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Spitfire cockpit colour


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#1 Mistron

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Posted 13 November 2011 - 23:22

As it's clear that many members of TNF are equally knowledgable about Supermarine Spitfires as they are about old racers, perhaps someone here can help me where Google has failed.

It looks like I'm about to take on a new project, and I quite fancy a change from the usual 'boring old grey' for the chassis, so does anyone know a colour code for the shade of green found in spitfire cockpits? or was it just 'airframe green' and varied from week to week and factory to factory?

All I can find are airfix or humbrol codes, and that's a pricey way to paint a spaceframe! of course, a modern equivalent code would be equally helpfull.

Many thanks in advance.

Al

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#2 WGD706

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Posted 13 November 2011 - 23:29

I think the color is the British 'cockpit green', which is a pale green with a slight blue-grey tinge. This was used to paint the interiors of most British aircraft during the period of WWII.
http://s362974870.on...howtopic=235650
Supermarine used an interior green that was different than model paints that are labelled as British Interior Green. In comparing the interior color of a Spitfire to other British aircraft it's a bit different. The color is more a beige-green, not a grey-green. I've read where Hu90 would work as it's closer than Hu78, for a Spitfire; Hu90 is a beige-green that's near to Sky. As you want acrylic, I would consider Tamiya XF21 Sky; by the time you put in a wash, highlights, etc; it'll probably look about right. If you think it's too bright, add some black or gray, but I wouldn't add much. I recently was looking at some original interior paint on a Spitfire XVIII that's getting restored. It was not as green as XF21 Sky, but definitely not as dark as British Interior Green.


Edited by WGD706, 13 November 2011 - 23:32.


#3 kayemod

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Posted 13 November 2011 - 23:34

I think the color is the British 'cockpit green', which is a pale green with a slight blue-grey tinge. This was used to paint the interiors of most British aircraft during the period of WWII.


Not disagreeing with that, but the stuff I've seen being applied by a restoration specialist didn't contain a lot of pigment, so the underlying metal would show through, that could account for any blue/grey tinge. As far as I can remember, it was a pale greyish green in the can.


#4 Hamish Robson

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 10:17

The latest Tamiya 1/32 Spitfire instructions call for XF71 "Cockpit Green" :drunk: :

http://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10132083

#5 Tony Matthews

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 11:13

I don't think it was so much a paint as a brush-applied chemical finish. For the life of me the name will not progress further than the tip of my tonge, but the word 'cadmium' seems to be involved. It will come to me... Chromate? Yellowish green, or greenish yellow.

#6 kayemod

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 11:18

I don't think it was so much a paint as a brush-applied chemical finish. For the life of me the name will not progress further than the tip of my tonge, but the word 'cadmium' seems to be involved. It will come to me... Chromate? Yellowish green, or greenish yellow.




I've just examined the tip of your tongue, a nasty job, but someone has to do it.

What I found there was "zinc chromate primer".

Eugh!


#7 h4887

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 11:58

I don't think it was so much a paint as a brush-applied chemical finish. For the life of me the name will not progress further than the tip of my tonge, but the word 'cadmium' seems to be involved. It will come to me... Chromate? Yellowish green, or greenish yellow.


If it were a chemical finish like Alchromate or Alocrom (don't know if they were around in those days) it would be an iridescent greenish yellow, rather like passivated zinc or cadmium plate, only much paler.


#8 Tony Matthews

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 12:10

I've just examined the tip of your tongue, a nasty job, but someone has to do it.

What I found there was "zinc chromate primer".

Eugh!

Doesn't taste too bad, but it frightens the children.

#9 Tony Matthews

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 12:14

If it were a chemical finish like Alchromate or Alocrom (don't know if they were around in those days) it would be an iridescent greenish yellow, rather like passivated zinc or cadmium plate, only much paler.

I'm sure you're right, I have no particular knowledge of this, just that I have, a long time ago, painted wheel wells and other exposed internal structure of model aircraft in this yello green. Kayemod has it, I think.

#10 f1steveuk

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 12:33

When I've been involved in restoration or aero parts (the Beryl jet engine from Bluebird K7 for example) we used an "acid etch primer, which leaves a green, matt finish, could that be it?

