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    Modelers help...Battleship colors for USN BB's.

    Because until WW2 the US Navy did a really bad job at keeping records. So we lost that institutional knowledge base. Just ask what color the USS Arizona was when she was sunk. There are at least 3 good answers, and everyone thinks theirs is the right one. But, the Navy cannot tell you, there are no color pictures, and any evidence that should be able to give the correct answer was lost or destroyed.

    Like most things on the internet, someone once made a statement about the Iowa being the only bathtub equipped battleship. No one refuted it. Then it becomes a "Historical Fact". And people incorporate it in their web pages and start citing it as "Fact". And added it to the Wiki page. And to the Iowa class BB web pages. But no one ever checks the accuracy of the original statement.

    Lot of Iowa Class "Facts" are that way. M21 and I use to argue about them over and over.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    Because until WW2 the US Navy did a really bad job at keeping records. So we lost that institutional knowledge base. Just ask what color the USS Arizona was when she was sunk. There are at least 3 good answers, and everyone thinks theirs is the right one. But, the Navy cannot tell you, there are no color pictures, and any evidence that should be able to give the correct answer was lost or destroyed.

    Like most things on the internet, someone once made a statement about the Iowa being the only bathtub equipped battleship. No one refuted it. Then it becomes a "Historical Fact". And people incorporate it in their web pages and start citing it as "Fact". And added it to the Wiki page. And to the Iowa class BB web pages. But no one ever checks the accuracy of the original statement.

    Lot of Iowa Class "Facts" are that way. M21 and I use to argue about them over and over.
    Not as bad as you think Grape. And yes they do know what color she was and what color the tops of her turrets without the cats were painted that indicated which BATDIV she belonged too. The movies that you see that depict Pearl Harbors attack helped contibute to the problems deciding what color she was all were different. There are even real Naval documents out there that can even tell you how much fuel she took on the day before after coming back into Pearl after manuvers. I have seen this document. I will try to find it and post on the BB board.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 14 Nov 11, at 01:03.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    Not as bad as you think Grape. And yes they do know what color she was
    So what was the color?

    Was it pre-war Standard Grey #5 with white tops? Thats the color she was painted during her yard work in Feb 41 when she left the West Coast.

    Was it Measure 1

    As per Navy Orders in Jan 41 (Ships 2). Which would be Dark Grey 5D with everything above the stacks Light Grey 5L (But Ships 2 wasn't distributed till Mar 41. Why she left the yard in Prewar grey)

    Or was she painted as per Kimmels order in What was referred to as "Mediterranean Blue"?

    Or lastly Was it Modified Measure 1. Using Sea Blue (5-S) in place 5-D of As per US Navy Specifications in Sept 41 (Ship 2 Rev 1)

    And when was she painted out of her Pre War colors? Was it when she was in dry dock in June at Pearl?

    And where is the documentation to show it? The last part is easy. The Navy destroyed most of their records pertaining to the Arizona shortly in 1944.

    Up until 3 years ago the common thought was that she was still in prewar grey. The new model at the Memorial Has her in Light Blue with Med Grey tops. Red Turrets.

    The big question, if she was painted IAW Ships 1, why were her Turret tops still Red? Ships One eliminated that. All horizonal surfaces were to be painted Dark Grey.

    and what color the tops of her turrets without the cats were painted that indicated which BATDIV she belonged too.
    The front Turrets indicate the BatDiv. In her case Div 1 (Red) The aft turret indicates the section her aircraft was assigned to.

    A run down of BatDiv 1 turret tops would show that:
    Arizona had turrets #'s 1,2 and 4 painted Red. As she was the Flagship for the Div. And had the First section of planes from VO-1 assigned.
    Nevada had #'s 1&2 Red and #4 painted White .VO-1 Second Section Planes
    Oklahoma had #'s 1&2 Red with #4 painted Blue. Vo-1 third section planes.

    All that was standardized in the late 1938. Last revision in Mar 41 due to planes losing their tail code colors. Turrets would still have the old section colors. Until they were painted IAW Ships 1.


    The movies that you see that depict Pearl Harbors attack helped contibute to the problems deciding what color she was all were different. There are even real Naval documents out there that can even tell you how much fuel she took on the day before after coming back into Pearl after manuvers. I have seen this document. I will try to find it and post on the BB board.
    Find the document that shows when she was last painted, and the color scheme and you will be famous.
    Last edited by Gun Grape; 14 Nov 11, at 05:46.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    So what was the color?

