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Why No Paint On Wings?  
User currently offlineA380900 From France, joined Dec 2003, 1118 posts, RR: 1
Posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5513 times:

It looks that the wings of airliners are all gray and never entirely painted like the fuselage. They are also always the same color. Why is it? Is it really always? Any pics of airliners with painted wings?



28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineTs-ior From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 3492 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5493 times:


It would reduce the aerodynamic performance of wings may be ?


User currently offlineKaddyuk From Wallis and Futuna, joined Nov 2001, 4126 posts, RR: 25
Reply 2, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 5450 times:

It is to reduce weight...

Do you know how much paint weighs... a TON! litteraly... And who is actually going to see it? no one on the approach cos they are below the wings and anyone on the aeroplane already knows about the airline they are flying on.




Whoever said "laughter is the best medicine" never had Gonorrhea
User currently offlineINNflight From Switzerland, joined Apr 2004, 3767 posts, RR: 60
Reply 3, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 5427 times:

I can understand this, but look at the rudder of Germanwings ( just as an example ) ... why do they paint the fins? There, really NOBODY can see it. Useless IMO.


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Photo © Guido Latz



regards, Florian



Jet Visuals
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 5376 times:

Do you know how much paint weighs... a TON! litteraly...

Not quite.

IIRC, the paint job (on a 772 in this case) countributes just over 400lb to the aircraft's weight.


User currently offlineCitationJet From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 2469 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 5361 times:

INNflight,
What do you mean nobody can see the painted rudder?
EVERYONE can see the rudder, except the 100 people onboard the aircraft. Based on your argument, the same goes for ANY painted surface such as the fuselage.
If nobody sees the painted rudders, then why do airlines spend money to put tail "logo lights" on the vertical tail?

[Edited 2004-05-05 18:54:18]


Boeing Flown: 701,702,703;717;720;721,722;731,732,733,734,735,737,738,739;741,742,743,744,747SP;752,753;762,763;772,773.
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 5341 times:

Wings usually are painted..............


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Photo © E.S. / FAP - Finnish Aviation Photography




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Photo © Gabe Pfeiffer




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Photo © Marian Musil



User currently offlineFlightSimFreak From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 720 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 5299 times:

What are you talking about... The rudder is probably the most seen part of the aircraft, especially over fences or through a sea of jetways, other aircraft, and ground equipment. The rudder is practically a billboard for the airline.

User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8766 posts, RR: 42
Reply 8, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 5295 times:

Either Florian was facetiously talking about the rudder, or seriously talking about the horizontal stabilisers.

By the way, this looks painted:
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Photo © Vasco Garcia
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Photo © Jean Christophe MONTAUT




Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineWilco From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 355 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 5282 times:

This has been discussed time and time again over in civil aviation.... general consensus was that the weight/labor costs was more than the marketing potential.

Livery is marketing

Of course we are talking about livery painting, not just any old paint. obviously all wings have sort of coating painted on, usually a solid bland color.

So ask this question.... why isn't the roof of trains, buses or trucks painted? Well they are painted with a basic coat but not with a corporate logo/livery....

As for passengers in the plane... their viewing angle is insufficient to take-in a wing livery.... HOWEVER a wingtip at 90 degrees is ideal.... no surprise that these wingtips are often the only part of the wing structure with livery.

regards,
WILCO




"Ever seen a grown man naked?"
User currently offlineQantasA332 From Australia, joined Dec 2003, 1500 posts, RR: 25
Reply 10, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 5262 times:

It would reduce the aerodynamic performance of wings maybe?

To put it bluntly, no. Even 'unpainted' wings have a finish (of sorts) applied, and this finish is almost completely -- if not completely -- identical to paint in terms of causing skin friction drag. Even between bare metal and paint, differences in drag would be quite tiny. Rather, as everyone else has said, there are so few painted wings simply because of their high weight penalty. For a surface that is, for the most part, not highly visible, paint is a waste...

Cheers,
QantasA332


User currently offlineGreasespot From Canada, joined Apr 2004, 3086 posts, RR: 20
Reply 11, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 5238 times:

We used to have painted wings at 7F.......But the skydrol leaking from actuators peeled the paint and looks terrible.......at least with bare wings you just wipe them off...I believe some of our 737's have painted wings still..........

GS



Sometimes all you can do is look them in the eye and ask " how much did your mom drink when she was pregnant with you?"
User currently offlineMr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2787 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 5228 times:

Hi guys.

Then you have airlines with every inch of their aircraft painted (except for static ports, antennas, etc) such as this Virgine Blue 737-8 (VH-VOH).

The wings are painted ..........


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Photo © Helmut Bierbaum



The engines are painted ..........


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Photo © Helmut Bierbaum



The whole fuselage is painted ..........


