Author Topic: douglas paint colours  (Read 11244 times)

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Offline derbybloke

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douglas paint colours
« on: 05 Oct 2005 at 13:53 »
hi
does anybody know the closest modern equivalent to Douglas silver and blue - its for a 1920 4hp 600cc - thanks

Offline alwyn

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Re: douglas paint colours
« Reply #1 on: 31 Oct 2005 at 12:20 »
hi
does anybody know the closest modern equivalent to Douglas silver and blue - its for a 1920 4hp 600cc - thanks

Sorry you didn't get a response to this question before now - I think it's one best answered by the paint manufacturers - if you have access to a sample, perhaps a petrol tank or another part bearing both colours you could refer it to them - otherwise you might put the question to the London Douglas Motorcycle Club to see if they have paint manufacturers' colour reference numbers recorded. Assuming you are not a member of that organisation I will e-mail the question for you - watch this topic for a further response.

Alwyn
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Offline alwyn

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Re: douglas paint colours
« Reply #2 on: 04 Nov 2005 at 01:21 »
...otherwise you might put the question to the London Douglas Motorcycle Club to see if they have paint manufacturers' colour reference numbers recorded. Assuming you are not a member of that organisation I will e-mail the question for you... Alwyn

Dave and all,
I have received a response from Chris Wright at LDMCC in regards to the paint question. With Chris's kind permission his response is quoted in its entirety below.
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Quote
"What Colour Should It Be?
   I asked this question when I purchased my first flat-tank Douglas, namely a 1925 CW that had been very badly painted and using stuck on plastic strips for the lining of the tank panels. From an impeccable source who had been restoring Douglas petrol flat-tanks for many years, I was informed that the Silver background to the petrol tank should be Vauxhall Sebring Silver Starmist with a formulation No 3896. The blue for the panels generally accepted to be Oxford Blue should be Rootes Oxford Blue with a formulation No 2371. It was thought that these “modern” colours were a good representation of the original Douglas colours for the 2¾ and 4hp models and other flat tank and early saddle tank models. There is some evidence to suggest that at least some models of later machines in the 1930s did have a slightly lighter colour blue especially on the models with large blue panels on their saddle tank and indeed, I have used a lighter colour on my Endeavour tank and Bantam tank and side panels.
   The colours listed above were easily and cheaply available from motor accessory shops in small or large Aerosol spray cans as the relevant car models were current. As time went by, the vehicle models using these colours disappeared or became collector’s items and the spray cans disappeared from the shelves. However, at any good automotive paint shop, books of plastic swatches for virtually any previously manufactured colour are available with catalogues defining their formulation and both of these colours are still listed. With Rootes, not only the spray can colours became obsolete but the company followed them. They originally made and distributed Hillman, Humber, Sunbeam and other makes of car. A later incarnation of the company before extinction was “Talbot” and the paint name was changed. I have examples of both Rootes Oxford Blue and Talbot Oxford Blue and cannot detect any difference. Vauxhall cars are of course still available in Britain as products of General Motors.
   The paint I used originally was Cellulose Enamel made by “Viton” and carried the formulation numbers above. My local paint shop then changed its supplier to “Lechler Coatings” with a product described as Extralucido Nitro-Synthetic Lacquer and the formulation numbers changed. Talbot Oxford Blue became 102 and Vauxhall Sebring Silver Starmist became 8WH. 
   These colours can be mixed and supplied either in bulk by the litre for gun spraying or filled into aerosol spray cans. The cans holding 400ml. are quite adequate for spraying a flat-tank. You will almost certainly use a full can for the silver whereas one aerosol can is sufficient to spray the blue panels on several of the early tanks.
   As Pre-1945 Spares Secretary for the past 5 years I have been asked many times about colours to use by members restoring these old machines and have consistently given the above advice even to the extent of sending sprayed swatches to overseas members to get colours mixed locally to match. I cannot swear to the originality of either colour but I do not think at this stage that it matters too much. Consistency is now more important and certainly a very large number of machines restored over the last 25 to 30 years now carry these colours. By definition, if all machines become the same colour then that becomes the standard. There are some machines with very light coloured blue panels. I believe these to be incorrect as light blue is in fact Cambridge Blue. No doubt some members will be incensed by this view and defend the originality of their machine.
   As a matter of interest, I have a rectangular can of paint believed to originate from the Douglas factory in the 1920s measuring 3½”wide x 3½“high x 1½”thick with a top circular filler neck sealed with a rolled over metal cap. It is quite rusty with the remains of a faded typed label on which can be made out “Douglas Motors Ltd  BLUE xxxxxxxx (paper damaged here) and Supplied by xxxxxxxxxx (indistinct). The contents are still liquid. It has never been opened and is probably unique. I have not been able to bring myself to destroy it by opening it to see what shade of blue paint it holds.   Chris J Wright"

