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RalphZimmer 7th March 2005 10:23

Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings - Color Chips
Hello all
Last week I finally received my copy of Merrick`s “Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings”. As far as I can see, it is full of valuable information. I can only state, that I am fully satisfied with this volume – and eagerly await the second one.
What really puzzles me is a seemingly “wrong” color chip on the second sheet (the one from 1938). The colour 28 looks much more like “brown” than “Weinrot”. The color chip in the In the previous sheet (from 1936) does not show the same color. I therefore believe that this chip must be misplaced in this special color chard. Other colour chips (Ullmann, 1998, Eagle Cals, T. Chory, …) seem to confirm this conclusion.
What I´m interested in is: Is this really a mistake that means a wrong color chip? Perhaps in my copy only? All I need is an explanation… As I think this color chip (“Weinrot”) in the 1938 edition should be the same as the color chip on the sheet from 1936, I should be satisfied with the answer “yes”.
Thank you very much
Ralph Zimmer

Mike Neal 11th March 2005 19:06

Yes, mines the same.

Great book on first appearances.

Has this book been released before? I've seen several references to it in older publications.

RalphZimmer 11th March 2005 20:14

Hello Mike

This book is "completely" new, but Mr. Merrick (together with T.H.Hitchcock) wrote the "Official Monogram Painting Guide to German A/C 1935-1945". This book was published in 1980 by Monogram Aviation Publications. There are some older works by Mr.Merrick too. All of them might be used as a reference in other books.
Concerning the wrong color chip: I got an answer from E.Creek (Chevron Publcations), that this is indeed a wrong chip. The sample in the other color card (1938 edition IIRC) is correct! He said that there will be an errata sheet and a correct color-chip included in vol. 2 of this work

Ralph Zimmer

markjsheppard 11th March 2005 21:31


After your observation I spoke with Ken.

I will include the relevant part of his reply.

I have now had some quick exchanges with Robert (Forsyth) about the odd coloured chip in the 1936 facsimile chart (it would be that one!). As I have not seen a copy of the book I am relying on his descriptions and the conversation he had with Jürgen (Kiroff), but I think the details below are correct now.

It seems that Jürgen Kiroff's instructions to Muster Schmidt (who prepared the actual colour cards and applied the colours) were either flawed or Muster Schmidt misread one reference. The mystery colour is actually 'Flieglack 7142 rot braun' - a primer colour used on fabric. It was intended to include this colour, but on a separate colour card dealing with colours not related to a camouflage finish. The production of the actual lacquers and their aplication to the facsimile cards has been done in Germany, under the supervision of Jürgen Kiroff, the UK publisher and myself not being party to this part of the production cycle. Had I seen the actual card before it was released I would have picked the wrong colour instantly, as would have Jürgen Kiroff, but no one at Muster Schmidt was in possession of the necessary knowledge of Luftwaffe colours to detect that discrepancy. Their role was the technical process of preparing facsimile cards and applying the colours to them. Because of the delays in perfecting the spraying system for this job, the cards then went directly from Muster Schmidt to the book bindery storage in the UK, bypassing the production team completely.
The only saving grace in the situation is that the book does contain other colour cards (such as the 1938 facsimile card) which has the correct RLM 28 colour shade shown on it. The customer has not been deprived of the full range of information - but all of us would have preferred the mistake not to have happened. An errata will be issued with volume two and possibly a replacement colour chip for the 1936 facsimile card, but the latter option is something about which Ian Allan will no doubt care to make an announcement in due course.

I am concerned at the moment only with getting the information out to
the public that while there has been a mistake, it does not detract
from the factual nature of the book. If you want to go onto the web
site where you found the message from Herr Zimmer and post the main
portion of this note to you, be my guest.

So a minor mistake which shall be retified one way or another.

Hope this helps



RalphZimmer 14th March 2005 09:47

Thanks, it did! (n/t)
It did help - thanks a lot!

Mike Neal 14th March 2005 19:24

Thanks Ralph.

On the subject of accurate paint chips, i've humbly got a question for all the experienced members of this forum.
I've just come back to the hobby of luftwaffe modelling and wandered, in your opinions, how definitive the colour charts that accompany John Merricks book are. Should they be considered the most accurate published to date?

The reason for the question is that the paints that i use that are purportedly correct (labelled RLM 02, RLM 70 etc.) - from various manufacturers - are inaccurate (some in the extreme) to the chips on the cards.

Sorry in advance if i've posted this in the wrong section.

