Soviet Red Army Camouflage Pattern of World War Two, 1939–1945

Soviet vehicle camouflage patterns

Soviet T-70 light tank, based on earlier T-40, and T-60 light tanks. The vehicle was up-armoured, and up-gunned to keep pace with German armour developments, but it was soon found that the T-34 medium tank was fast, and maneuverable enough to take on the T-70's reconnaissance role. As T-34 production increased, the T-70 was withdrawn from Soviet tank brigades, though it continued to serve in other formations, particularly with Soviet allies. The Wehrmacht also used many captured T-70 tanks in the reconnaissance role. The model is a 1:76 US Casts resin kit from the collection of Patrick Storto.

Basic Vehicle Patterns

  • Russian Green
  • Russian Green & White
  • Russian Green & Dark Earth
  • Winter Whitewash
  • British Standard Middle Bronze Green
  • Federal Standard Olive Drab

AER, a Moldavian manufacturer of 1:72 scale Soviet vehicles, recommends Humbrol No. 114 as the closest match for Russian green. AER box illustrations show a ZIS-5 truck with approximately 80 % winter whitewash over a Russian green base. Another variant has broad diagonal bands of Humbrol No. 29 dark earth over the same Russian green base. Wheel rims are painted Russian green.

Russian Green Pattern

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Matt Russian Green 114 WP7832 894
Standard vehicle base colour, factory applied. Whitewashed or painted matt white in winter.

Russian Green & Dark Earth Disruptive Pattern

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Matt Russian Green 114 WP7832 894
Matt Dark Earth 29* E 6603 XF52 H29 873
Broad diagonal bands of matt dark earth covering 50 % of the vehicle body, leaving broad bands of the Russian green base colour. Recommended for ZIS-5 and ZIS-5.V trucks produced by AER of Moldavia.

Russian Green & White Disruptive Pattern

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Matt Russian Green 114 WP7832 894
Matt White 34* E 0053 XF2 H11 A47 951
Broad diagonal bands of matt white covering 80 % of the vehicle body, leaving narrow stripes of the Russian green base colour. Recommended for ZIS-5 and ZIS-5.V trucks produced by AER of Moldavia.

Three-Colour Disruptive Pattern

Colour Designation Humbrol Testors Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Matt Forest Green 150 1714 A34 890
Matt Tan 118 1567 874
Matt Light Grey 64 1740 H22 870
Three-colour camouflage pattern recommended by the Ukrainian firm SKIF who produce the 57 mm ZIS-2 anti-tank gun and 76 mm ZIS-3 divisional gun in 1:72 scale.

Winter Camouflage

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Matt Russian Green 114 WP7832 894
Matt White 34* E 0053 XF2 H11 A47 951
Vehicle painted white or simply whitewashed over a Russian green base coat. Whitewash and white paint would rub off with use, revealing the base coat. Road wheels would be painted white, but the lower hull sides inside the running gear might have been left unpainted on occasion. Please refer to our article on Winter Paint Schemes for a step-by-step painting guide.

Lend-Lease British Standard Middle Bronze Green

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Middle Bronze Green 30* XF26 / XF58 895
Original paint seen on British lend-lease vehicles, like Matilda, Valentine, and Churchill tanks or Universal carriers.

Lend-Lease Federal Standard Olive Drab

Colour Designation Humbrol Model-Master* Tamiya* Gunze* Pactra* vallejo*
Olive Drab FS 34087 155 E 7873 H304 A30 887
Original paint seen on American lend-lease vehicles, like Stuart, and Sherman tanks, Jeeps, trucks, and White scout cars.

* Acrylic paint.

Scale Colour

A paint chip taken from an historic armoured vehicle may very well be the same olive drab or panzer grey colour which the hobbyist can purchase from Revell and Humbrol today, but it would be a mistake to paint 1:72 scale models in this way. When viewed from a distance, the actual vehicle exposed to sunlight will appear much lighter than a small model painted in the same colour. Dust settling on the vehicle can highlight the overall colour even further, sometimes completely obliterating the camouflage effect and making it impossible to hide the vehicle against the dark background of a treeline or forest.

The scale colour concept allows the model builder to simulate this effect. The authentic base colour is used as an undercoat, preferably sprayed on, to speed up the painting process. The undercoat should be left to dry before additional paint is applied. Mix the base colour with white to highlight it and then drybrush it onto the vehicle. The raised surfaces of the model will pick up the highlight just like the real vehicle picks up sunlight. Viewed next to eachother, at the appropriate scale distance, of course, both vehicles will appear to be the same size and their overall colour should be similar, depending on the intensity of natural lighting the modeller wishes to recreate. Drybrushing can be done in several layers, using more white each time. A final layer of dust grey can be applied to simulate the cumulative effect which a dusty road march would have on the vehicle and its crew.

Frequently Asked Questions

For further information and updates, please join us on facebook or in the Miniatures Forum.

Soviet Red Army Miniatures of World War Two