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Collishaw's Camel D3417


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Hi, all. I'm working on Raymond Collishaw's Camel D3417 from his time in RAF No. 203 squadron (RNAS 3rd squadron). Our RoF skin looked like the sketch below, but closer inspection of the photograph (lower) shows that the serial no. clearly shows on the vertical stabilizer, and the white band/circle appears to have a border on it, most likely black or red. I'm leaning towards red, but I would like to hear from others on what they think. Cheers!

 

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Collishaw_D3417.jpg.d0e03e0576aa80c703b9f0d57ee710e4.jpg

Edited by the_dudeWG
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To be honest I just wonder whether the apparent border is just the image playing tricks. Because to my eyes the image also shows a darkened ring around the unit marking (white circle) and cockade. And that does not seem probable. But do indeed cast suspicion upon that profile getting things reasonably accurate. I've not got much that I can source for question at hand (dare say adding more questions instead) but this is what The Camel File has to say about 203 Squadrons markings;

 

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Used no unit marking prior to the formation of the RAF. However, flight colours were used, on engine cowlings, wheel covers and (probably) fins. A Flt used red and B Flt blue. C Flt's colour is not know but black seems likely. These colours continued in use after April 1918. B Flt machines were further embellished with a large RNAS eagle painted below the starboard cockpit area. Individual markings were very much in vogue. Amalgamation into the RAF brought a more disciplined approach and the allocation of a unit marking - a white circle to be painted on the rear fuselage. Individual identities then appeared between the fuselage cockade and the unit marking. These were in white and presented on bands, of flight colour with white edging. It would seem that one flight used Roman numerals, and letters noted include H, P and W.

 

Should note that Wingnuts seems to conclude that the colour used on the squadrons C Flight machines was grey instead as that is how they have depicted Edmund Pierces B7275 in March and April 1918. So could the marking be made up of grey (or some light reflective blue) with white border? Though he was squadron commander around this time right? So not sure whether he would be within any flight as such, and his machine might not therefore follow this same pattern as others in the squadron?

 

Note on the serials and other details (some visible some hidden in the image) that might prove some use. D3417 was built at Clayton Shuttleworth and handed over by 17th May 1918. The machine reached 203 Squadron on 29th May 1918 and remained with the squadron come January 1919. And this is what The Camel File has to say about machines built at Clayton Shuttleworth;

 

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The company name and location were marked in white, on the lower rear fuselage. It would seem that the company used two styles of serial presentation concurrently on its earlier machines. On some the serial was in white on the rear fuselage, yet others (from the same batches) had a black fin serial similar to that on early Ruston-built machines. Handling markings were also in black. Later machines featured a white fuselage serial supplemented with a two-line presentation on the rudder.

 

So the handling markings if you intend on including them (hidden on the photo) ought to be changed from white to black. And the marking just forward of the tailskid is Clayton Shuttleworth's builders mark. I've got a work in progress (just needs the eagle) of Edmund Pierces B7275 which is also a Clayton Shuttleworth machine and you can use the graphic I've made for this Clayton Shuttleworth marking should you wish.

 

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CLAYTON SHUTTLEWORTH.zip

Edited by Oliver88
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Wow, Great stuff as always, Oliver! Thanks! I was going to ask you if the RNAS 3 squadron's logo was the circle, but it seems you already found confirmation of this. (I figured I would include a squadron default skin). Looking at the lineup image below, I'm curious about a couple other items. Are the cowls painted white? Especially Collishaw's Camel, the entire metal part of the front fuselage looks awfully bright. And are his spars painted? They look much darker than the other machines' spars. Cheers!

 

RAF203_Lineup.thumb.jpg.9c1479f5f2604fab09986d9bdc458d59.jpg

Edited by the_dudeWG
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8 hours ago, Oliver88 said:

And the marking just forward of the tailskid is Clayton Shuttleworth's builders mark. I've got a work in progress (just needs the eagle) of Edmund Pierces B7275 which is also a Clayton Shuttleworth machine and you can use the graphic I've made for this Clayton Shuttleworth marking should you wish.

