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wally7506

Invasion Stripes

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So the RAF adopted full "invasion" stripes the night of 5 Jun 1944.

Then removed them from the tops of the wings and fuselage some time later.

I've noticed a return to full invasion stripes (FUSELAGE ONLY) on some aircraft at the END of 1944. Some examples include 464 Sqn Mosquitoes at Thorney Island (Nov 1944) and a 541 Sqn Spitfire PR XIX at Benson (late 1944).

Was there an order for this? (if so, what date?) Was there an incident that led to the stripes being put back on?

TIA

464Nov44a.jpg

464Nov44b.jpg

Z-1.jpg

RM643.jpg

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Stripes were removed from uppersurfaces end of June/early July. In September they were removed from under the wings, leaving them only on the fuselage underside. It looks as though some people misread the orders.

Edited by Graham Boak

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Interesting to see the leading edge of the fins on the three nearer Mozzies (Photo 1) have been censored.

Phil

Edited by Red Dragon

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Are RM643's stripes dead straight here? Im building it in 1/72 scale, normally I'd mask the stripes but I assume they WERE handpainted a d therefore arent perfectly straight...

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Your model is only going to be about the same size as that picture: I'd say paint whatever it is you think you see, or whichever makes you happier.

Myself, for anything modelled as of late 1944, I would have neat masked stripes.

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This is the actual signal sent from H.Q. As you see, it says that the fuselage stripes were to remain, so why some aircraft carried them on the undersides only, is something of a mystery. There was no order (that I've found) to put stripes back on, simply a lack of an order to remove them until the end of the year.

PICT0054_zps4a0e670f.jpg

Note, too, that units were given several days in which to comply with the order. The final order, to remove the stripes completely, didn't come until the end of December, but many had faded to almost nothing, by then, anyway.

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Your model is only going to be about the same size as that picture: I'd say paint whatever it is you think you see, or whichever makes you happier.

Myself, for anything modelled as of late 1944, I would have neat masked stripes.

Going with what Edgar has pointed out, its likely the stripes were applied hastily before D-Day abd retained throughout 44 and maybe even into 45. I think I'm going to paint freehand but very neatly :P thanks for the responses.

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For my C-47 build i am intending to first spray the stripes then go over with a small flat brush putting brush strokes within the sprayed area.as at 1/72 scale i think they should look fairly straight with neatish edges

Alistair

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Going with what Edgar has pointed out, its likely the stripes were applied hastily before D-Day abd retained throughout 44 and maybe even into 45.

No, December 31st. was the cut-off point, because it was found that faded markings, in some light, could resemble the German black cross.

Edgar

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Despite what I thought some years back, full fuselage stripes were reinstated on twins and multi-engine types in October - see the thread on Mitchells for more details. They can be seen on Bostons, Mitchells, Mosquitos and Halifaxes, to my knowledge. I'm not quite sure how that leads to seeing them on Spitfires, but this may be related to the carriage of a full set of stripes by PR Mosquitos for protection from roaming US fighters, which appear to have had rather poor recognition skills at this time. This was said to prevent confusion with the Me410, but solo PR Spitfires may well have been thought to be equally vulnerable.

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Full 'invasion stripes' were retained on PR Spits and Mossies of 34 Wing 2ndTAF because of continuing misidentification problems ie. attacks by Allied fighters. Don't know if the same rule applied to UK-based PR types.

For the same reason full fuselage stripes were reintroduced on 2 Group's twins - Mossies, Mitchells and Bostons - in October 1944.

CT

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I understand that in some areas where the action was particularly hot, invasion stripes were retained for longer than normal.

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I was present at the Museum of Army Flying when one of the museum wardens got into an argument with a member of the public who was complaining about the width of the invasion stripes painted on the museum's Horsa.

The member of the public was insistant that the stripes should be a uniform width of X inches. The Warden told him they weren't. The member of the public insisted they had to be as he had a copy of the order. The warden told him he was wrong. The member of the public denied he was wrong and who was the warden to tell him so. The warden then explained that during the war he was ground crew at RAF Broadwell and on the 4th June 1944 he was given a yard brush and a bucket of white wash and told to paint three stripes on each wing and the rear fuselage of each Horsa, his mate was given a tin of black paint and a similar brush and told to paint two stripes, a written order was never seen, a tape measure was never used and the stripes were simply the width of the brush. The member of the public left muttering about old fools who didn't know what they were talking about. The warden and I had a good chuckle. :-)

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It would be interesting to look at the stripes on Horsas and see if they look any different from the published instructions. It wouldn't be too surprising if instructions weren't properly passed down to everyone, perhaps more surprising that they were in the vast majority of cases. Just how wide was this brush?

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The brush was just the standard domestic type from Barrack stores.