    Was it pre-war Standard Grey #5 with white tops? Thats the color she was painted during her yard work in Feb 41 when she left the West Coast.

    Was it Measure 1

    As per Navy Orders in Jan 41 (Ships 2). Which would be Dark Grey 5D with everything above the stacks Light Grey 5L (But Ships 2 wasn't distributed till Mar 41. Why she left the yard in Prewar grey)

    Or was she painted as per Kimmels order in What was referred to as "Mediterranean Blue"?

    Or lastly Was it Modified Measure 1. Using Sea Blue (5-S) in place 5-D of As per US Navy Specifications in Sept 41 (Ship 2 Rev 1)

    And when was she painted out of her Pre War colors? Was it when she was in dry dock in June at Pearl?

    And where is the documentation to show it? The last part is easy. The Navy destroyed most of their records pertaining to the Arizona shortly in 1944.

    Up until 3 years ago the common thought was that she was still in prewar grey. The new model at the Memorial Has her in Light Blue with Med Grey tops. Red Turrets.

    The big question, if she was painted IAW Ships 1, why were her Turret tops still Red? Ships One eliminated that. All horizonal surfaces were to be painted Dark Grey.



    The front Turrets indicate the BatDiv. In her case Div 1 (Red) The aft turret indicates the section her aircraft was assigned to.

    A run down of BatDiv 1 turret tops would show that:
    Arizona had turrets #'s 1,2 and 4 painted Red. As she was the Flagship for the Div. And had the First section of planes from VO-1 assigned.
    Nevada had #'s 1&2 Red and #4 painted White .VO-1 Second Section Planes
    Oklahoma had #'s 1&2 Red with #4 painted Blue. Vo-1 third section planes.

    All that was standardized in the late 1938. Last revision in Mar 41 due to planes losing their tail code colors. Turrets would still have the old section colors. Until they were painted IAW Ships 1.




    Find the document that shows when she was last painted, and the color scheme and you will be famous.
    Why not just ask an Arizona survivor who was stationed in the Mast tops what color she was?

    I pulled this from a sight the below person blogs too:

    Hi Steve,
    I haven't researched the colors as thoroughly as the dedicated warship builders since my involvement with the Arizona is with the survivors, but I'll tell you what I do know. On that fateful morning she was painted in the "Measure 14" twotone scheme of ocean gray (called "5-0") overall up to the height of the top of the superstructure masses, and very light haze gray (called "5-H") above that point. 5-O would apply to all metal items such as anchors, chains, etc since they were on the lower levels.

    IPMS Stockholm would have better crossreferences, but a photocopied chart I have says 5-O would be similar to PollyScale 505332, and the 5-H is allegedly 505330, or ModelMaster 2105 (French Dark Blue Gray in the MM expanded color line). Although it seems too dark to me personally. If anyone can tell me a good MM equivalent for the 5-O I'd lvoe to know!!

    I've read some references claiming the decks were stained dark blue, but the survivors have unanimously confirmed to me that they were indeed bare wood at that time.

    Not sure about the red upper areas on the turrets, but I've attached this photo I took last December at Pearl Harbor of one of our survivors pointing out his battle station on the large model of the ship at the Visitors Center, and it clearly shows the turrets without the catapaults to have the red.

    One other thing to watch for if you want simple accuracy that doesn't appear in the history books often: on the Revell model it has two antiaircraft guns (part #11) to be installed next to and slightly forward of the #3 turret, just next to the stairways headed up to the elevated deck area around the smokestack....the round tubs had indeed been installed, but the guns themselves were never installed. It was assigned work that was never completed. I hope my description makes sense...it's the only two part #11's to be installed on part #15, the aft deck.
    EDIT: I just noticed you can see the empty gun tubs in question in the photo above! So the model shown is correct.

    I hope this helps, and good luck!

    Andrew Desautels
    Secretary, USS Arizona Reunion Association Inc.

