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        AND REFER TO NO. C-S19-1-(5)(341)

Bureau of Ships

Washington, D.C.
11 July 1941


From:    The Chief of the Bureau of Ships.
To:   Commandant, Mare Island.
Commandant, Norfolk.
Commandant, Cavite.
SUBJECT:     Low Visibility Gray Paints - Potential Change in Formula.
(a) Buships Conf. let. C-S19-l-(2-19)(DYr) dated 20 Feb. 1941.
(b) Buships Conf. let. even number, dated 21 Mar. 1941.
Enclosures: (under separate cover) -
(A) Two Painted Panels each of Formula 5-H and 5-S.
(B) Two Pint Cans each of paints in accordance with the above formulas.

     1.      Reference (a) authorized the manufacture of alkyd base, low visibility, dark gray paint, formula 5-D and white untinted base paint, formula 5-U. Reference (b) furnished the addressees with manufacturing formulas and necessary instructions for the preparation of tinting pastes to convert unit quantities of a white base, formula 5-U into a light gray paint, formula 5-L and ocean gray paint, formula 5-0 as called for by the several measures in the Bureau's camouflage instructions, "Ships-2."

     2.      Further consideration and the intensive experience of a few months' exposures of paints shaded to match the respective colors of light, ocean and dark gray indicates that the last named paint is too dark and that it would be desirable to use the fewest number of shades of color essential to securing the desired effects in order to simplify the problem of supply and stowage of paint. The enclosures are samples of two shades of Purple Blue (P.B.) which have been recommended by personnel recently concerned with tests in the Pacific Fleet.





C-S19-1-5 (341)
From:      BuShips
To:        Comdts., M.I.,Norfolk, and Cavite.

     3.      These two shades can be made from the white untinted base, formula 5-U by combining appropriate amounts of it with the blue and black pastes described in detail in paragraphs 3(a) and 3(b) of reference (b). One hundred gallons of the blue paste should be combined with 12 gallons of the black paste. Thirty-five fluid ounces of the composite blue-black paste when added to five gallons of the white untinted base, formula 5-U will produce the lighter of the two shades of gray paint and the shade will approximate the Munsell color designation, Purple Blue (P.B.) 6/2. The darker shade of gray paint can be produced by the addition of 162 fluid ounces of the composite blue-black paste to five gallons of the white untinted base, formula 5-U. The resultant shade approximates the Munsell color designation, Purple Blue (P.B.) 4/4. The Bureau has assigned the formula designation 5-H, "haze gray" to the lighter of the two new gray shades and formula 5S, "sea blue" to the darker shade of gray.

     4.      The trend toward the use of these two new shades of gray paint is strongly indicated and the information given above relative to manufacture is forwarded to the addressees in advance of any actual authorization to manufacture. The addressees should plan manufacturing schedules accordingly, so as not to build up any reserve stock of dark gray paint, formula 5-D, in anticipation that paint in accordance with the latter formula will become obsolete.

     5.      The Bureau has not decided whether to authorize manufacture of the complete haze gray and sea blue paints at the paint manufacturing yards or to issue the white base and the correct proportions of tinting materials to the Forces Afloat, as has been the prevalent practice in the case of a light gray and ocean gray, formulas 5-L and 5-0.


Copy to:

    H. A. Ingram
    By Direction


National Archives & Records Administration, San Francisco Branch
Record Group 181, Mare Island Navy Shipyard General Corespondence Files 1941-46

Transcribed by RESEARCHER @ LARGE. Formatting & Comments Copyright R@L.

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