Easiest colors to see - RC Groups
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May 24, 2005, 01:54 PM
Registered User

Easiest colors to see

My last plane, an Acrophat was covered with a translucent orange and was always impossible for me to tell which way it was oriented. I'm stepping down to an easier to fly t-52 for my second plane and want to know what coloring suggestions people have to make it easy to see.

I was planning on ordering 2 colors of tape and covering the top and bottom of the wing opposite colors but i'm not sure which colors are most visible in the sky.
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May 24, 2005, 02:46 PM
Are you one of these
rcboatnut's Avatar
I have been told that the best thing to do is some pattern on one side and and solid color on the other, it makes for faster identification, different colors are better or worse in different lighting conditions. and when flying you will encounter many lighting conditions. thats my two cents worth.
May 24, 2005, 03:08 PM
Speed Addict
after flying my different strykers, I think I've come up with the best overall colors to keep orientated in most light conditions and I'll be implimenting this combo on my next build.. next week if I finally get a fuse

consists of: very dark colored top in what ever pattern you like (it's all going to be one dark color at distance anyways)
the bottom: the brightest white you can find with black windtips and nose...

what one needs is super contrast between top and bottom colors; black wingtips and nose with a jet white background should make the bottom very distinguishable during flight aerobatics. Especially with a dark colored top

well that's how I'm gonna hit mine anyways .. I tried bright yellow wingtip and nose on current stryker, and it all turns grey at dusk or even dull cloudy days.. the below pic I thought would be good ... not good at all
Last edited by Maine_Flyer; May 24, 2005 at 03:12 PM. Reason: add attachment
May 24, 2005, 03:55 PM
Registered User
Suggest Black onna Bottom And White on the Top..
Black has V highy visibilty and one really needs to notice if the thing is not showing you it's bottom :-)
May 24, 2005, 06:40 PM
Night Flying
Ron H's Avatar
Good info here. http://www.ultimatecharger.com/color.html
Coloring R/C Aircraft
May 24, 2005, 06:44 PM
Chillin till SEFF
bildo baggins's Avatar
I really like Yellow as it is easy for me to see. Bottom I like to do in the same color with orange or red stripes across the wing. Really shows up well.
May 24, 2005, 10:58 PM
Registered User
lensrc's Avatar
Acording to marketing guru's, red and yellow are the most visable combo. I have used it to great effect. I would beg to differ with the previous poster about using black on top, and a bright color on bottom. If you fly high enough, shadow will make the bottom of just about any colored plane dark grey or black. With a black top, you are left with no contrast. The only exception to this is open frameworks covered with translucent colors. They just glow in bright sunlight! So, I prefer the darker color on bottom, as it will "grey out" anyway. The bright color on top will be more effective in the sunlight. If your flying style does not include much altitude, the solid/pattern style works well.
May 25, 2005, 08:14 AM
gram obsessive
I just made a built up wing for my AP plane which I regularly fly at the limits of my vision to get good pictures. The top is red SoLite and the bottom is black and white stripes, (b-w-b-w-b from tip to tip.) I am very pleased with the results. It is easy to tell top from bottom, and the black and white is very visible, MUCH better than the stock Slow Stick wing.
May 25, 2005, 08:53 AM
Registered User
rcav8r2's Avatar
WEll everyone is different. One of the easiest colors for me to see is what the "experts" say is the worst... red. Yellow for me is the worst.

Best color combo I ever had was an all pink plane w/ white trim on the top. VERY easy to see in sunny, cloudy, hazy, rainy, snowy, etc conditions. Awhile back a fellow flying buddy was hunting at a fair distance from the field. He said he heard other planes, but my Kougar was the only one he saw Just don't land in a flowering field of CrownVetch.. You'll never find it
May 25, 2005, 08:55 AM
Registered User
flypaper 2's Avatar
What works well is the contrast. Light coloured top with dark bars going spanwise, somewhat like the sunburst pattern. Bottom with light base colour with dark, wide bars going chordwise.
May 25, 2005, 11:12 AM
Frequent Flyer
wattsup_kz's Avatar
You will find that your T-52 is very easy to find orientation with regardless of color. It has a high dihedral wing, tall fuse and good sized tail, all which help.
In addition it does not like to fly inverted at all.
Mine has a green fuselage with a white wing (top and bottom) with a green leading edge. It is my easiest to spot plane. I like to put it way up high and cruise around. At any longer distance, it appears all black.

May 25, 2005, 12:32 PM
Speed Addict
Originally Posted by lensrc
. I would beg to differ with the previous poster about using black on top, and a bright color on bottom. If you fly high enough, shadow will make the bottom of just about any colored plane dark grey or black. With a black top, you are left with no contrast.
I would have to respectfully dissagree lensrc, the entire white bottom "with black wingtips and nose" would be quite contrasting to a totally dark top.. the contrasting markings at the bottom will be quite visible... I quess it's impossible to get the perfect colors for all light conditions.. but what I am shooting for is contrast against the sky be it cloudy grey, or white clouds.. I do agree that shadowed bottom will be dark whether it's a dark or light color so the need for the contrasting pattern or wingtips (5-6inches) and nose is needed.. I could be way out in left field with my theory but I think it'll work well... I'll 'see' soon enough.. I also feel that the contrasting pattern of choice should not be too tight or the contrasting pattern at distance will blend to grey..

great thread!
May 25, 2005, 03:08 PM
Glue can fix that.
Brutus's Avatar
The link in post 5 is the definitive work on this subject. I have followed his guidelines and been very pleased.

here is a plane I tested it out on.
May 25, 2005, 06:20 PM
Registered User
jimsp's Avatar
Whatever color scheme you choose the bottom should be the dark color and the top the light color. The reason for this is that your brain because of sunlight has been programmed to think of the bottom of an object as dark and the top as being light. Not going against this programming makes it easier to get the orientation right as your plane is streaking across the sky.
May 25, 2005, 06:33 PM
A Clinger
rclark's Avatar
I find yellow as the 'best' so far . White is great in a blue sky ... but disappears on a gray one . On my Jitterbug, I added dark trim (dark green) to the top of my all white wing which helped a lot . Agree with above ... Light colors on top, darker on bottom ... I've also found that dark colors on leading edges is bad against a mountain background (dark) . Harder to see on final approach .... So all my 'new' builds will have light leading edges (white/yellow/red for example ) .

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