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Photo © Montague Smith



Regarding the vertical tail & rudder being a billboard for an airline, this type of advertising has to be one of the best! Big grin


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Photo © Tim Samples




Chris  Smile




"Just a minute while I re-invent myself"
User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 13, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 5222 times:

What are you guys going on about, NOBODY said the RUDDER is not seen!

I figure from a non-technical point of view, nobody 'sees' the wing. that is why so many layfolks think it is the engine that gets the plane off the ground because along the sideprofile, no wing is visible to the layeye. They see the wing, but they don't 'see' it, like with their brain, as if it was supposed to do something...

From an advertising spec, there is no point to paint the wing, 'less you a combat plane, and your top/side profile interchange daily. Big grin



The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
User currently offlineMr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2787 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 5209 times:

Hi guys.

>> A380900, I guess this is what you probably mean by wings that don't have a nice "shinny" coating of paint on them. They look rather dull.


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Photo © Matthew Lee - Contrails Aviation Photography
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Photo © Matthew Lee - Contrails Aviation Photography




Chris  Smile



"Just a minute while I re-invent myself"
User currently offlineCitationJet From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 2469 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 5181 times:

Lehpron,
See Reply 3



Boeing Flown: 701,702,703;717;720;721,722;731,732,733,734,735,737,738,739;741,742,743,744,747SP;752,753;762,763;772,773.
User currently offlineINNflight From Switzerland, joined Apr 2004, 3767 posts, RR: 60
Reply 16, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 5098 times:

Sorry guys, I apologize, I was talking about the horizontal stabilisers... shame on me!

regards, Florian



Jet Visuals
User currently offlineGoAllegheny From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 340 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 5048 times:

So what is the purpose of painting the top of a wing, even if it is a bland gray paint? Corrosion prevention? Something else?

User currently offlineAirplay From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 5039 times:

Finishing any surface with a protective coating is a good idea just like the wings, most of which are painted.

This prevents the loss and damage of the aluminum cladding of the airframe parts by air erosion and cleaning.

The pure aluminum cladding on the aluminum alloy skin is very thin and can be rubbed off.

With respect to composite parts (graphite, carbon fibre, fibreglass/kevlar) a protective coating prevents exposure to sunlight that can degrade the materials and from ingress of moisture through scratches and gouges.

Think of how long the wood on your house would last without some protective coating.

Of course some parts need to remain unpainted such as leading edges and engine intakes. These parts are made of stainless steel or some other durable material or are sometimes plated with chrome or other protective coating.


User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17180 posts, RR: 66
Reply 19, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 4770 times:

And so the conclusion is, as usual, $$$ and cents.


"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineCadmus From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2004, 187 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 4684 times:

This is the most 'famous' example of painted wings that I could think of.

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Photo © Lars Söderström


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Photo © Eduard Marmet


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Photo © Steve Williams


It's a pity it wasn't carried over into BA (although I believe a campaign was started).



Understanding is a three-edged sword
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31712 posts, RR: 56
Reply 21, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 5 hours ago) and read 4655 times:

Apart from the Weight gain with no purpose & secondly Paint has a tendency to peel out with time & airflow.Hydraulic leaks can cause pain peeling too.
regds
HAWK



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineSuper Em From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 448 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (10 years 7 months 14 hours ago) and read 4492 times:

Quick question. Why is it that on some JAL planes, they paint their reg # over or under the wing?

User currently offlineContinental From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 5521 posts, RR: 18
Reply 23, posted (10 years 7 months 14 hours ago) and read 4497 times:

I've noticed the regs. on wings as well, I think it's to offer different views if you can't see the reg. on the back, it's easier to see. It's not on just JAL planes, I know Swiss have some, and Air Tahiti Nui does as well, there are probably plenty of others...

User currently offlineSmcmac32msn From United States of America, joined May 2004, 2211 posts, RR: 4
Reply 24, posted (10 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 4352 times:

I've noticed the regs. on wings as well

Most, if not all Mexican planes I've seen have had their regs' on the top and bottom of each wing. As well as on the tail. I was wondering if this was something that the Mexican CAA (Not sure of the exact name) requires of all the Mexican registered aircraft. Any other countries that we know of that do this?



Hey Obama, keep the change! I want my dollar back.
25 FLYtoEGCC : Since Florian has since posted that he was talking about the horizontal stabilisers and not the fin and rudder... I'm no expert, but might I suggest t
26 Post contains links and images Arcano : As posted Color scheme is mostly a matter of marketing. On a wing, the only people that get to what it would be the passenger: those who already paid
27 Post contains links and images Continental : How about the Mesa Air (America West Express) CRJs?? View Large View MediumPhoto © Jay Piboontum Their wings are covered in paint!
28 B727-200 : Ansett used to paint the wings of their aircraft entirely white. The only exception to this was the B744's. When they had the B743's, it was quite an
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