Most Erla built Bf109G-10’s seems to have been camouflaged in the regular Luftwaffe camouflage scheme of RLM 74/75/76. A few colorphotographs as well as written descriptions in the “Crashed Enemy Aircraft Reports” supports this.
Beginning somewhere in the 151xxx W.Nr batch another scheme was introduced that stands out clearly against the regular schemes. These schemes must have been the results of the requirements on factories to save on both labour and raw materials. The entire fuselages including the undersurface was painted in a very dark color, most likely RLM 81. In some instances a second lighter color, that if the rules were applied, would have been RLM 82 was sprayed on top of the RLM81 to create a camouflage pattern. Such a scheme gives a very low contrast in B&W photos and is often hard to discern.The wings of these aircraft were also painted in the same dark color on the uppersurfaces, while the undersurfaces were left in natural metal with only wooden and canvas components painted RLM 76.
The latewar colors
Docuements recently found in German archives by Michael Ullmann has revealed some startling facts about the so called latewar colors. RLM 83 was according to these documents not a dark green as has been previously believed, but rather a dark blue color intended for use at unit level on bombers operating over the Mediterranean sea.
So the latewar colors seen on fighters must have been different variations of RLM 81 and RLM 82. The documents found by Ullmann shows that RLM 81 and RLM 82 were both developed from green colors, RLM 81 being described as Olive Green while RLM 82 was described as Bright Green. The document goes on to describe that new colors 81 and 82 (Brown tint) were introduced as well. This points to brown versions of BOTH RLM 81 and RLM 82 being tested.
There is little doubt that a green version of RLM 81 was produced as there’s even been a can found in the Czech republic labeled 81 but containing a dark green paint. So most likely, instead of a transition period where RLM 83/82 schemes were replaced with RLM 81/82, it now seems as if it was RLM 81/82 all the time, but that the RLM 81 changed from dark green (or olive green) to brown violet.
The so called 83/81 scheme would, following the same logic, be dark green RLM 81 with brown tint RLM 82. There’s no proof of this but it could certainly explain why there’s a brown color that is slightly darker than green 81 but also a brown significantly lighter than green 81.
That would mean that an RLM 81/82 scheme could actually be a number of combinations and for the Erla built G-10’s I’ve used Olive Green and Bright Green as that’s the combination that would likely give the lowest contrast. Until a colorphoto emerges of these aircraft, these theories are as close as one can get.
For modeling purposes, the olive green or dark green is matched by most brands by the “RLM 83” designation, Gunze for example being spot on. LifeColor has an RLM 81 that they call Brown Violet but in reality it is dark green. Green RLM 81 is also matched by RAL 6006 and FS 34083.