I keep coming back to this same image.
I’m convinced, now, that we just don’t have “the full picture.” There is some missing information, and we may never have it. Here is the result of that lack of information.
That is just…not right. Often, it seems to me that on those forums where “group think” is the strongest, modelers will actually fudge (and I mean fudge) the colors to “make it look right” while keeping to the “true faith” that 71/02/65 was the Luftwaffe Fighter Arm “official” color scheme.
No. Something is wrong with this. Anybody who has read David Irving’s The Rise and Fall of the Luftwaffe should be aware that the Luftwaffe was POORLY MANAGED. Yes, I said it. It was so poorly managed that it eventually collapsed from a combination of enemy action AND poor management.
(Warning: Comments about David Irving will be removed.)
The Luftwaffe had SIX MONTHS to repaint its planes during the Phony War. During the winter of 1939-40 they had plenty of time to create the “three grays” camouflage and order units to implement it. It took time to implement. But I believe that “something” happened during this period and Luftwaffe fighters went back to war painted in either 70/71/65 with the 65 up the sides of the fuselage (don’t see too many models in this very common scheme now–it’s out of style) OR they had a “three gray” paint job that looked very much like the 74/75/76 scheme that we all know and love.
If it ever happened at all, the combination of 71/02/65 was a fluke. A one-off. A weirdo to be repainted as quickly as possible. That dog won’t hunt.
At the same time, an OFFICIAL order from somebody came down which told fighters units that they could use RLM 70 and 02 (the beige color?) to speckle the sides of their 109’s. It made for some radical looking fighters, but nowhere in any of this is a standard set for 71/02/65. That color scheme is imaginary. It comes from runaway group-think going on for years and years. Now it’s cemented into history.
The basic “three gray” scheme did not change throughout the war. All references to weird greens, browns or other goofiness just don’t hold water when compared to actual color photographs.
Of course, the “experts” have an answer for that–“you can’t trust photographs.” Isn’t that convenient! You can’t prove them wrong. No evidence can alter their “carved in stone” version of the truth.
Well–I say it’s spinach, and I say the hell with it.