.

Interesting that the colour is referred to as 'high speed' rather than 'anti-flash'. And confirms my thought on the nosecone.

It does not appear in the plan note, but would the S after the numbers on the XR220 stencil quoted by @Paul Lucas equate to satin?

 

Matt

No. The letter 'S' denotes a 'Synthetic' finish. By the early 1960s there were Enamels such as DTD 314, DTD 827 and Cold Cure Epoxy DTD 5555 as well as the Acrylic finish that has been mentioned here available for use on aircraft, all of which were classed as synthetic finishes.

 

The other type of aircraft finish was Cellulose based, and these finishes had their DTD Specification numbers, such as DTD 827, marked on the aircraft in conjunction with the letter 'C' that denoted a 'Cellulose' finish.

 

The 'Anti-Flash Paints' section of the Defence List I referred to previously that dates from the mid 1960's shows White to have been available to DTD 827, DTD 899, DTD 5555, DTD 900/4710 and DTD 900/4740. 

 

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@Paul Lucas, I remembered that subsequent to posing the question, thankyou.

 

I have a thought as to perhaps how the perception was arrived at by Brian, although it may be a long shot ;the human memory is a strange place and can quite happily convince one of 'facts' that are no such thing.

 

At Weybridge there was a fullsize engineering mock-up. If the design team, drawing office, or anyone else needed to clamber over an airframe for any reason, it seems sensible that they would have done so on the mock-up for the most part, rather than the airframe on the assembly line.

The mock-up could conceivably have been painted (assuming it was) using absolutely any kind of paint, it would not have  mattered, and could well have felt chalky to the touch.

Twenty years later, even if the 'real' article had susequently been seen or clambered over, the sensory memory from the previious  encounters may have been the one embedded.

 

Thankyou for your inputs on this.

 

Matt

 

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13 hours ago, Work In Progress said:

This is...

 

....a wonderful photo- thanks for sharing that one!

 

Man, if I'm not careful I'll start wanting to have a gander at my 48th example.  I probably shouldn't admit it, but I don't often feel that way about this beastie.

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