This thread will give the colors required for certain models, and the paint choices I will use for them.
I am going to start this off with a "raw" list of the colors of the USN from the Elliot books.
Most people will think there are "mistakes" in the list, right from the beginning, because the Munsell numbers won't match up between colors that they "know" are supposed to be the same, even though, in real history of colors research, it can be shown that they were actually different.
If that bothers you, or goes against what you "know" from other places on the internet, then just go with those choices, and ignore this historical list. I use the actual historical evolution of the colors, because that is what I am modeling, in the colors, the aircraft shapes, and the details. Many of these things are ignored by modelers, because of the more artistic method they use to do their builds. I guess you would call them "artistic modelers", while my style is more technical. Keep in mind that today's decals are based on 595c, and are done in 1/1 scale colors. (out of necessity, due to the requirement that there has to be some currently available standard to the decal artist and the decal ink colors)
But, I model in the era when the ANA color standards and the 595 and 595a existed alongside each other. (one version of the USAF TO actually called out a mixture of FS and ANA colors in the description of the US Insignia) I also model in the era when color names were still being used, to quote "with the publication of the Fed Standard in 1968, it was the INTENT that color names would no longer be used",,,,,,which has to mean that they were being used until then,,,,,,,,and "a cross over chart was used to give the color name for the FS colors", which of course, meant the use of color names was still ongoing. I also model types that were mostly in service before the 1984 mistake made by the GSA, when they ran the colors together, all on their own, without input from the actual users of the colors. (the "Internet sources" all use the "post GSA decision" to match their colors)
The "Internet knowledge" of FS colors is almost always based on the IPMS color guide, which, sadly, was based on the 1984 FS, the very edition of 550 colors that the GSA made their erroneous decision on. At the same time that the IPMS booklet was being done, Elliot was sending FS cards to the Munsell company to compile his lists of color matches,,,,,,,using the pre-1984 color cards.
That leaves us with the choice of following a model guy (that may or may not have been wearing pants in his video rants) who didn't know the evolution of the color standards he was trying to describe,,,,,,,or a Smithsonian historian that did the proper research in order to write mere Appendices to his four book series. Since Elliott's findings agree with my own eyes (when looking at multiple copies of old FS booklets),,,,,,I am going with the Museum guy.
This is also a place to discuss "scale effect".
Many modelers say they use scale effect in their models, but, they very obviously don't.
I know, I know, time to get out the pitchforks.
But, it is true.
They use one aspect of scale effect, and actually go against the other two.
What they DO use is the "scale color" portion of the scale effect theory.
Scale Color is the attempt to make the colors appear as if you are standing a scale distance from the object, by varying the colors that they paint on the model. This is an admirable idea, and if used in concert with the other two aspects, would fool the eye into appearing as they intend. Since no one is actually using true "scale effect",,,,,I simply choose not to do it.
Scale Effect has three aspects to it,,,,the toning down of the colors, the blurring of the shape, and the obscuring of fine details. (shape and details are harder to see at a distance)
Since they go to great lengths to get the shapes right,,,,,,and then highlight the panel lines and fine details, and then use Scale Color,,,,,,they are fighting themselves. A truly Scale Effected RF-4B model would look just like an F-4B, F-4J, or USAF early RF-4C, unable to discern the nose shape, appearing in an overall gray color (that doesn't match the FS color), and unable to see the panel lines.
But, they pop the details out so distinctly that you can see the Photo Flash door on their RF, or the differently located Chaff/Flare door on the F-4B or F-4J. You also can see every line of the leading edge flaps.
That means that they aren't using Scale Effect,,,,,,,,,just the Scale Color part. Modelers also don't admit that any aircraft was ever clean,,,,,,,,,and we all know, with just a touch of logic, that ALL aircraft started out clean, and were cleaned before repainting,,,,,,,so a case could be made that Clean is provable, while some models are heavily weathered, without considering that some aircraft never lived long enough in a War Zone to even get dirty.
For those reasons, I build "Technical models" to illustrate what the regs called for, in the evolution of the colors in the services, and only highlight the lines on movable surfaces, with the often said "I can't see a mm" changes in the aircraft shapes and details.
I will continue to admire and compliment models built in the "artistic style",,,,,but, I won't change my method to build them myself.
** Regarding the "I can't see a mm", that is often said,,,,,,I know that I can, because I used to have to sort boards coming out of a gangsaw at a fairly high rate of speed, and put the ones 1/32 shorter than the others in a separate pile on palettes in stackers. Since 1 mm is 1/24 of an inch, I am fairly certain that if I could see that on a 30 inch board, at speed, that I can see that on 6 inch long models sitting still. For others, they say they don't need to model the difference between an A-4E and A-4C length,,,,,when to me, on my own shelves, they would stick out like a sore thumb.