#11 Mistron

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 12:40

Many thanks guys. Armed with the model paint codes I've got a couple of 'tester pots' which I'll take to my friendly paint supplier to see if he can match or mix me some up in sufficianr quantity.

Looking at it, my bet's on something from the 50s BMC range will be fairly close or can be matched by adding white. It has that sort of 'Austin Westminster' drabness about it! :drunk:

Thanks again.

#12 Bakeryman

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 18:09

Although WW2 was well before my time in the aircraft industry, all aluminium alloy parts would have been protected with etch primer (alochrome?) a pale green colour. A top coat would have been applied subsequently if necessary (eg the external surfaces of the completed aircraft) or possibly if local protection was required, for instance from hydraulic fluid. Otherwise everything was left in the pale green including wheel wells. Life was too short during the war and doubtless the cockpit was no exception.

To achieve a good colour match, it might be worth approaching WW2 aircraft restorers, eg http://www.arc-duxford.co.uk/ or http://www.airframes.co.uk/




#13 Doug Nye

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 18:37

Posted Image

Much depends upon your monitor's colour tones but here's a Spitfire cockpit I photographed in 2009.

Photo Copyright: The GP Library

DCN

#14 f1steveuk

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 18:43

Could you post one of your Supermarine S6 cockpit shots Doug, for comparision purposes?

#15 Mistron

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 18:58

It seems that RAF sky has the colour code BS210 (7) which with a bit of googling, managed to bring up some sort of recipie that I think I can take to get some mixed - it might not be the correct type of finish, but it'll give me the 'feel' i'll be looking for in the car (though there is a lot of work to do before then!)

Al

#16 Doug Nye

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 23:37

Could you post one of your Supermarine S6 cockpit shots Doug, for comparision purposes?


Posted Image

Here you go, Steve - the S6A cockpit green is a particularly repulsive shade of eau de canal...

Photo Copyright: The GP Library

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#17 Mistron

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Posted 14 November 2011 - 23:48

eurgh! did the early pilots claim that the colour gave them migraines, so they toned it down for the later ones? It's enough to make a man 'take to the silk' over the chanel!

#18 kayemod

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 09:45

eurgh! did the early pilots claim that the colour gave them migraines, so they toned it down for the later ones? It's enough to make a man 'take to the silk' over the chanel!


The effect of that colour was worth at least an extra 5 mph.


#19 ExFlagMan

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 11:43

A chart I downloaded from a modelmaking site gives the following Federal Standard (FS) colours for WW2 RAF interior colours FS:34226 34128,34373,34227
You can see the colours by going to this site www.colorserver.net
If you put in those numbers as a string you can see how much variation there seems to be :|

I assume you could then get a paint mixed to that spec

Hope that is some help

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#20 f1steveuk

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 13:07

Thanks Doug, don't remember it being quite so, "in your face"!

#21 fatbaldbloke

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 13:11

Mistron,

If you can wait a few days, I spend my Saturdays working on the Shackleton at Airbase, Coventry. The inside is painted the same pale green and I have a load of paint chip books here that I can match to.

Mark@grandprixmodels.com

#22 ktrhe

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 14:15

Posted Image
Cockpit of the Spitfire Prototype.
I took the picture during this year Goodwood Revival Meeting

#23 Mistron

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Posted 15 November 2011 - 15:50

Mistron,

If you can wait a few days, I spend my Saturdays working on the Shackleton at Airbase, Coventry. The inside is painted the same pale green and I have a load of paint chip books here that I can match to.

Mark@grandprixmodels.com


Hi Mark, that would be brilliant, many thanks.

#24 f1steveuk

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:13

Posted Image

Here you go, Steve - the S6A cockpit green is a particularly repulsive shade of eau de canal...

Photo Copyright: The GP Library

DCN



It was a bit paler when I sat in it.

Posted Image

#25 kayemod

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:16

It was a bit paler when I sat in it.


Which raises obvious doubts about the present colour's authenticity.


#26 Tony Matthews

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:37

Yes. I think they had some bright green Dulux (no relation) left over from the toilets.

#27 kayemod

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:54

Yes. I think they had some bright green Dulux (no relation) left over from the toilets.


I'd guessed that they might have had an LNER loco passing through the paint shop at the same time.