Topic Author
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2001 10:25 am

southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 1:41 am

Can anyone provide sites or info. on aircraft paint schemes, particulary southwests?
Posts: 6633
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 11:10 am

RE: southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 3:37 am

Well, just to see them you can search for the airlines right here on
Posts: 4224
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 3:49 am

RE: southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 3:38 am

I'm not sure what info you need, but it has an interesting history. The concept for Southwest started in the late '60s and after a lot of wrangling SW finally got going in 1971 or 72 with a handful of routes. You may wonder what this tidbit has to do with colors, but Texas Intl. and Braniff, who basically had monopolies on certain segments of thje Lone Star State, gave SW a really hard time, and things went to court in order to get SW started. Anyhow, as part of the settlement, Braniff had to supply paint to SW. The colors SW uses -- an ochre, orange and red -- were originally the same ochre, red, and orange that BN used in its pastel schemes of the late 1960s. Over the years, SW has varied the shades, especially the ochre, but the idea is the same.

SW is aware that the scheme looks a bit dated (it's not horrid, but certainly is a relic of the 70s) but they feel it is extremely identifiable with their product, so they are reluctant to change it.
CV990, the Maserati of the skies!

RE: southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 4:15 am

Well, check this site, as flyf15 already suggested. Also, you may wish to visit Southwest's Web Site.

This is a pic from their site. "All 4 schemes in one..."
Posts: 955
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:59 am

RE: southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 5:38 am

In addition to the picture above, they have an all-purple "triple crown" scheme, a "California" theme done to look like the state flag, and and all-silver themed plane with no paint save the tail. They're all probably in the archives in

Also, to tell a Southwest 737-700 from afar, look at the flap fairings on the trailing edge of the wing. Only on the -700 are they painted red.

There are three 737-300s painted in the Shamu theme. I have to say that the Shamu scheme is the most asinine paint job in the history of commercial aviation. It's even worse than the old WesPac schemes with the scantily-clothed women on the tails.
Topic Author
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2001 10:25 am

RE: southwest paint scheme

Thu Dec 10, 1998 6:22 am

Thank you cv990 that s understandable. I just finished a book about SW (Nuts) and visited their web site and many others, but no explanation about their odd colors

Popular Searches On

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos