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Old September 14th, 2011, 02:55 AM   #1

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Painting military machines with teeth etc


Just watching FlightPathTV and there's a clip of a WWII Spitfire with teeth painted on it, I don't think this is the sort of thing that the RAF would do but I am aware the Royal Navy painted some on their Seafires when fighting in the Pacific.

Where did this practice of painting faces on war machines originate from then? Can it be traced back to the eyes on athenian triremes? I know the US AVG in China the 'Flying Tigers' were very famous for it and the scheme was also painted on some Hueys in Vietnam, 'Flying Sharks'?


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Old September 14th, 2011, 03:32 AM   #2

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I'm sure I saw a programme about this once and also about the naming of aeroplanes...
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Old September 14th, 2011, 04:04 AM   #3

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Its not just an aircraft thing. Its not entirely clear but a Stug 3G somewhere on the eastern front
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Old September 14th, 2011, 06:56 AM   #4

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemowork View Post
Its not just an aircraft thing. Its not entirely clear but a Stug 3G somewhere on the eastern front
thats an interesting photo, i wonder what other designs crews might have come up with. i can't be sure of this but i think for germany the policy of painting camaplage paterns on tanks dident start until around the time of the battle of kursk. the tanks would be sent to the front in standard gray or mustard yellow and a painting kit with the crews could paint on their own design, the only rule i think being to use three colours to help in camaplaging them better. the only other painting on tanks i would know of is the rings around the turret of the tank to signafy kills
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Old September 14th, 2011, 11:45 AM   #5

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thats an interesting photo, i wonder what other designs crews might have come up with. i can't be sure of this but i think for germany the policy of painting camaplage paterns on tanks dident start until around the time of the battle of kursk. the tanks would be sent to the front in standard gray or mustard yellow and a painting kit with the crews could paint on their own design, the only rule i think being to use three colours to help in camaplaging them better. the only other painting on tanks i would know of is the rings around the turret of the tank to signafy kills

Late type Sherman tanks were marked this way during the Korean war. Just a morale booster really, did'nt mean much to the Enemy.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 02:05 PM   #6

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its an intimidating sight those teeth on incoming planes, although the enemy is unlikely to see them as they will be ducking for cover, also they just look cool to be honest.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 02:07 PM   #7

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its an intimidating sight those teeth on incoming planes, although the enemy is unlikely to see them as they will be ducking for cover, also they just look cool to be honest.
I believe that some Stuka's in the Luftwaffe were marked up like this.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 04:47 PM   #8

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Originally Posted by Earl_of_Rochester View Post
Just watching FlightPathTV and there's a clip of a WWII Spitfire with teeth painted on it, I don't think this is the sort of thing that the RAF would do but I am aware the Royal Navy painted some on their Seafires when fighting in the Pacific.

Where did this practice of painting faces on war machines originate from then? Can it be traced back to the eyes on athenian triremes? I know the US AVG in China the 'Flying Tigers' were very famous for it and the scheme was also painted on some Hueys in Vietnam, 'Flying Sharks'?


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EoR
As a point of trivia you may have answered your own question. If you look under the wing the usual red/white blue roundel of the RAF has been reduced to two banded blue/white, the red inner was removed in the far east because the japanese red 'meatball' caused confusion, split second visual recognition usually meant anything with a red spot on it was fired at so the RAF removed theirs for safety.

In addition the lightweight overalls worn by the pilots as well as the camo overalls worn by the guy on the left, available to US personnel in the east but never widely worn in the west says far east service.

Burma maybe?
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Old September 14th, 2011, 04:57 PM   #9

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And some days the force is strong...

Number 457 squadron RAAF, aircraft a Spitfire mkXIII called 'Grey Nurse' after the shark and operating out of Morotai and the Brunei bay area of New Guinea.

Picture taken 19th May 1945


[Photo] Australian pilots of the No. 457 Squadron 'Grey Nurse' RAAF in the Brunei Bay area, Borneo, 19 Oct 1945; note Spitfire fighter in background | World War II Database

As a further update the entire squadron was called 'grey nurse' and were painted in the same way, they adopted the name on delivery of their Spitfires in late 1944 since the issued grey/green camo resembled the pattern of the grey nurse or sand tiger shark the Australians were familiar with.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 05:01 PM   #10

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemowork View Post
As a point of trivia you may have answered your own question. If you look under the wing the usual red/white blue roundel of the RAF has been reduced to two banded blue/white, the red inner was removed in the far east because the japanese red 'meatball' caused confusion, split second visual recognition usually meant anything with a red spot on it was fired at so the RAF removed theirs for safety.

In addition the lightweight overalls worn by the pilots as well as the camo overalls worn by the guy on the left, available to US personnel in the east but never widely worn in the west says far east service.

Burma maybe?

I should assume it's Burma or India and that is indeed Crab Air or the Aussie version.

Click the image to open in full size.
Another spit pic

Click the image to open in full size.
p51 had it too

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and p47

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me109

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fw190


I wasn't expecting to see it on German aircraft, I wonder what else we can find teeth on?

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