Ilyushin Il-2 single-seater with VYa-23 guns

(Il-2 model 1942) with winter painting

Updated on June 1, 2014
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this work collects a lot of photos from many sources, not always identified and mentioned.
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Winter camouflaged planes

Il-2s were often camouflaged (partially or completely) with MK-7 white washable paint to improve the camouflage during the winter.

This paint gave a poor finish and increased the drag of the plane, being very disliked by Ilyushin himself.

In some cases, the planes could have been painted with white nitro paints in factory, but the evidence of this is very limited.

It's more difficult to distinguish the factory that built a plane from a photo, because the white paint covers the characteristic camo patterns.

A plane with winter finish photographed in the 'wrong' season, probably spring 1942 in the Leningrad area. The style of stars suggests it was produced by Z.18 in late 1941/early 1942. Note the PBP-1 in the canopy and the strange device on the nose.

right: a detail of the same (or very similar) plane. It looks a canopy of early type with large side windows and an armor added on the upper part.

 

Il-2 of lt.col. Vitruk Andrew Nikiforovitch, commander of 65 ShAP, Moscow area, beginning of 1942.

http://www.warheroes.ru/hero/hero.asp?Hero_id=1924

On the foreground, Mig-3s of 120 IAP.

The plane looks to have a silverish look; a similar impression is given by the MiGs (cropped out in this image). So, it is difficult to say if silver lacquer was utilized instead of white paint, or it is all a joke of the light.

The plane was built in Z.18, as recognizable for the balance weights on the wings, typical of metallic consoles; the plane looks to have the barrels of VYa-23 guns.

The color of the number 2 on the rudder can be hypothetically assumed as red. The stars and number seem painted over the winter layer, also because the fuselage star looks wider than the typical ones painted on in factory 18. The underwing star seems particularly large too.

Image: Zaika, via V. Timoshenko

Good photo, likely of the same plane, that looks to confirm the use of silver paint instead of the usual white for its winter camouflage.

Note that the truck, although painted white, hasn't the same shining look, so it can hardly be justified as an illusion due to light conditions.

A reconstruction of this plane, supposed to have a silver winter camouflage.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

Red 22 is unusual for the position of its bort number. The winter painting has survived intact the cold season, so it could be made with white nitro paint instead of washable paint.

The plane looks produced by Zavod 18 in early 1942, as suggested by the position and size of stars and the damages on the wing leading edge that looks metallic. The balance horn seems lost during the crash landing.

 

 

Il-2 Silver 6 flown by Snr.Lt. A.I.Borodin of 504. ShAP (74. GShAP – Guards Assault Aviation Regiment – from 18 March 1943),
Stalingrad front, winter 1942/43.

The plane features the late type metal wings and, probably, the VV-1 aiming device, whose probe looks vaguely visible on the photo, and the PBP-1 is clearly absent inside the windshield.

The smaller image let see how soft is the transition line between the temporary white finish on the rear fuselage and the black-green camouflaged nose; unfortunately, the camo pattern is unrecognizable on these photos.

The bort number 6 is probably silver, because of its strong change in darkness with the angulation of the photo.

(from Viktor Publishing, IL-2 part 1)

 

 

A reconstruction of White 6.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

Plane of unknown unit.

The position of the star, close to the tail, suggests it was built in Z.18.

A red 17 (or 43 with odd font?) is visible on the fuselage side.

Image via Vitaliy Timoshenko

 

Image of planes of 996 ShAP, Kalinin front, on 31 January 1942.

The red inscription means Yaroslavskij Komsomolet (the youngs communist organizations of Yaroslav, that donated funds for 20 planes). Their gift included both single-seaters and two-seaters; probably their donation arrived when the production was being converted to the newer type.

Under the dark covers, the noses are probably painted white. Note that the white washable paint MK-7 covers even the prop blades.

These planes are known to have been built in Zavod 30 (and then with wooden wings).

The red star in low-aft position was seen on some photos of other planes built in this factory.

(From Squadron-Signal, Ilyushin Il-2 in action)

http://yarportal.ru/topic509870s0.html

 

A reconstruction of this plane.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

A plane with a damaged wooden wing and 20 mm guns in winter 1942/43. It's unknown if it was of Z.1 or 30.

Note the VV-1 on the nose. It's possible that this plane has a dust filter on the wing root intake.

 

 

Downed 'white 6' in winter 1942/43.

The plane looks produced in Zavod 18 in mid/late 1942, being the VV-1 external gunsight well visible on the nose.

The winter camouflage made with small white dots is remarkable.

 

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of White 6..

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

 

Very interesting photo of an Il-2 with a 'worms' winter camouflage on the fuselage, made with a thin brush. What can be seen of the wing root seems to show it painted with a solid layer of white. The tail looks have not received any winter camo.

The fuselage star seems to have some relatively dark outline, perhaps matt silver or yellow. The star on the tail looks to have remains of a white outline.

Very few can be seen from this photo. The plane was drawn as a z.18 example of early 1942.

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of Red 4.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

Il-2 red 55 of N.G.Stepanyan, 57 PShAP. VVS KBF, Baltic/Leningrad area, date unknown (presumably 1942).

