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Need Confirmation on Enterprise SBD-2 Markings

Discussion in 'Information Requests' started by gldr327, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Hi All,

    I'm working on modeling the Enterprise SBD-2 (from the Battle of Midway) and I was hoping for some feedback/confirmation on the accuracy of the markings. The models are just a work in progress, but if anyone can let me know if there's something marking-related that I missed -- or if everything passes muster -- I'd really appreciate it!

    SBD-2_1.jpg SBD-2_2.jpg SBD-2_3.jpg
     
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  2. JJWilson

    JJWilson Well-Known Member

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    Very Nice looking indeed. I could not tell you if you have every marking possible on their, but from what I can tell, it looks very, very realistic. Weathering, sun fade, burn marks from 50cal guns. Great job on the Swiss cheese dive flaps as well.
     
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  3. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Thanks for your feedback and taking the time to check out my work - I can't tell you how much I appreciate the input. We're working really hard to make everything look and feel as historically accurate as possible. Thanks again!
     
  4. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Can't tell if everything is correct but your model making is first rate. You obviously put a lot of time and care into what you do. I'm sure someone with greater knowledge than I have will give you better feedback. Be patient.
     
  5. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    VB-6 at Midway operated both -2's and -3's, so you are probably okay there, even better if you know for sure B-11 was a -2, but, on the other hand, VB-6 side numbers were in black, not white, and forward of the fuselage national insignia. LSO stripes on tail were double, not single.
    See
    NH 100740
    NH 95557

    B-11 was assigned to ENS Thomas Wesley Ramsay; Radio-Gunner was AMM2c Sherman Lee Duncan. Ramsay and Duncan went for a swim on 4 June 42, ditching, but successfully deploying their raft. They got lucky and were picked up by a PBY on 12 June. Duncan later flew backseat for ENS William Pittman in 6-B-3 during the Guadalcanal landings. Ramsay went on to serve in VS-10 operating off Enterprise in the fall of 1942 and was later augmented on 30 Oct 44.

    6 of the aircraft lost in the course of VB-6's attack and withdrawal from the morning attack were SBD-2's, bu/nos 2105, 2123, 2125, 2145, 2153, & 2180. Which one was B-11? I've not a clue, but if you know, I'll be sure to stash that tidbit in one of my interminable lists.

    Rich
     
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  6. JJWilson

    JJWilson Well-Known Member

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    Is this modeling for you as a hobby, or are you contracted to do this? Either way I'm extremely impressed, now with Rich's input, you can have a great looking, and accurate plane.
     
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  7. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Also, if it were me, I wouldn't go with the gaudy bright green zinc chromate on interior surfaces. Pre-war and early war types such as the -2's tended to have a dark, green-grey interior, more green than grey. Any photo you might see with a bright green finish is indicative of a post war repaint. Further, 1942-43 vintage chromate as used by the USN had a distinctly brown cast to it.

    Picture is of the repaired wingtip of the Aleutian/Koga A6M2. The blue-green finish is the original Japanese paint, the yucky brown stuff is the zinc chromate as applied out of the can by the Assembly and Repair shop at NAS San Diego in August 1942.

    The museum at the Washington Navy Yard has the wingtip from the “Aleutian/Koga” Zero, the largest surviving piece of that aircraft. My father retrieved the folding wingtip and some instruments from the pile of wreckage in 1945 shortly after the airplane was “eaten” by the propeller of an SB2C. We carried those parts around with us from station to station for the remainder of his naval career; he retired in 1971. In the early 1980s he donated the pieces to the museum. While it wasn’t something we at all displayed, it was stored in various places in various homes and I remember it quite well.

    Below these is an nice example of the dark green color, this from the interior of an F4F panel circa 1942-43, b/n 11985.

    Rich

    Wingtip hinge 01.jpg Wingtip 01.jpg

    inside of panel.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  8. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Oops, and here’s some bad news . . .

    B-11 was an SBD-3, b/n # 4620

    SBD-2’s in VB-6 were:
    B-8 b/n 2105
    B-9 b/n 2123
    B-1 b/n 2125
    B-2 b/n 2133 this one was an SBD-2P
    B-13 b/n 2145
    B-6 b/n 2153
    B-14 b/n 2180
    B-17 b/n 2185

    SBD-3’s in VB-6:
    B-16 b/n 3235
    B-7 b/n 4532
    B-15 b/n 4542
    B-10 b/n 4561
    B-5 b/n 4581
    GC b/n 4618
    B-11 b/n 4620
    B-4 b/n 4640
    B-3 b/n 4682
    B-12 b/n 4684
    B-18 b/n 4687

    Knew I had that stuff somewhere.
     
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  9. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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    OP, you made the "Not Cringe Worthy Modeler" list. It's damn short.
     
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  10. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Thank you, everyone, for your input! It took me a couple of days to cross reference everything against the after action reports and my reference library, but here are the updated stills with the new - and more accurate - texture. See anything I might have missed? Thanks again!

    1.jpg
    2.jpg
    3.jpg
     
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  11. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    I'm actually an independent filmmaker. My team and I made "Fortress" several years back, and the models I'm working on now are for our upcoming movie.
     
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  12. JJWilson

    JJWilson Well-Known Member

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    Wow it's a pleasure for me too get to talk to you. I actually have not seen the movie, but from the work I see here, I am very compelled to do so now. I think I can speak for all of us, when I say thank you for your attention to detail and trying to be as realistic as possible, it means a lot to me, but it means the most to those who fought and took part in the conflict I am sure. Please keep us updated on any and all developments you are working on.
     
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  13. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Honest to God, I’m not a kill-joy. The bureau number and such on the tail should also be in black, not white. I know, picky, picky . . . Rich needs a life.

    Other than that, I think it looks rather nice – I am impressed.

    VB-6 had a bunch of good sticks, too bad they lost so many of them. At least we know for certain what happened to B-15.

    Knew a few of those guys, Dick Best, Harvey Lanham (6th & 7th grade with his son; Lanham made Rear Admiral the year before my father), Lew Hopkins. Have some fond memories of a couple of dinners with Best in Pensacola back in 98. Best’s funeral at Arlington was a veritable who’s who in naval aviation of his day still alive and mobile enough to get there, not to mention the intervening years as well. Never seen a Golden Eagles annual reunion, but that funeral would have given them a run for the money on attendance.

    When you get to VF-3, all their side numbers and tail ID info was in white. And remember, Thach flew # 23 for the morning strike escort and switched to his assigned # 1 for the CAP action against the incoming torpedo attack. Off the top of my head, only four, maybe 5, VF-3 pilots actually flew in their assigned planes during the battle. Everyone else took what was spotted when it came their time to launch. Oh, and no “F”, just numbers, forward of the national insignia. #’s 13 and 14 did not have the Felix the Cat insignia, some overly loyal folks in VF-42 maintenance down on the hangar deck painted them over . . . ah, well, that’s another story.

    And some day I'll tell you the story about the pictures and film taken on Hornet after the battle with various fighter pilot sitting in "their" airplane suitably adorned with the requisite number of rising suns down the side.

    Oh, and the blue on my avatar is a pretty good example of faded non-spec blue grey. That's a crop of a photo of the squadron insignia on a F4F that went from Maui in Feb 1943, via USS Long Island to Fiji; by air from there to Espiritu Santo on 21 April; and from there to Guadalcanal on 26 April. Stayed there boring holes in the sky, and a couple of Zeros, until 12 July when back to Espiritu Santo where it got turned in for whatever was going to happen to it next - less the side panels with the squadron insignia and the instrument panel 8 day clock. They got swapped out for same retrieved from the Luganville boneyard.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
  14. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Interesting that two of our foremost experts are both go by "Rich". Usually I'm not to interested in modeling but this has been a very informative and interesting thread and looks like it's leading to even more.
     
