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  • Effective camouflage..

    Hi all
    The most effective camouflage I ever saw was on a British Army Gazelle helicopter, in the Don, one fine day. I was approaching it from the rear and it appeared to be all-black. Naturally, I was curious, wondering who'd brought the all-black Gazelle in to the Don.Bear in mind that a civvie black Gazelle was flying around Ireland at the time(early 90s). It wasn't until I got closer and changed the angle of my approach that I saw that it was a standard green-and-black AAC Gazelle. All the black portions of the colour scheme lined up, directly ahead or aft.**** me, sez I, that's a great scheme, virtually invisible in poor light, so it was. So it proved when I saw several Gazelles at low level around the Border area. The sods were invisible, especially at low level and poor light (dusk) until it was to late for the observer.Which lead me to wonder about all the other green-and-black colours on the British Army's gear. Subsequently, I learned that green is the last colour that that the human eye loses perception of, as light fades. Also, our climate means that our countryside is effectively green and black with the odd bit of brown and occasional yellow or earth shades thrown in. So, the question is, is the plain and simple green-and-black the best camo there is?
    Apart from all that, another example of great camo was, when on a visit to Dublin Air Traffic Control Tower, the radar controller pointed out an RAF Nimrod flying along the 12-mile limit, which is also the airspace boundary, give or take, between the UK and Ireland. He then handed me the binocs to see if I could spot it.It was a hot Summer's day, hazy enough, so I looked out to sea, aiming at the Kish lighthouse. Sure enough, there was a Nimrod, down at low-level, cruising along, virtually invisible with it's hemp camouflage.Only for the sun reflecting off it's windscreen, it would have been impossible to spot.
    I thought, those Brits are sharp men when it comes to the camo.
    Any comments?
    regards
    GttC

  • #2
    The Brits took to painting their training aircraft black. After experimentation, they realised that that was the easiest colour airplane to spot. Makes sense, I guess.

    In the 1980s, the USAF did some paint experimentation with two F-16s. They called them the Charcoal Lizards.

    http://members.fortunecity.com/joeflow/f16_5.jpg



    The experiment was not deemed successful. At distances greater than 1km, you couldn't tell the difference between that and a standard grey F-16. For a swing fighter, it was deemed more beneficial to keep them grey.

    That said, the Mudhens (F-15Es) are green, so presumably for an aircraft that in theory will never be in a hostile environment at altitude, green still has its advantages.

    NTM
    Last edited by California Tanker; 3 January 2007, 16:47.
    Driver, tracks, troops.... Drive and adjust!!

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    • #3
      the bluish colour scheme on the CASAs works pretty well over seas, especially crappy grey dirty days.
      Fate whispers to the warrior, "There is a storm coming"

      And the warrior whispers back "I am the storm".

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      • #4
        Have to garee with GTTc..saw some nimrods operating during my time at sea..and they were almost invisible..and very quiet at night while operating on only two engines.

        Very help ful in lighting up trawlers from time to time....lol......it happened!
        Covid 19 is not over ....it's still very real..Hand Hygiene, Social Distancing and Masks.. keep safe

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        • #5
          would someone mind explaining how exactly the ACU is suppose to work? cause it doesnt unless your laying down on a mangy 70's couch?
          Over the centuries, mankind has tried many ways of combating the forces of evil...prayer, fasting, good works and so on. Up until Doom, no one seemed to have thought about the double-barrel shotgun. Eat leaden death, demon...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by GoneToTheCanner View Post
            virtually invisible with it's hemp camouflage.
            Interesting. The hemp was said to be for camouflaging against concrete runways / hardstands. That is until they redone Kinloss in asphalt.

            http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=57.64...9444,-3.560556
            Last edited by Victor; 2 January 2007, 15:53.
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            • #7
              How effective the camouflage scheme of an aircraft depends on, whether you are looking at it from above against the ground (Sahara desert, sea, the Glen), looking up at it from the ground (with/without a backdrop of land) etc etc.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by T.I.M. View Post
                would someone mind explaining how exactly the ACU is suppose to work? cause it doesnt unless your laying down on a mangy 70's couch?
                In theory, it's supposed to combine with the naturally produced shadows caused by the cover that you're hiding in/under/behind, which is then mottled by the digitising to disrupt the silhouette. In reality, however, it's not as effective as plain green.

