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One Nakajima NK7A Mamoru 11 fourteen-cylinder air-cooled radial, rated at 1, hp for take-off, 1, hp at 1, m and 1, hp at 4, m, driving a.
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Captured Kate Pearl Harbor was just the beginning. Kates quickly proved that they could sink maneuvering ships at sea as well as ships sitting in harbor. In the first year of the war alone, they sank or helped sink three U. Carrier Bombers and Attack Aircraft Japanese carriers embarked two kinds of bombers. First, they had dive bombers, which they designated kanjo bakugekki -ki carrier bombers.

Diving steeply, they dropped their bombs at close range for accuracy. Of course, this put them deep into anti-aircraft fire. Dive bombers usually could only carry a single medium-size bomb. Kan meant ship, jo meant embarked, kogeki meant attack, and ki meant machine — in this case an aircraft.

Other navies called such planes torpedo bombers. However, neither torpedo gyorai nor bomb bakudan appeared in the Japanese designation. It always dropped its bombs in level flight, increasing safety but limiting accuracy. In the Allied code name designation system, both versions were called the Kate. Referring to Japanese aircraft is problematic because the Japanese designation systems in World War II were complex, changed frequently, and used inconsistently [Francillon , Mikesh ].

Both had a crew of three seated one behind the other. In a pure monocoque construction, the outer skin supports the aircraft structure completely, like an egg shell. In semi-monocoque construction, the skin is strengthened by adding internal ribs. Even with these ribs, semi-monocoque construction is lighter than a tubular structure. Figure 1: Semi-Monocoque Fuselage Construction. Like torpedo bombers in other navies, the Type had a crew of three.

Figure 6 shows that the members of the Type crew sat under a single glazed canopy. Each could open the canopy around his station independently [King ]. Each had a bucket seat with a seat belt [King ]. There was no need for shoulder harnesses because the Kate did not engage in violent maneuvering like the Zero [King ]. Figure 2: Crew Seating. Wings The B5N wings had a flush-riveted stressed metal skin with all-metal flaps and fabric-covered ailerons [Francillon 61 ].

The slotted flaps extended to the wing fold, the ailerons from the fold outward [Hawkins 9]. These big wings gave the B5N the lift capacity it needed to carry its big ordnance loads. This was the first use of hydraulically folding landing gear on a Japanese single-engine aircraft [ Aireview staff 45]. Source: U. Figure 3: Underside of Type Wings. Source: Ray Panko. The exhibit is a fiberglass model. Jury struts were attached to the fuselage to support the weight of the folded wings during storage [Hawkins 9].

1/72 Nakajima B6N Tenzan Jill (wet decals)

To minimize folded height and width on hangar decks, the right wing folded partially under the left [Hawkins 5]. To develop this low-wing design, Nakajima used knowledge gained earlier by examining designs from Northrup, Douglas, and Clerk [ Aireview staff 45, Hawkins 10], but the wing design was not a mere copy of foreign aircraft wings. The tail had fabric-covered control surfaces [Hawkins 10]. Figure 4: Overlapping Wings for Storage. Ordnance Carriage Kates carried their ordnance externally, under the fuselage. They had different racks for different ordnance loads [Hawkins 6], which were typically a single torpedo, a single kg class bomb, two or three kg class bombs, or six kg class bombs.

In China, two kg class bombs or six kg class bombs dominated ordnance selection [ Aireview staff 46].


For some bombs, there were front and back fuzes, which could be selected by the bombardier before the drop [Panko Fuzes]. One fuze detonated the bomb on contact, while the other delayed the explosion about 0. The former was best for outdoor targets, the latter for penetrating buildings before exploding. The variety of weapons racks could cause re-arming issues in the stress of combat, such as at Midway. Figure 5: Kate with Bomb Load. Probably with three kg lb. The Imperial Japanese Navy used two engine designation systems. Sakae 11 was the operational designation [Francillon, ].