    A fast pic of her after turret tops after settling in the mud show her as "dark" compared to the sailors "working blues" in this pic. A much darker shade of paint then what she was photographed in just months prior to Dec 7TH 1941.
    You can also see the outline of a different color of paint on the turret top on turret #4 by its contrasting shade outline. The sunlight itself would have bleached it the very same blue/greycolor as the turrent if it wasnt painted a different color and perhaps a reflective color as the markings for the floatplane airgroup colors indicate.
    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/0139008.jpg

    As far as the turret tops I have seen the very same info, I have also seen instances where that info is not correct when it is compared to dated aerial photos of the ships at sea.

    Pennsylvania did sport the almost exact "blue/grey" scheme that Arizona appears to have had. Both being Flagships but Pennsy did not sport the paintjob with any clarity (color picture) until later in 1944 when photographed in a floating drydock.

    Pennsylvania's original cammo scheme layout (Measure 32) does list though the "5-0" & "5H" colors along with black and deck blue.

    If you look at USN's meaure 14 color it does appear to be the grey/blue coloring that some claim to be "Mediteranian Blue" which is not listed in USN color schemes however Navy Blue is but not for the Pennsylvania class but is for the following BB40 New Mexico class.

    This is a shot of BB38 Pennsylvania just after refit at Mare Island 03/02/42. Notice she has been repainted since the blistered paint she had from Pearl Harbors attack has been "cleaned down".

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013865.jpg

    This is a shot of Pennsylvania in Pearl Harbor with blistered paint before refit and just after the attack.

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013834.jpg

    This is a shot of Pennsylvania late in 1944 in the Pacific

    http://www.history.navy.mil/photos/i...000/k02106.jpg

    There would be no reason to repaint the ships color scheme since refit knowing she would serve the South Pacific campaign on the bombardment line and being photographed only a year later in drydock.

    So IMO, from the information available from Arizona survivors Assoc and photos taken before and after that they would have deviated from the classes intended color scheme then what was intended in the plates.

    And I would be pretty sure those survivors would not forget something like that. They could probably tell you every detail about the ship and that particular day. It would be pretty hard to forget from their standpoint. If they say she was 5-0 with 5-H thats what I would go with beyond question. If the mixer of the paint put more color into it thats pretty reasonable but he probably went exactly by the book since she was as you mentioned a Flagship. And Pennsylvania being one as well was more then likely painted the exact same pigment.

    "Paint Ship" is a long and tedious process. Even just to touch it up.

    Another color shot of Pennsylvania in drydock at Pearl. Note the darker structure aft at the bridge and the light colored upper works. Even the bare wood decks same as the Arizona survivors claim her to have. The BB in the distant background reflects the very same paint scheme.

    http://www.maritimequest.com/misc_pa...nnsylvania.jpg

    Adm. Kimmel was doubtfully aware there was no such color and was more then likely using a "reference" towards that color pigment of the blueish grey scheme.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 14 Nov 11, at 19:38.
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    Paint scheme listing, Naval designation for it and appearance.

    Paint_Formulas
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    The big question, if she was painted IAW Ships 1, why were her Turret tops still Red? Ships One eliminated that. All horizonal surfaces were to be painted Dark Grey.

    Grape, that transition in total had still not taken place at the time as far as the turret tops go.

    Note this picture of Tennesee showing both forward turret tops in white paint immediately after the attack which is consistant with her aerial markings.

    http://www.okieonthelam.com/tag/pearl-harbor/

    Or this one taken of Nevada in Pearls drydock in Feb 1942. Turret #1 & #2 are supposed to be Red on top and as you can see turret #1 has been damaged. Turret 1 has been patched up but turret #2 is obviously a different color on top. More like a reflective color red.

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013600c.jpg

    Or this overhead from Battleship Row showing Nevada turret #4 roof in white consistant with her aerial markings.


    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_rWJUQcebQx...ng_SW+copy.jpg

    Oklahoma after being righted shows turret #2 & #4 a darker color then the rest. Turret 1 & 2 should have been red and turret #4 a true blue color. Turrets 2 & 3 could have easily been scoured when she rolled over both being in the superfiring positions and possibly scraping again the bottom of the harbor.

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013721b.jpg
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 14 Nov 11, at 23:31.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    Why not just ask an Arizona survivor who was stationed in the Mast tops what color she was?

