Hawker Hurricane Camouflage and exterior / interior colors.


I’ve just completed a series of color profiles of Hurricanes and I’m going to explain them here, with links to click on to show the images. I can’t seem to imbed them in this page without making a literal copy, which seems like a bad idea. So here’s literal copy to show what kind of image we’re talking about, and then descriptions and links:

Hurri Mk I, A patt

Hawker Hurricane, 1939; port profile,”A” pattern camouflage; 2 speed de Havilland prop; black, white, aluminum under v.12

Here’s the first plane, chronologically by subject:

Hawker Hurricane Mk I, 1938, digital image, by me, "A" pattern camo, Watts prop, no strake, tube mast, alu. finish under.

There are four parallel histories here, one, of the exterior colors and camouflage the RAF used on all their airplanes, from 1937 to 1946. Second, the evolution of Hurricanes as a new-build manufactured item from Hawkers, Gloster, etc., in the UK, and Canadian Car and Foundry in Canada. Third, the evolution of Hurricanes in service, as operated, maintained, and repaired. Fourth, the colors and markings specific to Hurricanes.

All this first set use the same “Camouflage” colors, the Temperate Land scheme. (Capitalized? Scheme? I’ll look at my references, there is no end to this stuff.) Other RAF standards,  when Hurricane production began were, Tropical Land Scheme, Temperate Sea Scheme, and Tropical Sea Scheme. All of these camouflage schemes applied only to the upper surface of the airplane. The underside finish was the previous, non-camouflage, standard, Aluminum, dope, lacquer or enamel.

Temperate Land colors are Dark Earth, a golden brown, much like a freshly plowed field in UK, and Dark Green, a nice, mature foliage color. On my first visit to the UK, looking out of the airplane window, I saw these same colors spread out in the countryside, and I realize this is precisely what this camouflage was intended to blend in to.

Here are relevant examples:

Captured Hawker Hurricane

Color photo of captured RAF Hawker Hurricane undergoing testing in German hands. Note Luftwaffe markings, worn appearance of finish.

Canadian Hurricane

Contemporary color photo of Canadian Hurricane in flight

Preserved Hurricane

British Science Museum’s Mk 1 Hawker Hurricane and Supermarine Spitfire. Hawker Siddley overhauled the Hurricane in 1963, the finish may not be original.

Tropical Land scheme
Contemporary WWII photo of Hurricane production, in Tropical Land scheme
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3 responses to “Hawker Hurricane Camouflage and exterior / interior colors.

  1. Bill

    KZ295 is NOT Tropical Land scheme, that is supposed to be Dark Green/Middlestone uppers and an underside blue, and is debated if used., but is the Desert scheme of Dark Earth/Middle Stone upper with Azure Blue undersides.
    Contact me and I can send you more information on Tropical Land Scheme, it’s a ‘maybe’ scheme.
    this may or may not help!
    http://forum.12oclockhigh.net/showthread.php?t=10987

    for interior colours, please see here, http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234963507-all-the-stupid-hurricane-questions-here/page-3

    and also check the links in post #49

    while searching up the TLS info, some more which maybe of interest
    http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234956860-hurricane-mk-iv-asymmetrical-loadouts/

    hope of interest

  2. Bill

    so wrapped in trying to find Trop land scheme information, a couple more points.
    the Canadain plane you show is from a specialist squadron, and has an unusual underside colour, I need to eat, so not searching up now.
    The Science Museum plane, L1952, there is a photo of this pre restoration in one of the other links. AFAIK, restored by Hawker’s in the 1950’s.
    Also turned up in the background of a Monty Python sketch IIRC after restoration!

  3. Troy,

    There is absolutely nothing to debate. The term Tropical Land Scheme refers to the colour scheme Dark Earth/Midstone NOT Dark Green/Midstone. This is the way it has always been. The order supposed to prove the existence of the Dark Green /Midstone scheme (AMO513/41) has been proven to be nothing more than a typo error, corrected at least three times since it’s publication. I have archive documents supporting this beyond reasonable doubt, posted on the same forum that you linked to above.

    Regards,
    Mark Mackenzie

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