USAAF Camouflage Reference Contents:
The Late WW2 USAAF Night Fighter Aircraft Camouflage (1943-1945)
The U. S. Army Air Forces commenced outfitting with night fighters, such as the Northrop P-61, and modified versions of the Lockheed P-38 and Douglas A-20, referred to as P-70, during the latter part of the war. These aircraft were adorned in the customary color scheme of Dark Olive Drab No. 41 or Olive Drab ANA 613 over Neutral Gray No. 43 and Sea Gray ANA 603 respectively. This practice persisted even after the 30 October 1943 directive of leaving most combat aircraft unpainted at the factory. Subsequently, experiments were conducted to develop an appropriate gloss black paint for nocturnal operations, leading to the creation of Jet ANA 622. Though Jet ANA 622 was officially incorporated into the ANA system on 26 April 1944, its application began in January of that year.
Despite its gloss finish, Jet ANA 622 was frequently used without a primer, particularly notable in cases like Northrop, the manufacturer of the P-61, which opted for this approach. As a result, the paint tended to fade and appear matte after extensive use. It was quite common for many P-61s to paint their radomes in Insignia White No. 46 or its successor ANA 601. Due to the radomes being composed of different materials than the fuselage, they often exhibited distinct fading patterns.
Color Guide to The WW2 USAAF Night Fighter Aircraft Camouflage
- Insignia White ANA 601: An off-white color that matches to its post-war successor FS 17875 fairly well.
- Sea Grey ANA 603: A dark bluish-gray underside color, replacing its ancestor Neutral Gray No. 43 in 1943. The closest analog is believed to be FS 36118.
- Olive Drab ANA 613: A standard dark olive color used for upper surface camouflage since 1943. Depending on the weather conditions and climate in which the aircraft was operated, this color could vary from green to brown shades. When it's new, the closest equivalent is FS 33070.
- Jet ANA 622: Glossy when freshly applied, ANA 622 quickly lost its sheen in use. Its post-war successor FS 17038 is best suited, but off-black or dark gray colors may also be suitable.
|Original Paint||ANA 601
|Gunze Mr. Color||(C316)||-||C12||(C2)|
|Vallejo Model Air||71.279*||71.097*||71.016*||(71.057)|
|Vallejo Model Color||(70.820)||(70.868)||70.887*||(70.861)|
|AK Interactive||(AK 2052)||(AK 2144)||AK 2204||(AK 719)|
|AK Real Colors||(RC222)||(RC244)||-||(RC001)|
|AMMO by Mig||(A.MIG-047)||(A.MIG-204)||A.MIG-240*||(A.MIG-032)|
|Lifecolor||(LC 51)||(UA 022)||-||(LC 01)|
Photo Reference on WW2 US Army Night Fighter Aircraft Camouflage
- Archer, Robert D. and Archer, Victor G., USAAF Aircraft Markings and Camouflage 1941-1947, Schiffer Publishing (1997)
- Bell, Dana, Air Force Colors Volume 1 1926-1942, Squadron/Signal Publications (1995)
- Elliot, John M., The Official Monogram US Navy & Marine Corps Aircraft Color Guide Vol 2 1940-1949, Monogram Aviation Publications (1989)
- Rodrigo Aguilera, The World Wars.net