    I pulled this from a sight the below person blogs too:

    Hi Steve,
    I haven't researched the colors as thoroughly as the dedicated warship builders since my involvement with the Arizona is with the survivors, but I'll tell you what I do know. On that fateful morning she was painted in the "Measure 14" twotone scheme of ocean gray (called "5-0") overall up to the height of the top of the superstructure masses, and very light haze gray (called "5-H") above that point. 5-O would apply to all metal items such as anchors, chains, etc since they were on the lower levels.

    IPMS Stockholm would have better crossreferences, but a photocopied chart I have says 5-O would be similar to PollyScale 505332, and the 5-H is allegedly 505330, or ModelMaster 2105 (French Dark Blue Gray in the MM expanded color line). Although it seems too dark to me personally. If anyone can tell me a good MM equivalent for the 5-O I'd lvoe to know!!

    I've read some references claiming the decks were stained dark blue, but the survivors have unanimously confirmed to me that they were indeed bare wood at that time.

    Not sure about the red upper areas on the turrets, but I've attached this photo I took last December at Pearl Harbor of one of our survivors pointing out his battle station on the large model of the ship at the Visitors Center, and it clearly shows the turrets without the catapaults to have the red.

    One other thing to watch for if you want simple accuracy that doesn't appear in the history books often: on the Revell model it has two antiaircraft guns (part #11) to be installed next to and slightly forward of the #3 turret, just next to the stairways headed up to the elevated deck area around the smokestack....the round tubs had indeed been installed, but the guns themselves were never installed. It was assigned work that was never completed. I hope my description makes sense...it's the only two part #11's to be installed on part #15, the aft deck.
    EDIT: I just noticed you can see the empty gun tubs in question in the photo above! So the model shown is correct.

    I hope this helps, and good luck!

    Andrew Desautels
    Secretary, USS Arizona Reunion Association Inc.

    A fast pic of her after turret tops after settling in the mud show her as "dark" compared to the sailors "working blues" in this pic. A much darker shade of paint then what she was photographed in just months prior to Dec 7TH 1941.
    You can also see the outline of a different color of paint on the turret top on turret #4 by its contrasting shade outline. The sunlight itself would have bleached it the very same blue/greycolor as the turrent if it wasnt painted a different color and perhaps a reflective color as the markings for the floatplane airgroup colors indicate.
    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/0139008.jpg

    As far as the turret tops I have seen the very same info, I have also seen instances where that info is not correct when it is compared to dated aerial photos of the ships at sea.

    Pennsylvania did sport the almost exact "blue/grey" scheme that Arizona appears to have had. Both being Flagships but Pennsy did not sport the paintjob with any clarity (color picture) until later in 1944 when photographed in a floating drydock.

    Pennsylvania's original cammo scheme layout (Measure 32) does list though the "5-0" & "5H" colors along with black and deck blue.

    If you look at USN's meaure 14 color it does appear to be the grey/blue coloring that some claim to be "Mediteranian Blue" which is not listed in USN color schemes however Navy Blue is but not for the Pennsylvania class but is for the following BB40 New Mexico class.

    This is a shot of BB38 Pennsylvania just after refit at Mare Island 03/02/42. Notice she has been repainted since the blistered paint she had from Pearl Harbors attack has been "cleaned down".

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013865.jpg

    This is a shot of Pennsylvania in Pearl Harbor with blistered paint before refit and just after the attack.

    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/013834.jpg

    This is a shot of Pennsylvania late in 1944 in the Pacific

    http://www.history.navy.mil/photos/i...000/k02106.jpg

    There would be no reason to repaint the ships color scheme since refit knowing she would serve the South Pacific campaign on the bombardment line and being photographed only a year later in drydock.

    So IMO, from the information available from Arizona survivors Assoc and photos taken before and after that they would have deviated from the classes intended color scheme then what was intended in the plates.

    And I would be pretty sure those survivors would not forget something like that. They could probably tell you every detail about the ship and that particular day. It would be pretty hard to forget from their standpoint. If they say she was 5-0 with 5-H thats what I would go with beyond question. If the mixer of the paint put more color into it thats pretty reasonable but he probably went exactly by the book since she was as you mentioned a Flagship. And Pennsylvania being one as well was more then likely painted the exact same pigment.

    "Paint Ship" is a long and tedious process. Even just to touch it up.

