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Mitsubishi Zero A6M2a Type 11


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From what I've read, IJN cowls were actually a blue-black (I ususally use a 10/1 mix of black to dark blue) while IJAAF cowls were more of a brownish black. The blue-black seems to be the one color that has not been controversial over the past couple of decades.

SN

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Thanks Steve! Good info to file back for future reference....even though won't be able to start on it for a while.

And a bit tongue-in-cheek here......nice to hear that SOMETHING about colors isn't the subject of debate...:whistle:

Good to go,

Jim

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According to a post by Ryan Toews at j-aircraft.com and some photos from A6M2N relics, the flap interiors were painted silver on these models. Presumably for better protection from the salt spray.

Edited by timc
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  • 1 month later...

The latest color discoverys are from Japan. Several Japanese researchers made a concerted task to locate color documents with great success. Three Japanese Navy documents and a IJA document have been located thus far.

The first document published was Feb 1942 IJN Document Number '0266', a test of variety of colors applied to the famous Zero. A large amount of discussion began, yet the conclusion was that more searching was required.

Page 1: http://japaneseaircraft.multiply.com/photo...olor_samples#11

Page 2:

http://japaneseaircraft.multiply.com/photo...olor_samples#12

The next document located and GAKKEN magazine printed was an April 1945 IJN document number '8609' and the number system was drastically different than '0266' for the same color name. Page 1: http://japaneseaircraft.multiply.com/photo...olor_samples#19 (All pages are posted at this URL).

Digging continued. and TWO copies of the November 1938 IJN document [April 1942 revision] “Temporary Specification No.117 Additional Volume†were located. This truely laid out the colors used in WWII (see attached 'spread' of the swatches) and the other documents (above) helped to show some changes as the war progressed. http://www5d.biglobe.ne.jp/~cocoro/subw117-2.htm

Satoshi Kimura, the son of the late Tadao Kimura (pilot of Zero AI-101 at Pearl Harbor), wrote more about the history of Japanese color (This is a machine translation):

http://translate.google.com/translate?u=ht...=en&ie=UTF8

Check the 'Ame' (caramel) 'Iro' (color) at: http://japaneseaircraft.multiply.com/photo.../Color_samples# It was NOT used after 1940.

The Japanese researchers confirm that the color used on the Zero prototype thru the A6M3 model 22 is called 'Hairyokushoku' (literally gray-green)...including the RUFE That color 'M0/M1...Hairyokushoku' may be seen in the 'M' series of the '117' color swatches.

Tamiya produced this 灰緑色 'Hairyokushoku' [literally 'gray-green'] for their 1/32 Zero 21 and 'unsaturated' (lightened) the color for use on 1/32 and 1/48 scale miniatures: http://tamiyashop.jp/shop/images//8/1/81776.jpg

Sweet has 'unsaturated' the 灰緑色 'Hairyokushoku' color even further for 1/144 scale Zeros. http://www.ms-plus.net/images_item/19000/19120.jpg

Gaia has their 灰緑色 'Hairyokushoku' version:

http://www.ms-plus.net/images_item/20000/20487.jpg

and Mr Color is selling C-128 灰緑色 'Hairyokushoku', too.

