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 Post subject: Tank camouflage
PostPosted: Wed 03 Jul 2013 01:58 am 
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Lincolnlanc wrote:
Was there really a Disruptive Camouflage Pattern scheme around then ??

Absolutely. The British Army employed Royal Academy artist Solomon Joseph Solomon to assist and advise on camouflage in general. He and other artists were responsible for creating disruptive schemes as well as a range of other forms of camouflage. Solomon himself was a great believer in the value of camouflage netting (to the point of getting a bit obsessed with it). Solomon had argued that many things were too difficult to 'hide' and that knowledge of colour and light could be useful in creating 'deception', that is making something look like it isn't. The aim of the disruptive schemes was not to hide a tank, but to use colour and pattern to break up its shape and hard lines. People often judge camouflage by looking at a close distance when in reality most objects on the battlefield are seen through gun sights at distances of at least 500m if not considerably greater. It's at this point that the observer is looking to identify a target by its silhouette or by a recognisable shape. A successful disruptive schemes makes it hard to identify something because it does not appear as the shape you are looking for.

Where as a popular perception of WWI is mind numbingly futile frontal attacks for four years (oh and then suddenly....victory), it is really an amazing story of creativity, invention and technical advance in almost every aspect of warfare. Other than being more mechanised, WWII wasn't that different from WWI and there is really little difference to the way the British army fought the battle of Alamein in 1942 and the way it fought the battle of Amiens in 1918. On the otherhand Amiens was entirely different to the way the British army fought the battle of Neuve Chapelle only 3 years earlier. Ah, but I digress.......

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PostPosted: Wed 03 Jul 2013 08:37 am 
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I'm afraid that I can't agree with MLB about WWII being the same as WWI but that is another topic for discussion at another time. I would point out that the use of camo painting was used by the artty from the beginning,almost. I once had a book with a colored painting of one of the British rhomboid tanks paintup in camo. ( color photography wasn't there yet ) It was done in green,brown, tan and pink and purple splotches with a black outline. It was also covered about a 1/3 of the way up with mud !!! In my old Squadron book on British camo and markings, they say camo painting was wasn't worth the time,so they went to an overall gray. One thing found on early British tanks were an eye painted on each side of the bow. When ask why,the painter replyed," No have eyes,no can see ..."
BTW, my Grandfather,who was in the AEF, told me about.the tanks he saw. I was a small boy and had just finished my new Aurora M4A3E8. He said they were huge rumbling stinking things that made you bounce in the air when they went by and most people avoided them like the plague. I got to experience something quite similar once. I was working as a counselor with troubled kids. I was at the land fill with a group of them dumping trash from our group home when a bulldozer went by less than a foot from the side of the truck we were unloading (almost got a couple of boys ,too). As it approached,the ground began to shake and by the time it drove by we all were barely able to stand. We were also bouncing on the ground as it went up and down. The land fill soil was very much like the shelled ground of the Western front in 1918 !!! And yes it was very noisy, very smelly and not something any of us wanted to do again.

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PostPosted: Thu 04 Jul 2013 08:35 am 
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Father Ennis wrote:
I'm afraid that I can't agree with MLB about WWII being the same as WWI but that is another topic for discussion at another time.


LOL, yes, I guess this is not the place. Although I didn't say WWII was the same as WWI, I just said it wasn't that different, paricularly if you look at 1918 (changes to warfare and technology are very marked between each year, it's almost impossible to look at 1914 and then 1918 and see them as part the same war).

Worth noting from a purely modelling perspective that it was quickly discovered that tanks didn't run well in mud and so churned up, muddy ground was avoided. One early idea was to have the artillery leave gaps in the area they shelled so that the tanks could rumble through. Problem was it left pockets of enemy unsupressed. Most tanks were used where the going was fairly good - one reason Cambrai was chosen for the first mass use of tanks in a combined arms attack. Once the Allies went on the offensive from August 1918 the war became extremely mobile and there was no more trench warfare as in 1916, so tanks were used on firmer ground (by which time the wasteful mass bombardments that churned up the battlefield in 1916 and 1917 were outmoded and artillery was being used in a much more sophisticated fashion). So it doesn't follow that your WWI tank need to be liberally covered in thick layers of mud; just the usual levels of mud, dust and dirt of any vehicle in a combat zone.

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 Post subject: Re: Tank camouflage
PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct 2013 08:59 am 
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Disruptive camo was used extensively by the RN - more specifically to break-up the visual silouette of the more distinctive larger ships - where it seemed to be particularly effective.

Painted bow waves of 'white froth' were also employed - as a ruse to imply speed.
:pirate:

In terms of WW1 - used on the extremely slab-sided early German tanks.... :Tank:


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