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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 6:22 pm 
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Model Monkey
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The color of ships at Pearl Harbor is a discussion absolutely worth having and has value to modelers. But there is some unpleasant history associated with this topic some may not be aware of. For many reasons, this specific discussion tends to go very badly on this site and others.

This is an attempt to create here on MWS a dedicated thread where evidence can be presented, interpretations of the evidence can be thoughtfully analyzed and respectfully discussed, and viewpoints be shared in a meaningful way, in it own place, free from personal attacks, put-downs, accusations and counter-accusations. Keep in mind, MWS needs to be a safe place for modelers to interact and learn.

To post here, meet these guidelines:

1. Presentation of documentary, photographic and video capture evidence is welcome and invited. If you know the photos or video captures are colorized, state so.
2. Posts inviting analysis, interpretation and thoughtful, respectful discussion of presented evidence are welcome and invited.
3. Keep an open mind and be respectful of persons with different opinions and viewpoints. Act like an adult.
4. Accept that different photographic and reproduction processes can yield different results. See photo below.
5. Personal attacks will not be tolerated.

Regarding photographic processes yielding different results, consider the two photos of a Bristol Beaufighter shown below. They are exactly the same photo of exactly the same airframe, but reproduced differently. Is the airplane mostly grays or it is it mostly tans and browns? What does this say about photographic evidence? Is the person who says "grays" correct or is the person who says "tans and browns" correct? Are both right or are both wrong? You decide.
Attachment:
Beaufighter color comparison.jpg

Below are six examples of acceptable posts. Note the civil tone and the invitation for further respectful discussion.

1. "Here are some video captures of some footage of USS [battleship] I found from [source]. The [source] says the footage was taken on December 10th, 1941. It looks like USS [battleship] was painted in overall 5D with 5L above the tops of the stacks on that date. What do you think?"

2. "I was searching the NARA website this weekend and I found this [document] which seems to indicate that painting USS [battleship] to 5S from 5D had begun. I'm not quite sure. Have a look and see what you make of it."

3. "In this photo of USS Arizona in drydock during post-collision repairs, she looks very dark. But in this other photo after the attack, her paint looks a lot lighter. What could cause that?"

4. "Here is the text of an interview with USS [battleship] survivor named [sailor] who says he was on a paint detail on Saturday, December 6th. He says he remembers the tops of the turrets were definitely painted [color a] while he was painting casemate bulkheads [color b]. Do we have any documents to confirm his recollection?"

5. "I read that different kinds of black and white photography produces reds and blues differently? So does that mean a blue ship can look differently in black and white photos depending on the kind of photography used? Isn't all black and white the same?"

6. "This guy I know who works with paint at a Navy shipyard was telling me that gray makes a great camouflage color for ships because it reflects the colors around it really well helping the ship blend in to its surroundings. Does this mean that when I look at a color photo of a gray ship, am I seeing the true gray color of the paint or am I seeing the reflected blues of the sky and sea? And if it's the reflected blue color, what color do I paint my model ship?"

From sponsors' perspective, we don't want discussions-gone-bad running off the clientele. The color discussion has nearly always ended up as a hornets' nest of personal attacks. You all may remember the intimidating Faroe dealer Johnny Tyler played by Billy Bob Thornton in the movie "Tombstone". Tyler's behavior drove away the saloon's clientele. In a very memorable scene, Wyatt Earp, played by Kurt Russell, confronts Johnny Tyler saying, "You gonna do something or stand there and bleed?" After Earp ejects the bullying dealer, business at the saloon boomed. A booming business is what sponsors want.

Any "Johnny Tyler posts" on this thread will be deleted. If we're not able to maintain a safe thread for the color discussion, the entire thread can be deleted, too. Let's hope that won't be necessary.


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Last edited by ModelMonkey on Sat Sep 26, 2020 7:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 7:09 pm 
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Let's start off with a time-line of known colors of specific ships and then refine, or debate, the details.
:wave_1:


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 7:10 pm 
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And if I may add, if you got something that refutes another's post, respect the person posting, by posting your evidence and not setting him or her up for embarrassment by making a statement like "It's not the way you say, you might want to rethink your post/answer before I destroy your post" That form of discussion is insulting to the intelligence of everyone in the conversation and no good researcher or investigator would use that language. There will always be people who know less than you do the same as there are those that know more... A good researcher respects those who are still learning the subject and tries to help them understand it better with the greater knowledge they have at their disposal.

If we accept the fact we are all aiming for the same thing, shedding light on the mysteries that wars and battles leave us and approach it as bringing forth the light with respect for all people investing in the time it takes to do this work, we will have a lot more success...

