Our good friend Zygmunt Szeremeta is honouring us with two samples of his artwork made specially for our blog.
"オタ-409 (OTa-409)" belonging to the Oita Ku in standard overall trainer orange paint and black cowling extending to the forward cockpit. Something went wrong and the upper parts of the landing gear covers were removed. The A6M2-K Zero trainers carried similar paintwork when coming out of the factory. We opted for a softer trainer orange instead of a pure dark orange or a yellow.
"オタ-406 (OTa-406)" another Oita Ku "Claude" trainer with green paint applied on the top surfaces for camouflage. There is only one monochrome photo of this particular plane and as I'm sure you know well it's rather difficult to tell colours from b/w photos. But let's give it a try. In the standard factory finish the black anti-glare paint extended to the forward cockpit. When these trainer aircraft were later camouflaged with green paint it would have been extremely tedious to overpaint the orange colour right next to the curvy black line and therefore the common practise was to paint everything green until the cowling. There was also no point to overpaint the cowling green.
In the overall orange aircraft the tail marking was usually, if not always, black. Overpainting this and keeping the black digits would also have been too troublesome. Much easier to overpaint everything and then apply the marking again. In this case we opted for red instead of black, which is also possible.