Tamiya: http://tamiyashop.jp/shop/product_info.php?products_id=81776

Sweet: http://www.ms-plus.com/search.asp?id=19120

GAIA: http://www.ms-plus.com/search.asp?id=20487

Mr Color: http://kakaku.livedoor.com/item_info/20773440560134

A6M General

http://www.biwa.ne.jp/~yamato/zeke.htm

http://www.preservedaxisaircraft.com/Japan...subishi/A6M.htm

http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Hangar/4691/

A6M 2, 3, 5

http://www.zero-fighter.com/bilingual/genzon.htm

http://www.geocities.jp/okasan41/hiko06.htm

A6M2

http://www.hubuki.jp/museum/kawaguti2004/a6m2004.html

http://www002.upp.so-net.ne.jp/g-sugi/toku...awaguchiko.html

http://www.fargoairmuseum.org/historic-air...-zero-6544.html

A6M3

http://otd6.jbbs.livedoor.jp/1255492/bbs_plain

http://rwebs.net/avhistory/history/Zeke32.htm#Cockpit

http://home.interlink.or.jp/~katoh00/

A6M5

http://harunazy.hp.infoseek.co.jp/zeropht/zero11.htm

http://www2u.biglobe.ne.jp/~choufu/ibutu63.html

http://ksa.axisz.jp/021memoKureYamato-1.htm

http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=e...l%3Den%26sa%3DN

A6M7

http://www.rinku.zaq.ne.jp/bkaun407/sub2.htm.htm

http://www.picmate.jp/106502569/albums/20896/

http://rides.webshots.com/album/558492595xlIYaa

A6M Details

http://www10.ocn.ne.jp/~a6m232/index.html

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  • 4 weeks later...

I have one question. Asking same thing also in J aircraf...

I'm building Sakai Zero A6M2, WEM colours greygreen, most puzzling is number, some say it is white V-103, others black V-128, I know it is possible he flew both numbers, which one in more correct..?

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I have one question. Asking same thing also in J aircraf...

I'm building Sakai Zero A6M2, WEM colours greygreen, most puzzling is number, some say it is white V-103, others black V-128, I know it is possible he flew both numbers, which one in more correct..?

Sakai flew several A6M2 aircraft. He flew a white V-103 [piped in RED] until they arrived to Lae when the tail code color changed to black.... Japanese researcher FUJII has addressed these Lae based (and later) at: http://japaneseaircraft.multiply.com/photo...36/Saburo_Sakai

His effort to help the English readers is with the second page in the above album.

HTH,

David

Edited by David_Aiken
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thought you might find these interesting they were taken june 6th at the Hill afb airshow. this airplane is flyable and has flown at the last three shows at hill (I tried to post my pictures of the A6M3 TYPE 22 ZERO that was at the hill afb airshow but was unsuccessful if anyone would like to see them let me know and I will e mail them to you or you can see them at pilotwall.com under hill afb airshow photos you have to join but it is free.)

Edited by fritzie101
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  • 2 months later...

"The Japanese researchers confirm that the color used on the Zero prototype thru the A6M3 model 22 is called 'Hairyokushoku' (literally gray-green)...including the RUFE That color 'M0/M1...Hairyokushoku' may be seen in the 'M' series of the '117' color swatches.

Tamiya produced this 灰緑色 'Hairyokushoku' [literally 'gray-green'] for their 1/32 Zero 21 and 'unsaturated' (lightened) the color for use on 1/32 and 1/48 scale miniatures."

etc.

This was posted before at Hyperscale and my response is here:-

http://www.straggleresearch.com/2008/08/ze...ours-again.html

Colours cannot be compared or assessed from hobby paint charts taken from online images. There is no comparison between Tamiya XF-76 and Kariki 117 Mo/M1 - they are different colours.

The Kariki 117 colour M1 was called Tan Ryoku Shoku and was a mid-toned sage green used to paint the cockpit interiors of Nakajima Zero aircraft. It is almost identical to FS 34102 in appearance (approx Munsell 2.5 GY 4/2). Try that on the exterior of an early Zero and you may find it looks odd. Put it beside a Zero painted in Tamiya XF-76 and the difference will be apparent.

It is true that the 'M' series of colours in Kariki 117 was called Hairyokushoku (Ash-green colour) collectively, but apart from Horikoshi's remarks about the appearance of the Zero prototype this term is not used in official documents describing the early Zero colour scheme. Those refer to hai nezumi iro (grey rat colour), J3 Haiiro (J3 ash or grey colour) and J3 haiiro slightly towards ameiro (ash or grey colour slightly towards amber or candy colour) which all suggest warm, perhaps slightly yellowish, greys.

Edited by Nick Millman
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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi all

Man, this is one of my favourite parts of modeling. "Paint, mix or no mix, dream or take a pot shot".

I have been very interested in mixes with Humbrol and have to my eye at lest, a favourable match for the grey/green for early Zero, Val a/c.

(Humbrol colour Hu 31 Slate Grey Hu 34 White Hu 117 Mid Green Hu 117 Tan)

Humbrol is my choice of paint so here we go... Hu 31, Hu 34, and Hu 118 same amount for each colour, mix well and behold, near enough scale colour.