Leave the agendas at home.....

Opinions are welcome as long as it is recognized that opinion is not fact....

I an of the position that most people today believe the Arizona was Ms. 11 Sea Blue scheme, with airgroup colors on her turret top, some do not, the model companies give a blue scheme to their more recent productions which pretty much reveals what is currently the most widely accepted position. Sea Blue.... The facts as we have them leads on a preponderance of evidence standard that she was in fact in Sea Blue but that is not confirmed in any way. What is confirmed, or, at least highly likely, is she did have some blue on her and it was fresh new paint less than three weeks old... And that there is a ten day period in the latter part of November where this painting by the crew could have taken place...... It doesn't take ten days to repaint a battleship....

Until we have some documentary proof of this color change there are always going to be people that disagree with the analysis that has been done to date...

So please while those of us with less knowledge go through our own analysis of what facts we have in hand, those with more could help by posting their facts and analysis of why they believe different.... so those with no knowledge can make their own conclusions...

I have never wanted to create an argument, anger never adds to a discussion... So please respect those who know less than you do, remember, at one time you were in their position as well and someone presented their evidence and helped you to the level of knowledge you have now...

EG


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 7:29 pm 
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drasticplastic wrote:
Let's start off with a time-line of known colors of specific ships and then refine, or debate, the details.
:wave_1:


Ok I"ll start with the Arizona...

The beginning of 1941 she was in overall standard pre-war #5 Navy Grey, around June during her yard availability, she was yard painted in Ms. 1 Dark Grey scheme in compliance with the Ships-2 camouflage orders in effect at the time... we know she was in this scheme at the end of October and first two week of November....

We know that some time between the end of her dry docking in November and sortie to test her repairs, and her final sortie for gunnery practice she was painted in some measure of blue. (believed to be Ms. 11 Sea Blue Scheme) which is the same as Ms. 1 Dark Grey scheme just substitution 5-S sea blue for the 5-D dark grey....

We have survivor testimony as a group that some painting was done, in fact the entire crew was called out to paint her and that there was sufficient paint aboard to do this. But we do not have any hard documentary evidence that this was completed....

Images of the Arizona coming back from her last sortie appear to be substantially lighter than the images of her in Dry Dock for repair two weeks previous....

We may never know the answer to this question, so there are three schemes that an Arizona model could be painted in, Overall Standard Navy Grey, Ms. 1 Dark Grey and Measure 11 Sea Blue... and it is up to the modeler to decide what colors he/she is going to paint her, the first two are absolutely proven, the last scheme does have a preponderance of evidence to support it but is not proven at this time... All of these schemes have the factually proven aviation color panels painted on the tops of three of her turrets, this is absolutely proven as well...

I think I got the current status of the AZ's 1941 paint schemes focused at this point, what is left to be proven is how much of her was painted in blue and when it was done...

EG


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 7:35 pm 
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Suggest this get moved to "Camouflage & Coatings" section.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2020 10:35 pm 
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Good idea. Done.

For reference and consideration, below is the Snyder & Short color sheet, for US Navy ships during World War Two, appearing in the ModelWarships.com review section.

Note:
1. The colors on the sheet will look different on the computer monitor you're now viewing than they will look in hand. Computer monitors vary in color reproduction. In other words, what I see on my monitor is almost certain to be different than what you see on your monitor. What you see on your monitor is nearly certain to be a bit different than the colors on the actual paint chart card if you were holding the card in front of you.
2. The colors are not weathered, they have not been damaged by heat or blast, they have not been faded by the sun, and they have not been immersed in salt water, all of which may affect the tone and hue of the colors seen on the actual ships.
3. The colors appearing in other references or determined by later scholarly work may look different.

Also note that gray and blue paint tend to reflect the colors around them, which is why they make good camouflage colors for ships. Blue and gray paint on a cloudy day on a ship in muddy, brown, oil-stained water will look very different than the same blue and gray paint on a sunny day on a ship in crystal-clear, dark blue water.

All these factors, and more, ought to be considered when looking at photographs and film on your computer monitor.


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Last edited by ModelMonkey on Wed Sep 30, 2020 10:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 6:27 am 
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Here is color film shot at Pearl Harbor and Honolulu dated "Spring 1942" showing several battleships, tugs too. Some nice slow "drive bys" of several BBs.
There are also aircraft in the Hawaiian Air Depot scheme shown landing, which is what I was researching at the time. Can anyone pin down the date? The first couple minutes are general landscape scenes, skip to 1:56.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5cqIT6_Cbs

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 11:11 am 
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InchHigh wrote:
Here is color film shot at Pearl Harbor and Honolulu dated "Spring 1942" showing several battleships, tugs too. Some nice slow "drive bys" of several BBs.
There are also aircraft in the Hawaiian Air Depot scheme shown landing, which is what I was researching at the time. Can anyone pin down the date? The first couple minutes are general landscape scenes, skip to 1:56.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5cqIT6_Cbs

Yes, March or April of 42 the first Battleship is the West Virginia, the second Battleship is the Nevada...