                In practise, it's kindof irrelevant as the US doesn't spend much of its time today fighting in green pastures. Towns and deserts is where it's at, and a chap in ACUs will be harder to spot in a city than a chap in DPMs. See that wonderful quote in "A Bridge Too Far" where Johnny Frost is ringing the doorbell. "You know, something just occurred to me. We're wearing the wrong camoflauge. All very well in the country, but it's hardly going to fool anyone in the city, is it?"

                NTM
                Driver, tracks, troops.... Drive and adjust!!

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                • #9
                  do you trust it Cal

                  did you wear it during your time in Iraq
                  Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
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                  • #10
                    fair point , but i do think that marpat is far superior and comes in two flavours . the best urban camo i ever saw was the "t block pattern" used by the usmc it was experimental and was not adopted
                    :confused: ONCE YOU HAVE THEM BY THE BALLS , THEN YOU CAN WIN THEIR HEARTS AND MINDS ! :

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by hedgehog View Post
                      do you trust it Cal

                      did you wear it during your time in Iraq
                      Wasn't out yet.

                      Personally, I think the dis-effect is overstated. If you're relying on the colour of your uniform as your primary means of concealment, I think you've got other problems.

                      NTM
                      Driver, tracks, troops.... Drive and adjust!!

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                      • #12
                        if thats the case the brits should go back to wearing red coats....but i do think the acu camo does work better in a desert enviroment it seems to work well in urban situations and as we know future warfare seems be played out in a fibua setting. but the usa should have kept a temperate bdu
                        :confused: ONCE YOU HAVE THEM BY THE BALLS , THEN YOU CAN WIN THEIR HEARTS AND MINDS ! :

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                        • #13
                          On the camo thing all I can say was what I was told from an ex RAF type, he said that they really werent to worried about what was ontop of the A/C looking down rather what was on the bottom for the cheeky bugger with his shoulder mounted SAM on the ground looking up.
                          The best camflague that he said they had was a set of lights on the body of the A/C which were linked to some sort of a resistor when varied in accordance with the Sunlight i.e. at dusk the lights would match the surrounding light conditions to a tee and make the A/C for all intents and purposes invisable to the naked eye.
                          Dont know how revelvant this would be to heli's as this guy flew fast jets but I would assume that there would be similar principles involved.
                          Again dont know if this was ever implemented as I've never heard of it since. Probably too expensive on both cost and weight.
                          Lifes a bitch, so be her pimp!

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                          • #14
                            www.roggenwolf.comcheck out this site for interesting digital camo designs
                            :confused: ONCE YOU HAVE THEM BY THE BALLS , THEN YOU CAN WIN THEIR HEARTS AND MINDS ! :

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by flash bang View Post
                              if thats the case the brits should go back to wearing red coats....but i do think the acu camo does work better in a desert enviroment it seems to work well in urban situations and as we know future warfare seems be played out in a fibua setting. but the usa should have kept a temperate bdu
                              I agree that there is something to be said for having a green BDU, though it does lead to an interesting problem when fighting in urbanised green areas like Europe: The more grey colours will still fit in better in the cities, towns and villages than the green ones will, the question then becomes how much mounted vs dismounted fighting is there in modern warfare in the city vs in the country. We train primarily for the countryside fighting, though that may just be a factor of not having any cities to train in. This is presumably even more so the case when fighting the Americans: I think most people have learned by now that fighting them in the open country is a losing proposition, and so will be more inclined to engage in urban terrain.

                              The red coat comment is a bit facaetious. I don't meant to imply that personal camouflage is irrelevant, just that you can accept some compromise without it being too much of a liability.

                              Probably too expensive on both cost and weight.
                              Probably also doesn't work too well in real-world conditions. Just because the sensor is receiving direct sunlight from blue skies straight above doesn't mean that Ivan the anti-aircraft-artilleryman looking at an oblique angle at a chopper just above the horizon doesn't see this bright spot against the dark stormclouds a few miles thataway.

                              NTM
                              Last edited by California Tanker; 3 January 2007, 16:47.
                              Driver, tracks, troops.... Drive and adjust!!

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