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Color/coating of naval guns

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  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Color/coating of naval guns
Posted by Don Stauffer on Thursday, August 31, 2017 8:35 AM

Most of the naval ships I see in museums today have guns painted.  I assume this is to withstand weathering.  However, thick paint does reduce thermal heat transfer from the barrels.  When the ships were in service, were the guns painted, or were they coated with a chemical conversion coating, something like gun blue?  I am particularly interested in smaller weapons, from secondary armament through, say four or five inch guns.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    May, 2008
  • From: Wyoming Michigan
Posted by ejhammer on Thursday, August 31, 2017 8:39 AM
In the 60's, the 5"/38 guns aboard USS ESSEX when I was aboard, were painted. EJ

Completed - USS ESSEX 1/700 Hasegawa Dec 1942, USS Yorktown 1/700 Trumpeter 1943. In The Yards - USS ESSEX 1/700 Hasegawa 1945, USS ESSEX 1/700 Dragon 1944, USS ESSEX 1/700 Trumpeter 1945, USS ESSEX 1/540 Revell (vintage) 1962, USS ESSEX 1/350 Trumpeter 1942, USS ESSEX LHD-2 as commissioned, converted from USS Wasp kit Gallery Models. Plus 35 other plastic and wood ship kits.

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Thursday, August 31, 2017 9:47 AM

.50's and 20mm I have seen in person seem to always be oiled or blued. The bases, tripods and gun shields are painted.

28mm that I've seen pictures of, the bases are painted, the guns themselves look painted.

40mm I would like to know as it's coming up on a future carrier build.

The 5/25 and 5/38 guns i've seen photos of on ships are painted. Likewise on subs. Whether they are deck colored or the color of the surrounding vertical is always a question.

On my current build, CV-2, the Lexington was painted in three different schemes between November 1941 and May 1942. Whether the 5" guns got attention each time I don't know.

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Thursday, August 31, 2017 12:19 PM

A good friend of mine was a gunners mate on Perry Class FFGs. I will be building an Academy kit for him. One point that he made to me on a few occasions was that his 76mm gun had a black painted barrel.

 

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Formerly Bryan, now Arlington, Texas
Posted by CapnMac82 on Friday, September 01, 2017 11:08 PM

Depends upon the era and the arm.

Naval Gatlings had a black paint/coating on the barrels; the other parts were brass adn bronze; and the mount was supertructure color.

QF guns under 5 pounders were laso blaxk-coated, ecepting the working bits.  Above that dimension, barrels were, often, in either deck or superstructure color. 

To throw a wrinkle in that, 5" 50s were a mix of black painted steel and natural bronze & brass.  At least until about 1940, then they went to deck or superstructure color (except the secondaries on BB-35 Texas, those stayed black).



20mm had barrels that were in a black phosphate (Parkerizing) finish, the frame and mounts were in superstructure color unless the Camo Measure directed Deck color.  Magazines were a semi-gloss black.  Shileds were typically superstructure color.  Shoulder braces were black or superstructure paint with brown leather padding.  Straps were a pale grey buff.



40mm were a whole mi of colors.  The recievers were in deck and supertructure color.  The springs were black finished, barrels were charcoal grey phosphate (although some were in deck color).  The flash cones on the muzzle were all sorts of colors--you have to check references.



3"25 & 3"50 were pretty much painted all over, other than a few working parts in natural metal.  The late-war 3"50 with auto loaders had dark grey phosphate barrels (ecept when they were painted;  post war examples were never painted)  The radar was a mih of grey and balck.  The autoloader was red.

5" 38 open mounts were painted all over.  The internal parts for 5" in gunhouses were pale grey to white, with natural metal "bits" inside, paited to Measure outside.



Modern Cal..50 MGs are Parkerized; there will be a charcoal grey ofer a gunmetal sort of color.  That Phosphate runs from near black to a medium grey.  If the arm wasa coated in cosmoline and wrapped in Kraft paper, the phospate finish gets a green tinge (this is the classic look of the M-1 Garand).

25mm chain guns are a mi of phosphate finishes. all tucked into a superstructure pain mount

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Friday, September 01, 2017 11:54 PM

Smile Guns....

 

 

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, September 02, 2017 12:00 AM

  Pre WWII 

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, September 02, 2017 1:19 AM

Haze grey and under way. Stik thanks.

 

My current big build has .50 cals, 1.1 inch guns, 20mm, and 5" 25 cals.

Thank you Cap'n, I am going with Navy blue pedestals and Tamiya semi gloss black guns on the fifties. I have resisted adding 1/350 water hoses and traverse control rails, so my torn up AMS card is available.

For the twenties, blue pedestals and shields. Semi gloss black guns. I got to shoot one once, it was gun colored. In the excitement I neblected to pull a color match.

 

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, September 02, 2017 1:36 AM

Anytime my friend. I think it's interesting that the water cooling jackets on the .50's in the top photo look to be OD. 

1.1's... the Chicago Piano. Lots of B&W photos of those out there... color ones are harder to come by... 

is this listing for your Lady Lex?

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, September 02, 2017 1:40 AM

Yes it is. 

  • Member since
    May, 2008
  • From: Wyoming Michigan
Posted by ejhammer on Saturday, September 02, 2017 9:36 AM

Thanks Capn;

And, sometimes it's - 

Whatever color the Chief says to paint it.

Completed - USS ESSEX 1/700 Hasegawa Dec 1942, USS Yorktown 1/700 Trumpeter 1943. In The Yards - USS ESSEX 1/700 Hasegawa 1945, USS ESSEX 1/700 Dragon 1944, USS ESSEX 1/700 Trumpeter 1945, USS ESSEX 1/540 Revell (vintage) 1962, USS ESSEX 1/350 Trumpeter 1942, USS ESSEX LHD-2 as commissioned, converted from USS Wasp kit Gallery Models. Plus 35 other plastic and wood ship kits.

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Saturday, September 02, 2017 9:41 AM

Thanks from me, too, Cap'n.  Great post and great pictures too!

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Formerly Bryan, now Arlington, Texas
Posted by CapnMac82 on Saturday, September 02, 2017 5:27 PM

ejhammer
And, sometimes it's - Whatever color the Chief says to paint it.

No, it is always whatever color the Chief says to paint it Smile

Unless he says to polish it.

As a mere O6 if an E7 said to do something that did not jibe with my knowledge, I would go and look up the info., as I might hav missed instructions for Type or Higher.  (Which is how a person gets to be O6)

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Formerly Bryan, now Arlington, Texas
Posted by CapnMac82 on Saturday, September 02, 2017 5:28 PM

Don Stauffer
Great post and great pictures too

Well, only thing I can really offer is a mix of BTDT and of being a modeler trying to decide which bottle or tin best represents reality as I saw it.

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, September 02, 2017 7:02 PM

ejhammer

Thanks Capn;

And, sometimes it's - 

Whatever color the Chief says to paint it.

 

Now THERE is an honest reason...

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

GAF
  • Member since
    June, 2012
  • From: Longview, TX
Posted by GAF on Saturday, September 02, 2017 8:40 PM

I always heard that "if it doesn't move, paint it".  Must have been confusing on a moving ship.  ;-)

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