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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage

 
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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/6/2019 12:33:00 AM   
Dili

 

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What are the rules for the sizes, i just get AE examples and made a crude scale




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Post #: 31
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/6/2019 4:42:34 AM   
Kull


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Dili

What are the rules for the sizes, i just get AE examples and made a crude scale



I use the AE shipsides as a guideline, knowing that all of them were created in accordance with this scaling system outlined by JWE:

"We have two conflicting imperatives for the ship graphics; these follow from the box rule of a 200 ‘dot’ graphic picture width. One is to have the pictures ‘generally’ in proportion with one another, the other is to have sufficient detail for the dinkies (80 foot PTs etc). If we follow a strictly linear rule, this may, on the one hand, leave the PTs as a small gray blur on the background. On the other hand, if the scale were to give detail to the PTs, it would put a Porter in the same size (pixel) class as a New Orleans CA.

I have noticed that the great majority of interesting vessels fall in the 350’ to 780’ range. Thus, I propose a dynamic scale. 4 feet per pixel seems to work down to the destroyer classes, but begins to unravel for Clemsons, Wickes, Otoris, DEs, and especially PGs, PCs, MLs, and the like. I have also noticed that the odd ducks seem to cluster at about 80 to 90 pixels, relative. This is also (80 to 90) a reasonable scale for detail.

What I propose is a sliding scale; one scale for vessels between 80’ to 300’; a second scale for 300’ to 400’; a standard scale (4’ per pixel) for 400’ to about 760-780’, and a final by-guess-and-by-golly scale for the monsters. This method tends to compress the PC, PG, DE, and smaller DDs into the 86 to 90 pixel range.

The math goes like this, where “y” is the length of the ship in pixels (bit map blocks):

Y = (ship LOA)/8 + 44, for all ships up to about 350’
Y = (ship LOA)/6 + 32, for ships between 350’ and 400’
Y = (ship LOA)/4, for ships between 400’ and 760’ (std 4’ per pixel)
Y = (ship LOA)/6 + 64, for ships over 760’ (to a max of 820’)

This will give an 80’ PT at 54 pixels (not too bad) and a Yorktown with ‘some’ space fore and aft. I haven’t paid much attention to the top end, since my concern has been models of those ships in the 300’ to 500’ range, but I can refine the graph very easily. I can’t upload the graph (wrong format), but I can modify with the appropriate math input. I would appreciate comments. We should finalize this and cast it in stone for our project. Fewmets and rotten vegetables accepted."

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Post #: 32
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/6/2019 11:09:23 AM   
Dili

 

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Check my scaled up screen , values are in meters, each color is linked to a certain length and a pair of dots in each side Since not enough colors to distinguish i had to repeat them but they are far enough of each other as to not make confusion. I made in this screen 2 connections to be seen how to do use it. Red is a 50m length ship and blue violet is 227 m length.




i also made one for submarines since they have other scale.

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< Message edited by Dili -- 10/6/2019 11:12:17 AM >

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Post #: 33
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/9/2019 8:57:50 PM   
Kull


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Escort (E) Type color schemes:

A completely unexpected discovery was that all Ukuru class and Type C class Escort ships have a two toned paint scheme (see examples below). For both classes, the upper half of the bow-end of the ship is a very dark grey (appears to be Sasebo-type, although probably it varies by shipyard) while the rest of the hull is a much lighter grey. In the pix for several of the C-Class Escorts, this band appears almost white.

In-game, both types have a single bmp but they share it with other Escort classes, specifically:

175.bmp is shared between Ukuru-class and Mikura-class
116.bmp is shared between Type C-class and Type D-class

Fortunately the Mikura class has two bmps, and the first one (115.bmp) is not shared with any other class. So even though it begins to arrive in mid-1943, it doesn't share the Ukuru class bmp until October 1944. I could not find any instances of Mikuras using the Ukuru paint job, however there are only 8 Mikuras and 33 Ukurus, so it's "less wrong" to give all of them the two-tone ship-side starting in late 1944.

We don't have the same problem with the bmp shared between Types C&D, because both of these Escorts feature two-tone paint, although the lower hull of the Type Ds is a bit darker.

All the pictures in the attachment (and many more) are available on a Polish web site called Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy

Edit: Worth noting that new 175.bmp and 116.bmp art does NOT require the "foldered ship" system.




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< Message edited by Kull -- 10/11/2019 6:19:23 PM >


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Post #: 34
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/10/2019 11:00:42 PM   
Kull


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CL Kuma-class Aleutians Camouflage

In AE, the CL Kuma-class comprises three ships (Kuma, Kiso, & Tama) and has 2 bmps for 4 database entries:
020 - 12/41
020 - 10/42 (minelaying removed, Type 96 AA added L & R)
220 - 8/43 (Type 21 Radar added, more AA)
220 - 9/44 (Type 13 Radar added, more AA)

As discussed in post #9 above, two of these (Kiso & Tama) received "Aleutians camouflage" in 1941 and wore it until they were repainted in standard bluish-grey warship colors in May 1942. Although each ship used a different variation of the "dark grey + white" camo scheme, in-game there can only be one pattern per class, so I used the Kiso variant. Largely because that was the only ship which had a full side view picture to work from (see photo at bottom of the attachment).

There were three existing ship-sides to use as the base model and I chose the new BigB version (3rd from the top) because it already has a bluish-grey tint similar to the correct Sasebo-Yokosuka color scheme. I darkened that further and then added white "stripes" to the hull, and white splashes to the funnels, mast tops, and the rear gun (4th ship-side from the top).

In a foldered system, this would be the starting ship-side in 1941 (020.bmp) and would be replaced by the BigB version in June 1942. Without ship folders, it would carry on until replaced by the 220.bmp file in mid-1943 (which is less than ideal, albeit visually attractive).

I highly recommend that players who seek greater authenticity in their Japanese ship colors should download Big B's revised Carriers, Cruisers, and Destroyers (the latter are the work of Sulu Sea) as they feature a more accurate bluish-grey tint (along with other improvements). These are direct replacement sides and shils, so you only need to unzip them into the correct folders. Like all new ship and plane art, they will appear immediately in ongoing games.





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Post #: 35
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/16/2019 4:52:08 PM   
Kull


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Escort (E) Type color schemes:

As discussed in Post #34 above, see the attachment for a look at the two-toned paint scheme applied to the Ukuru class, Type C class, and Type D class Escort ships. Unlike most of the shipside images I present, these are zoomed in by 400% - not to see the pixel-by-pixel difference between the current models (top) and the new (bottom) - but the hues.

In the center of the image are 5 color swatches. The two at the top are Sasebo A and Maizuru A, which are early-to-mid war "bluish grey" shipyard colors. The three at the bottom are the late war shipyard colors (more on that in the next post), specifically Sasebo B, Kure B, and Maizuru B.

Look closely and you'll see that the bottom 3 swatches are a good match with the existing AE Japanese shipsides. In other words, much of the existing AE ship art can be used in a foldered system as accurate representations of the late war Japanese shipyard colors. In combination with the bluish grey Big B and Sulu Sea warships, it's going to allow for a much easier implementation of an "early vs. late war" color system for warships.





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Post #: 36
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/16/2019 5:25:19 PM   
Kull


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Color Variation by Shipyard

As discussed in Post #2 above, I recently obtained the Snyder & Short color swatches for the various Japanese shipyards, both early-to-mid war bluish-grey and the late war formulations that did not include blue pigment. Plus the different shades of green used by carriers and merchant ships. Setting the swatches under natural light and using an i-phone app to get relatively consistent RGB values took some doing, but here they are:

Palette #1 (Early-Mid War):
Sasebo A: 70,77,92
Kure A: 92,111,124
Maizuru A: 100,122,130
Yokosuka A: 79,95,102


Palette #2 (Late War):
Sasebo B: 81,87,94
Sasebo C: 79,85,87
Sasebo D: 84,90,90
Kure B: 103,112,119
Kure C: 105,115,118
Maizuru B: 120,126,127


Late War Carriers & Merchant ships:
Type 2 : 93,125,100
Type 21: 139,166,147
Type 22: 180,198,182
Type 21B: 100,128,85


I've searched for information detailing the time frame in which the shipyards made the switch from bluish to greyish hues, but so far without success. Interestingly however, it seems that the US Navy had a similar problem:

quote:

In January 1945 BuShips revised its paint formulations due to a shortage of blue pigment, and the realization that tone was far more important than hue in camouflage effect, eliminating the blue-purple shades which had characterized nearly all Navy ship colors whether called "blue" or "gray." The new paints were neutral grays, Navy Gray replacing Navy Blue (but confusingly receiving the designation "5-N" while Navy Blue became "5-NB"), and Deck Gray replacing Deck Blue. Ocean Gray and Haze Gray retained their names but lost their bluish cast. However, the new paints (which were shipped pre-mixed, not as tinting paste) were generally only available in stateside yards, while ships repainted at forward bases continued to use the older bluish colors.