Yes, I can see that logo in the photgraph. Thanks for sharing, I'll definitely include that. Cheers!

 

Edit: And I do agree with you on the mysterious dark bordering around the roundel and squadron circle, but the "cigar band" border looks just too definitive to me.

Here's what it looks like in red ...

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Edited by the_dudeWG
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Quote

 was going to ask you if the RNAS 3 squadron's logo was the circle, but it seems you already found confirmation of this

 

Or at least was once they ceased to be 3 Squadron RNAS and became 203 Squadron RAF.

 

2 hours ago, the_dudeWG said:

Are the cowls painted white? Especially Collishaw's Camel, the entire metal part of the front fuselage looks awfully bright.

 

Not sure what to make about that. Does appear awfully bright. But then again the earth in the foreground also appears awfully bright. And other areas of his aircraft look like they are being affected a bit differently by the light/camera to the other aircraft also, darker wooden fuselage panels, darker dope, darker shadows on the undercarriage struts. 🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️🤷‍♂️

 

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Image

 

2 hours ago, the_dudeWG said:

And are his spars painted? They look much darker than the other machines' spars. Cheers!

 

Or rather perhaps an indication of the opposite. I do not remember where but remember learning that the varnish coatings can come out appearing quite dark in images (and tbh is noticeable in images). So maybe just that his cabane/interplane struts are darker tone (similar to the wooden fuselage panels) due to varnish on them while the others are lighter as they are unvarnished (or worn) or been painted over.

 

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Sopwith Camel | BAE Systems | International

 

Edited by Oliver88
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I'm with you on the varnished wood, mate. I think the Major had some nicely varnished wood bits on his machine as well as the whitest nose of the bunch. I suspect everyone in the 203rd had the front of their fuselages painted white because we can see that the machine next to Collishaw's has an unpainted cover, and the contrast is striking (see image below). As a result, I believe his Camel should look something like the lower image. Any thoughts?

 

RAF203_Cowls.thumb.jpg.e7d742b3232d74c499c7a41736643235.jpg

 

 

2020_09.18-22_47.thumb.jpg.9e0773c1f74b53c13cb2d32da8b01892.jpg

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Yes and no. No sure answer as to the colour for PC10. And could vary between chocolate brown and olive drab depending on the mixture and time spent exposed to the elements. Though PC12 is stated as being dark chocolate brown. At least that's according to Wingnuts and have seen the same stated elsewhere.

 

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23 hours ago, Atomic_Spaniel said:

I'm sure it's been discussed before, but isn't PC10 more of a chocolate brown colour than a green? The Shuttleworth aircraft and the F2B at Duxford are much more brownish than greenish.

This is a good question. We have a brown canvas layer in our template, and I’ve always been unsure if it’s PC10 or PC12 and when to use which. Maybe my eyes are biased, but the machines in the black and white photos almost look more brown. Maybe I should try the browner version?

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Ok, so sometimes I run a black and white image in Photoshop Channel Mixer, using a Blue filter to replicate the way a lot of those old photographs darken the reds and lighten the blues. It might not be 100% accurate, but I've found that it usually works pretty well for my use. Below is a PC12 (left) vs. PC10 (right) and their simulated black and white photographs using the blue filter. I'm fairly happy with the browner version, and it seems to appear closer in tone to the original black and white photograph. Any thoughts?

 

420940810_Collishawolivevsbrown.thumb.jpg.ea42c11a186a14e6de74ade4293fe50f.jpg

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6 hours ago, the_dudeWG said:

Any thoughts?

 

I don't usually participate in skinning stuff but I respect your work dude ... and all the other skinners. Fantastic stuff!  As to feedback, I've always thought the chocolate brown is closer to reality for the old RFC/RAF kites in general. Perhaps I've been influenced by the many illustrators and books on WW1 aviation I've read over many years going way back but chocolate brown seems a common theme. I'm sure it was mentioned by pilots which is why it's perhaps? stuck in my memory but I can't provide a quote!

 

I could be wrong but I'd stick with the brown. Looks great. :good:

 

S!

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