Notes About Luftwaffe Colors

by Martin Waligorski

As a modeller returning to the hobby after several years’ inactivity, I found a whole new world of research about aircraft colors. During the seventies, every Luftwaffe aircraft model could be painted PLM 70/71/65 ”for accuracy”, and RAF Sky was still referred to as Duck Egg Blue or Duck Egg Green, depending on the mood. Now, everything has changed. References are better researched. We have also new modelling paints in authentic colors, so we don’t need to ”map” everything to available Humbrol colors.

Now, the question is, what are the correct color shades? I wanted to get a better idea about how the RLM 02 or Braunviolett looked like. So I bought myself a Federal Standard chart and started browsing through some books and magazines. I made notes from what I found, and these are presented in the table below. I use this table as a guide when i pick or mix the paint for my models. Please note that I’m not saing that these are the proper FS matches for Luftwaffe colors. I have simply written them down from various sources. You may also note that some colors in the table have more than one FS number. This means that i found that different sources quote different FS numbers for these colors. You can decide for yourself which one is the best for you.

With these reservations I must say that this table certainly gave me a much better idea about the actual Luftwaffe colors than any kit’s instructions. If you find it useful, enjoy.


RLM Color Name

Possible Federal Standard match

RLM01 Silber


RLM02 Grau


RLM04 Gelb


RLM05 Elfenbein


RLM09/99 Gelbgrun

RLM21 Weiss

37880, 37875

RLM22 Schwarz


RLM23 Rot

31304, 31302

RLM24 Dunkelblau


RLM25 Hellgrun

34241, 34250, 34115

RLM26 Braun


RLM27 Gelb

33655, 33591

RLM28 Weinrot


RLM61 Dunkelbraun

30109, 30117

RLM62 Grun

34148, 31128

RLM63 Hellgrau

36314, 36559

RLM65 Hellblau

35526, 35414

RLM66 Schwarzgrau


RLM70 Schwarzgrun

34050, 34052

RLM71 Dunkelgrun

34079, 34086, 34095

RLM72 Dunkelseegrau

34056, 34058

RLM73 Seegrun

34092, 34159

RLM74 Dunkelgrau

36081, 36086, 36118

RLM75 Grauviolett


RLM76 Hellgrau


RLM77 Lichtgrau

36493, 36492

RLM78 Azurblau

35414, 35450

RLM79a Sandgelb

30219, 33434

RLM79b Sandbraun

30118, 30125

RLM80 Olivgrun

34102, 34096

RLM81 Braunviolett

34088, 30040

RLM82 Dunkelgrun

34096, 34092

RLM83 Hellgrun


RLM84 Graugrun

34201, 34432



This article was originally published in IPMS Stockholm Magazine in January 1997.