Although as yet we don't have a date for the change in Japanese color formulas, if the US Navy was experiencing blue pigment shortages in late 1944, it's wouldn't be surprising if Japan faced the issue even earlier. Accordingly, a shift in Japanese ship hues from bluish to grayish should probably happen in early 1944, possibly earlier. For example, if some ship classes begin to arrive in very late 1943, it would be easier to start them off with the grayish colors instead of using the bluish pigments only for a few months. Likewise, any late-1943 upgrades which include a new shipside bmp, could be implemented as grey (and without folders).

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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/16/2019 5:43:06 PM   
Kull


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BB Haruna Turret Stripes

Back in Post #8 I was reviewing the "extreme late war camouflage" and noted that most of it had no application to AE, "with the possible exception of BB Haruna's Turret stripes".

Just for grins I played around with that, and although it's impossible to get a 200x60 shipside to display narrow strips like those in the attachment, the insert shows "before and after" shipsides in which the lower one has a sort of "tiger stripe" effect on the forward and rear turrets. Worth noting that while there are lots of images showing stripes on the forward turrets, only this photo had enough detail to conclusively verify that the same system was applied to the rear turrets as well.

Anyway, this would require the foldered ship system and would only take effect in January 1945, but hey, why not?





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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/21/2019 9:20:13 PM   
Kull


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Early War Dazzle Camouflage

Of the various color and camouflage schemes, the most "visually interesting" is the early war Dazzle Camouflage which was applied primarily to Auxiliaries and merchant ships. Unfortunately there isn't a complete list identifying all the ships which had it. The US Navy Technical Team Report devoted a few pages to the theory behind Japanese Dazzle and provided some examples, but it was far from comprehensive.

The best single repository - one that is frequently cited by modelers - is a web site featuring ship models created by the "merchant marine expert", Motoyuki Iwashige (he's published at least one book on the subject). There are sub-pages containing almost 200 detailed models (most with photos), and it is a tremendous resource for anybody interested in the pictorial details of Japanese merchant shipping of this period.

In a few cases I was able to find evidence for additional ships with early war camo, and put the whole thing together in a spreadsheet that lists the names, ship types, AE classes, and links to evidence. As an example, the list below is just for AK-types:

Name Camo Type Camo Evidence AE Class AE Type # Ships Comment

Akagane Maru Dazzle Model Ansyu-C Cargo xAK 54 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/akaganemaru.htm
Ayatosan Maru Bow Wave Photo/Model Yusen A Cargo xAK 7 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/ayatosanmaru.htm
Brisbane Maru Dazzle Painting Kyushu Cargo xAK 32 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/brisbanemaru.htm
Gyoku Maru Dazzle Photo/Model British xAK 0 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/gyokumaru.htm
Gyoten Maru Dazzle Photo/Model British xAK 0 https://8320.teacup.com/delight/bbs
Hirokawa Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/hirokawamaru.htm
Kansai Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Kyushu Cargo xAK 32 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kansaimaru.htm
Kazuura Maru Dazzle Photo Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kazuuramaru.htm
Keiyo Maru Dazzle Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/keiyomaru.htm
Kinka Maru German Radar Model Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kinkamaru.htm
Kinugawa Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kinugawamaru.htm
Kirishima Maru Bow Wave Photo/Model Kyushu Cargo xAK 32 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kirishimamaru.htm
Kiyozumi Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Ehime Cargo xAK 58 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kiyozumimaru.htm
Kyushu Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/kyushumaru.htm
Myoko Maru Dazzle Photo Kyushu Cargo xAK 32 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Myoko_Maru_(1939)
Nagara Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/nagaramaru.htm
Nako Maru Dazzle Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/nakomaru.htm
Oigawa Maru Dazzle Model Gozan Cargo xAK 61 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/oigawamaru.htm
Sado Maru Dazzle Model Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/sadomaru.htm
Sagami Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/sagamimaru.htm
Sasako Maru Dazzle Painting Yusen S Cargo AK 10 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/sasakomaru.htm
Shinai Maru ("Seikyo" in AE) Bow Wave Photo Ansyu-C Cargo xAK 54 https://www.flickr.com/photos/acstudio/6834602562
Suez Maru Dazzle Photo Daigen Cargo xAKL 68 http://www.powresearch.jp/en/archive/ship/suez.html
Taimei Maru ("Teimei" in AE) Bow Wave Photo/Model Ansyu-C Cargo xAK 54 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/taimeimaru.htm
Yamabiko Maru Dazzle Photo Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yamabikomaru.htm
Yamabiko Maru Dazzle Photo Yamabiko AR AR 1 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yamabikomaru.htm
Yamagiri Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yamagirimaru.htm
Yamaura Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yamauramaru.htm
Yamazuki Maru Dazzle Photo/Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yamazukimaru.htm
Yasukawa Maru Dazzle Model Lima Cargo xAK 46 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/yasukawamaru.htm
Zenyo Maru Dazzle Model Yusen N Cargo xAK 57 http://ww6.enjoy.ne.jp/~iwashige/zenyomaru.htm

The important thing to remember (and yes, I'm repeating myself), is that in most cases AE merchant ships and auxiliaries are grouped into multi-ship categories. So even when there is evidence that a particular ship had Dazzle (or other) Camouflage, we need to consider how the in-game implementation will affect all ships of that class.

Edit: Apologies for the data mish-mash. Apparently the BBS software ignores tabs.

< Message edited by Kull -- 10/21/2019 9:26:02 PM >


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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/21/2019 10:53:48 PM   
Kull


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LSD Types

There are 2 classes of LSD in WitP-AE:

1) Shinshu Maru LSD (internal boat storage & cranes): A single ship in this class. A single bmp file (0316.bmp), not shared. Photo evidence of a 2-tone color scheme (not camo).

Although pre-war photos (up to 1940) clearly show a dark hull and a much lighter "upper level", the AE shipsides are uniformly light grey (as are most ship models and paintings). However, that "all-grey" look may have come later, as Shinshu Maru was torpedoed and sunk in February 1942, and was probably repainted after being raised and repaired in Singapore (between 12/42 and 5/43). The foldered system can show this with a two-tone hull until 5/43, reverting to the current all-grey AE shipside after that.

Edit: The shipside was significantly improved, as you can see here in Post #62 and tweaked a bit more in Post #125.




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< Message edited by Kull -- 2/26/2020 3:47:07 PM >


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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/21/2019 11:26:29 PM   
Kull


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LSD Types

The 2nd class of LSD in WitP-AE:

2) Akitsu Maru LSD (flight deck type): Three ships in this class, although all were engineered differently (the AE graphic represents Akitsu Maru). A single bmp file (0048.bmp), not shared. There is photo evidence for early war Dazzle camo and a late war "carrier green" scheme.

At the top of the attachment is an overhead aerial shot of Akitsu Maru from 1942 (can't find an exact date) showing deck camo. Although I could not find pictures of side camo, Motoyuki has modeled it (and it seems inconsistent to have one but not the other). A 1944 pic (3rd in the attachment) has no deck camo but does show the green sides (assumed as the pic is b&w), as does Motoyuki's second model (4th). Photo and model show a number of significant changes between the 1942 & 1944 configurations. The timing and explanation can found at combinedfleet.com:

13 April 1944: Aioi. Undergoes remodelling construction at Harima shipyard. The bridge and funnel are moved to starboard to allow installation of a flight deck for flying off the ship’s her seven Army Ki-76 aircraft. A single lift is at the aft end of this deck.
30 July 1944: Remodelling is completed.

There is also an interesting video showing autogyros landing and taking off from Akitsu Maru, which gives an "up close" look at portions of the 1944 configuration.

