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Aircraft Serial Number Restoration Project.

Community Beginner ,
Jan 21, 2024 Jan 21, 2024

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I am trying to make legible some faded painted serial numbers on an old WW2 airplane. I have tried brushing with dehaze-clarity and texture and have been able to just make out some mumbers. I know there must be a better use of tools etc. I will attach the imge if that helps. The attched image is unedited.

 

Thanks in advance PeterDSCF8355 copy.jpeg

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Experiment , macOS

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Adobe
Community Expert ,
Jan 21, 2024 Jan 21, 2024

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Is that a B-24 Liberator?

 

The numbers look like

 

B-24 A,H, or R

503

 

 

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 22, 2024 Jan 22, 2024

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Hi Jeff its a Dauntless. Its going to be restored in NZ but the CAA need the serial to register. 

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Community Expert ,
Jan 22, 2024 Jan 22, 2024

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This looks tough to do with the posted photo...it’s hard to think of what tools will easily distinguish the characteristics of the paint from the metal.

 

It would be easier if there was a way of more clearly seeing where all the remaining paint fragments are. Of course someone could probably use scientific equipment to isolate where the tiniest remaining paint fragments are on the metal, but we’ll assume that kind of equipment isn’t handy. With a normal camera, you might try exploiting the difference in reflectivity between paint and metal. Some ideas:

 

  • Re-photograph the serial number area from different lighting angles, for example by moving the camera (to get a different angle of room lights vs metal reflection) or moving a handheld light at different angles as multiple photos are taken.
  • Try a range of diffuse and point light sources, in case one works better. 
  • Try applying some color filters (on camera or during editing), to increase any color difference that might exist between the metal and remaining paint fragments. 
  • Maybe take a video instead so you can replay all of the angles as the camera and light are slowly moved around the area. 

 

Hopefully a certain angle and light can be found that causes a different enough reflection between the metal and remaining paint that more of the serial number can be recognized.

 

Good luck…I remember building a Dauntless kit as a kid, and a few years ago I watched a restored one flying.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 24, 2024 Jan 24, 2024

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Thanks so much for taking the time to give some great suggestions. I'll see what we can get from those.

 

Regards peter

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