Another mix is 2 parts Hu 118 and 2 parts Hu 34 with 1 part Hu 117 for a more caramel hue.

For the fabric surfaces same amounts for Hu31 and Hu 34 will yeild a lighter Grey/Green hue.

Cheers

Denie

Denie

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Hi all

Man, this is one of my favourite parts of modeling. "Paint, mix or no mix, dream or take a pot shot".

I have been very interested in mixes with Humbrol and have to my eye at lest, a favourable match for the grey/green for early Zero, Val a/c.

(Humbrol colour Hu 31 Slate Grey Hu 34 White Hu 117 Mid Green Hu 118 Tan)

Humbrol is my choice of paint so here we go... Hu 31, Hu 34, and Hu 118 same amount for each colour, mix well and behold, near enough scale colour.

Another mix is 2 parts Hu 118 and 2 parts Hu 34 with 1 part Hu 117 for a more caramel hue.

For the fabric surfaces same amounts for Hu31 and Hu 34 will yeild a lighter Grey/Green hue.

Cheers

Denie

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I hate Tamiya paint and only use MM paints. Does anyone know why MM did not make the grey/green in their Series 2 Jap WWII paints? They only have the IJN Green and IJN Grey but I assume those colors are for A6M5 zeros. I don't get why they missed out on making the grey/green for A6M2 zeros.

Any MM paint users help me in what I can use for the Tamiya 1/32 A6M2 model I am just starting? I was thinking of using MM RAF Interior green and the MM Interior Metallic Blue for the cockpit. I am not sure what to use for the airframe?

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I hate Tamiya paint and only use MM paints. Does anyone know why MM did not make the grey/green in their Series 2 Jap WWII paints? They only have the IJN Green and IJN Grey but I assume those colors are for A6M5 zeros. I don't get why they missed out on making the grey/green for A6M2 zeros.

Any MM paint users help me in what I can use for the Tamiya 1/32 A6M2 model I am just starting? I was thinking of using MM RAF Interior green and the MM Interior Metallic Blue for the cockpit. I am not sure what to use for the airframe?

Different strokes. I personally hate MM (and Polly Scale) with a blue passion. I threw all of them out that I'd ever bought. They did nothing but clog up my airbrush. Tamiya sprays great, covers great, and mixes great.

In any event, the reason MM probably never did the grey-green Zero color because the research on it is relatively new. Their IJN colors came out like 20 years ago.

J

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I hate Tamiya paint and only use MM paints. Does anyone know why MM did not make the grey/green in their Series 2 Jap WWII paints? They only have the IJN Green and IJN Grey but I assume those colors are for A6M5 zeros. I don't get why they missed out on making the grey/green for A6M2 zeros.

Any MM paint users help me in what I can use for the Tamiya 1/32 A6M2 model I am just starting? I was thinking of using MM RAF Interior green and the MM for the cockpit. I am not sure what to use for the airframe?

Do not use any kind of "Interior Metallic Blue" for cockpit! RAF Interior green is not the best match but vastly better option.

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I did not mean for the cockpit. MM Japanese Metalic Blue/Green for the wheel wells etc. I just want to share with everyone that I airbrushed Tamiya X76 Grey/Green on one wing and MM RAF Sky "Type S" (ANA610) on the other wing and it looks pretty close and maybe a bit better of a faded look. I was very suprised, the color in the bottle looks lighter, but once sprayed and allowed to dry and gloss/flat coat, it looks pretty darn good and for sure after wash and weathering.

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I did not mean for the cockpit. MM Japanese Metalic Blue/Green for the wheel wells etc. I just want to share with everyone that I airbrushed Tamiya X76 Grey/Green on one wing and MM RAF Sky "Type S" (ANA610) on the other wing and it looks pretty close and maybe a bit better of a faded look. I was very suprised, the color in the bottle looks lighter, but once sprayed and allowed to dry and gloss/flat coat, it looks pretty darn good and for sure after wash and weathering.

Hey, that's good to know! I prefer MM Acryl over Tamiya, so I'm going to give this comparison a try.