There is a 3rd class of LSDs not present in AE, which is unfortunate since they had very useful amphibious assault features (although much of that is undoubtedly mimicked by the game's many AKs). A Don Bowen post from 2006 details what we never got to see in AE:

quote:

Then came Mayasan Maru and Tamatsu Maru, which gave up all ability to carry aircraft and then the Type "A" (Hyuga Maru, Kibitsu Maru, Settsu Maru, and Tokitsu Maru) which launched their landing craft through large hinged doors at the stern. The Type "A" as sometimes called LSDs but they did not have a floodable well deck - the landing craft being loaded on the main deck and moved to the stern via rails.

There was also Takatsu Maru, a wartime conversion of a cargo ship into a landing craft carrier (I do not have details on this ship).


Most of these are grouped in the IJA Landing Craft Depot Ship section at combinedfleet.com:
Mayasan Maru (Mayasan Maru class)
Tamatsu Maru (Mayasan Maru class)
Hyuga Maru (Kibitsu Maru class)
Kibitsu Maru (Kibitsu Maru class)
Settsu Maru (Kibitsu Maru class)
Tokitsu Maru - Not listed
Takatsu Maru (Takatsu Maru class)





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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/22/2019 1:19:23 PM   
John 3rd


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Well done with great attention to detail and accuracy.


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Member: Treaty, Reluctant Admiral and Between the Storms Mod Team.

Reluctant Admiral Mod:
https://sites.google.com/site/reluctantadmiral/

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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/22/2019 3:14:42 PM   
Kull


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quote:

ORIGINAL: John 3rd

Well done with great attention to detail and accuracy.



Thanks John! The existing AE artwork sets a high bar - replacing those gems with something of noticeably lesser quality is simply not acceptable, so I'm determined to research heavily and then take days (if necessary) to get each replacement "just so" (and even then, there's always something which could be improved).

Equally important are Motoyuki's models. Consider that the majority do not come directly from kits, and had to be built either completely from scratch or through significant modification to existing kits. The historical research and attention to detail are breathtaking. And just think - he's built 190+ of these things! Each one a work of art in its own right.

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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/23/2019 4:07:23 AM   
Kull


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LSD Types

Let's take a look at implementing Akitsu Maru in-game. As was mentioned above, this class has three ships, all engineered differently:

1) Akitsu Maru: Discussed in detail earlier, but I didn't mention that she doesn't appear until the end of March 1942.
2) Nigitsu Maru: The sister ship of Akitsu Maru, but unlike her, never received a flight deck. Obviously that means she looks VERY different, as the Motoyuki model (see top of the attachment) clearly shows. This ship is also available right at the start of the game.
3) Kumano Maru: Another flight decked LSD (2nd in the attachment), but one that arrives very late (March 1945)

Anyway, the different arrival dates mean that it's possible to have a Nigitsu Maru model, used only by that ship, for the first four months of the war! Accordingly, I took a similar ship (3rd) and made some adjustments (to include adding miniaturized versions of Fremen's cool-looking wooden Daihatsu barges from CHS), and the result is the ship-side you see at the bottom of the attachment.

Here's how this works in the foldered ship system:

1) 12/41: The new Nigitsu Maru shipside is the default JnSide0048.bmp
2) 4/42: Akitsu Maru arrives at Kyoto on 3/27/42, so we would put the 1942 Camo + Flight Deck shipside into the April 1942 folder.
3) 8/44: No upgrade, but since the historical Akitsu Maru conversion wasn't finished until 7/30/44, the new "carrier green" configuration wouldn't be visible until August anyway.
4) 4/45: Kumano Maru (the last of the 3 ships in this AE class) arrives at the end of March 1945. It had a flight deck and was painted carrier green, but there were significant differences from the other 2 ships. Still, by this point in the game it won't matter much and there's no need to make adjustments to the model.

Edit: Argh!! Unfortunately the Nigitsu Maru which is present at game start is a Kiso-E AKL. The LSD class Nigitsu Maru doesn't arrive until 5/27/43, so that means the non-flight deck ship-side will never see the light of day. And yes, that also means there are completely different ships with identical names. Oh well, the effort wasn't a total loss, since I now have Daihatsu barges that stand out from the rest of the ship, and those will be useful elsewhere. Plus, the new Nigitsu Maru LSD shipside could be used by modders who want to add the "missing" LSD class discussed in Post #41 above.




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< Message edited by Kull -- 10/26/2019 9:37:47 PM >


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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/24/2019 6:22:55 PM   
GI Jive


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Kull - I've been following this thread regularly. I had no idea Japanese ships sported such a wide array of camo colors and schemes. Very impressive work!

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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/24/2019 7:41:11 PM   
Kull


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quote:

ORIGINAL: GI Jive

Kull - I've been following this thread regularly. I had no idea Japanese ships sported such a wide array of camo colors and schemes. Very impressive work!


Buddy, you aint seen nuthin' yet!

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RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/30/2019 2:43:37 PM   
Kull


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Although I haven't updated the thread recently, there's a lot going on "behind the scenes". The major effort right now involves figuring out how to deploy the "Early War Camo" (mostly Dazzle) in AE. As an example of the complexity, let's look at the unique Kimikawa Maru, which is one of six ships in the Kamikawa AV class. As you can see from Motoyuki's model & inset photo (#1 on the attachment), she features a strange front-only U-shaped white camouflage, added when she was assigned to support Aleutian operations. The first problem (mentioned often) is that you can only have one bmp file per class, and none of the other six Kamikawa AVs had anything like this.

However, while sorting out the many upgrade and conversion options available to the various xAK classes, I noticed that the Husimi type has only 25 ships, but they fit in six different classes. Most of those are the valuable AR and AK conversions, but there is an AV option with its own unique shipside (0051.bmp - not shared with any other class), which is smaller but otherwise similar in shape to the Kamikawa AV class. Now most players will not do this conversion, and even if they do it's likely to be no more than one or two ships. Which is actually perfect for this rare form of camouflage.

After determining that this camo pattern can be included in AE, that led to the next question: What IS the pattern, exactly? Normally Motoyuki (and certainly his photo) would be definitive, but I found several different ship models which added a rear white u-shape (see #2 for one of several examples). This pattern looks more realistic and has a certain resemblance to bow-wave camo, but where did it come from? I hunted around, and eventually found an interesting photo (#3) from PacificWrecks.org which purports to be a "near miss explosion" off the starboard side of Kimikawa Maru, during Aleutian operations in June 1942. The blast is so large that it obscures most of the vessel, but looking closely, you can clearly see the stern of the ship....and it is painted a brilliant white! There is also a photo from April 1943 (#4) showing her after the camo over-paint, but aft of the funnel you can still see remnants of white paint extending well above the waterline. So there we have it - photo evidence which supports extending camo to the rear of the ship.

Next is the timing - how many ship-sides do we need, and when should they be deployed in the foldered system? Here we can rely on the Kimikawa Maru TROM at combinedfleet.com, which gives us several important pieces of information:

quote:

2 December 1941:
Arrives at Ominato. Painted with gray/white splotch camouflage for Northern operations.

18 March 1943:
Arrives at Yokosuka. Undergoes repairs. Camouflage painting is deleted.


Please note that since the camo overpaint was done at Yokosuka, we should use the "bluish-grey" hues associated with Naval shipyards in this period.

The result of all that research can finally be distilled into the following deployment plan:

12/6/41 = Start with the double-u-shaped white camo 0051.bmp file (#5)
4/1943 = Change to a "bluish-grey" color scheme (#6)
1/1944 = Change to "greyish-grey" (#7)

Phew!




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Post #: 47
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/30/2019 7:35:15 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
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From: El Paso, TX
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There are 5 classes of AV in WitP-AE, of which two have been given new camo shipsides (and one remains). So before we move on, let's look at all the ships of this type:

1) Akitsushima: New ship-side created. See Post #30

2) Husimi AV: New ship-sides created. See Post #47

3) Kamoi AV: A single ship in this class. A single bmp file (0057.bmp), not shared. No upgrades or conversions. No evidence of camo. This ship is visibly unlike all other AV classes (so it already has a unique "look" - #1 on the attachment). The current ship-side features a purplish-grey color, so potentially that could be changed to a bluish-grey (12/41) followed by a "greyish" look in 1944, but that's an easy enough fix. Otherwise, no action.

