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P-51 Wings: Color and Finish


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#1 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 12:45 PM

Well, that time is almost here and I need to face the music regarding the wings color and finish. The two biggest issues are color and the details. My choices are:
1.Fill in the panel lines and rivet detail on the first 2/3 of the wings, then paint the wings a gloss aluminum color
2. Leave all the wing detail as molded by Tamiya and paint the wings a gloss aluminum color
3. Leave all the wing detail as molded by Tamiya and finish the wings with a NMF, as the fuselage.
Of course, if the answer is to paint the wings a gloss aluminum color, what color is it and how to best replicate it?

Thanks
Peter
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#2 dashotgun

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 12:50 PM

From what I understand the flight crews maintained the puttied wings even after stripping the camo off and going to a nmf finish. It makes sense performance is life for a fighter pilot. That being said I do have some pictures of some aircraft with the putty gone. I think it depends on the operational tempo of the unit. For my model I did it was a bit of pita but I am happy how it came out. I used Floquil old silver

Posted Image
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#3 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 12:59 PM

Thanks for posting the photo of your sweet looking P-51; she really looks good. From the photograph, the wing color certainly looks different then the fuselage color and has the right look to it. I'm not sure but I think I can see some panel lines half way back from the leading edge in the middle area of the wing.
Peter
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#4 petrov27

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:13 PM

How about P-51B wings? Were they puttied same as the D model?
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#5 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:18 PM

In my research, I found this pinned thread on the ARC Forum. The drawing was posted by Jennings (post 2 march 2012) and it has a notation on it: J.R. Helig, copyright c 2012. Jennings wrote ...Here's the way Mustang wings looked from the factory. Lighter areas are aluminum paint, darker areas are bare metal. The bolder black panel lines on the wings were *not* filled, and those shown in light grey, along with all of the rivets *were* filled. This was complied from LOTS of photos and the inputs of people on the P-51 SIG site who are **VERY** knowledgeable of this stuff...
Hope I am not violating any forum rules by posting this drawing, as I have tried to give credit to the correct individuals as I understand it.

Posted Image

From the drawings it shows how the wings left the factory.
Was this maintained in the field as well?
In photos, the panel lines and rivets seemed to be slightly visible on puttied and painted wings. Would this imply on a model to maintain the same effect, they souldn't be puttied in?

Peter

Edited by Peterpools, 06 September 2012 - 01:31 PM.

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#6 dodgem37

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:32 PM

Peter,
I am not a P-51 aficianado, but in my research I haven't come across photos of maintenance personnel re-puttying wings. In addition, it seems to me that the time required for personnel to redo this task over and over for a squadron of stress-skinned aircraft, when I would guess there would be more important maintenance issues at hand, would preclude it being done.

Just my opinion.

Sincerely,
Mark
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        Works in Progress:   Italeri 1/35 PT596Tamiya P-51D, Sinai, 1956,

            Completed WiP:  Erich Hartmann, Bf109G-14

                        Idle WiP:  Fw190A-5 Black 7 1/25th IDF Sho't, c.1982Bf109K-4, I./KG (J)6, BohemiaHungarian Bf109G-14, Bf109F-4/Z Trop,Shelf of DOOM!: Kawanishi N1K1 Kyofu Type 11 Rex , IDF AH-1 Tzefa FWerfer-Granate 21's,

   Ready for Inspection: Erich Hartmann, Bf109G-14, Ludwig Franzisket, Bf109G-6


#7 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:42 PM

Mark
I have to agree that maintaining both the putty work and the painted finish over time in a combat zone would have been a ton of extra work. The only reason I brought up the whole subject is that no matter what portion of the build I researched, two areas always jump to the top of the list:
1.Pre Tamiya ... the Wing spar issue
2. Wing color and finish.
I've looked at a zillion photos and in most, it's nearly impossible to tell. In some museums, the wings were painted gloss light gray (?). Just seems to me the whole issue is being given more importance then it's worth but everyone jumps right on it. After spending this much time on BBD, I just wanted to finish her correctly without going nuts.
Peter.
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#8 JRutman