RalphZimmer 15th March 2005 07:53

color accuracy
Hi Mike
IMHO you can´t state a color and especially a color chip more or less "exactt" because of the following reasons (some of those come from the Luftwaffe Experten Messegae Board IIRC):
1. Color perception is not objective i.e. everybody "sees" a slightly different color. This applies to a comparison of different color chips, too.
2. As Merrick states a 100% accuracy in production and preparation of a color is not possible over different production runs.
3. After about 60 Years color changes. Even if recreateted using the forma formula color cannot be 100% exact because of slight differences in the production process and the raw materials.
4. In modelling you can only achieve color accuray (by strict adherence to a color sample of the original) OR the correct "look" (by accounting for the scale effect) but not both!
5. I for myself have seen only photographs or restorated LW a/c - and thus cannot judge any color accuracy, which would only be possible if I had the chance to compare color chips with those paints that where actually applied.

For all these reasons it isn´t realistic to state that ANY color samples are 100% correct or incorrect. BUT: The color chips in LWCM are printed in a usable dimension, form (as a detachable set) and seem to be well researched. They even reproduce the style of color cards...
Thus i believe that these color-cards CAN be referred to as the "best" up to now - but thats just my impression - everybody is free to have a different one...
Use this colors as a sample - who is able to PROVE they are wrong (except color 28 of course ;-) )?
All the best

markjsheppard 22nd March 2005 08:54

Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings - Color Chips

Additional follow up from Ken.

The comments Herr Zimer makes relate to information provided about the colour photos in the book, not the colour chips. The colour chips are 100% accurate, thanks to Jürgen Kiroff locating original chemicals and other ingredients for each colour to the original formulae, and then making the pigments using the original rolling machines. Thus not only the colour is 100% accurate, but also the actual surface finish. What the reader has on the colour charts is what was originally provided by the RLM to the paint manufacturing industry as the standard for each colour. What is also provided in the first volume, and will be augmented with the second volume, are a range of extra colour chips for colours that were used for purposes other than external camouflage - such as primer colours for metal and fabric, cabling, etc. If any super modeller wishes to paint a model following the original process, or a full size aircraft restorer, the colours can be laid down as per the original painting process. The object of this two volume work is to include colour chips for every possible colour used by the Luftwaffe, the NSKF and also the civil aircraft industry (which includes some company 'house' colours).

Also bear in mind that Ken, even though the author has yet to receive his copy of the book!!!

Hope this helps



RalphZimmer 22nd March 2005 17:05

Re: Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings - Color Chips
Dear Mark
thank you very much for your continued investigation. If I understand your last post correctly, Mr. Merrick stated, that the mistake lies in the color photos not the color chips. That has to be a misunderstanding, as the exclamation in your earlier post perfectly "fits" my problem WITH THE COLORCHIP IN A WRONG COLOR.
In my first post I gave the wrong color card (from memory). But in the meantime I checked the color sample against some reference cards (NOT ORIGINAL CARDS i must confess) and it seems to be a close match fpr the color labeled Farbton "45" in the eagle productions color card. This was confirmed by the editor, Mr. Creek, who told me in an email, that the problem was caused by a misplaced (?) color chip. Unfortunately I´m at work now and am not able to mail the editor´s answer to you or correctly state, wether the wrong color chip was in the 1938 color card or the 1936 edition.
If you are interested I can send you a copy of the mail from Mr. Creek.

All the best

RalphZimmer 23rd March 2005 11:22

Re: Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings - Color Chips
Dear Mark
After reading your post again, I must confess that the misunderstanding was mine.
Concerning the wrong color chip I add the reply I received from Mr. Creek.
Dear Herr Zimmer,
Your email has been forwarded to us by Ian Allan Publishing, for which many thanks. We are the production company involved in producing Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings Volume One by Ken Merrick. Further to receipt of your email, we have contacted one of the two German companies involved in the manufacture of the paint chips and cards included in this book (we have had no involvement in the manufacturing process, which has been entirely controlled by Farben-Kiroff-Technik of Fürth and whose details are published both on the colour cards and the imprint page in the book). We have been in touch with Kiroff and have been informed that although the correct paint for Weinrot 28 was mixed and supplied by Farben-Kiroff-Technik, the other company - manufacturers of the cards - have erroneously applied another paint to the 1936 card. The colour chip on the 1938 card (also included in the book) is correct.
We are proposing that in Volume Two of this work, a new colour chip to
replace the incorrect chip, will be provided, plus errata details.

This answered my impression of a wrong color chip.

Regarding the difficulties in assessing colours I try to clarify my former statement:
1) I didn´t intend to make this a critic regarding the new color cards from Mr. Merrick´s book. Personally I regard them as the "new" standard for the reasons you gave in your last posting.

2) My comment should be a remark regarding to the color applied ON A MODEL. In this cases one has to choose between the correct color (compared with a sample like the ones from Mr. Merrick´s book) or the correct APPEARANCE of the model (because of scale effect, weathering, different kinds of painting etc.)
Even if the modeller is able to chose the correct color there will be differences.
I hope that this clarifies my opinion. I apologize for not beeing able to put my thougts into words. Unfortunately [img]images/icons/icon9.gif[/img]English is not my native language.

If you think a further discussion is useful, feel free to mail me at my private adress.

All the best

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