    Another color shot of Pennsylvania in drydock at Pearl. Note the darker structure aft at the bridge and the light colored upper works. Even the bare wood decks same as the Arizona survivors claim her to have. The BB in the distant background reflects the very same paint scheme.

    http://www.maritimequest.com/misc_pa...nnsylvania.jpg

    Adm. Kimmel was doubtfully aware there was no such color and was more then likely using a "reference" towards that color pigment of the blueish grey scheme.
    Dred I will happly respond to this post, But this is really the wrong thread for the discussion.

    Your new BB Color sticky is where it belongs. That way we don't hijack the Quiz. I don't want to "Pull a Gunnut"

    Mods can you move the last few post to this thread?

    http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/bat...rs-usn-bbs.htm
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    Dred I will happly respond to this post, But this is really the wrong thread for the discussion.

    Your new BB Color sticky is where it belongs. That way we don't hijack the Quiz. I don't want to "Pull a Gunnut"

    Mods can you move the last few post to this thread?

    http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/bat...rs-usn-bbs.htm
    Not a problem Grape and yes I do agree to no hijacking. I also recently found some comparisons in paintwork for the ships including the Iowas they may help explain the color that they appear in pictures vs the colors they were actually painted. Much of it appears to be some sort of reflective quality in the paint schemes against their backgrounds such as lighting and water color reflections.

    In other words we can compare two different pictures of the very same thing and both will appear differently.

    I will leave you an example below of one.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 16 Nov 11, at 22:17.
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    For example: Iowa and Wisconsin, both are pictured here in Philadelphia in rougly the very same time frame, almost the same location but they have been moved (bridge and cranes locations in one but not the other and forward of their one mooring in the second) from almost (sort of) the same angle. The only difference is the weather, overcast in the second one and water reflection which shows them as their normal haze gray scheme. The first one shows different lighting and weather conditions (water reflection) making them appear almost blue/gray in color.

    This is only for comaprrison means but IMO, it seems as though there is definately some kind of reflective quality in the pigment of the paint.

    The New Jersey appears the very same way in two pics I have to scan. One, when her paint job was only a few days old making her a very dark grey against an overcast sky and one that makes her appear bluish grey on a sunny day and water reflections. I hope to post these two very shortly but one I have to scan first. Yes, I said scan.

    Keep in mind though the contrast of colors in the Iowas scheme against the older schemes or Pearl Harbors ships. And the fact that the Navy only used black and white camera work for the majority of that period which will also add to the contrast in colors.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 16 Nov 11, at 23:03.
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    New Jersey appearing in her blueish/grey color, basically sunlight and semi clear skies. Still working on the scan picture.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 23 Nov 11, at 18:40.
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    Some stuff from the first page:

    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    Was it pre-war Standard Grey #5 with white tops? Thats the color she was painted during her yard work in Feb 41 when she left the West Coast.
    Arizona didn't have white turret tops; even this fall of 1940 document called for her to be Red/Red/Red. For what it's worth, Arizona left Puget Sound in the Pre2are #5 Standard Navy Gray and served in that paint up until late May or Early June. She and the rest of the fleet was ordered into Measure 1 much earlier than that, but there were paint production delays. I have a photo showing battleship row in the distance and three of the five battleships (can't make out specific ships) are in Measure 1 whereas the other two are still in prewar gray.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    Or was she painted as per Kimmels order in What was referred to as "Mediterranean Blue"?

    Or lastly Was it Modified Measure 1. Using Sea Blue (5-S) in place 5-D of As per US Navy Specifications in Sept 41 (Ship 2 Rev 1)

    And when was she painted out of her Pre War colors? Was it when she was in dry dock in June at Pearl?

    And where is the documentation to show it? The last part is easy. The Navy destroyed most of their records pertaining to the Arizona shortly in 1944.
    Mediterranean Blue was a term used by Glenn Lane, one of Arizona's aviators; he was describing 5-S Sea Blue but didn't know/remember the official designation. Measure 1 was cancelled by SHIPS-2 Rev 1 and essentially replaced by measure 11. All of the paint schemes in the original SHIPS-2 had featured light gray masts above the stacks, but none of the SHIPS-2 Rev 1 schemes did, even though they were largely refined measures from the original release (Measure 1 - Solid, Measure 11 - Solid, Measure 21 - Solid. Measure 2 - Graded, Measure 12 - Graded, - Measure 22 Graded).