4) Kamikawa AV: Six ships in this class (Kamikawa Maru, Kimikawa Maru, Kunikawa Maru, Kiyokawa Maru, Sagara Maru & Sanuki Maru). A single bmp file (0050.bmp), not shared. No upgrades or conversions. The photos (and ship models) depicting 4 of the 6 do not show evidence of camo. However, two of these ships have photos showing early war camo:
- Kimikawa Maru (reviewed in Post #47 above)
- Sagara Maru acquired a unique blue & light grey Dazzle camo scheme in mid-1942, but unfortunately it's experimental nature makes it unsuitable for all ships of this class.
The current ship-side features a purplish-grey color, so again we're looking at a change to bluish-grey (12/41) followed by "greyish" in 1944. Otherwise, no action.

5) Sanyo AV: A single ship in this class. A single bmp file (0049.bmp), not shared. No upgrades or conversions. Per the comments accompanying Motoyuki Iwashige's model, "It seems that camouflage was given, but it is omitted in the example". The accompanying photo appears to show a dazzle type, but it's extremely hard to make out the details. This ship (like Husimi AV) is a slightly smaller version of the Kamikawa AV class, but structurally nearly identical (#2).

So here is where it gets interesting. As with the Kimikawa-Husimi swap, this is a good candidate for the unique Sagara Maru camouflage scheme (#3). In this case we only have a single ship in the class, and although the Kyushu xAK has the option of upgrading to Sanyo AV, it is unlikely that the player will do this for many (if any) of that class as the Kyushu's are fast and the conversion options include AKE, AS, and the valuable AR and AK.

Next is the timing - how many ship sides do we need, and when should they be deployed in the foldered system? Let's look at the Sagara Maru TROM at combinedfleet.com:

quote:

26 February 1942:
At 1820 arrives at Singapore. SAGARA MARU is camouflaged using captured British paint. Her hull is painted light gray. Two wide indigo blue stripes run almost horizontally from her bow to her stern with two other vertical stripes at her bow. The camouflage scheme is the result of an IJNAF experiment.

13 June 1942:
At 1200 departs Seletar and drydocked at 1555. Hull painted.

25 June 1942:
At 1120 undocked. At 1445 arrives at Seletar.

26 June 1942:
Seletar Naval Base, Singapore. SAGARA MARU wears a “dazzle” type of camouflage.


Note that the TROM cites two instances of the ship being painted with camouflage, so it's quite possible that the stripe colors were changed from blue to black during this second painting, as that is what we see in Motoyuki's model. As for the "captured RN paint", I've chosen the "dark blue" color from the WW2 Royal Navy paint chip samples at Kew archives (#4):

Here is the foldered deployment plan:

12/6/41 = The as-is purplish-grey 0049.bmp file (#5)
2/1942 = The Sagara Maru blue dazzle camo (#6)
6/1942 = The Sagara Maru black dazzle camo (#7)
11/1943 = Change to "greyish-grey" (#8)

Note: The Naval Technical Mission report specifically says this ship replaced Dazzle with Green Merchant Camo in 1944, but that's actually impossible since Sagara Maru was destroyed in mid-1943. Even so, that is an option depending on what the mix of "green vs. grey" shipsides looks like in 1944.




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Post #: 48
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/1/2019 1:57:24 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
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From: El Paso, TX
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xAP Types:

1) Brazil Maru xAP: Two ships in this class (the other being Argentina Maru). A single bmp file (0303.bmp), not shared. One data base entry (12/41). Cannot upgrade or convert. No evidence of early war camo.

There's an interesting photo of Brazil Maru at Truk in April 1942 (see #1 in the attachment), and it has almost a pre-war look with extremely light uppers and a very dark hull. Motoyuki's model confirms this, with the interesting detail that the hull was dark green (#2). He also adds a humorous explanatory comment:

quote:

"There is a description that the captain of the ship hated gray and kept painting for a while after the war"


Here's where it gets interesting. The timing of the photo seems a bit off as the combinedfleet TROM has Brazil Maru departing from Truk on 3/30 for a tour of the Marshalls, after which she returns to Japan for a conversion in Yokosuka in May 1942. Interestingly, the Argentina Maru combinedfleet TROM places her sister ship in Truk on 4/1/42, so perhaps a case of mistaken identity? Either way, both ships wind up in Yokosuka at the same time, which seems more than serendipitous and probably the date when both received their "official" wartime paint jobs.

Here's the foldered plan:

12/6/41 = A new green-white 0303.bmp file (#3)
5/1942 = Restore the original "bluish-grey" AE shipside (#4)

Note: The Brazil Maru xAP class was given the full "research everything and revise accordingly" treatment in Post #124. There are now 4 new shipsides for this class. Earlier, the rest of the xAP types were reviewed sequentially starting with Post #86




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Post #: 49
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/2/2019 12:53:25 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
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From: El Paso, TX
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Let's take a look at one of the most unique (and useful!) Japanese auxiliaries

Akashi AR: A single ship in this class. A single bmp file (0090.bmp), not shared. No evidence of camo. Two database entries (12/41 and 3/43). This is a famous ship with a very different shape from the other AR classes (see #1 & #2 on the attachment), but if anything, that suggests we should give it more attention. The current ship-side features a purplish-grey color (#3), but it was built in the Sasebo Naval yard so that should change to a bluish-grey, followed by a "greyish" look in 1944. Although Akashi was based at Truk for most of the war, it seems reasonable that periodic repainting would be necessary and by the late war that would mean "greyish-grey". Also, because this is such an important ship, I've added a few minor graphical enhancements to improve the look:

Here is the foldered deployment plan:

12/6/41 = The new bluish-grey 0090.bmp file (#4)
3/1943 = Adds Type 96 AA to front and rear (#5)
3/1944 = Change to "greyish-grey" (#6)





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Post #: 50
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/3/2019 4:46:04 PM   
Kull


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From: El Paso, TX
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There are 4 classes of AR in WitP-AE, of which one has been given an updated shipside. So before we move on to the next group, let's look at all the ships of this type:

1) Akashi AR: New ship-sides created. Post #50 above

2) Yamabiko AR: A single ship in this class. A single bmp file (0298.bmp), not shared. No upgrades or conversions. Historically this ship was one of the Yusen N class, converted to serve as a repair ship before the war (worth noting that Yusen N does not have an AR conversion option). Interestingly, the name "Yamabiko Maru" is used twice in-game, one for this AR while the other is a Yusen N Cargo class xAK. Although the Motoyuki model (see #1 on the attachment) does not feature camo, the inset photo, though fuzzy, shows the sort of color deviations which are probably Dazzle Camo. It's impossible to pin down the exact pattern, so I've selected the somewhat similar one used by her sister ship Yamaura Maru (#2), one of eleven known Yusen N camo patterns (since we can only use two for that type - more on that in the eventual Yusen N posting).

Although I don't know the date of Yamabiko's inset photo (Motoyuki has access to many Japanese sources, in particular the "Gakken" magazine series containing a large number of war-time photos not usually seen in the West), the Yamabiko Maru combinedfleet TROM indicates that she was in Singapore during November 1942 (probably arriving in October), and we know from the US Navy Technical Team report that Singapore was the location where a large number of ships received their Dazzle Camouflage.

There is additional photographic evidence from the "Rabaul Raid" of November 2, 1943, in which 72 B-25s (escorted by 80 P-38s) attacked Rabaul's airfields and harbors. The TROM confirms that Yamabiko was damaged in the attack, and there are several internet sites which have a photographic record. The 475th Fighter Group Newsletter featuring the "Battle of Rabaul" has a large number of photographs, although the quality is poor. However, the real gem is an overhead illustration (#3) that numbers, names, and shows the mooring locations of all the Japanese ships in the harbor at the time of the raid. Since all the photos on this site put these numbers next to each ship, it allows us to identify (by name) most of the ships in the photos. A couple of those show the Yamabiko Maru, including one taken right as a bomb goes off amidships (#4). Unfortunately Yamabiko is extremely fuzzy in every photo, but knowing exactly where she was moored turned out to have critical significance (just be aware that this Army raid was followed up by a carrier strike a few days later, so be careful not to confuse the two when looking at photos, as mooring locations have changed)

A search for more "Raid on Rabaul" photos hit the jackpot when I found 7 high res photos, including one (#5) showing a profile view of Yamabiko, just minutes or seconds before she was bombed. A "zoomed in" in Yamabiko (#6) still gives a fuzzy result, but several things are apparent:

- Yamabiko appears to have a "light-center, dark bow-and-stern" paint scheme, unlike anything I've seen before. Even more interesting, when you start looking at all the photos in these archives, quite a few other ships seem to have a similar pattern. Frankly, that was a complete and total shock, something I've never read about anywhere, even on ship modeling sites (and those guys know what they are talking about). In many ways its the opposite of the green Merchant Ship Camo scheme which has a dark center and lighter ends. Anyway, I'm going to file this away as "something to be researched later", and we'll see what turns up. I kind of suspect that it could be a Rabaul-specific scheme, something developed locally and never promulgated (or recorded in documents).

