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Author Topic: Question about "Invasion Stripes"
Member # 1909

posted 01-23-2000 06:14 PM     Profile for Sphinx   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
well, i downloaded a few skins with "invasion stripes" and they look way cool, but i was wondering what their actual significance or purpose was?

i guess they were used during the D-day invasion and that is why they are called invasion stripes? where they only used during D-day? on all allied planes (bombers and fighters)?

as to their purpose i have 3 (totally uninformed!) guesses:

1. a sort of psychological boost "one force united!" type of moral-builder for the pilots and troops during the invasion.

2. to break up the outline of the planes (like a dazzleship) to make them harder to hit, especially in large groups.

3. (the opposite of two) to readily identify allied planes to each other to avoid "friendly fire" with so many planes in the air etc. (although presumeably this would have helped german pilots in the same way, so this one at least may defy common sense!)

also are ETO (European Theatre of Operations??) something else again?

Posts: 33 | From: Canada | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged
Member # 1971

posted 01-23-2000 06:31 PM     Profile for wulf_pilot   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
Well you are on the right track. The stripes were first used before d-day on typhoons because they were mistaken for (oddly enough) fw 190s. And eventually all planes had them for the D-Day operation. Although i believe that toward the end of the war they werent used as much since the luftwaffe was so depleted and confined to bomber operations.
Posts: 222 | From: Stanhope New Jersey USA | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged
Member # 1503

posted 01-23-2000 06:31 PM     Profile for Cortilein     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
Well, Sphinx, as far as I know, your suggested no. 3 was the main reason to apply the stripes to the planes.

Cord Hartmann

Cord's EAW Page

Posts: 600 | From: | Registered: Dec 1999  |  IP: Logged
Member # 86

posted 01-23-2000 06:44 PM     Profile for Tailspin   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
I think the main use for invasion stripes was for easier ID for friendly AAA gunners.
Posts: 1895 | From: Metropolis USA | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
Member # 1062

posted 01-23-2000 11:50 PM     Profile for RossC   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
Yup, it's all about ID. The Allied planes needed a universal method of identifying themselves to everyone - other pilots and ground gunners. Various planes had different stripe schemes throughout the war - notice the white stripes & nose on the default EAW P-47C, as it was mistaken for the Fw190 early on. P-51's also had them, as they were mistaken for Me109's quite a number of times. Early model Typhoons had white noses - I believe Airbuddha has a skin like that on his page. The invasion stripes were applied to all Allied tactical aircraft (not B-17's, Lancasters, and such, though some Halifaxes had them as they were employed as paratroop transports - that would've been a painting job!) as a universal means of identification, instead of an ack-ack gunner looking through his manual, "P-47's have which set of stripes this week...?"

Anyway, back to invasion stripes - they were first applied in "full" schemes, with many rows of stripes wrapping completely around the aircraft's wings and fuselage. As the allies gained air superiority, and planes went back to depot for overhauls, and the stripes just plain wore off, stripes were re-established in "partial" schemes, fewer stripes just on the undersurfaces (for GtoA ident). The classic being the P-51D black-white-black across the rad/oil cooler scoop on the belly. I think the order to maintain the stripes was rescinded at some point, but it remained a handy method of ident, to individual units' tastes. I have a large framed picture of a B-26 and the stripes look pretty sad, they had just been left to fall off on their own.

Invasion stripes 101...


[This message has been edited by RossC (edited 01-23-2000).]

Posts: 394 | From: Williams Lake, BC, Canada | Registered: Nov 1999  |  IP: Logged
Member # 1588

posted 01-24-2000 12:15 AM     Profile for bucky-s   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
wulf-pilot's closest to the cigar. Including the bit about the Typhoon being first (excellent homework, wulf). In fact, the Typhoons were sporting those way back in '43. If you'll look closely, though, you'll see that the black stripes in the Tiffie scheme are significantly narrower than the surrounding white ones. On the D-Day aircraft, they were all a uniform 18 inches.

As for timing, if you're playing any mission later than, say, late July of '44 where the planes are all still sporting stripes, it's inaccurate. SHAEF ordered all the stripes off the planes soon after the landings. There may, of course, have been scattered "lazy" units that were too busy to be bothered with paint jobs, but I think you could say with a fair amount of certainty that the stripes were all gone by the end of that summer.

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Posts: 179 | From: Shizuoka City, Japan | Registered: Dec 1999  |  IP: Logged
Member # 1909

posted 01-24-2000 12:34 PM     Profile for Sphinx   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post
thanks a lot guys! very interesting!
it definitely adds something when you understand the significance of markings etc., especially with so many historically accurate skins out there. S!

Posts: 33 | From: Canada | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged

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