    With regards to documentation, I'm pretty sure that some of it (deck logs) went up with the ship. I've been focusing on the "echoes" - orders to other ships or commands that might have mentioned Arizona or effected her. For example, I found this order in August from Mare Island Navy Yard (responsible for manufacturing paint for the Pacific fleet up until 1943) in the general Mare Island Navy Yard camouflage files. However, there were no requisitions of any sort in those records, so I don't know what sort of follow up there might have been. The Ships actually didn't get their paint from the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard - keep in mind that Pearl Harbor was both a Navy Base and Navy Yard, with separate commands, and that the fleet was still considered forward-based at that time. Most of the ships received their paint from Argonne in some respect, which was the Flagship for Base Force.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    Pennsylvania did sport the almost exact "blue/grey" scheme that Arizona appears to have had. Both being Flagships but Pennsy did not sport the paintjob with any clarity (color picture) until later in 1944 when photographed in a floating drydock.

    Pennsylvania's original cammo scheme layout (Measure 32) does list though the "5-0" & "5H" colors along with black and deck blue.

    If you look at USN's meaure 14 color it does appear to be the grey/blue coloring that some claim to be "Mediteranian Blue" which is not listed in USN color schemes however Navy Blue is but not for the Pennsylvania class but is for the following BB40 New Mexico class.

    -*SNIP*-

    There would be no reason to repaint the ships color scheme since refit knowing she would serve the South Pacific campaign on the bombardment line and being photographed only a year later in drydock.

    So IMO, from the information available from Arizona survivors Assoc and photos taken before and after that they would have deviated from the classes intended color scheme then what was intended in the plates.

    And I would be pretty sure those survivors would not forget something like that. They could probably tell you every detail about the ship and that particular day. It would be pretty hard to forget from their standpoint.
    OK, so, a sort of rambling free-floating response to a bunch of stuff above. Sailors statements are often contradictory and wrong. A gentleman named Don Stratton who has an amazing story of survival swears he saw a torpedo hit Arizona, yet no torpedo hole or evidence of a strike was ever found. Others remember details we know didn't exist at that time.... the memories get jumbled with age. Heck, I can't remember when I moved into my current house without having to sit and think about it, so I don't blame them at all for being human.

    Your statement "there would be no reason to repaint the ships color scheme since refit," is a little off, as they did repaint ships when new orders came out. Not always immediately, but they got it done either when they were in refit or when they were at anchor for periods of time. Pennsy had more than a couple of refits during the war, and was repainted a few times after the attack on Pearl. Measure 32 was never applied to Pennsylvania (it was a dazzle system and wasn't around until 1943) and Measure 14 was Ocean gray, and not the Sea Blue that "Mediterranean Blue" is substituted for.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    These are the Pearl Harbor Era battleships only, after having been raised, repaired and refitted all of this changed and from the North Carolina class (the first new ships to enter service after Pearl Harbor attack and the Washington Treaty collapse) forward, these markings were no longer used as ID from above was not desired by the USN (to protect ship movements) and the ships names for the most part were all removed from the stern however they all did retain a small hull number marking fore on both sides of the bow and aft on both sides of the stern for official ID. ID in the war theatre was largely made by sillowette drawings or ID plates made by USN intelligence such as this one below of BB38 Pennsylvania.
    Minor nitpicks, the Washington Naval treaty collapse predated the attack on Pearl Harbor, (North Carolina was commissioned in April of 1941) and the names were still on the stern, just that the metal pieces were painted the same color as the hull so you couldn't make them out unless you were REALLY close.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    Why not just ask an Arizona survivor who was stationed in the Mast tops what color she was?

    I pulled this from a sight the below person blogs too:

    Hi Steve,
    I haven't researched the colors as thoroughly as the dedicated warship builders since my involvement with the Arizona is with the survivors, but I'll tell you what I do know. On that fateful morning she was painted in the "Measure 14" twotone scheme of ocean gray (called "5-0") overall up to the height of the top of the superstructure masses, and very light haze gray (called "5-H") above that point. 5-O would apply to all metal items such as anchors, chains, etc since they were on the lower levels.
    Ask Law Enforcement Officers how reliable "Eyewitness Testimony" is.