- The AE shipside has two masts and a rear crane (#7), but it's very obvious that Yamabiko still had all four of her merchant ship masts & derricks, even this late in the war. It's possible that the aft derrick had a crane appendage, so we can keep that. But there's no doubt that a tall rear mast was present, just like the one shown in Motoyuki's Yamabiko model (#1), so that will have to be added.

The TROM later tells us that she survived the bombing but obviously was heavily damaged, so in December 1943 Yamabiko "is ordered to put her repair machinery ashore at Rabaul and depart for the Empire via Truk to be fitted out again". Although sunk just prior to her arrival at Yokosuka, that does give us a date for when the camouflage paint (whatever the scheme) would have been replaced by late war "greyish-grey".

Anyway, that's enough information to give us a nice set of color schemes. Here is the foldered deployment plan:

12/6/41 = Since the pre-war AR conversion occurred in Osaka, we don't need a bluish-grey color and can retain the existing purplish-grey. However, the 0298.bmp file has to be modified to add the rear mast (#8)
10/1942 = The Yamaura Maru dazzle camo (#9)
1/1944 = Change to "greyish-grey" (#10)

3) Kyushu AR: An upgrade option for the Kyushu Cargo class. A single bmp file (0281.bmp), shared with the AS version. No evidence of camo. Potentially available to 32 Kyushu-type ships. No action for now as all color options for the Kyushu types will be discussed later.

4) Husimi AR: An upgrade option for the Husimi Cargo class. A single bmp file (0283.bmp), shared with the AS version. No evidence of camo. Potentially available to 25 Husimi-type ships. Although touched upon during the Husimi AV discussion in Post #47, nothing specific is needed for the AR version as the remaining color options for the Husimi types will be discussed later.





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Post #: 51
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/4/2019 8:39:53 PM   
Kull


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From: El Paso, TX
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After further research, let's take another look at AV Kamoi:

This ship has an interesting history, having been built in the US in 1922 as a large Fleet Oiler (10,000 ton capacity), and serving as such until her conversion to seaplane tender in 1934. Kamoi retained her fuel transport capability after the conversion, with the seaplanes all stored above decks in sheds and under canopies. Which is part of the reason why she has a truly unique shipside in AE (#1 on the attachment, zoomed up to 200% so you can better appreciate the details), which correlates best to a photo that I've been unable to date, but was probably taken soon after her conversion (#2).

The next major upgrade occurred in 1936-37, when Kamoi's stern was modified and fitted with German Hien-Mat recovery gear and crane (#3). This was a system that allowed ships to recover seaplanes while still underway, and was utilized by several European navies in this period. A dated photo from 1937 clearly shows the Hein Mat roller and rear crane (#4)

At this point we still have a ship profile which is pretty close to the one in AE, and the combinedfleet TROM doesn't indicate that any further modifications were made up until the time she was converted back to a Fleet Oiler in April 1944 (more on that below). However, a Russian web site has a page dedicated to Kamoi, with lots of information and good photographs. Here we learn that in "1939 - the ship spent in Yokosuka, undergoing repairs and modernization". That's not much to go on, but they also have a "Modernization" section, which includes a tab for 1939:

quote:

1939: The ship began to undergo a major modernization, after which it was planned to place 10 operational-suitable and 4 replacement seaplanes of new types on the ship. The new project for the composition of the air group was to include 2 Aichi E13A1 reconnaissance seaplanes (plus one spare) and 8 Mitsubishi F1M2 reconnaissance seaplanes (plus three spare). Only 14. However, just before the end of the modernization, the purpose of the ship was changed to a floating base of flying boats. Immediately after this, the sheds and rails were dismantled, and on the upper deck behind the forecastle, temporary, wooden living quarters for 200 people of technical composition were built. In addition, a fueling system for flying boats was installed on the ship. At the same time, artillery weapons were strengthened. On the bow and stern artillery sites, one 50-caliber 14-cm type 3 gun was installed . Anti-aircraft weapons included two former 8-cm type 3 anti-aircraft guns (on-site from the chimney) and six 12.7-mm Vickers anti-aircraft guns .

Steam boilers were replaced with 4 boilers type Kampon Ro-go .

After the completion of modernization, the ship's displacement in tests was 15381 tons.


I haven't seen that information anywhere else, but since the cited source is 3 books by Russian authors, it's possible this is just one of those areas where the translations haven't made it to the West. Well, that is a pretty significant change, and one would expect that Kamoi should look a lot different afterwards. And in fact they have a line drawing supposedly from 1941 which shows the new configuration without all the sheds (#5). I also found a very poor quality line drawing on JSTOR (#6) which shows all of these conversions, albeit their dates are incorrect. OK, so far so good, but where are the photos? What did Kamoi really look like after the 1939 conversion? Well fortunately there IS a photo, although we have to do some sleuthing in order to date it properly.

At the bottom of the Kamoi page is an aerial photo showing a large Japanese ship formation (#6). Although not dated, the photo is helpfully titled such that we know the names of all the ships: "From foreground to back, left to right: Kamoi , Haruna, Kongo, Mutsu, Nagato, Hiryu, Akagi, Jingei, and Chogei." Just as important, this is a fairly high res picture, which allows us to zoom in and get a pretty good look at Kamoi (#8), and sure enough, all the sheds are gone and she looks very much like the line drawings would suggest.

But when was it taken? Fortunately, the aircraft carrier Hiryu is in the upper left of the formation, and after comparing her profile with other pictures, there's no doubt that this is not Soryu (the port-side island is a dead giveaway). Which is important, because while all the other ships in the photo were active with the IJN since 1937 or earlier, Hiryu was not commissioned until mid-1939. Thus we can safely draw the conclusion that we are looking at Kamoi's final pre-war configuration.

That really matters because it means that Kamoi could no longer carry its own native air group and had to function primarily as a floating seaplane base. Additional confirmation comes from another aerial picture (also on the Russian site) which appears to be from roughly the same period (although probably not the same event since the ships are different and display pennants). In this case, Kamoi's stern is clearly visible and the Hein Mat system has been removed (#9), which is what one would expect in a ship that no longer carries it's own seaplane group.

So, what does all this mean for AE? Well, first let's consider the goal of this thread, which is to support the existing AE scenarios and database. That means Kamoi's functionality will not change in any way, although the shipside does need to be altered, plus the color should shift from a purplish hue to bluish-grey since we know the 1939 conversion took place in Yokosuka. In addition, the TROM tells us that Kamoi was damaged and went to Singapore for repairs in early 1944. There, she was also converted back to an AO since by this point in the war Japan was in far greater need of Tankers than Seaplane tenders. Without database changes, there's no point in modifying the shipside to look like an Oiler, but we can change the color to the late war greyish grey (although by then it's equally possible that she would have received the Merchant Green camo). Anyway, that means:

12/6/41 = Modified "bluish-grey" 0057.bmp file (#11) (#10 = Original shipside precedes #11 for comparison purposes)
5/1944 = Change to a "greyish-grey" (#12)

Those working on game mods should consider making the following changes to their database:

1) Give Kamoi a liquid carrying capacity of 10,000 tons. This reflects the historical reality of her conversion from AO to AV in 1934, in which her liquid storage holds remained untouched. In other words, she could serve as both an AV and a TK (the ability to fuel ships at sea would presumably have been lost during the AV conversion, as it would be unnecessary).

2) The AV modification in 1939 removes the ability to carry seaplanes, although she can still support them when disbanded in a dot or base hex.

3) Kamoi should have the ability to convert from AV to AO, preferably a conversion that comes with a tanker-like shipside (#13 = models showing AO version of Kamoi next to AO Notoro). And presumably the conversion should work both ways.






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Post #: 52
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/6/2019 3:32:15 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
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From: El Paso, TX
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AS Types

Heian Maru AS: A single ship in this class (arrives in Kobe on 12/30/41). A single bmp file (0277.bmp), shared with Heian Maru xAP class. One database entry (12/41). No upgrades or conversions. There is a Motoyuki ship model & photo depicting Dazzle camo (see #1).