The manufacturing project designation was the NK1B, where N meant Nakajima, K meant air cooled, 1 meant that it was the first air-cooled engine in the current numbering sequence, and B meant that it was the second version of the engine [Francillon, ]. As in aircraft designation, Japanese engine designations were complex and changed over time [Francillon, ]. The Sakae 11 generated 1, hp at takeoff and hp at 9, ft 3, m [Francillon ]. It gave a top speed of mph at 11, ft and a cruising speed of mph at 9, ft [Francillon ].

The need to carry enough gasoline to meet range requirements, in turn, precluded self-sealing fuel tanks. Their thick rubber bladders reduced fuel volume too much. Although the Kate was rightly called the best torpedo bomber in the world at the start of the war in the Pacific, it was a slugger with a glass jaw.

If fighter support was not present, a flight of Kates was easy prey for enemy fighters. Coming in from the front, a fighter could attack with impunity because B5Ns had no forward-firing machine guns. Even attacks from the rear only faced a single 7. Even several Type 97 flying in close formation posed limited risk to attacking fighters. The Japanese Navy used many terms based on English. The flight crew of an aircraft was called a peah pair regardless of its size [King ]. Each had important roles during an attack. Figure 6: Crew Seating.

This improved visibility the over the long nose of the big tail-dragger. However, flying the Kate required extreme concentration and split-second decision making. The pilot had 16 instruments to monitor constantly, had to fly in close formation, and had to fly very smoothly because variation in engine power caused fuel burn to spike in a heavily loaded airplane [Mori ]. In addition, during a torpedo or bomb drop, it was essential to fly absolutely level, with no pitch, yaw, or roll.

Any small variation would throw the bomb off target.

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  • Nakajima B5N2 “Kate” Type 97-3 Carrier Attack Aircraft at Pearl Harbor.

When Juzo Mori attacked the California , he had to make a series of split-second decisions about not attacking the Helena , aborting his first run at the California , and swinging around to attack the California again, this time successfully []. He then had to weave an escape route through heavy anti-aircraft fire seeking revenge []. He had to do all this flying at very low level in an aircraft of limited maneuverability.

The radio in a Kate was fairly good. This radio was much better than the miserable set in Zeroes, so to return to the striking force, Zeroes and Kates rendezvoused, and the B5N2s shepherded the fighters back to the carriers. When Mitsuo Fuchida had his radio operator break radio silence and send the message Tora, Tora, Tora to his carriers to advise that surprise had been achieved, the transmission was heard in Japan, although only because of odd atmospheric conditions [Fuchida , King ].

The rear-seater had a rather cheap-looking folding chair that faced forward for radio operation [King ]. To use the machine gun, the rear-seater folded his chair, clipped it to the side of the cockpit, unstowed the gun, and stood up to fire [King ]. On Val dive bombers, in contrast, the rear seat swiveled front to back [King ].

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He was normally tethered to the floor by his parachute cord, but crews did not use parachutes during the Pearl Harbor attack, so he had no attachment to the aircraft beyond his hands on the gun and his knees braced against the side of the fuselage [King ]. The weapon itself was a Type 92 7. Based on the British Lewis machine gun used on World War I aircraft, it fired rounds per minute, and its muzzle velocity of 2, ft per second gave it an effective range of m [Francillon ].

Its arc of aim was about forty degrees left, right, and down and about 80 degrees upward [King ]. As already noted, this gun was puny compared to those in American fighters, most of which had six. Figure 8: Type 92 Machine Gun 7. Teisatsu The middle-seater had the most complex job.

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He was the teisatsu , which is usually translated as observer [King ]. On reconnaissance and maritime patrol missions, observation was, in fact, his main task. To improve his view, he could raise or lower his seat up to about 14 inches, and swivel his seat a bit over 35 degrees right or left [King ]. He also had two small windows in the fuselage sides to illuminate his charts and manuals. Chief Petty Officer 1 st Class Haruo Yoshino, the teisatsu on a Kaga Kate in the Pearl Harbor attack, noted that he had been trained in many navigation tools, including the use of charts, maps, slide rules, sextants, and navigation by the stars [King ].