The photo shows the central part of the fuselage, the red 55 with white outline and the star with white outline that suggests a plane built by Z.18. The underlying camouflage is unrecognizable, but the plane appears oversprayed with faint blotches of white washable paint, partially extended over the markings.

On the drawing, the presence of the intake filter, aiming lines and VV-1 is merely hypothetical.

Thanks to Vitaliy Timoshenko for the informations and the image.

At a first look, this image gives the idea that the plane has a mirror and support for a fixed rearward firing machine gun, but the exam of another photo and some unconsistencies let to abandon this idea; the supposed mirror and support are illusions due to war damages.

Most likely, the plane is built in late 1942, and shows the VV-1 aiming device, the air filter on the wingroot intake and white aiming lines painted on the nose; the use of ShVAK 20 mm guns, recognizable for the smaller barrels than usual VYa-23, and the position of the star on the fuselage suggest a plane built in Z.1 with wooden wings.

The clean winter finish has saved the part around the stars and the canopy, probably to avoid masking. The stars don't have the usual white outline of planes of Z.18. A very small light number (possibly a white 6) looks visible on the rudder, on the part not covered by white paint.

 

A reconstruction of this plane.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

 

This photo of Il-2, probably dated in winter 1942/43, seems to represent a plane obtained by joining a rear fuselage and tail from one plane with the front fuselage and wings of another one.

The plane looks a single seater of late production, equipped with VV-1 external gunsight and possibly with an air filter on the supercharger's intake.

The camouflage of the rear fuselage in particular, the shape of the black band on the tail) suggest that the plane (or at least this part) was built in Factory n.1 in Kuybyshev, while the damaged outer wing edge seems to be wooden, coherently with the same origin.

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of Red 5.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

 

 

 

This plane downed in winter 1941/42 has the 4-stacks exhaust pipes typical of Zavod 1. It is partially covered with MK-7 winter washable paint.

Unfortunately a part of the rudder is missing, probably due to AA fire, and an eventual bort number is lost.

Light aiming lines are visible on the nose.

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of this plane; the bort number, if any, was omitted.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

 

The white winter finish follows roughly the black bands of the typical camo scheme of Z.30.

The nose looks to have a fresh black repainting with a strange division line between blue and black, and a clean white band behind the spinner. The white paint seems a durable one.

.Having z.30 started the production of Il-2s in the spring 1942, the photo can be dated in the winter 1942/43.

The plane has the dust filter on the intake, as sometimes seen on late single-seaters.

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of White 803.

Click on the profile to see a page with a larger 3 views drawing and further photos.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

.:

 

 

 

This Il-2, probably photographed in 1944, is interesting because combines elements of 1942 (the plane itself and its camouflage) with other ones of late 1943/44 (the marks). The white outline on its tail and some traces of winter finish make this plane even more interesting. The base camo looks that of Zavod 30..It's possible, but not sure, that this plane was equipped with a dust filter on the carburetor's intake.

Image from www.luftwaffe.be

 

 

 

 

A reconstruction of this plane; the bort number, if any, was omitted.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

 

 

 

Single-seater Il-2 red (?) 7 of 174 ShAP on Leningrad front. The plane seems built in Z.1.

Photos doesn't agree on the date; some sources date it 1942, but the type of star suggests a photo taken in winter 1943/44. On the other hand, all the planes of the flight are singleseaters, and this seems to confirm the date of 1942 or early 1943.

It's hard to say if the red stars with wide white outline had the thin red outline too. Probably not.

The front of the spinner appears light on some photos, dark and gloss on other ones; reports of veterans describe it as blue.

The plane features an interesting partial winter scheme, a red 7 with thin white outline, some light brown patches visible on the tail and a strange blackish zone under the rear fuselage and tail, probably due to exhaust stains; it's likely that black hides the original red star.

Note the swept back aerial mast.

From Red Stars of Geust, Keskinen, syenman- Ed. Apali

Thanks to Vitaliy Timoshenko

 

 

A reconstruction of this plane.

Click on the profile to see a 3 views drawing.

An higher resolution version of this artwork will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.

Planes with skis

 

 

Il-2 s/n 381417 with non-retractable ski installation at the state tests in January 1942. This is a rare plane built in Zavod 281.

The plane features an early unarmored canopy and an early type metal wing with well visible balance weights for ailerons and wingtips.

All the upper and side surfaces are painted with Mk-1 washable white distemper.

(From Ilyushin Il-2 by Oleg Rastrenin)

 

 

This photo of black 6, probably of 62th ShAP, shows a plane built in z.18 with retractable ski gear.

Note the late type metal wing with VYa-23 guns and extended landing gear nacelles to fit the retracted ski.

Below: an Il-2 with retractable ski gear in flight.

(from Viktor Publishing, Il-2 part 1)

 

 

 

 

Reconstructions of two Il-2s with skis.

Click on any of the profiles to see a page with larger 3 view drawings and further photos of some Il-2s with skis.

Higher resolution versions of these artworks will be published on the book on Il-2 of Jason Moore.