Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum

Luftwaffe and Allied Air Forces Discussion Forum (
-   Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings 1933-1945 (
-   -   Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291 (

Ruy Horta 19th March 2006 13:46

Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
When I look at this photograph it strikes me that instead of a two colour chequer pattern, as in red / black (or blue), it consists of a single dark colour, the second chequer actually being made up by the paint of the a/c.

This is especially clear at the deviding line between the top and bottom camouflage, the line crossing a "chequer".

Now I haven't been looking at Luftwaffe camouflage for a while now, but this is the first time I really take notice of this type of chequer.

If I am right, I find it even more interesting!!

The color doesn't look as strong as the Swastika (no guarantee but), doesn't look like black, could even be red.

PhilippeDM 19th March 2006 14:23

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291

IIRC the color of black and white pictures depends of the quality of the film. This picture was taken with Orthochromatic film. One of the properties is that it does not reproduce red as a grey color but as black. So this picture does not show a Karoband. I have to look through my files but I'm sure there are pictures where 5012032 has clearly a checquer band.

(a quick search: in MichaŽl Ullmanns book Luftwaffe Colours but page?

Perhaps should A. Arnold publish here his compilation about chequerbirds?

Very best regards,


Ruy Horta 19th March 2006 14:29

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Ah, that I would accept if it wasn't for a number of details.

1. The top/bottom devision line clearly running through the relevant chequer

2. Upon close inspection also the devision between light and dark camo on top chequers.

3. Clearly light belly chequer.

IMHO there can be no doubt that this is a single colour chequer, giving only the impression of a full two colour pattern.

It may simply have been unfinished, or else ... more interesting :confused:

Hi Philippe, been a while since our little meeting in Amsterdam!!

Ruy Horta 19th March 2006 14:38

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291

VERY interesting, given the evidence from Merrick, I'd be tempted to say that the photo as published on p. 75 of Ullmann's Luftwaffe Colours 1935-1945, has been altered.

It is clearly the same setting, but even if you'd explain it by different film (unlikely) or filter (remote possibility), it still does not explain the three different tones as illustrated in Merrick's book, essentially corresponding to respectively 1. dark camouflage color, 2. light camouflage colour and 3. the lower surface colour.

As such I cannot be convinced it is the outcome of film or filters.

The photo in Merrick's looks like a clean print of the original, whereas the Ullmann looks like a (bad) copy.

note: this is not intended as criticism against Ullmann!

Ruy Horta 20th March 2006 19:20

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Me 262 WNr. 501232 is starting to freak me out, depending on the source I use I see very different results.

Ullmann p. 75
- very dark two tone chequer (right side)

Merrick Vol. 2 p. 291
- single color chequer (right side)

Merrick Official p. 42
- two tone chequer (left side)

Smith & Creek Me 262 Vol. 4 p. 820-822
- two tone chequer several shots, left & right

YET, something fishy is going on.

Creek & Smith p. 822 looks like a mix of the shot used by Merrick Vol.2 and Ullmann.

I don't want to start a copyright argument here, but those of you who have these books should really take a look.

All kinds of possibilities, but at least one picture as been doctored either way, that of the right side.

The left side looks pretty authentic.

Holding a monolog, but still - for the record :rolleyes:

David E. Brown 22nd March 2006 05:11

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Hi Ruy,

I have been studying this kite for many years now and offer the following comments for your consideration:

The various images of this aircraft were, as Philippe notes, taken with panchromatic and orthochromatic film. Where the tailband is a single colour, this point to ortho. Indeed, that the tailband appeared all black was an important clue in confirming that the true colours were red and black. If the lighter colour was green 25 or 82, then it would still appears and a light grey shade. The yellow number retained its grey tone but red turns black. Furthermore, Merrick and Hitchcock interpreted the colours and dark blue and light green and Yellow 5 appears with a band in these colours on the cover of Monogram's "Jet Planes of the Third Reich" book. The tonal contrasts in panchromatic film for red, green 25 and light green 82 are almost identical as can bee seen in several of the images you mention.

You are right that there is something fishy about the Classic photo. The original is from Jim Crow's collection and shows the band to appear all black. The Classic image has been photoshopped to give the appearance of the red and black chequer tailband. No problem with that, though only if you do not state this in the caption - a definite publishing no-no / faux pas.

Finally, there is another Crow photo taken of the starboard side whereby the red and black / two-tone grey scale image is visible.



PS: Hard to believe that seven (7!) years has passed since the first meeting of the Luftwaffeforschungsamt-Amsterdam met in February 1999. Long overdue for another don't you all agree?


PhilippeDM 22nd March 2006 08:05

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291

When do you fly over???

You're welcome. Belgian beer is better than dutch one (say experts, as I do not drink beer;))

Nice to hear from you...

Very best regards,


Ruy Horta 22nd March 2006 09:59

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Quite a reunion going on in here!

I guess I could at least scan and post the bits that matter to the discussion.

Difference in filter and film explain the variance of colors seen on different shots of the plane, but cannot explain the difference between markings in the similar shot.

Since the word photoshop has been dropped, I expect that this didn't happen once, but twice in time.

You've been studying this a/c for some years, so there is little I can bring against that, but it certainly has kick started my interest again!

There is a third possibility, which added to photoshopping and old fashion retouching, and that's (re)painting in the field. And I am talking about a possible mix of these as well.


Itching to scan these tids and bits, will do so later today.

Ruy Horta 22nd March 2006 14:03

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Three times the same WNr 501232, three times the same photo, but not the same pattern.


Ullmann in detail

Ullmann 300 dpi

Smith & Creek

Smith & Creek in detail

Smith & Creek 300 dpi


Merrick in detail

Merrick 300 dpi

Of course I can understand inconsistency between different photos, even on different sides, but this is the same shot. I'd be extremely surprised if they could have managed a film or even filter change. Besides that would not explain the continued pattern of camouflage.

IMHO either the starboard (right side for the most of us) had an unfinished chequer and some people were creative enough to finish for them on the through retouching or in modern times photoshopping, or the opposite is true and camouflage was added (which doesn't make sense).

Even the photos of the port side look to have a messy pattern, either through having been a rush job, or again some inconsistency - perhaps even post war imagination??

But I am not willing to speculate on the port side, the starboard side is proving to be challenging enough, and I think you will agree with me that pictures say more than a thousand words.

Please understand that I do not want to breach any copyright laws, these scans are purely to illustrate what is proving to be an interesting enigma.

O.Menu 22nd March 2006 18:05

Re: Me 262 WNr. 501232, Vol 2, p. 291
Excuse this late answer but I always though that Germans got time to finish portside only of the fuselage bi-color band, only one color being painted on the starboard side...

So i agree with you Ruy, the only not photoshoped image is probably only the last (the one from Merrick)...

But on the other way i m surprised to learn that you found some "messy Pattern" on portside!

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 18:38.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©2004 - 2018,