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Early 1980s VA-65 low-viz colours? (intriguing photo)


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Silly me... I've got AOA's excellent "Intruder Sandbox"  sheet in 1/32 and recently got a great deal on an A-6E.

Somehow, my current VA-65 build makes me want to build another VA-65 aircraft, but in this scheme:

image047.jpg

AOA decals does a VA-65 Part II sheet with these markings, but for AG-500, whose instructions (review courtesy of LSP, thanks!) state that the aircraft may have been overall FS36440 but were (as can be seen) rather weathered and this is far from certain.

 

While browsing around some this morning for no apparent reason I stumbled upon this interesting shot of similar looking AG-501:

a-6e intruder va-65 tigers attack squadron uss dwight d. eisenhower cvn 69

It may not have been at exactly the same time as AG-500 depicted in the AOA decals (these aircraft miss the "E" marking near the "S" that AG-500 did have) but at least on my monitor there is a tonal difference between 501 (overall grey) and 511 and the A-7 in the back (both rather clearly still in grey/white).

I love the weathered walkways on 501 :)

 

Seeing this I'm even more tempted to go with this scheme... Any guesses on what the overall colour may have been? Light or Dark Ghost grey?

 

Jeroen

 

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For the official orders, after some testing the navy did in the mid 70's it was ordered around 1977 that all aircraft off the assembly line and out of depot will be overall Gloss Gull Gray (16440). Just to note it doesn't take long for gloss Gull Gray to become dull and weather beaten. TPS started showing up in the mid 80's after again testing in the early 80's. I arrived at my first squadron, VF-124, in 1986 and it was 60/40 Gull Grey to TPS. We had over 20 Tomcats since it was a training squadron (RAG). It wasn't until  the mid 90's that pretty much all navy aircraft were in TPS.

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Thanks!

 

Interesting stuff for sure. :) This whole paintscheme does look a bit like an experiment, with the overall colour, but still with hi-visibility warning markings, light painted/natural nose and the white TRAM turret.

Too bad they did not park a grey/white aircraft next to the one on the catapult for comparison!

 

On the shot I posted both aircraft don't look too dissimilar with regards to weathering, though the first one, on my monitors, seems have a more blue tinge to it. If and when I have a go at it, I could do either and it would be hard to prove either wrong I guess :)

I'd definitely not put money on either :)

 

Edited by jeroen_R90S
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If you compare the photos of the A-6E in those markings, 3rd roll down 3rd from left at the site Derek provided, with the photos next to it. the left photo being Gloss Gull and the right being TPS I say these Intruders are in Flat Gull Grey. I can say that I do not recall ever seeing Intruders or any attack aircraft in overall Gull Grey so this might have been an experiment being done by that community. Again my point of reference is 1986 and all attack that I can remember were in TPS. Now just to note all KA-6D's remained in the Gull Grey over white for it's whole career.

 

Thanks Derek, cool site.

Edited by ScottS.
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So I'm practicing with uploading pictures and wanted to share this one of same squadron in flight, with the white radomes I'm pretty convinced that these are overall Gull Grey

 

a-6-intruder-large-56a61b753df78cf7728b5

Edited by ScottS.
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The overall gloss gray paint scheme the Navy used briefly was a cooler/bluer gray than warm light gull gray.  Looked good but I don’t remember it being around long on tactical airplanes, although you saw it a lot on special mission airplanes like Whale variants going back to the late 60s.

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  • 1 month later...

Sorry for getting back so late (see my Intruder thread for an explanation), but Iove what you guys came up with!

 

The full-size shot Finn posted is really interesting, as it seems to show that only 501 looks to have a different tone to the rest of the aircraft. 510 is an overall colour, but seems like that is in light gull grey when compared to the rest of the line-up.

On the other hand, the S-3 (702) parked on the other side has a similar hue to 501 on my monitor, and that S-3 still has white undersides.

 

So it seems that they're all light gull grey, but in different stages of weathering, age and lighting.

I suppose for a model you can just about mix up some greys, add some olive green, yellow and blue, it it would still come out to a match to any of these aircraft :D

 

Jeroen

 

PS I love the folding tail on those Vikings :)

 

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