Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

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Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Sun Jul 30, 2017 10:29 am

Found a new thread which I thought might be useful to Panzerwaffe builders.

First the background in a nutshell. What colour was Dunkegelb?

- Spring 1941: Wehrmacht introduces RAL 8000 Gelbbraun (yellow-brown) for use in North Africa.

- March 1942: Two lighter colours specifically tailored to North Africa introduced, RAL 8020 Braun (brown) and RAL 7027 Grau (grey)

- February 1943: A yellow basecoat Dunkelgelb nach Muster (dark yellow according to standard) introduced in anticipation of the summer campaign in Russia, after the success of the paints destined for North Africa, some of which were used in Russia. This colour did not enter the RAL standard catalogue.

- April 1943: RAL 7028 Dunkegelb introduced. Here the confusion starts. Supposedly Dunkelgelb nach Muster to the RAL standard, it's clearly a different colour.

- 1943-44: There are at least three variations of Dunkelgelb, as found on surviving equipment, all supposedly to RAL 7028, which should be a single standard colour.

So there's the problem. Modellers after an accurate finish for a specific period are left wondering what is correct. It's easy to say, "what the hell, I'll use any old yellow" and why not?

The definitive work on German camouflage colours is Tomas Chory's book:

[attachment=1]ccwh3_book_advert.jpg[/attachment]

which has excellent colour chips:

[attachment=0]2_br-Wehrmacht-Heer-colours-chip-colour-chart-pic.jpg[/attachment]

Chory quotes the various shades of Dunkelgelb but doesn't attempt to attribute them.

A researcher has recently traced the variants back to the original manufacturer and has been able to put a specific timeline to them and find original chipsets. This is ground-breaking stuff for anyone looking for historically accurate colours for the majority of Wehrmacht vehicles. The thread on Fine Scale Modeller is here:

http://cs.finescale.com/fsm/modeling_su ... 75682.aspx

With this information, if you choose to model a specific vehicle at a particular time, as I like to do, you can now match very accurate colours. The only health warning is that what appeared in the field varied considerably from the standards, with application, wear and weathering.

So I suppose you can still paint any old colour with a clear conscience....

Stephen
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Kent Wiik
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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Kent Wiik » Sun Jul 30, 2017 12:53 pm

Hi Stephen,

Yes this topic of a never ending story of what is the correct RAL7028 on a model.

To confuse things even more so how historically correct Dunkelgelb you put on a model it will
turn out to dark due to the smaller area that reflect the light.
However our 1:6th scale are (almost) large enough to manage the difference but not 100%.

And to confuse thinge ever even more so do Dunkelgelb wary in looks even from the same jar depending on the light.
Just look at the bus below.....
Dirt, dust and wear will also make Dunkelgeld look different as seen on the worn out Panzer III Ausf N below.

I use Tamiya TS3 myself and the result look the part. Easy and forgiving to use but a bit expensive but if keen on saving £ I would never had enter this hobby :)

Kind regards
Kent
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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by David Stewart » Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:08 pm

Very interesting info there, I am amazed at how many different shades there are of German dark yellow. I have been using Zib militaria version from a recommendation on this forum and love the result. I have used Tamiya in the past on small plastic models but found it too light personally for our big scale. Interestingly I have found that Games workshop Graveyard earth is also the same shade as dunklegelb!

I would guess that due to the ever changing nature of war that crews imropvised in field, hence why you get so many different shades. As correct me if I am wrong didn't they have to thin the supplied paint down to use?

David
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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:34 pm

Kent, David, interesting points.

Firstly, application. Dunkelgelb was, until the end of the war, a factory applied base coat, so you'd expect the hue to be consistent. Mixing pastes is only relevant to the Tarnfarbe ie the camouflage colours which were mixed in the field and applied over the Dunkelgelb.

This new evidence suggests that the paint supplied by the original manufacturer changed over time. It doesn't however reveal why. You could attribute a number of reasons, that the OKW changed the requirement or that availability of materials played a part, for example. We do now know though, that the issued paint was consistent in hue, that differing hues are not the result of random variations in manufacture or application but were the result of deliberate manufacturing decisions and that you can associate each hue with a specific period of production.

