Along side my research into colour paint matches, I'll also be looking to gather materials that look at the camouflage patterns used by the Luftwaffe. I've started with a look at early Bf 109s as I currently have one of Airfix's offering on my bench.
I began my research with a look through the Bundesarchiv, so hopefully even the seasoned Luftwaffe modeller will find some images that are interest. Here is a small sample of what I have unearthed thus far.
My starting point for the Bf 109 is looking at the changes to the camouflage made through the campaigns in the Battles of Poland, France and Britain. The significant change in the images above from later schemes is the demarcation between the upper and lower colours. In the image below you can see a soft edged demarcation about an inch of so above the bottom of the canopy.
This second image, again from 1940 shows the demarcation slightly lower, this time in line with the bottom of the canopy.
To finish this post, here is a final picture of an aircraft from 1939 with an attractive Edelwiess motif. This image shows a narrow soft demarcation between green upper camouflage colours that is difficult to spot in the images at the start of this post. I hope you've enjoyed what I've found and it serves as an inspiration for building your own model of an early Bf 109.
In my second post on Luftwaffe colours, I will be looking at a recent purchase. Aeromaster are well known for the decal range, but what may have been forgotten is that they once producted a range of paints. Colour samples from their paints range is included here. What this booklet does is highlight some of the issues that are encountered when trying to be accurate with regards to colour.
The bulk of the booklet is colour side profiles, many taken from Aeromaster's decal range.
The last three pages of the booklet are pertinent to the point in hand. There is a series of hand painted samples included.
The RLM 04 paint chip is worthy of notes. The brush marks where the paint has been applied both thinly and thickly show a definiate shift in tone. This is a point alluded to a number of references - the surface upon which a paint applied and how it is applied can have an impact on how a colour appears.
This document is not perhaps the definitive reference, in fact it points towards the conclusion that I had already arrived at: the definitive colour reference does not exist and the modeller is going to have to make do with something that is close to what was applied to the real aircraft.
An important point about scale effect is raised in the second paragraph of the booklet. The warbirds paint range is lightened to take account of scale effect, which presumably means that the twenty paint chips included are also lighter than actual RLM paints. The booklet mentions that the paint has been lightened for ease of use but they recommend a further adjustment of 15%, 10% and 5% white for scales 1/72 1/48 and 1/32 respectively.
So another variable has been introduced into the mix, if you'll pardon the pun.
As it is International Women's Day today, here is a small post to recognise the role women are playing on the front line of the modern Luftwaffe.
Major Ulrike Fitzer was the first female fighter pilot in the German Air Force. She is the first German female Tornado pilot, having completed training in 2007 at Holloman Air Force Base.
Major Nicola Baumann became second female fighter pilot in the history of the German Air Force in 2007 flying both Tornado and Eurofighter Typhoon in Luftwaffe.
Video via: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicola_Baumann
The German Military Aviation
Special Interest Group
The Luftwaffe SIG Newsletter online edition written by SIG Leader Nathan Robinson.