STORMO! "How To" Article Series
Applying Regia Aeronautica Camouflage
by Jean Barby
Today as I was in the process of starting the paint scheme of my S84, I said to myself that it would be a good opportunity for Stormo afficionados to have a closer look at how I work. In this article I won't discuss the endless variety of color shades because this is a seemingly endless discussion and it won't make you paint any better.

The most interesting pattern is the so called three color scheme, consisting of a Yellow ochre base, n 1, 2, 3, 4, differing by the depth of the brown tingue, this latter becoming darker on the highest
number, a green and a reddish brown. I usually use a mixture of RLM 79 and Matt White from Gunze, mixed to a 50/50 ratio. I thin this paint with acetone. The reason why, is that acetone dries fairly quickly and at the same time while hardening the paint. I found through experience that gunze paints thinned with Tamiya acrylic thinner or the corresponding gunze thinner, remain fragile to the fingers touch and this is evdient even after a few days following application. I spray my paints using an Aztec airbrush with the special acrylic nozzle (red or black or yellow). The flow must be regular and the pressure set between 0,5 and 0,7 bar. In the case of the S84 , I used Mr Kit Giallo Mimetico 3 from straight from the tin.   That's it for the base color; Now, for the most time consuming part of applying this paint scheme. We'll spray a green, Verde Mimetico 3 or a lighter shade ,verde 53192, and a red brown, Marrone mimetico 2, Marrone 53193. OK. Mr kit range has these colors and they capture the shades quite well. After years of modeling I fell in love with the Mr Color range from Gunze. Those colors have been designed in Japan for the Japanes market as Japan is a humid place and those colors (acetone based) dry lighting fast. These paints are a little bit tricky to use but when you find the right balance between the paint and solvent they are a delight to use. Another advantage is that they support any kind of wash without the need to protect the paint. So for the Verde 12593 I use the H-312(FS34227) and for the brown, H-133 (earth) a US tank color. Before starting the mottling, I'll scan a pic of the aircraft, pin it to a wall in front of me, to have a constant visual reference when I paint. The paint must be thinned to about 30/70% ratio and I must be able to write with my airbrush. Don't be afraid to make some blotches as latter on you will have to be back with the yellow base to remove some green or some brown.

The pattern on the fuselage is seldom similar to the one on the wings: on the fuselage the 'real' painter would be standing and facing a wall and painting is rather easy; on horizontal surfaces, larger aeras by definition, the position is not the same and so the pattern is neccesarily different! This is exactly what you will do on your model! Be patient, do not ask yourself too much the first time. Practise on some plastic cards until you feel comfortable enough to start on a model. Remember: practice makes perfect, enjoy yourself and have fun! When everything is done, using the yellow base dilluted to a 10/90% ratio, spray the whole model from 30,40 cm away. This will tie together the three shades of colors. Another trick is to sand smoothly the surfaces with a 1500 grade sandpaper. Try try try, imagine, invent, the sky is the limit and orthodoxy is just another jail of the mind!
Jean Barby is a well known modeler and a contributor to the French model magazine Replic. His numerous award winning models are highly acclaimed for their detail and accuracy.  Jean is 53 and a half and is the chief purser for Air France where he's logged more than 15,000 hours of flying.  Jean is an adventurer, he became a scuba diving instructor and worked for two years at Club Med where he emigrated to French New-Caledonia in the South Pacific; to get a real taste of the tropics.
He returned to France in 1989 and on his spare time he's a semi professional guitar/banjo player in love with traditional, bluegrass and folk music. Jean has been modeling since his child hood days in Algeria where he was born.  Jean truly enjoys sharing his passions and interests; he enjoys expressing himself through various media such as the webzines which allow him to demonstrate his unquestionable humanity ... "I have no pretentions whatsoever other than doing a good job, with love and passion. "

STORMO! 2005