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:55 PM

I would go with the drawing that was posted from the SIG. This topic was gone over ad naseum over there and that drawing reflects exactly what the P-51 looked like from the assembly line. Unless you are modeling a specific photograph of a specific airplane at a specific time,always go with that drawing.
Never trust a picture from a museum when researching what is now basically,an antique airplane.
HTH,
J
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#9 Guest_Ta152H1_*

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 01:57 PM

Peter,
for starters think about the harsh life of a fighter flown hard,often more than several times a day,mantained under even harsher conditions,then think about putty shrinkage,vibrations,steep dives,violent turns,landings,firing 050s,cleaned with wathever solvent could be handy,from contaminated gasoline to brake/hydraulic fluid,and you'll have a sharper image...all of these things would lead to putty and paint coming off axd if it was gouache and stucco!
Rivets and panel lines that were puttied at the factory weren't reputtied on the field,but beeswax was used to gain those "vital" 7mph lost to drag.
When the green camo applied over the factory finish in England (using mainly Her Majesty's paints) was stripped off P 51s of the 357 FG in the winter of 1944 the putty came off and the surfaces remained bare metal.
Don't forget that YZC was applied over the putty ,therefore if you want to depict a wing where the paint has worn off some YZC should appear.
Cleaning an aircraft or even polishing it would eventually lead to rub some paint off,and talking about "speed=life" then we can assume that "Less weight=more speed",hence no need to burden an aircraft with additional weight,read re-puttying and repainting,when beeswax would do the trick just as well,helping getting rid of unwanted drags by summarily filling in rivets and lines and polishing the surface in the process!
All in all any P 51 COULD have lost the factory finish on upper and lower wings at a certain moment of its career for a reasion or another and while a P51 with puttied wings would be OK for an aircraft straight out of the production line,nobody in the known World could and would break out a day-to-dat photo chronicle of EVERY P 51 built and prove you wrong in case you'd decide against puttying your model's wings!
Should you decide not to putty them I'd suggest you to go for a NMF with some light gray paint left in the rivets and panel lines,or even YZC...and black and white where the Invasion stripes were painted!
If you want to go the whole hog and putty them remember tha the original factory finish was Dupont silver/aluminum laquer over YZC,the latter sprayed on the central area of the upper wings.
Whatever your decision remember that it's YOUR model and that it'll be beautiful,"puttied" or not.
Mrs Bonnie will have his wings NMF because it had been cleaned several times with hydraulic fluid,av gas and stripped of putty and paint to gain more Mph....US$ 10000,cash on the nail, to the first one that will prove me wrong with a daily photo coverage of her life!
Cheers
Lou
P.S.;if we had the "pinned" P-51 thread this question,asked by me several weeks ago as well,could have had an answer fasterthanthis!

#10 dodgem37

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:19 PM

'Just seems to me the whole issue is being given more importance then it's worth but everyone jumps right on it.
After spending this much time on BBD, I just wanted to finish her correctly without going nuts.'

I understand. It is common knowledge to those who have researched the subject that during production the aircraft left the factory door with the front 2/3 of the wing puttied and the whole wing painted, etc.

But once the aircraft was in the air, beginning with the test flight before turning the aircraft over to the Army, it was stressed. From that moment, the wing began to lose that which it had gained during the production process.

You've done your research. You know the production process. You know that field conditions are not the factory floor. You are the expert for this aircraft. Build the thing the way you want it. If the experts don't like it, too bad for them. You have done your research and can defend your position.