Once he'd told me about using whitewash I started to notice I could tell film from D-day apart from Market Garden. A number of gliders were painted up for D-day but didn't go so they sat out in the open for three and a half months in British weather. Look closely at the film and you will see some Market Garden gliders with the white stripes on the upper wing either parrtially or completely washed away leaving just the two black stripes.

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Going with what Edgar has pointed out, its likely the stripes were applied hastily before D-Day abd retained throughout 44 and maybe even into 45. I think I'm going to paint freehand but very neatly :P thanks for the responses.

As this XIX probably wasn't in service in June 44, I doubt they would have been applied in a hurry...

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There is plenty of photographic evidence of very hastily applied D-Day stripes on many types.

And there is plenty of photographic evidence of very neatly applied D-Day stripes on many types.

Any generalisation is going to be wrong, so if a picture of the aircraft of interest is available, follow this.

However here we're talking of models that are many times smaller than the real things. Hastily applied stripes that are not perfectly straight may well look so if the subject is seen from a certain distance and in a sense the model should IMHO represent this. A small deviation on a real aicraft is likely not visible on a model. And last but not least, sloppy rendered stripes on a model often look disproportionately bad.

Said that, the picture posted above of RM643 seems to show the rearmost white portion as wider than the others. Mind, it could be an effect due to the angle of the picture or the fact that the fuselage tapers

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...,.. explained that during the war he was ground crew at RAF Broadwell and on the 4th June 1944 he was given a yard brush and a bucket of white wash and told to paint three stripes on each wing and the rear fuselage of each Horsa, his mate was given a tin of black paint and a similar brush and told to paint two stripes, a written order was never seen, a tape measure was never used and the stripes were simply the width of the brush.....

Hi

I was told the same thing happened at RAF Harrowbeer, everyone including the kitchen staff, painted the aircraft stripes the same way.

cheers

Jerry

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In his autobiography Focus on Europe (Crowood 2004) Ronald H Foster DFC CdG, who flew PR Mosquitos, relates that at Benson stripes were very smartly applied, despite the limited timescale. It really was "all hands on deck", with everyone lending a hand, and was done quickly, but they were straight. Bear in mind also that despite wartime conditions the air arms involved were military units, who generally are renowned for not tolerating sloppiness.

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We seem to revisit this subject on a pretty regular basis. However, nothing really changes.

From photographic evidence, memoirs and hearsay it is clear that the neatness/accuracy of the invasion stripes applied immediately before D Day varied from unit to unit. Therefore the advice remains the same; wherever possible refer to a photograph of your actual subject. If that's not available then a perhaps a photograph of another aircraft from the same unit will give you a clue how the stripes were treated.

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As this XIX probably wasn't in service in June 44, I doubt they would have been applied in a hurry...

I agree. Almost all the PR Spitfires in service on 5 June were still the PR.XI so the strong likelihood for all sorts of reasons is that this aeroplane in late 1944 was not wearing stripes applied on the night of 5 June with a yard brush.

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Beware of too-sweeping statements; according to StH RM626 - 647 were all delivered to Benson before D-day; the only caveat, of course, is that they were all unpressurised. Pressurised PS--- (very few) deliveries started in November 1944, so might have had (underside) fuselage-only stripes.

Edgar

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No, December 31st. was the cut-off point, because it was found that faded markings, in some light, could resemble the German black cross.

Edgar

Oh ok, thanks for clearing that up :P

As this XIX probably wasn't in service in June 44, I doubt they would have been applied in a hurry...

So it wasn't. Forgot to check the date it entered service... apparently it started service with 541 sqn late july '44!

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In relation to the Airfix 1/24 Typhoon.

I notice that stripes on the top of the wing shown in the painting instructions don't reach as far as the outside cannon.

But real pictures appear to show them going just beyond the cannon (and also the box art), and from Airfix's measurement of 95mm width this would also seem to take them beyond the cannon.

Am I right here or just being picky?

Cheers

BB

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In relation to the Airfix 1/24 Typhoon.I notice that stripes on the top of the wing shown in the painting instructions don't reach as far as the outside cannon.But real pictures appear to show them going just beyond the cannon (and also the box art), and from Airfix's measurement of 95mm width this would also seem to take them beyond the cannon.Am I right here or just being picky?CheersBB

Not picky Billy, just observant. Just beyond the outer cannon is correct if the instructions for painting were accurately followed. Starting 6 inches inboard of the wing roundel is the precise marker.

I was a bit puzzled as to why they appear incorrectly positioned in the Airfix drawing for 'CG' but in the right position under the wings on 'ZY-N'. As remarked earlier in the thread - refer to photos! There are 3/4 front shots available of CG and they show that although the starboard wing stripes were correctly positioned, the port wing stripes started inboard of the outer cannon. So Airfix were half right!

Note also the incorrectly painted u/c doors - the stripes do not line up when closed, and the different treatment of stripes/ serial on each side. And all those anomalies on the Wingco's aircraft .... what about the rest!

CT

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