Ark Royal colors

Hi guys

On the old forum we had a good and long discussion on the colors of Ark Royal. I cannot find the tread anymore. Have the treads been removed?
When I go to the old forum all posts/topics are gone?

I am now getting started on the painting. I am thinking 507c admiralty light grey for sides and superstructure and 507a admiralty dark grey for the flight deck. But I cannot remember the outcome of the discussion…

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Hi Jesper,
Is this the thread you are looking for?


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…I am thinking 507c admiralty light grey for sides and superstructure and 507a admiralty dark grey for the flight deck.

Hi Jesper,

I did an Ark Royal a while back with a grey flight deck, but if I were to do it again I think a light green, like in this image:

might be more accurate for the Ark’s flight deck.



The deck was actually in a color very similar to olive drab…maybe slightly faded! The color was Bronze-Grey, Pattern 631, for flight decks of aircraft carriers . The main ingredients included 28 lbs of white oxide of zinc oil paste, pattern 104; 14 lbs of paint, black, ordinary, pattern 110c; 56 lbs of ochre, pattern 52a; as well as white spirits, and linseed oil. That formula results in a faded OD color.


You guys are the best! This is exactly the tread I was looking for.

I might go out on a limp and do a green deck. Seems plausible that it would be the deck color.

There are no markings in the kit. Is there an aftermarket for decals? Especially roundels for the aircraft wings and the circle for the deck.

The straight lines should be possible to do in white - either as decals or simply masking.

I don’t think you said what scale you’re working in. If 1/700, Flyhawk makes a set of excellent Swordfish with PE struts and rigging, and dozens of tiny decals for markings. You even get torpedoes for the Swordfish!

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Thanks for the tip, Leo. It is 1/600.

No need for new planes. Rigging in 1/600 scale - my head is spinning just with thought of it. :grinning:

I just wanted some decals :slightly_smiling_face:

Main colors are on the Ark Royal. Went with the green deck recommendation.

Looking at pictures it seems like life rafts and life boats were simply painted light grey like the hull? Is that right?

What else needs to be painted separate colors on the ship?


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Any Royal Navy experts that can help out on colors?
Boats, life boats etc. were just painted light grey like the hull?

I’m very late here but in case it helps anyone searching in the future, HMS Ark Royal spent most of her career in Home Fleet Grey (Admiralty Pattern 507A from 1939 onwards). Her flight deck was almost certainly Bronze Grey. Her underwater hull was painted in Moravia brand protective and anti-fouling compositions and the chosen colour of the final anti-fouling coat was grey, not red as usually shown on models and unresearched illustrations. The latter fact is from the Ship’s Book preserved at the National Archives at Kew. It’s recorded in her D.495 Docking Forms.

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Jamie, Indeed too late for my build, But good reference for future builds :slightly_smiling_face:

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