Unfortunately, you can't do the reverse, ie to state which variant is on a specific vehicle at a specific time. That's because the Germans always encouraged existing stocks to be used up before changing. There must therefore be overlap periods in the factories. Some vehicles must also have been given a new basecoat after base overhaul.

I'm sure there is good science in colour scale effect but for me, it's too simplistic just to lighten the shade. Why go to the trouble of accurately matching paint to the original and then play about with it, in an entirely subjective way? I prefer to use an accurate colour match, as I've done on my Cent, and then fade and shade the panels with oils. The oils are translucent and so you can give an overall filter effect without compromising the underlying hue and it's more fun than mixing paint.

The Tamiya is a good average but it's now possible to match the exact hues of Dunkelgelb.

I'm a few years away from needing Dunkelgelb on my Fehrmann Tiger but I hope this is of general interest.

Stephen

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Sun Nov 05, 2017 9:55 pm

Help, please. Did anyone by chance save a copy of the Fine Scale Modeller article at the link in my original post? I’ve lost it and although the words are still on the FSM Forum, the author has removed the photos from PhotoRipoff. I’d love to retrieve the photos if anyone has them. Thanks. Stephen

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Adrian Harris » Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:22 pm

I have my suspicions this chap might be a "Walt".

On another thread (http://cs.finescale.com/fsm/modeling_su ... 38929.aspx) he claims to have been swimming in a river in East Germany in 2005 (reunification was 1990?), found a Panther G, and is now restoring it to running condition. Would the German government allow that ?

The name on the PB account was "James Goddard", and there's a James on WoT also claiming to be restoring a Panther he found in a river.

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by John Heath » Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:27 pm

Came across this info a while ago based on spectroscopic analysis of original paint and they mixed Tamiya paint to duplicate the original colour as accurately as possible. Of course given the colour variations of the original paint would’t be accurate for everything but at least would be accurate for some.

Dunkelgelb (Dark Yellow)
- XF-60 Dark Yellow
- XF-59 Desert Yellow
- 4 parts of XF-60 to 1 of XF-59

Olivegrun (Olive green)
- XF-58 Olive Green
- XF-65 Field Grey
- 8 parts of XF-58 to 1 part of XF-65

Rotbraun (Red Brown)
- XF-64 Red Brown
- XF-1 Black
- 6 parts XF-64 to 1 part of XF-1

German Red Oxide
- XF-64 Red Brown
- XF-9 Hull Red
- 3 parts XF-9 to 2 parts XF-64

John

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Sun Nov 05, 2017 10:47 pm

Adrian, you could well be right:

https://www.scalemodellingnow.com/james-goddard

The reason I want the photos from his FSM post is to compare them with the chips in the Chory book, which are widely regarded as definitive and then compare both with the ones in the new AK book Real Colors of WW2. The latter are interesting because the book has assembled a large collection of photos of surviving kit with original paint.

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Adrian Harris » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:00 pm

You could reach out on FSM, I'd almost guarantee he'd email them to you...

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:14 am

PM received late last night with the pics. Sanity restored. I've compared the Goddard chips with the Tomaz Chory ones using the iColour app sampler and the hues check out, although there is variation in the light values, which you'd expect sampling from photos.
1 Dunkelgelb Nach Muster.jpg
1 Dunkelgelb Nach Muster
2 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 1943.jpg
2 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 1943
3 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 variant.jpg
3 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 variant
4 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 1944.jpg
4 Dunkelgelb RAL 7028 1944
These, for comparison, are the chips in the new AK Interactive Book, Real Colors of WW2, which has just been released. (No breech of copyright, this is taken from the AK brochure).
Dunkelgelb AK Samples.jpg


Stephen

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by mark lawson » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:07 pm

Steve, do you know the Tammy a mix for the 1944 version of Dunkelgelb
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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Mon Nov 06, 2017 1:18 pm

Mark,

The following screenshots show you four mixes, based on three sources, the new James Goddard source, the Chory source which has been regarded as definitive up until now and two versions of the new chip from the AK Interactive book Real Colors in WW2.

I’ve had to use the iPad camera, so there is a health warning about light levels but I think it’s more or less right.

On the iModels pages, the top line (Ref) shows you the reference chip, the next line down (Mix), the final mix. The CIE 2000 delta figure (eg 0.99) is an index of how close the match is, the lower the figure, the closer the match, followed by the proportions of red, green, brown. Anything less than 1 is probably not obvious to the naked eye. The bands below show the Tamiya paints in the mix, with the relative percentages on the right. The total number of parts is shown on the left and the number of parts per colour on the right.