The Wee Vee is in Measure 11, Sea Blue, (what's left of it) and the Nevada is in Measure 1, Dark Grey, (again what's left of it)

I posted shots of it (and a link to the full video in the up and at 'em Arizona thread which prompted this thread.....


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 12:16 pm 
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Egilman wrote:
The Wee Vee is in Measure 11, Sea Blue
[/quote]

EG, When I first saw this film showing the lighter colors on West Virginia quite a few years ago, I, like you, thought she had 5-S on her.
Image
I fell into the trap of jumping to conclusions based off of 1 color piece of film and not considering all the other sources of film and photos out there. Also, we must take into consideration exactly what happened to her on Dec.7th. Her aft turrets and her forward stack appear to be the most likely portions of the ship in 5-S in the above still shot.
On Dec. 7th she took a bomb on the roof of her #3 turret which completely destroyed two of her Kingfisher's. This area erupted in a large ball of fire as aviation fuel from the planes spilled over the side of the turret and down to the deck. Another Kingfisher that was on her deck next to turret #4 was flipped over by a torpedo explosion ripping off a portion of one of her wings adding more fuel to the fire.
As she was raised, most of the areas that suffered flame damage got a coat of the corrosion red we see here.
Image
Notice the small portion of turret #3 without the red does not appear to be quite as blue as the first still. Turret #4 had to be completely painted in red.
Image

She took numerous torpedo hits to her mid section causing her to heal over very quickly and oily waters spilled over onto her boat deck at the spot of her forward stack. Another bomb also was dropped in this exact location. A tremendous fire erupted in this area completely engulfing the forward stack and the port side of her superstructure.
Red lead was applied to most of her superstructure upon her raising but not to the stack or the portside boat crane. Notice her aft stack is still very much 5-D. The light blue structure you see in between the stacks was not part of the ship and was not there during the attack.
Image

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 2:14 pm 
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Jeff, As much as you feel the smoke stained darker aft stack is 5-D dark grey, here is a shot from the video from her port side after they took off the heat damaged aft cage mast.... Even the fire blackened port side hull hints towards blue

Attachment:
vlcsnap-00001.jpg


Here is a starboard side aft view of the stacks, from the same video, you can see the aft stack is smoke blackened, but the blue still shows through...

Attachment:
vlcsnap-00002.jpg


And the same shot as you posted, taken from the video @ 4:35, shows the soot blackened blue of the aft stack....

Attachment:
vlcsnap-00003.jpg


Both stacks were blue, the film (and video) is of sufficient quality to show the underlying colors very clear...

Why would they repaint both boat cranes, the forward stack, the superstructures between the stacks and forward cage masts, the afterworks like the turrets and aircraft crane and leave the aft stack in 5-D Dark Grey?

That makes zero sense, is not the way the navy did things either, and if that is the only evidence to claim she was in 5-D Dark Grey what about the starboard side shots of the hull showing a blue hull?....

Three shots of the starboard side from different successive angles....

Attachment:
vlcsnap-00006.jpg


Attachment:
vlcsnap-00008.jpg


Attachment:
vlcsnap-00009.jpg


Three different angles all showing the starboard side of the ship in Sea Blue..... The Starboard side was relatively undamaged as it was protected from burning oil by the hull of the USS Tennessee which she was tied to...

To my judgment, there is way too much blue on way too many portions of that ship that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue to make any claim that any portion of her was in 5-D nor support the conclusion that the ship was anything but completely finished in Ms. 11, 5-S Sea Blue....

EG


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:02 pm 
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Egilman wrote:
.To my judgment, there is way too much blue on way too many portions of that ship that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue to make any claim that any portion of her was in 5-D nor support the conclusion that the ship was anything but completely finished in Ms. 11, 5-S Sea Blue....EG


EG, exactly which portions of the ship are you looking at "that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue"? Keep in mind the footage you are using as your basis for your argument of her raising was filmed in June '42, six months after the attack. Six months of her hull being under water.
Also, if she was in MS-11 as you claim then why did she have 5-L on all her upper works above the top of the stacks?