Heian Maru xAP: Two ships in this class (Hie Maru & Hikawa Maru), both in game on 12/41. A single bmp file (0277.bmp), shared with the Heian Maru AS class. One database entry (12/41). This xAP class can upgrade to the AS class (but not the other way around). No evidence of camo.

Although the bmp is shared by all three ships and only 1 of 3 had camo, the game system will not allow an alternate scheme for the xAP types. Keep in mind that historically you had a situation where Heian Maru had camo, Hie Maru did not (#2), and Hikawa Maru was painted as a hospital ship (#3). Accordingly, ANY choice will be incorrect for 2 of 3, so the camo side is no more incorrect than the others. As an aside, there is also an xAK named Heian Maru (Aden Cargo Class), which has no connection to either of these classes (so it can be ignored).

Next is the physical appearance of the shipside. It has a crane (like all the other WitP-AE AS types), and while that would seem to be inappropriate for 2 of 3 ships, per the combinedfleet TROM Hie Maru was also converted to a submarine depot ship (4/42). So, no change necessary. Fortunately the AE armament is the same for both the AS and xAP classes, so we can add the Type 88s which sit on the lower part of the forward deck (the rest is OK).

The existing AE ship coloration is mostly bluish, so that remains the starting ship side. The date on which the Dazzle camo was applied is a bit up in the air. Motoyuki only says that his model shows "Heian maru in mid 1943", while the Heian Maru TROM says that during her Yokosuka upgrade (Oct-Nov 1943), "dazzle camouflage pattern is possibly applied at this time". However, it must have occurred much earlier, because there is a photo of Heian Maru at Paramushiro-jima in 1943 (#4), and the TROM tells us that she served as the TF flagship during the Kiska evacuation in July 1943. Given that her camouflage pattern has a distinct resemblance to the "white u-shape" applied to Kimikawa Maru prior to her Aleutians operations, it seems likely that Heian Maru received the camo paint upon arrival at Yokosuka in May 1943 (along with repairs of near-miss damage received during US bombing attacks at Rabaul in January).

Of the photos I could find which come after this period, none provide enough of a close-up (#5) to indicate when or if the camo was replaced. Heian Maru was sunk at Truk during Operation Hailstone (Feb 1944), and even those pics do not answer the question. A modeler has created a diorama featuring all the ships at Truk during the attack, and while his Heian Maru still has Dazzle Camo, that alone doesn't prove anything (he doesn't cite a reason or source). However, even if she had survived that attack, at some point the Dazzle would have been replaced (eventually all ships with Dazzle were either sunk or repainted), so we'll arbitrarily choose a month in late 1944.

Taking all that into account, here's the foldered plan:

12/6/41 = The as-is bluish-gray 0277.bmp file (#6)
5/1943 = The dazzle camo 0277.bmp file (#7)
9/1944 = Change to "greyish-grey" (#8)





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Post #: 53
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/6/2019 10:30:20 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
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From: El Paso, TX
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AS Types

Jingei AS: Two ships in this class (Jingei & Chogei). A single bmp file (0105.bmp), not shared. Three database entries (12/41, 9/42, & 3/44), and no conversions.

There is no pictorial evidence that Jingei ever had camo (and her TROM says nothing about it). However, there is a photo showing Chogei in 1942 with a very distinct white "bow wave" camouflage which extends the length of the entire ship (see #1). In addition, there is a photo from 1926 (#2) which appears to show an early version of the same system while a 1946 photo (#3) shows the remains of this camo scheme. Which means that it was present throughout the war, although Chogei's combinedfleet TROM makes no mention of it. Since there are only two ships in the class, a "with camo" bmp is just as accurate as a "no camo" bmp, so we'll use the Chogei camo system (interestingly, the existing AE shipside makes partial use of this feature, with a white strip in the center of the ship, running length-wise just above the waterline).

As for colors, both ships were laid down in Nagasaki at a commercial shipyard (Mitsubishi), and there is no record in either TROM of an extended prewar stay at a Naval Shipyard, so we can retain the existing purplish-grey AE colors. However, each ship was in Kure in mid-to-late 1942, so the first upgrade for this class (9/42) is a good time to alter the non-camo colors to bluish-grey. Likewise, the 1944 upgrade is an appropriate time for a switch to greyish-grey.

Next is the physical appearance of the shipside. The biggest issue is that both ships were equipped to carry a floatplane (as you can clearly see in the #1 photo), and in the absence of a catapult, they were fitted with a crane to lower and recover aircraft. Although that capability is missing from AE (Jingei class has no ability to carry or support floatplanes), graphically it's not an issue since neither crane nor plane is included in the shipside. Everything else looks pretty good, although there were a few opportunities for improvement.

Both of the upgrades involve additional AA weapons, and here we can make some adjustments. First of all, kudos to the "Calling all IJN Jingei fans" thread at ModelWarships.com, which was of great assistance in this exercise. According to the AE 12/41 database entry, there are Type 88s present from the start, and these are located between the funnels on a nice Jingei 1942 ship model (#4). The 9/42 upgrade adds additional 13mm MGs, but those are essentially invisible at this scale. The 10/44 upgrade adds 25mm Type 96 AA to the bow and stern, and the placement is seen on the Chogei 1944 model (#5). This upgrade also adds the Type 21 air search radar, which is visible on both the Chogei model and the 1946 photo (#3)

Taking all that into account, here's the foldered plan (for comparison purposes, #6 is the current AE shipside):

12/6/41 = The new bow-wave camo 0105.bmp file (#7)
9/1942 = Change to bluish-gray (#8)
3/1944 = Add AA & Radar, change to "greyish-grey" (#9)





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Post #: 54
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/14/2019 3:14:38 PM   
Kull


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From: El Paso, TX
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Before completing the AS types (or any other auxiliaries), it's time to look at the Merchant Shipping category as a whole, in particular the many types of Cargo ships. When compared to it's predecessor (the original WitP), AE provides a wealth of depth and differentiation in this area. Instead of a mere two ("Large AK" and "Small AK") we have 23 different Cargo ship types, each of which can convert or upgrade to a number of additional classes. Of course, even this doesn't fully capture the real variation one actually saw in the merchant shipping of this era - hundreds of shipyards worldwide, building ships in thousands of different configurations.

Still, the devs have done a great job in giving us far more of this flavor in AE, but there are still limitations, and never is that more obvious than the issues affecting early war Japanese camouflage. As discussed in the post-war US Navy Technical Team report, until 1944 the camouflage painting of merchant ships and auxiliaries was never treated as a top-down system like one sees with the various US and Royal Navy patterns. Instead, one finds that literally EVERY camouflaged ship was uniquely painted, usually at the whim of the individual ship captain*. Accordingly, not only are the patterns different, but even the timing of when they were first created (and eventually replaced), all vary from one ship to the next (and rarely do we have the specifics).

Looking just at the xAK/AK groups, there are 943 ships (present or planned) in 16 different named types. Of those, only 6 types (comprising 185 individual ships) have evidence of early war camouflage. However, as you can see from the attachment, there are 25 different ships - each with a unique form of camo - within those 6 types. Technically that means we'd have to downselect from 25 varieties to 6, thereby losing most of the variation. But even that is unacceptable, because now 185 ships would have dazzle camo when historically the number was far less.

Fortunately there ARE ways to preserve the variety and limit the number of ships which display each pattern - but it does get complicated. The important thing is to recognize that the game imposes certain hard limitations, and we have to work within those to get the best possible outcomes.

If this sounds familiar, it's the same issue we faced earlier with the AV types and their camouflage. To reprise the main points, we had a situation where the Kamikawa AV class had 2 of 6 ships with camo, each having a different pattern. Rather than give one pattern to all 6, we found two other AV types which comprised only a single ship, and gave the camouflage to them. Thus the unique look of each pattern is in-game and applied to only a few ships, albeit to a different class than was historically true.

And that is what you are about to see - writ large - as we work our way through the various cargo ship and auxiliary categories. With very few exceptions, the result will be that most of the historical dazzle camouflage will appear in-game, and that each unique pattern will apply to just one or a few ships. I am hopeful that the overall result will be a breathtaking assortment of historically accurate Japanese dazzle-type camouflage applied in limited numbers all across the map.

