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Latico
05-03-2004, 05:57 PM
I know that the skin designers will be chomping at the bit to start work on AG and Squadron markings for the PF aircraft. I thought I'd point out that In reguard to US Naval planes, they did not display such markings. I found the following on a military history web site.

Naval markings 1941

26 February- An extensive modification of aircraft
markings added National Star Insignia to both sides of
the fuselage or hull and eliminated those on the upper
right and lower left wings; discontinued the use of colored
tail markings, fuselage bands and cowl markings;
made removal of vertical red, white and blue rudder
stripes mandatory; and changed the color of all markings,
except the National Insignia, to those of least
contrast to the background.

Of all the photos I've seen of carrier based planes I have yet to see one with the Squadron ensignias on the planes. From the CV6.org site I read that the reason for this was to eliminate the possibility of the Japanese to track the where-a-bouts of US carriers.

At most, markings would look like this.

For a fighter from the CV6 fusalage markings would appear as 6-F-1 (the number after the "F" would signify pilots position in the squadron, I think)
SBD scout planes would appear as 6-s-#
SBD dive bombers appeared as 6-B-#
TB's would appear as 6-T-#

These numbers were not made very big so they weren't easily read by the enemy.

After the war got going good, the Navy started shift the AG's around on the carriers, again to confuse the enemy. CV6 had AG's 10, 20, and NAG90 (night Air Group) as the war went on.

The USAAF, USMC, and other allied AF's were a different story.

Just thougtht I'd point this out before the skinners tear into creating tail art and such for the carrier planes.

Latico
05-03-2004, 05:57 PM
I know that the skin designers will be chomping at the bit to start work on AG and Squadron markings for the PF aircraft. I thought I'd point out that In reguard to US Naval planes, they did not display such markings. I found the following on a military history web site.

Naval markings 1941

26 February- An extensive modification of aircraft
markings added National Star Insignia to both sides of
the fuselage or hull and eliminated those on the upper
right and lower left wings; discontinued the use of colored
tail markings, fuselage bands and cowl markings;
made removal of vertical red, white and blue rudder
stripes mandatory; and changed the color of all markings,
except the National Insignia, to those of least
contrast to the background.

Of all the photos I've seen of carrier based planes I have yet to see one with the Squadron ensignias on the planes. From the CV6.org site I read that the reason for this was to eliminate the possibility of the Japanese to track the where-a-bouts of US carriers.

At most, markings would look like this.

For a fighter from the CV6 fusalage markings would appear as 6-F-1 (the number after the "F" would signify pilots position in the squadron, I think)
SBD scout planes would appear as 6-s-#
SBD dive bombers appeared as 6-B-#
TB's would appear as 6-T-#

These numbers were not made very big so they weren't easily read by the enemy.

After the war got going good, the Navy started shift the AG's around on the carriers, again to confuse the enemy. CV6 had AG's 10, 20, and NAG90 (night Air Group) as the war went on.

The USAAF, USMC, and other allied AF's were a different story.

Just thougtht I'd point this out before the skinners tear into creating tail art and such for the carrier planes.

Latico
05-09-2004, 09:28 PM
Bump

Scottly666
05-10-2004, 07:56 AM
The numbering system you're talking about here wasn't used on planes after about mid-1943, maybe earlier.

The 6-F-# codes were related to the air group or squadron, not the ship. Originally (mostly prewar I suppose) it was hoped the an air group would remain with a carrier indefinately, and that that group would share the carrier's hull number. However, with carrier sinkings and the fatigue experienced by pilots, especially in 1942, groups were moved around carriers or rotated home, and newer ones brought in.

After mid-1943 (not sure on that, may have been even earlier), the squadron-type-number code was abandoned, although the plane number was retained. Carrier groups then used various shapes on their tails to identify the carrier from which they originated, shapes which were inherited by replacement groups. Essex planes (from CVG-9, then CVG-15, then CVG-4) had a white stripe around the top of the tail, Hornet planes a small circle, Saratoga twin diagonal stripes, Enterprise an equilateral triangle, plus others that I can't remember. Most CVLs used a single letter on the tail, like X for San Jacinto.

