Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

February, 2005

Federal Standard Paint Colors

Q. What is the difference between 595a and 595b? Would a paint referenced as 595a be the same as a color referenced as 595b?

A.The answer for the first part:
The Fed-STD-595B, issued December 15, 1989, supersedes the 595A, issued January 2, 1968.

Rev A had nine "Change Notices" over the years, which included corrections, deletion of a few colors, and many additions, for a total of about 556 colors patches at the end.

Rev B was issued with 586 color patches. "Change Notice 1" for Rev B, issued January 11, 1994, adds 25 colors to the catalog, for a total of 611, and adds a gloss level table.

For the second part:
Yes, they are the same. A few minor corrections were done, none which would affect the color, but more importantly, if the color chips used a reference are from the 595A era, they might be faded, discolored, or dirty, in which case they should be replaced with a more recent edition.

Best regards,

Danny Pascale

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