* NOTE: Over time, I've come to question that assessment of early war Japanese camouflage. There probably was not a central organization controlling all this, but there is plenty of evidence that certain locations (Singapore, Ominato/Paramushiro-jima, probably Rabaul) performed camo painting on something more than just the initiative of individual ship captains, and there is clear evidence that one or more of the Japanese Naval yards were painting ships with camouflage even before the war began. Unfortunately the postwar destruction of records prevents a more detailed look into this process, but there absolutely was a higher degree of control and implementation than most analysts believe.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 2/9/2020 2:59:03 PM >


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Post #: 55
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/14/2019 3:25:36 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline



When talking about merchant ships, especially when trying to identify individual ships in photos or compare AE shipsides with photos and and models, terminology matters. I've use a lot of it already, and more is coming! Anyway, for those who aren't maritime experts, here's a helpful guide. Better yet, all the terms are linked to the photo, so you can easily move from one to the other:

ABAFT - Behind or the rear of any part of a ship.
AFT - Near or toward a ship's stern
AMIDSHIPS - In the general vicinity of the center of a ship's length.
ASTERN - Behind a ship's stern, or backwards
ATHWARTSHIP - Across a ship (at right angles to the fore and aft line).
BALLAST - Material carried to give a vessel stability when empty of cargo; usually water or sand.
BEAM - The greatest breadth of a ship's hull.
BOOM - A heavy spar for handling cargo; usually attached to the base of a mast or kingpost.
BOTTOM - The underwater part of the hull, extending from the keel to the curved portion of the ship's sides.
BOW - The forward end of a ship.
BRIDGE - A high athwartship platform on the forward part of a ship's superstructure, including in its central portion an enclosed pilothouse.
BULKHEAD - Partition walls which subdivide the interior of a ship's hull
BULWARK - A short, solid continuation of the ship's hull above the edge of an exposed deck giving protection against weather loss of material or personnel overboard
BUNKER - A hull compartment used for stowage of coal or oil fuel.
CATWALK - Narrow exposed fort-bridge connecting the hull islands.
CRANE - Mechanical device used for hoisting or moving heavy weights.
DAVIT - A device for carrying, raising, and lowering lifeboats.
DECK - The "floors" of a ship's structure; included are the main deck weather deck, first, second, third decks, forecastle deck etc.
DECKHOUSE - An isolated element of a ship's superstructure which may occur at the base of a mast, on the poop, etc.
DRAFT - The depth of a ship below the waterline varying with load conditions.
DECKHOUSE - An isolated element of a ship's superstructure which may occur at the base of a mast, on the poop, etc.
DRAFT - The depth of a ship below the waterline varying with load conditions.
ENGINES AFT - Term used to describe a vessel stern.

ENSIGN - A national flag flown by naval or merchant ships.
FLUSH - Level, free from breaks or irregularities.
FORE - Adjective used as a prefix indicating forward or leading position.
FORE and AFT - Lengthwise (of a ship).
FORECASTLE - A raised island at the forward part of a ship.
FORWARD - Toward the bow.
FREEBOARD - Vertical distance from the waterline to the topmost continuous weather deck.
GALLEY - The space on a ship in which food is prepared and cooked.
GOALPOSTS - Double kingpost placed athwartships, with tops connected by a light truss.
HALYARDS - Light lines or ropes used for hoisting signals, flags, etc.
HATCH, HATCHWAY - An opening in a deck through which cargo may be handled; also smaller openings for personnel or ventilation.
HOLD - A Space below decks, used for stowing cargo.
HULL - The shell or body of a ship, including island but excluding built-on structures, such as deckhouses and superstructure.
ISLAND - Full-width sections of the hull rising one deck above the main weather deck.
JURY MAST - temporary light mast.
KEEL - A full-length, centerline strength member to which a ship's ribs are attached
KINGPOST - A short vertical post used to support a derrick boom; may be single or in pairs.
KNOT - A unit of speed, equaling one nautical mile (6080.2 feet) an hour.
LADEN (VESSEL) - Designates condition when vessel is fully loaded.
LIGHT (VESSEL) - The opposite to laden; empty of cargo.
LIST - Inclination of a ship to one side from the vertical.
MOTORSHIP - A ship driven by internal combustion engines

POOP - An island at the after end of a ship
PORT - Left side of a vessel, when facing forward.
PORT, LIGHT - An opening in the side of a ship's hull or deck structure.
PORT, FREEING - Openings in bulwarks at deck level to permit egress of water.
QUARTER DECK - The part of the upper deck between the stern and mainmast.
RAKE - A term denoting fore and aft inclination from the vertical. This applies to masts, funnels, bows, sterns, etc.
RIGGING - The ropes and cables that support or operate the masts, spars, and booms of a ship.
SAMSON POST - Same as kingpost.
SHEER LINE - The longitudinal line of a ship's deck at the intersection of a deck and sides.
STAY - Rope or wire used to support a mast, spar, or funnel.
STARBOARD - The right-hand side of a vessel, when facing forward.
STEAMSHIP - A ship driven by steam engines, whether fueled by coal or oil.
STEM - Extreme forward part of a vessel's bow.
STERN - The extreme after end of a ship.
STERN POST - Vertical rudder post in the stern of a vessel.
STORM DECK - The extended portion of the center island either fore or aft the structure.
SUPERSTRUCTURE - A structure or structures built above a vessel's hull. Includes pilothouse bridge, galley house, deckhouses, etc.
WATERLINE - A line on the hull representing the water level when the ship is in loaded condition.
WEATHER DECK - The uppermost deck that is exposed to the weather, exclusive of hull islands which may be built upon it.
WELL (DECK) - An area of weather deck situated between hull islands.
WHEEL HOUSE - Deckhouse in which the steering wheel is located usually aft.

Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 11/19/2019 4:03:22 AM >


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Post #: 56
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/15/2019 11:48:31 AM   
Trugrit


Posts: 788
Joined: 7/14/2014
From: North Carolina
Status: offline

Nice work on this. I know it is a lot of work, thanks.

A note on the article for those who are not maritime experts:

The Naval article on Merchant Ship Shapes is not correct when it says that
tramps are old freighters.

Tramps are merchant ships that are engaged in the Tramp Trade.

The tramp trade consists of merchant ships that don’t have a fixed schedule or published ports of call.
They move about from port to port based on the available markets.

Regular freighters make scheduled runs between ports.
(Like CS convoys in the game)

Tramp freighter: A cargo ship engaged in the tramp trade.
Tramp steamer: A cargo steamship engaged in the tramp trade.
Tramper: Same thing.

Note that the term has also been used as a derogatory label for a woman
who moves from man to man.


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 57
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/15/2019 9:21:35 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Yusen A Type (2 classes):

1) Yusen A Cargo (xAK): 7 ships in this class, all in-game on 12/41. A single bmp file (0253.bmp), shared with the 3 ships of the Akagi Maru AMC class. Yusen A Cargo class can upgrade to Yusen A class immediately (an AK type using 0319.bmp, see below), which most players will do. The xAK class has only one database entry and no other upgrades or conversions. Worth noting that the xAK class cannot upgrade to the Akagi Maru AMC class. There is a single example of camouflage in this class, and Motoyuki has a ship model depicting the Bow Wave camo (see #1).

2) Yusen A (AK): Zero ships start with this configuration, but all 7 of the xAKs can upgrade from the start. A single bmp file (0319.bmp), not shared. Two data base entries (12/41 and 11/43) and no conversions, although the Akagi Maru AMCs can upgrade to the AK class immediately (12/41), if desired. No evidence of camo specific to this class.

Even though only 1 ship of the Yusen A Cargo class was known to have camo (Ayatosan Maru), there is a way to place it in game. First of all we need to research the history of this ship. Unfortunately there isn't a dedicated TROM at combinedfleet.com (nor much information elsewhere), but it does appear in the TROMs of a few other ships. To summarize:

8 December 1941: Ayatosan Maru is part of a convoy landing troops at Kota Bharu, Malaya. Damaged by RAF light bombers.
2 April 1942: Departs Singapore for Rangoon
7 April 1942: Arrives at the Rangoon rivermouth
27 May 1942: Part of a convoy being escorted through the Bungo straits (Japan)
2 July 1942: Departs Davao, Philippines for Palau
20 July 1942: Departs Rabaul for Buna
21 July 1942: Departs Buna for Gona (New Guinea). AYATOSAN MARU starts to unload.
22 July 1942: While unloading troops and supplies at Gona, takes bomb hits from American aircraft and is beached to avoid sinking (#2).