Beginning sometime in late 1944/early 1945, this scheme was abandoned in favour of more obvious geometric markings, which were also on one or both wings. Probably the most recognisable was that of Bunker Hill's CVG-84, a large upward pointing arrow. Others included the lightning bolt of Shangri-La, the checkerboard of Independence, the harlequin (alternating patches) of Hornet (see SkyChimps sig), and other stripes or halves painted white.

In the last couple of months of the war, this in turn was abandoned in favour of large letters painted on the tail. The only such markings that I have ever seen were from Yorktown, 'RR' (although the letter 'Z' might have been used by Shangri-La, memory's a bit cloudy on that).

It would be nice to see all of the above markings included, so that each squadron can have the relevent skin for the right campaign. But considering that there were so many groups, and quite a few paint schemes in addition to the changing markings plus sometimes squadron noseart (like VF-17s Skull and Crossbones, or those amazing Princeton Sharkmouths), it might be a big job. Plus of course all the Japanese equivalent markings.

http://img8.imageshack.us/img8/5579/belushi_1941_4.jpg
"Pull my finger to hear what I think about Hellcats"

BlitzPig_Ritter
05-10-2004, 08:10 AM
It is true that with the exception of kill markings, US naval aircraft all pretty much looked alike.

______________________________
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Scottly666
05-10-2004, 08:32 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by BlitzPig_Ritter:
It is true that with the exception of kill markings, US naval aircraft all pretty much looked alike.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Maybe before the geometric markins came in, but certainly not when they were introduced. Although many of them are hard to describe, they are very easy to recognise and relate to a particular carrier.

I've done some digging about those very late tail codes. They were in fact called 'G Codes' and here are some of them:

Essex F
Yorktown RR
Intrepid I
Hornet E
Franklin LL
Ticonderoga V

I'll post a full list if anyone wants it.

http://img8.imageshack.us/img8/5579/belushi_1941_4.jpg
"Pull my finger to hear what I think about Hellcats"

DuxCorvan
05-10-2004, 12:09 PM
Don't you worry about me. I just work with real aircraft graphical data and references. Be sure that if there were no unit markings or badges on those planes, you won't find them on mine.

- Dux Corvan -
http://www.uploadit.org/DuxCorvan/Altamira2.jpg
Ten thousand years of Cantabrian skinning.

IV_JG51_Razor
05-10-2004, 02:30 PM
I recently got a DVD from Zeno's drive in videos, of a Navy training film on a/c handeling and spotting. It is very informative, and I highly recommend it to anyone truely interested in carrier operations. Anyway, this flick was made on a Jeep carrier, where F4Fs and TBFs were embarked. It was facinating to see the variety of paint schemes amongst the planes. The movie was made in 1943, and the predominate paint scheme was the tri-color camo with the red ringed start and bar. However, you could see a couple that still were painted in the older two tone Nonspecular blue and light grey with just the star and blue surround. On quite a few, you can see where they have painted over those stars that were on the top of the right wing. The numbering system they had in place on the F4Fs didn't look like anything I have ever seen before. They looked as if they had been hand painted in a rather hurried manner.

The point of all this is to say that, regardless of what Navy Regs were in place at any particular time regarding a/c markings and camoflage schemes, there were always a few that just hadn't quite caught up with the rest of the pack for various reasons. Painting an airplane is a fairly involved, laborious process, which doesn't happen overnight after a new set of regs hit the desk. Especially in the case of Air Groups on the line engaged in combat operations, they just didn't have the time, or the luxury of being able to strike all the planes below and repaint them.

If I'm not mistaken, that F6F squadron off the Princeton didn't get to keep their shark mouths on there for very long. I don't remember who it was that took exception to it, but the CAG had to tell them to remove the "nose art" in fairly short order. I think it had something to do with the CV's CO, or an Admiral aboard not liking the way it made them look too much like an Army Air Corps outfit! LOL

Here's a link to that video: http://www.zenoswarbirdvideos.com/

Razor
IV/JG51 Intelligence Officer
www.jg51.net (http://www.jg51.net)

"Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from poor judgement"