So far so good! I believe Lechler Coatings to be basically a French company but have commenced discussion with stockists of their products in the UK to determine the current availability and prices of the paint and will keep the forum informed via this topic as further information comes to hand. Chris has mentioned that he intends to arrange re-publication of the information in a future edition of NCR.

We are appreciative if Chris's help in this matter.

Alwyn
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Offline Dirt Track

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Re: douglas paint colours
« Reply #3 on: 05 Nov 2005 at 21:27 »
G'day all
Manufacturers generally used "British Standard Colours", I suppose occasionally factories came up with their own colours but I think this was rare.
Surely there is a complete list of BSC's somewhere?
Howard.

Offline alwyn

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Re: douglas paint colours
« Reply #4 on: 06 Nov 2005 at 03:06 »
Surely there is a complete list of BSC's somewhere? Howard.

G'day Howard,
Perhaps we could search for British Standards and attempt to identify a close standard colour to what we think it might have been but I don't think that eliminates the guesswork as to what actually was the colour used on the early Douglases - also it's a matter of doubt in my mind as to whether there were BS standards in existence during the period of early Douglas production but it shouldn't be too hard to determine that - having achieved that however and found a 'Standard' applicable to the era, it may be still subjective as to which 'standard' colour was applicable, (if indeed a 'Standard' colour might have been used as you suspect). A lot of 'ifs' there and before we go off on that track I prefer to wait on responses from the Lechler products stockists that I have contacted - I have thus far at least, received a read receipt for one of the e-mails I sent - I'll keep the forum posted.
Alwyn
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Offline alwyn

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Re: douglas paint colours
« Reply #5 on: 26 Nov 2005 at 00:21 »

So far so good! I believe Lechler Coatings to be basically a French company but have commenced discussion with stockists of their products in the UK to determine the current availability and prices of the paint and will keep the forum informed via this topic as further information comes to hand. Chris has mentioned that he intends to arrange re-publication of the information in a future edition of NCR. We are appreciative if Chris's help in this matter. Alwyn Global Mod.

Hi all,
I eventually received a response from Rotherham Refinishing Supplies (UK), stockists of Lechler Coatings, to my question regarding the paint colours - I did request colour formulations with a view to reproducing the correct colours here in Australia but unfortunately that aspect has not been addressed in the reply received which is quoted below...

Quote
Dear Alwyn - We are Lechler stockists and supply Extralucido at the time of this e mail, as you will be aware due to the VOC contents of paint this product will not be manufactured in the near future. The price of Extralucido is £17.72 per 1 ltr.
Aerosols are  £7.98 per each. The above prices do not include a delivery and will be added on to any orders. Regards
Brian Harrison. 

PS from January 2007 all products produced for topcoats will be water based and the formulations you require will probably have to be formulated in this product.if you require any more information please do not hesitate to contact me.

VOC is an acronym for Volatile Organic Compound(s) which come under the control of certain emission control legislation in most countries including our own. Harrison has not said whether the remaining stock offered is available in the colours we Douglas enthusiasts wish to preserve - has anyone got a current repaint job for which they would be prepared to buy an aerosal can from Rotherham's - I'm sure given a sample, my Dulon (manufactured by PPG Industries in Victoria) stockist would match the colour perfectly as he did the Mist Green for my recent (relatively) BSA Bantam restoration.

Alwyn
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Quotable Quote - "640 k should be enough for anybody"! - Bill Gates - 1981.