Japanese Aircraft markings and Camouflage

This forum contains affiliate links to products on Amazon and eBay. More information in Terms and rules

Wurger and Shinpachi, I think this last photo might support the appearance of the profiled aircraft, although it's not conclusive. Thanks for your help...................John
I see. Here is enlarged part of the picture with the A6M Zero wearing similar markings to these in the colour profile. But I would like to ask you a question. Is the sign before each of numbers on tails, the digit "7"?

View attachment 210092

The "7" is in fact the japanese character for the G or Ge for the Genzan Kokutai the Aircraft in question is "Ge" - 113 and appears to be an A6M2 rather than an A6M5.
Chinese "元山" = Japanese "Genzan" = Korean "Wonson"
Genzan = ゲンザン in Japanese Katakana letters.
ゲ(Ge) is a sonant of ケ(Ke).

Thanks Wayne.
Last edited:
"Ge-120" (third from the bottom) is the only other machine besides "Ge-113" in the lineup that is not an A6M2-K, and it also appears to be an A6M2(or 3). It clearly has a light colored undersurface compatable with standard grey camo. This would suggest to me that Ge-113 would similarly have a standard grey undersurface, and, in the absence of exhaust stubs, is an earlier mark. The artist profile which is the subject of my post is "Ge-111", which may be an altogether different machine that is in fact an A6M5 with an orange undersurface, although it seems less likely in light of these photos................John
Last edited:
So the sign is....

= ケ(Ke)

Am I right?
Found this profile on a decal sheet offering. Note #22, machine G-113 is an A6M2(or 3?) with a standard grey under surface. I presume this is a rendering of the aircraft in your photo posted above, and a more accurate depiction of the profile in my original post..................John
Alright... I'm trying to find some pretty straightforward hard and fast ways to add some details to a few models I'm building.

The aircraft on the table are J7W1, B7A1 and D4Y3. My plan is to do them all in Carrier Air Group colours and markings. I want to do the J7W in the older off-white Zero style, and the other two are probably going to be in the late war style, with dark green over either grey or metal (I forget which they used).

The basic story is they're representative models of aircraft in the CAG aboard a finished/operational Shinano. The J7W's hook will be mid-fuselage, the only place it would work without being ripped apart by the prop, and the nose gear would give it the ability to use a fuselage hook, where other planes would risk slamming their nose into the deck when the hook engages.

I'm having trouble finding good squadrons to use for the principle. I don't have a lot of reference books on the time period/situations. I'd love to figure out squadron numbers/markings for the tail codes, but right now my big question is this:

What was the coding/meaning of the various stripe bands? I'm assuming the quantity is rank-identification, but is there differences between White, Red, Blue, etc, what colours correspond to which purposes?
Most of the striped bands (late War) represented Command identification, usually a single Stripe, fuselage or tail a "Shotaicho" leader of a 3 aircraft flight or Shotai. Double stripe or bands "Chutaicho" leader of 9-12 aircraft a Chutai (Squadron) or 3 Shotai's. The colours usually represented Flight colours of Ist 2nd or 3rd Shotai, same for Buntai using yellow, red and White as id colours.
in the case of the N1k2-J Shiden-kai of the 343rd kokutai , yellow and White were used for these command markings.
Some really beautiful pics, info and discussions about falsely assumed colours too. Arigato Mina/Thanks everyone

I have a copy of a similar pic this on my pc, but no matter what filtering, deblocking, tonal and other image adjustments, I cannot get a clearer idea of what the katakana or hiranga marking is on the fin of the captured P-40 in the right side fore ground is.

Also having gone through what few Japanese fonts I have upon upon my own pc, I don't even have a close approximation of the characters shape, so I cant even give an idea to its real shape, apart from that one side and top of it looks like a kids game/sketch of a hangmans noose gantry, with something inside the area enclosed by the 'gantry' like a upside down 'Y'... oh and the paint upon the fin appears a little weathered too.

Could I get help kudasai?
Last edited:
Sorry, Lewis, it's unreadable.

If it was a Chinese charactor, it might be "荻-511" but here is no data even if it was a squadron name of 荻(ogi = Japanese plant).

The word Ogi reminds me that an ancient poet wrote "神風の 伊勢の浜荻 折り伏せて 旅寝やすらむ 荒き浜辺に = Devine wind folds Japanese plant on the beach gently for my good sleep" though.

Users who are viewing this thread