:whistle:

Mike

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mlicari, I just wanted to clarify I used model master enamal so I don't know if the model master acrylic shades are a bit different or not.

Thanks for the clarification. I have both the Acryl Sky Type S and the Tamiya X76 so I'm going to do a side-by-side...

:whistle:

Mike

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  • 2 weeks later...
Do not use any kind of "Interior Metallic Blue" for cockpit! RAF Interior green is not the best match but vastly better option.

For a Nakajima built zero, this is acceptable, but not for a Mitsubishi built airframe. cockpit colors will be similar to FS34102 and the wheel wells will be the underside color. No Aotake in the wheel wells of Mitsubishi built A6M's.

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  • 3 months later...
Like this one?

a6m7-1.jpg

Nuts! :thumbsup:

j-aircraft, lots of interesting stuff in there. Well I suppose I'll paint the Zero XF-76.

This topic is of interest to me because I am currently working on a diorama of the Pearl Harbor Attackers. My main source of information on this is coming from Scale Aircraft Modeling (SAM) Volume 21, Number 12, but I have other sources as well.

There is a picture.....very widely known & published....of the wreckage of Zero AI-154 after it has been recovered

from the waters of Pearl Harbor and the airplane is obviously gray. There are also plenty of pictures showing the aircraft on the deck, taking off or coming back, and they are all gray.

According to one source I have, green camoflage was not applied to the Zeros until after the disaster at Midway, when the Japanese High Command ordered all aircraft to be given a coat of green camouflage as a "passive" form of defense against further losses.

As to the "exact" shade of gray.......well, we can argue that one all day and not prove anything one way or the other, but I have found the Gunze-Sangyo/Mr. Color IJN Gray to be "Close Enough" for me. I recently finished a 1/72nd scale Rufe where I used Model Master Light Sea Gray as the primer color, put a Gunze Dark Green on top, and thought it came out looking pretty darn close!

As a side note, the Vals used at Pearl were all gray, while the Kates were camouflaged on the upper surfaces: either a simple straight green or green with brown spots. This was done while they were on the carriers on route to Pearl, because it was felt that since they would be flying "low & slow" over the water, they would be the most vunerable to attack.

That's my two cents' worth.

Sincerely,

JS

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As to the "exact" shade of gray.......well, we can argue that one all day and not prove anything one way or the other,

Actually, the color is an olive-grey color and has been pretty much been narrowed down through evaluation of the relic evidence for the early zeros. The shade of olive-grey differs between Nakajima and Mitsubishi built airframes and the fabric control surfaces on both Mitsubishi and Nakajima airframes are a different shade of grey than the metal part of the airframe. I recommend a visit to www.j-aircraft.com and review the most current research done on relic evidence from IIda's zero and IIRC AI-154 as well. Yes, pieces of these aircraft still exist and have been extensively used to determine the "proper" color for the early A6M2 Model 21 zeros.

The grey paints you reference are probably ok for a weather beaten aiframe but for a newer airframe, such as would be the case with Pearl aircraft, they would be overall olive-grey with very little weathering evident. Here's some evaluation of an existing paint line from one of the experts at J-aircraft.com. Greg Springer has exhaustively evaluated the extant relic evidence (inlcuding a piece of Iida's zero from Kaneohe bay) and you can evaluate his comments in relation to your statements.

In the end, your models are your models and you build em to your satisfaction. However, before making statements such as "all" and "never", take some time and find out what the experts on the subject have determined. It'll prevent you from ending up with egg on yer face. Also, when making such statements, please list your references so that we can evaluate them for ourselves; don't just claim one of your references states....blah, blah, blah. Facts without documentation are not facts, they're opinions.

HTH

Tim

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Unfortunatelly the examination of relics, strongly promoted by j-aircraft.com, and conclusions drawn from it don't take into account degradation and aging of the original paint.

Quite a few Japanese researchers remain rather skeptical.

Also the statement that control surfaces were painted in completely different shade of gray is based just on the speculation that these parts were delivered to both Mitsubishi and Nakajima by subcontractors. As far as I know nobody has produced any serious confirmation of this.

Cheers,

Mario

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