Just my opinion.
Sincerely,
Mark
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        Works in Progress:   Italeri 1/35 PT596Tamiya P-51D, Sinai, 1956,

            Completed WiP:  Erich Hartmann, Bf109G-14

                        Idle WiP:  Fw190A-5 Black 7 1/25th IDF Sho't, c.1982Bf109K-4, I./KG (J)6, BohemiaHungarian Bf109G-14, Bf109F-4/Z Trop,Shelf of DOOM!: Kawanishi N1K1 Kyofu Type 11 Rex , IDF AH-1 Tzefa FWerfer-Granate 21's,

   Ready for Inspection: Erich Hartmann, Bf109G-14, Ludwig Franzisket, Bf109G-6


#11 Guest_Ta152H1_*

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:29 PM

Mark's right and he has echoed what I have written in my post!
Know what bro....a P 51 with its boring,puttied,laquered wings is just that....BORING!While a NMF one,with acres of contrasting panels is totally rad!
It's your model Peter....it'll be a winner whatever you do and as Mark has rightly put it...if the "Experten" will booh you and BBD...too bad for them!
Cheers
Lou

#12 xmh53wrench

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:41 PM

OT
FYI guys, add MUSTANG to your titles for P-51 threads, as P-51 returns no search results. Kev knows, and is seeing if there is a fix for it.

Great threads guys, just wish the other thing had worked out.
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#13 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:44 PM

Thanks Guys
Who ever thought. Sure looks like there are pros and cons for going either way.I kind of look at models models as a mini museum and would want to displays to reflect a Used but not Abused look. I'm leaning towards putty and a glossy aluminum/silver paint, such as Floquil Old Silver over a base color of YZC. MY idea of a museum vignette setting would be to have the aircraft looking good in it's combat closes.
Lou ... looking to compare finishes when we're done just to see how they look. Of course it's no where near the same thing but when I owned my own plane, I washed and waxed it almost every week. Talk about wax in the seams on the fuselage, as the wings were covered in Ceconite and were smooth as silk.
Thanks for all the help an information.
Peter
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#14 Guest_Ta152H1_*

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:11 PM

Thanks Guys
Who ever thought. Sure looks like there are pros and cons for going either way.I kind of look at models models as a mini museum and would want to displays to reflect a Used but not Abused look. I'm leaning towards putty and a glossy aluminum/silver paint, such as Floquil Old Silver over a base color of YZC. MY idea of a museum vignette setting would be to have the aircraft looking good in it's combat closes.
Lou ... looking to compare finishes when we're done just to see how they look. Of course it's no where near the same thing but when I owned my own plane, I washed and waxed it almost every week. Talk about wax in the seams on the fuselage, as the wings were covered in Ceconite and were smooth as silk.
Thanks for all the help an information.
Peter


Peter,
your airplane was YOUR OWN airplane,paid with your hard-earned and used as a "toy" and I doubt that you had to be ready to "scramble" at any given moment...and that differs a lot from an aircraft used on a daily basis and......abused!When I was in the Army the easiest way to wash our M113s and make them look as new before retuning them to the barracks for a thorough cleaning was....a broom and a few liters of diesel fuel!After that a good washing,touch-ups,tuning and lubrication returned the M113s to "Italian Army Racing Team" standards.It wasn't certainly so for the M113 used (and abused) in Viet-Nam,Sinai,Lebanon aso.
Just read posts #9 and #10...they could be of help!Don't be too obsessed by this putty thing but if you do want to fill all those rivets and panel lines (I'd rather fill the latter than the former and I could even do that with stretched sprue if it wasn't a royal PITA...after all ALL the engraved panel lines on ALL kits are ALWAYS too wide,since the panels are nearly always perfectly matching) use something that will help you along the process and not that will make the job a nightmare....I'd airbrush some Mr-Surfacer or black matt paint,sand it with wet-n-dry and seal the sanding dust inside the rivets and panel lines with varnish or primer...that's the easiest way...to me at least!You could use Rub-'n-Buff as well,but being wax-based painting on it would become difficult because the paint wouldn't adere well....not to speak of transfers and decals!
Later
Lou

#15 Peterpools

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:24 PM

Lou
Well said and some good advice at that. I want to have a good hint of the panel lines and rivets and air brushing on Mr Surfacer and then YZC should be the ticket before the Floquil. Yup, it's my way to go.
Peter
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