Nothing about camouflage anywhere, but it's noteworthy that she was at Singapore in early April (the locus of early war Dazzle experimentation according to the US Navy report), although that's probably too early. July seems to have been rather busy with travel between the Philippines, Rabaul and New Guinea, so that leaves us with May or June 1942 (flip a coin).

Accordingly, we have a situation where all of the Yusen-A xAKs will have 5 months to upgrade to the more desirable Yusen-A AK, which means that only three Akagi Maru AMCs will still be using the 0253.bmp file. Admittedly the player is unlikely to convert the AMCs to the Yusen-A AK class, because they carry more troops AND get the same amphibious unload bonus as the AP/AK classes. Even so, that's a pretty small number of ships with this camo pattern.

Looking at armament, there's a noticeable difference between the AMCs and xAKs which share the 0253.bmp file, but that's only a short-term disconnect (as discussed above). Thus during the 5/42 "upgrade", the AMCs (which should now be the only ships displaying the bow wave camo side) can display their 15cm Navy guns at the front and sides so we'll alter the look of the front & rear guns (based on the Ayatosan Maru model) and also add a Type 88 DP weapon. The side AA guns are hidden by the central superstructure, and thus invisible (so we can ignore them for shipside purposes). The 0319.bmp file for the AKs is mostly OK, but we can show the front Type 88 which arrives during the 11/43 upgrade.

Taking all that into account, here's the foldered plan for each category:

Yusen A Cargo (xAK):

12/6/41 = The as-is purplish 0253.bmp file (#3)
5/1942 = The new bow-wave camo & altered guns 0253.bmp file (#4)
1/1944 = Change to the late war "greyish-grey" (#5) (Note: If this were still used by xAKs, it would be "green merchant camo")

Yusen A (AK):

12/6/41 = A new bluish-gray 0319.bmp file (#6). Typically all "navalized" ship conversions took place at the Japanese Naval Yards.
11/1943 = Change to the late war "greyish-grey" and add the Type 88 (#7)





Attachment (1)

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Post #: 58
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/22/2019 4:52:07 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Ansyu-C Type (3 classes):

1) Ansyu-C Cargo (xAK): 54 ships in this class, all in-game on 12/41. A single bmp file (0257.bmp), shared with Ansyu AKE class. One database entry (12/41). Can convert to both of the other Ansyu-C classes. There are three instances of camouflage in this class (two Bow-wave, one Dazzle). Motoyuki has a ship model (Taimei Maru or "Teimei" in AE) depicting the Bow Wave camo (see #1) while another photo from the "Battle of the Bismarck Sea" shows a second ship of this class (Shinai Maru or "Seikyo" in AE), also with bow wave camo (#2).

Note: As an aside, the AE scenario database often includes the historical "sunk date", so that's the first clue that the AE ship name might apply to a different vessel. To verify, the next step is to look at the 1947 Japanese Naval and Merchant Shipping Losses During World War II by All Causes report to see exactly which ships were sunk on that date. In this case we know from a multitude of sources that Shinai Maru was sunk on 3/3/43 and yet the AE database doesn't have any ship by that name. But it does have a similar Ansyu class vessel named "Seikyo Maru" which is said to have been sunk on that same day. However, if you go to page 39 of the 1947 report, it tells us that 9 merchant ships were sunk on 3/3/43 (#3), none of which were "Seikyo Maru". But sure enough, Shinai Maru is there. Kind of a long story, but when you see instances where I equate differently named ships, it's usually more than a guess. ;-)

2) Ansyu xPB (PB): 52 ships in this class, all in-game on 12/41. A single bmp file (0133.bmp), not shared. Two database entries (12/41 & 4/44). Can convert to both the other Ansyu-C classes (until the 4/44 upgrade). No evidence of camo.

3) Ansyu AKE (AKE): 0 ships. A single bmp file (0257.bmp), shared with Ansyu-C Cargo class. One database entry (3/42). Can convert to both the other Ansyu-C classes. No evidence of camo.

Very few of the Ansyu-C Cargo ships are known to have camo (just 3 of 54), so at first it appears to be an unlikely candidate for a camo shipside. However most of this class will convert to the Ansyu xPB (the AE Forum consensus opinion), since it has a cruise speed of 14 plus good range (6K), and the need for relatively fast long-legged escorts means that most players will convert a majority of the cargo class to PBs fairly early in the war (and, as noted above, the PB has a different bmp file). As a result, the eventual ratio is going to be more like 3 of 20 (and probably less), which will minimize the number of ships sporting this camo. Also, this particular "front end" bow wave is a very subtle form of camouflage, and there could have been other ships of this class - unphotographed - that used it too.

Pinning down the "where and when" of camo application is a bit tricky. The combinedfleet TROMs for Taimei Maru and Shinai Maru make no mention of camouflage, but there is an interesting coincidence. According to their TROMS, neither ship traveled together or even so much as voyaged to the same ports (ever), until both ships arrived at Rabaul in January/February 1943 (shortly before departing on their ill-fated voyage to Lae). But when they arrived in Rabaul, also present was AS Chogei - another Bow Wave vessel and a rather prestigious Rear Admiral's flagship. As you can see from the earlier photos, the Shinai/Teimei camo is much less extensive than that of Chogei, and the sort of thing that would be easy enough to apply while at anchor for a few weeks. Given that the only camo photos of either ship were taken during the air attacks which destroyed them a few weeks later, it's not unreasonable to think that this was the time period when the camo was applied.

As for armament, the existing 0257.bmp is fine. Although the AKEs have some 25mm guns (the xAKs have none), we'll ignore that from a shipside perspective since they are small side guns and largely invisible anyway. The PB class is mostly correct - 12cm Navy guns fore and aft - but we'll need to remove the forward 25mm AA gun and then add it back in (along with rear AA) as part of the 4/44 upgrade.

Note2: There are a lot of ships in this AE "class", which means that many of them have different profiles and sizes. The most obvious example is that Shinai Maru has two fore-and-aft masts which match the Ansyu-C profile while Taimei Maru has four of the "king post and derrick" types. On the other hand, Taimei has the Ansyu-C tonnage (2880 vs 2980) while Shinai (3800 tons) is much heavier. Just something to keep in mind when comparing real ships with those in AE - this won't be the last time you see this sort of mismatch.

Anyway, here's the foldered plan for each category:

1) Ansyu-C Cargo (xAK):

12/6/41 = The as-is bluish-brown 0257.bmp file (#4)
1/1943 = The bow-wave camo (#5)
7/1944 = The green merchant ship camo (#6)

2) Ansyu xPB (PB):

12/6/41 = A modified bluish-brown 0133.bmp file (forward AA removed) (#7)
4/1944 = Change to the late war "greyish-grey" and add fore and aft AA guns (#8)

3) Ansyu AKE (AKE):
- Same system as Ansyu-C Cargo (can't be different since they share the same bmp file)

Edit: As noted in Post #5 above, the Japanese Maritime Transportation Bureau issued the "green merchant ship camouflage" directive on 5 June 1944, so from that point forward one can expect to see it in-game. In this case the 7/44 date was basically pulled out of a hat, and I'll do something similar for the other merchant ship classes going forward. Ultimately, the plan is to phase them in month-by-month, class-by-class, so that you see a gradual increase in the percentage of ships bearing this new camouflage system. In other words, "7/44" isn't graven in stone and may well alter as the foldered plan is developed for this particular camo pattern.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 11/22/2019 5:22:20 AM >


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Post #: 59
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 11/25/2019 3:55:11 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2086
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Trugrit


Nice work on this. I know it is a lot of work, thanks.

A note on the article for those who are not maritime experts:

The Naval article on Merchant Ship Shapes is not correct when it says that
tramps are old freighters.

Tramps are merchant ships that are engaged in the Tramp Trade.

The tramp trade consists of merchant ships that don’t have a fixed schedule or published ports of call.
They move about from port to port based on the available markets.

Regular freighters make scheduled runs between ports.
(Like CS convoys in the game)

Tramp freighter: A cargo ship engaged in the tramp trade.
Tramp steamer: A cargo steamship engaged in the tramp trade.
Tramper: Same thing.

Note that the term has also been used as a derogatory label for a woman
who moves from man to man.


I always envisioned "tramp freighters" as a term entirely related to a class of scruffy, barely functional cargo ships, always one step ahead of the authorities and inevitably captained by an "African Queen" era Humphrey Bogart look-a-like.

I'm grateful (and equal parts saddened) to learn the truth.

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