3D020C31-5B41-4473-8386-E0A29555AAA9.png
James Goddard Chip
1F28E63D-E30C-49FE-929E-99C799F688AC.png
Tomaz Chory Chip
9F570506-5F0D-4503-86F7-E45AD5612C2F.png
AK interactive chip 1
A8DFC5BC-BBFD-49D8-B9D1-6CFE43A7E8F5.png
AK Interactive chip 2
Hope that helps.

Stephen

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Jeff Hyder » Mon Nov 06, 2017 7:28 pm

Hi, Just to throw a spanner in the works I read in a Modelling magazine in the early seventies a readers letter stating that his father brought back from Normandie the lid from a stowage bin from the rear of a Panther. Inside the lid was painted red primer but the outside was painted cream. He took the lid around various model shops to match the colour and found the nearest colour was Humbrol BRITISH RAILWAYS COACHING STOCK CREAM !. I must say this left me confused as I always used Humbrol BLEACHED TEAK (Tamiya FX60 was unavailable back then).As I have been visiting The Tank Museum every year since 1968 I checked out the colour on the Porsche Tiger. Back then the Tiger was painted a Dark Cream which I dismissed as wrong but on closer inspection especially around the front towing eyes were people had worn the layers of paint off you could just see over the Red Primer a light Cream colour .To me it appeared that the staff tried to match the colour with a darker shade , just my opinion. The Tank has since been repainted. Just an aside the little Springer Tank has supposed to have its original paint and the colour on that is Dark Yellow not Dunkelgelb.

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by Stephen White » Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:59 pm

Jeff, interesting reminiscences.

Understanding of Wehrmacht Dunkelgelb has advanced significantly with access to the original RAL colour specifications and far more scientific analysis of surviving paint chips.

I've looked at British Rail Coaching Stock Cream. Its hue is not at all close to Dunkelgelb nor indeed any of the wartime RAL paint colours . The nearest chromatic match is with RAL 1002 which had no German name but is a sand yellow or beige colour. It was used as a primer, particularly for the interior colour RAL 1001 Elfenbein. Conversely, none of the original RAL specs for Dunkelgelb could remotely be described as a cream colour. The spec sheets and chips were recently published by AK Interactive and I posted them earlier.

Neither is Tamiya XF60 on its own a close match for any of the known Dunkelgelb hues. Its hue is closest to RAL1012, which was not a wartime colour.



The Tank Museum "Porsche" King Tiger was not a production machine. It was the second prototype ie V2 and is constructed with mild steel, not armour plate. It was used at Sennelager for testing, came to the School of Tank Technology in 1945 and passed to the Tank Museum in the Fifties. Despite being a prototype, there is no obvious reason for Henschel to finish it in a unique cream colour, when standard colours were readily available in the factory. It was almost certainly painted in the standard Dunkelgelb. As a late 1943 build, this was probably one of the two variants which succeeded Dunkelgelb nach Muster (see above). Although guessing colours from black and white photos is a notoriously tricky, the surviving photos of the V2 at the Henschel factory and on arrival in Bovington show that the colour was probably the same as the other vehicles which came with it and that was not a cream colour.
v2-king-tiger-tank.jpg
V2 at the Henschel factory
v2-king-tiger-testing.jpg
V2 on arrival at Bovington
Finally, with a couple of exceptions, the Tank Museum's relationship with accurate paint colours has been fleeting at best. Previous curators have tended to take the Dulux option and this is certainly true of the imaginative scheme the Porsche Tiger sported until the recent attempt to repaint in a more accurate representation of Dunkelgelb.

Of course, new evidence is regularly coming to light both in documents and on surviving artefacts. On that basis it would be wrong to rule out a cream exterior colour definitively. You only have to look at the Grumman Martlet in the Fleet Air Arm Museum to see an example of a hitherto unknown colour revealed when later layers of paint were painstakingly removed. The best evidence for the variants of Dunkelgelb is in the earlier posts.

Stephen

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Re: Dunkelgelb - what colour (color)?

Post by mark lawson » Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:19 pm

thanks for the information Steve as always very helpful, do you happen to know a company would could mix these colours accurately
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