  15. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Thank you all so much for your responses! I'm really sorry I wasn't back to reply sooner - been down with the flu (while still trying to get our models squared away). I have some new images to show y'all from a different squadron. Any input is TREMENDOUSLY appreciated - your feedback has made a huge difference in the accuracy and authenticity of my work. Thanks again!

    Mike1.jpg
    Mike2.jpg

    Mike3.jpg

    Mike4.jpg
     
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  16. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Hi Rich - sorry I haven't been able to respond directly sooner, I've been meaning to get back to you for a while. First off, let me just say that, in my mind, there's no such thing as too picky! After working on Dogfights for the History Channel, I quickly learned the value of accuracy down to the most minute detail. We couldn't always afford to be exactly on the mark -- and we paid for those time through our audience! But my favorite part of the experience was the chance to regularly meet - and, in some cases, interview quite a few pilots I've been reading about since I was kid. That was freaking amazing for me.

    Also, the information you gave - backed up by fact - kept us from making some pretty huge mistakes, since most of my reference books and materials have contradictory paintings and/or drawings of SBDs attacking. I based mine off of this photo of the Hornet's SBDs (which clearly wasn't an intelligent assumption to make!):
    Battle of Midway.gif

    I would give my right arm to have the funds and the manpower to include VF-3 and Scouting Squadron 6 in more than superficial details. But, we're stuck in the world of independent filmmaking for the time being, so the best I'm able to do right now is include them "background characters" on the Enterprise.

    I also never thanked you for the tail numbers - I had some from the after-action reports, but not all. That was a HUGE help!

    As I continue putting shots together, I'll keep throwing them on here. Please don't hesitate to point out anything glaring I may have screwed up on - I can't tell you enough what a difference it makes, having qualified eyes reviewing my work.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018
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  17. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Thank you, JJ! If you happen to have Hulu, Amazon Prime or Netflix, you can watch Fortress for free. It's a composite crew, based on various after-action reports and interview we've done. Our work has come a long way since then, but I still like to think it tells a pretty good story (even if no one believes that a B-17 once did a loop).
     
  18. JJWilson

    JJWilson Well-Known Member

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    I actually watched it the movie on Amazon Prime a few days back, I really quite enjoyed it, and it was all very believable, and pretty much never over the top, great cast selection as well, you don't need big name actors to have a good movie....
     
  19. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    I made the great leap that you were depicting a Hornet VS-8 SBD-3 in your second rendering. Very nice job. It's always good to have a nice clear and identified photo from which to start. Regretfully, a fast pass through the files did not reveal who was actually driving VS-8 Sail 3 at any particular time during the Midway period, though we do know it was not one of the three VS-8 SBDs lost or otherwise out of commission between the time the ship left Pearl Harbor and its return afterwards in mid June. It would seem that Sail 9, in the period photo, apparently suffered a deck accident as my notes have it as out of commission aboard the ship on 9 June . . . this recorded by Mark Horan, who knows far more than I on the matter.

    You may wish to consider making the panel beneath the windscreen, the dashboard if you will, flat black. This was for anti-glare purposes . . . pretty much a standard practice. Never seen one in zinc chromate. I didn't want to mention it until I could find a semi decent shot to illustrate. See attached, also note the "browner" and duller chromate of the period (what little can be seen). You can only barely tell, and my bet is no one would notice, but according to my sources on the scene, the inside of the canopy ribs were also black.

    SBD dash.jpg

    Rich
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018
  20. gldr327

    gldr327 New Member

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    Thanks Rich,I will hop on that dashboard right now,funny I completely missed that and it would have been a big continuity error since I did paint it black on the SBD that I built for the actors to sit in and just forgot when I started building the 3d model.

    As for the VS-8 renders ,Unfortunately for me that was supposed to be a plane from VS-6 flown by Ens Roberts.These tail markings are becoming the bane of my existence. I'm trying to show planes from VS-6 on the E's flight deck prior to launch. Did all of the Enterprise planes use 2 stripes on the tail,Mucluskys GC sbd ,vb-6,vs-6,vf-6 and vt-6?
     

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