Image


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2020 10:30 pm 
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Jeff Sharp wrote:
Egilman wrote:
.To my judgment, there is way too much blue on way too many portions of that ship that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue to make any claim that any portion of her was in 5-D nor support the conclusion that the ship was anything but completely finished in Ms. 11, 5-S Sea Blue....EG


EG, exactly which portions of the ship are you looking at "that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue"? Keep in mind the footage you are using as your basis for your argument of her raising was filmed in June '42, six months after the attack.


The starboard hull, the Stacks etc etc, I clearly pointed out what I was showing in my previous post. And yes, the Wee Vee portion was filmed by John Ford on the 9th of June when she was moved into dry dock. You are aware that she was refloated in May? May 19th to be exact? three weeks prior to her dry docking?

Jeff Sharp wrote:
Six months of her hull being under water.
Irrelevant on my opinion, her hull was dry when they were moving her.....

Jeff Sharp wrote:
Also, if she was in MS-11 as you claim then why did she have 5-L on all her upper works above the top of the stacks?


Measure 11 as ordered in the September revised Ships-2 was exactly as Measure 1 substituting 5-S Sea Blue and 5-H Haze Grey

The documents are there specifying what the ordered Measure 11 actually was.... I do not see how anyone can argue otherwise. Ships at that time that were painted in overall 5-S were repainting to what Kimmel said in his memo, which was subject to the revision to Ships-2, essentially, they jumped the gun so to speak...

My evidence of this....

https://www.shipcamouflage.com/ships2_1_41_chapter3.htm

Ships-2 January '41,

General Directions Common to All Systems.

All approximately vertical surfaces above the top of the stacks shall be painted Light Gray 5-L in all the systems. Some of the plates are incorrect in that they fail to show this detail.

Dark Gray System. (Measure 1)

Paint all vertical surfaces, such as sides of hull, sides of superstructure, stacks, lower masts (but not pole masts), etc., Dark Gray 5-D.

https://www.shipcamouflage.com/ships2_9_41_chapter2.htm

Ships-2, rev. 1 September '41,

General Directions Common to All Measures.

All pole masts and their yards, and slender upper works above approximately the top of the superstructure masses shall be painted Haze gray 5-H and measures 12, 13 and 14.

Sea Blue System. (Measure 11)

Vertical surfaces from boot-topping to top of superstructure masses, pole masts, yards, slender upper works above level of top superstructure masses, Sea Blue, 5-S.

Horizontal surfaces, Deck Blue, 20-B.

PACIFIC FLEET CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE NO.15 CN-41 10/6/41....

Paragraph 9 (last paragraph)

9.Pending receipt of comprehensive instructions from the Bureau of Ships, no change is contemplated in the present directive providing for the general application of Measure 1 to ships in the U. S. Pacific Fleet. However, inasmuch as the manufacture of Formula 5-D has been discontinued, painting will of necessity be limited to touching up with available supplies of this paint, until general issue of the new formulas, 5-S, 5-0 and 5-H has been initiated. Ships having exhausted supplies of formula 5-D, will requisition sufficient Formula 5-S, to apply Measure 1A of paragraph 2 above, and will report application of this measure to Type Commanders. For the present, paint will not be applied to the wood decks of ships other than those designated to carry out measures outlined in reference (f ). General instructions for painting all vessels in this Fleet will be promulgated in the near future.

H. E. KIMMEL.

The section Kimmel was referencing in the above directions....

Experimental measures are now being applied, pursuant to reference (d), to ships listed:

(a) Measure 1A
(PORTER,
FLUSSER) - Apply Formula 5-S to all vertical and horizontal surfaces except decks.
Paint steel weather decks with bluish-gray deck paint, reference (e), when available.

This was interpreted by some to mean drop the Light grey/Haze grey on the upper works, but to others it was meant to follow the current orders in hand which was the original Ships-2 pending the revised Ships-2 coming in the near future....

Very confusing yes and all we have left is what the commanders actually ordered as represented by the colors their ships actually were.... 5-H haze grey tops were a part of Measure 11 according to Ships-2 rev. 1.....

The documents speak for themselves.... The fact that some ships dropped the Haze grey tops is a representation of how much confusion was going on in what the admiral wanted his ships to look like... And a big part of that was created by admiral Kimmel himself...


Last edited by Egilman on Tue Sep 29, 2020 12:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2020 10:43 pm 
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As an added note...

I doubt that the battleship admirals and captains were very appreciative of the multiple orders as to various color schemes, being that they really needed to run their ship and the disruption to ship operations complete repaints would be were very conservative in their judgments... so they went with what would be the easiest to do and could be argued as valid...

