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Aircraft Topics related to WWI aircraft, aircraft engines and armament

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Old 7 December 2003, 04:13 PM   #1
Langdon
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For some time now I have been considering the camouflage style on the Fokker E.V wing and with many model aircraft builders replicating this aircraft I presume others have spent considerable time on this problem as well, if so I would like to hear of your observations.

Fortunately we do have some clues as the original E.V wing drawing No.33050/1 still exists (I have a copy thanks to the generosity of Mr P. Grosz) and in the materials list of the title block are the details of the paints used, in English they translate to: - New True Green, Azin Violet, Azure Blue & Mocha Brown and for each of these the requirement is 20 grams of product. The "remarks" column describes this product as "holzbeize" which is wood stain.

This wood stain would have been mixed either with water or a spirit and with the quantities mentioned it would have been applied fairly thinly. With the help of Koloman Mayrhofer we have been able to perform some tests using these same wood stains that have been produced by a company in Austria for around 90 years although their range of colours has decreased the colours they have supplied match the colour description given in the drawing. Incidentally we do not know what company or companies supplied Fokker at the time and it would be a long shot to suggest the company we are using is the same one but it is possible as there is an abreviated word in front of the wood stain description, Sch. which could stand for Schimek the company name from our product.





So these are the colours used but the question is how were they applied? Some have suggested they were mixed together to form an olive colour and applied either as a solid colour or streaked and others have suggested they were applied in bands of colour which is my preference, My belief is that they were lightly applied in a streaky fashion and that the colours, in the main, were kept separate. Why specify four colours if you only want one? It seems logical to me that the earthy tones, brown and green, would be used on the upper surface with violet and blue on the undersurface but anything is possible.

Here are some of our latest samples which I believe display the Spartan use of the stains. Please remember that there would have been a varnish finish applied over this.






I would be very interested in hearing the thoughts of others on this subject.

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Old 8 December 2003, 04:01 PM   #2
Dan_San_Abbott
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Langdon:
I resoled this problem in 1999.
1. The stains were not mixed together to achieve an olive color. Tey will not produce an olive green or brown.
2. the stains were applied directly to plywood, green and mocha on the top surface and azure and violet on the bottom. The blue matches the green on the leading and trailing edge and the violte matches the mocha.
3. I have identified four and five panel pattern. The wing is NOT divided into equal areas, it is assymetric. The patterns slope right / or left \. The angle of the slope at the center-section is about two rib bays.
It seems the streaking is more uniform in density than what was done on fuselages and tailplanes. on the early Fok.D.VII aircraft.
After staining was dry, the wing was varnished.
I would suggest you go back and re-look at the photographs and you will find the streaking. Once I had detected the wings were streaked and reviewed the photographs, I found it in almost every photograph.

Blue skies,
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Old 8 December 2003, 04:59 PM   #3
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Dan-San,

Thank you for your reply.

I agree with all you are saying although I feel you have mis-read my position concerning the streaky effect, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the camouflage was streaked. I am not so certain that we can say that Green and Mocha were definitely the top surface colours with blue and violet as the undersurface colours but this certainly seems likely given the similarity these colours would have to the dominant colours of upper and lower printed fabric.

I have never had access to really good quality photos of E.V aircraft in service and so I have always found it very had to notice any camouflage effect on their wings but recently I was given a copy of this picture of E.V 113/18, the aircraft that was sent to MAG, the Hungarian company owned by Fokker and was fitted with a 160hp Steyr built, 11 cylinder LeRhone derivative engine (not UrIII). I think this photo shows the streaky effect quite well.
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Old 8 December 2003, 05:26 PM   #4
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Sorry I had to do this posting in two halves as the photo above had to be "attached".

The wood stain certainly was applied directly to the plywood surface as this finish is unsuitable for mixing with varnish or for applying over a varnished surface, another observation of this finish is that the brush strokes are noticeably thinner to the brush strokes applied to fabric covered Fokker aircraft. I suppose I should have mentioned that the wood stain is certainly not the same type of product as that used on the fabric surfaces of earlier Fokker built aircraft.

My impression of the bands of colour is that they were quite random in their application in both extent and position, the brush strokes are generally on the angle / when viewed with the leading edge at the top as can be seen in the photos below (of the wings underside), but towards the tip, on this wing anyway, the streaky effect has become a solid colour, probably violet, and the brush stroke direction has become random. Please note that the streaky application toward the centre of the wing is quite lightly applied.





The streaky finish and banding can be seen on the top surface of this broken wing. The banding is less noticeable due, I think, to the darker colours used.



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Old 8 December 2003, 05:48 PM   #5
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Thanks, Guys!
IMHO, this is one of the "final frontiers" of WWI camo, from a modeler's perspective, in as much as all E.V/D.VIII models I've see have solid olive wings. I have a copy of Dan-San's 3-view of the D.VIII, and have been in a conundrum about how to replicate the colors in scale (in my case, the 1/32 Falcon Vac kit). Mayhap, by the time I actually finish it, Y'all will have given me an idea of how to do it An Alle: Vielen Dank, Rob
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Old 8 December 2003, 06:05 PM   #6
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I'm glad you have got something from my posting Rob, hopefuly we will hear from other modelers who have pondered this question.

By the way if you mix the four colours together you end up with a blueish grey result, so dark olive would never have been the colour of the E.V wing, in my opinion anyway.

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Old 8 December 2003, 06:21 PM   #7
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Langdon,

Thank you very much for posting these pictures. These are the first photos in which I have been able to really see the streaking!

I've been told that there is a photo of an E.V flown by Karl Sharon of one of the Marine Jastas that shows color variations on the wing, but I've not seen this photo myself.

I've begun to study E.V color schemes for a 1/4 scale R/C model project. I'll likely try reproducing the streaked finish on a smaller display model, as I'm eager to see this scheme in 3D. In my study material are 2 of Dan-San's color drawings.

I'm therefore very interested in what you are doing, and hope you will continue to post your findings. Maybe I can even be of help in some small way.

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Old 8 December 2003, 07:12 PM   #8
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If I am looking at this wrong forgive me and let me know.That is the wing in the clamps right?Why is the surface uneven like it is some type of covering or vanied been glued to a wing? Plywood is not that flexable so it does look like a cover being glued to the wing surfaces.

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Old 8 December 2003, 09:04 PM   #9
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CWatson,

I deliberately cropped the photo to show the streaky camouflage to greater effect, the whole photo is posted below and it shows the wing in the Schwerin factory undergoing tortional testing. This wing was almost certainly manufactured, along with all other production wings, at the Perzina works as they placed the plywood covering sheets in a different manner to the factory built experimental examples. I believe this wing to be one of the initial batch of D.VIII wings which were tested to destruction.

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Old 9 December 2003, 09:11 AM   #10
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Where could a person get these color stains. I,m in the process of completing a 1/4 DVIII and want to have the wing like In the drawing I got From Dan-San.
I,m also starting on a full scale version in my garage as long as the wife will let me have her parking spot
D. Turnwald
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