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F-86 Sabre wartime cockpit color

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None of the books I have show any area of the cockpit, just two pictures are of the inst. panel and fwd. console area

which appear to be black. Kit instructions state dark gray. Will be a closed canopy build so any area that will be seen helps.

One museum bird has black headrest, but most Korean war pics seem to be dark red.  Thanks!

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During wartime, a very large majority of Sabre cockpits were fully black. Very late, some F marks were possibly delivered to units in Korea with grey pits as the color cockpit change in North American factories occurred end of 1952 whereas the cease fire was announced mid-1953.


The best way to know is to look at the serial number of the airframe you want to reproduce. More precisely, Inglewood F-86Fs changed to grey in production from sn 52-4500 (F-86F-30) and Columbus-built from 51-13400 (F-86F-25). Some Canadair airframes were also used by the USAF in Korea and it looks they implemented the change about the same time (between sn 23200 and 23400).


As the color change occured some months before the end of war activities, many of the grey pit Sabres stayed in CONUS or were deployed in other theatres of operations (e.g. USAFE). Accordingly, most of the preserved airframes in museums have grey pits.


So, by default, in case of doubt, use black for a Korean war Sabre.





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