    You showed one example. The survivor swears that she was in Measure 14.

    However there are other survivors that have stated that she was in PreWar Standard Grey. Others that say she was in Measure 1. A few that have stated she was painted Black. The Chief in charge of the paint locker swears she was painted 5s.

    Without documentation, we just don't know.

    Measure 14 was part of Rev 1 of Ships 2. Rev 1 was approved for distribution in Sept 41. How long do you think it took to get it to the printers, then out to the Yards and Major Commands?

    Haze Grey, Ocean Grey and Sea Blue were not standardized until 30 July 41.

    Aug 22 All paint request by ships and stations were canceled. New paint formulas had been developed. The old Dark Grey (5D) formula was discontinued. New specs sent out to manufactures. Ships told to reorder the new formula. They would have been at the bottom of the list Shipyards and repair facilities would have been stocked first.






    A fast pic of her after turret tops after settling in the mud show her as "dark" compared to the sailors "working blues" in this pic. A much darker shade of paint then what she was photographed in just months prior to Dec 7TH 1941.
    You can also see the outline of a different color of paint on the turret top on turret #4 by its contrasting shade outline. The sunlight itself would have bleached it the very same blue/greycolor as the turrent if it wasnt painted a different color and perhaps a reflective color as the markings for the floatplane airgroup colors indicate.
    http://www.navsource.org/archives/01/0139008.jpg
    One thing I have learned from my photographer friends. Never, ever try to distinguish correct colors from a black and white photo.

    Not only that but did the person analyzing that picture take in account that she was burned. How do you make color decisions based on a photo of a ship that was on fire for hours?



    Pennsylvania did sport the almost exact "blue/grey" scheme that Arizona appears to have had. Both being Flagships but Pennsy did not sport the paintjob with any clarity (color picture) until later in 1944 when photographed in a floating drydock.
    Pennsy was in MS-1. Thats documented. Dark Grey (5d) to the stack. Light Grey(5L) above. From Jan to Sept 42 she was in Measure 1 mod. Blue replacing Dark Grey. Some books, mainly the Squadron ones, do say she was in Measure 14. But no documentation to back that. After repairs/refit (left Mare Island in Feb 43) she was painted Measure 21. Stayed that way for the rest of the war.

    Pennsylvania's original cammo scheme layout (Measure 32) does list though the "5-0" & "5H" colors along with black and deck blue.
    When was Pennsylvania in Measure 32? Which BTW disruptive pattern measures didn't come out until 1944. (edit Late 43)
    Last edited by Gun Grape; 24 Nov 11, at 23:39.
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    Resident Curmudgeon Military Professional Gun Grape's Avatar
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    I think the 2 pics of the Jersey prove my point about not using B&W photos to identify color..

    The Jersey is painted Post WW2 Haze Grey (FS 36270) in both pictures.
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  14. #14
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Grape View Post
    I think the 2 pics of the Jersey prove my point about not using B&W photos to identify color..

    The Jersey is painted Post WW2 Haze Grey (FS 36270) in both pictures.
    And you are correct in that instance Grape. I was trying to show the difference in color as compared to weather etc. The below article written by a modeler is also very interesting. If you read it notice the very last page which gives an excellent point about the contrast of photos even back then. I have no idea how many modelers have seen this last page photo of Arizona before they cut away the existing superstructure (the radars and mast among other features) were already long gone but you must admit it is very interesting as to the color contrasts both black and white and then color. He also offers a good explanation about paint fade in the militarys color schemes. Its a good read.

    http://mikeashey.com/SHIP%20ARTICLE%...ARL-HARBOR.pdf

    I am also familiar with the documentation detailing the "delayed" shipments of paint to Pearl Harbor although in order to understand it you pretty much have to be used to reading the lingo and thats only if it was indeed applicable.

    There are still other documents. What we need to do is find the supply chain that issued either from Pearl or replentishment ship, that will tell all before that day.

    I cannot imagine Arizona being painted any different color then the rest of the fleet at the time although she was a Flag, just like Pennsylvania. Some of these peoples idealisms about color relate to the ships that sailed with her during ops just prior to Dec. 7th 1941 and that is very relevant. Even to todays Navy they all sail the very same color although some are more sun faded or weather beaten.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 26 Nov 11, at 15:19.
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