Measure 11 the same as Measure 1 substituting 5-S sea blue......

Given the actual colors on the ships, this is a pretty good conclusion to come to, absent any documentary evidence to the contrary...


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 7:39 am 
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Gonna add a few more shots I've found searching through my archives....

USS Maryland.....

Attachment:
Okie-Maryland1.jpg


Most of the superstructure is clouded in smoke, but the hull is clear, and appears blue.....

Attachment:
Okie-Maryland2.jpg


You can make out the rake of the bow in this one, blue it is....

Attachment:
Okie-Maryland3.jpg


Definitely blue at a distance as well....

Attachment:
Okie-Maryland4.jpg


I think it is pretty safe to state that the Maryland was blue as well....


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 7:56 am 
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I also found a couple more shots of the Arizona....

Attachment:
OArizona1.jpg


The #3 turret is blue and the starboard boat crane pedestal although fire blackened is tinting blue as well..

A slightly different angle, you can see the blue on the boat crane better in this one......

Attachment:
OArizona2.jpg


And just a few days after the attack....

Attachment:
OArizona3.jpg


Yep, more shots, different days, different angles different light, different camera, you can still see blue on the Arizona, there isn't much of it left, but it's there...


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 8:00 am 
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Seems to me that the battle fleet was well on it's way into repainting into blue, we have the Arizona, the Tennessee, the West virginia and the Maryland in blue, the Nevada and Oklahoma in Grey, still need to get photo's to figure out what color the Pennsylvania and California was in....


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 8:11 am 
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Now you are using colorized photos to claim Maryland was blue? I am going to respectfully bow out of this conversation with you EG.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:48 pm 
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Jeff Sharp wrote:
Now you are using colorized photos to claim Maryland was blue? I am going to respectfully bow out of this conversation with you EG.


Which ones are colorized? Do you know where I got them from?

Don't go away! explain please! going away is conceding/giving up.... (oh, psst. I probably should say where they came from, they are all stills taken from video/movies in the national archives)

Over 5 million feet of film, color film was shot during the first year of the war..... and that was before they got organized....

WWII was the war of the color movie....(just because the war department refused to allow the color movies to be released publically doesn't mean it wasn't taken or was colorized afterwards)


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 11:15 pm 
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Jeff Sharp wrote:
Egilman wrote:
.To my judgment, there is way too much blue on way too many portions of that ship that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue to make any claim that any portion of her was in 5-D nor support the conclusion that the ship was anything but completely finished in Ms. 11, 5-S Sea Blue....EG


EG, exactly which portions of the ship are you looking at "that were completely undamaged and clearly present as 5-S Sea Blue"? Keep in mind the footage you are using as your basis for your argument of her raising was filmed in June '42, six months after the attack. Six months of her hull being under water.
Also, if she was in MS-11 as you claim then why did she have 5-L on all her upper works above the top of the stacks?

Image


I figured I would take a look at this image on my own machine, so I found it on Shutterstock and downloaded it. It's looked a little dark to me although the undamaged part of the hull looked bluish tinted to me... So I loaded it up in Gimp and brightened it a bit, (10%) to get a good look at the underlying color the camera captured....

Here is the result...

Attachment:
Screen-Shot-2020-09-28-at-5-46-05-PN.jpg


Attachment:
Screen-Shot-2020-09-26-at-1-06-24-PN.jpg


Attachment:
Screen-Shot-2020-09-26-at-1-06-01-PN.jpg


Attachment:
Screen-Shot-2020-06-13-at-7-27-08-PN.jpg


Sure looks blue to me....


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:34 am 
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I found these videos on YouTube some time ago and asked about them in the Big 5 thread, but didn't really get any answers.

This is USS California getting ready to leave Pearl Harbor after repairs. You can see the hull has been freshly painted, along with some other parts, in what looks like 5S. To me the other parts of the ship that aren't freshly painted look more like 5N than 5D. Looks too dark to have been 5S, but maybe it darkened up from smoke/soot? The video clips seem to be true to their colors.

https://youtu.be/tyEH_IfQgkg

https://youtu.be/MSMCGCBkgiI

Just curious what thoughts anyone else had about these videos. I plan on painting my 1/700 California 5N based on the colors in the video.

Just for fun, here's a b/w photo of three models of mine in the three colors in question (5S, 5N, and 5D). These are painted with TruColor paint, which matches the paint chips posted earlier rather well. I added a little white and did some weathering, but I found it interesting that they all look pretty close to the same.

Attachment:
118777730_332736598068335_1484033195687656313_o.jpg


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