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Kittyhawk MK.II with a black wing
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Author Topic: Kittyhawk MK.II with a black wing  (Read 1965 times)
Massimo Tessitori
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« on: June 02, 2014, 09:17:27 AM »

Hi,
while researching for profiles, a perplexity has arisen.
On Red Stars 4 there are many photos of Kittyhawk MK-2 (ex-British P-40 B and C).
At least two of them (pag.37, low and pag.46, low) show surely a black left wing undersurface, while two (pag. 36, mid and 40, top) show surely sky  surfaces under the left wing.
All other planes, , including AH-965 and 975 that are the subject of the drawings, are uncertain. Unfortunately nearly all photos are from the right side (that, in this case, is the wrong one).
Photos of British Kittyhawks show both sky and black wings.

Tapani has found this explanation:
Quote
Apparently, the split White & Black underside was applied to RAF aircraft after the Munich Crisis of August 1938."
On June 6th 1940 this paint scheme was dropped completely for the single application of "Sky"  which then became the standard."
Black was re-applied over "Sky" to the port wing underside only starting 27 November 1940 and then removed by April 22,1941.
So the black wing should be  only aircraft delivered  before April 22,1941.

But this doesn't look convincing after having seen 2 Soviet planes with black wing against 2 with sky wing.
I've tried to understand the color from the wheel doors and disks, but without conclusive results. The color of the outer side of the wheel disk should be related to the wing undersurface, but I can't say if it is the same for the inner face.

Does anyone know more on this?

Regards
Massimo
« Last Edit: June 02, 2014, 09:21:46 AM by Massimo Tessitori » Logged
Troy Smith
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Posts: 386


« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2014, 03:56:31 PM »

The P-40B was used mostly for Army Co-operation in UK, and was not particularly successful in that role.   

The P-40B was a Tomahawk in RAF service, and Kittyhawk was used from the P-40E onwards [P-40E = Kittyhawk I etc]

It's quite possible for types that went into storage or were not being used would not have the black port wing repainted, and could well have then been shipped 'as is' to the VVS.

They would have been repainted if they were still being used by an RAF unit, but probably not if stored. 
In a similar way you get ex-RAF Airacobra's being seen in US applied Temperate Land Scheme [Dark Green/Dark Earth/Sky] and in Day Fighter Scheme [Dark green/ Ocean grey, or a mixed 'equivalent' /medium Sea Grey]

My Ducimus booklet is not to hand.  Will check more later.
T



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Massimo Tessitori
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Posts: 5971


« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2014, 10:32:50 PM »

Hi Troy,
thank you. Substantially, forgotten black wings.
Another thing: I see a wide rectangular mirror mounted externally on the top of the windshield, on the right. It is not always installed. Do you know if it is from the factory, a refit,  or if it is related to some version only?
Regards
Massimo
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