Access to a downward photo-reconnaissance camera was also available from this position. Dropping Bombs On level bombing missions, the teisatsu was the bombardier. To sight the target, he had two trap doors on the left side of the floor. He unstowed his Type 90 telescopic bomb sight and lowered it into one of the doors [King ]. As the aircraft neared the target, the teisatsu directed the pilot to go slightly to the left or right.

When the bombsight was lined up with the target, the teisatsu released the bombs [King ]. The bombardier preceded the drop by a steady vocalization, which he changed to a shout at the moment of drop [King ]. Because the doors were on the left side of the cockpit, the bombs or torpedo were offset to the right side of the fuselage. Figure Underside of Type Wings. As the aircraft neared potential targets, the teisatsu , who had time to look around, selected a target and directed the pilot to it. Teisatsu Haruo Yoshino originally selected the West Virginia , but the ship was blanketed by water spray from other torpedoes.

He directed the pilot to switch to the Oklahoma [King ]. Either the pilot or the teisatsu could release the torpedo. At Pearl Harbor, Yoshino performed the release, freeing the pilot to concentrate on low-level flying [King ]. After the torpedo release, the teisatsu told the pilot which way to turn to escape. Only he could aim the aircraft at its target, using a sight on the top of the instrument panel [King ].

Only he had the perspective to know when to drop the torpedo, especially at sea, where almost every torpedo release involved complex deflection shooting at a precise speed and altitude against a moving target. He had to make these calculations mentally while dodging flak and flying the airplane at low altitude [King ].

Landings Carrier landings are always difficult, especially for heavy bombers that lack agility. Who Was in Charge? On the way toward Oahu, he navigated for the entire first wave [Fuchida ]. Both sides envisioned an eventual climactic slug-out between battleship that would decide the course of the war. With fewer battleships, Admiral Husband E. Kimmel would be outnumbered and would not sortie his battleships at the start of war per the Rainbow 5 War Plan. Figure 11 shows where the battleships were moored on the west side of Ford Island.

One battleship not on Battleship Row was Pennsylvania , which was in dry dock being overhauled. The Imperial Japanese Navy also knew the importance of carriers. Figure 11 shows the normal mooring spots of the three carriers stationed at Pearl Harbor. Note that Enterprise normally moored directly in front of California. There was a Battleship Row, but there was no carrier row. The Japanese knew that no carriers had been reported to be in harbor, but they still had these sixteen Kates attack from the west.

Enterprise and Lexington were away on missions to deliver airplanes to Midway and Wake [NHHC], there being no escort carriers available yet.

Nakajima B6N Tenzan take off from IJN carrier Zuikaku

Enterprise had actually been scheduled to return to port the day before the attack, but it was delayed by heavy seas [Bureau of Ships 3]. Torpedoes were the only reliable way to destroy battleships. This was far more powerful than any bomb dropped on Pearl Harbor. Best of all, it was reliable, having been relentlessly tested and developed since Due to their weight and speed, when the aerial torpedoes struck the water, they kept diving down.

At shallow Pearl Harbor, this initial plunge would have driven the Type 91 Mod 2 into the mud. The Japanese worked furiously to modify the torpedo to pitch up immediately upon entering the water instead of waiting for it to right itself after water entry. The torpedo was heavier on the bottom than the top, but this natural and automatic method for righting the torpedo took time that the plunging torpedo did not have.

The solution was a gyroscope that controlled two ailerons at the front to the tail cone. This anti-roll mechanism ensured that the torpedo would be upright when it struck the water, allowing the horizontal rudders to be pitched up upon water entry without the danger of throwing the torpedo left, right, or even down.

The big stabilizing fins at the very back of the torpedo were there to reduce wobble, not to pitch the torpedo up or down as it dropped through the air [Panko Torpedo]. Torpedo attacks were extremely risky. The Kates had to approach flying steady at wave-top level and low speed. If the ships were alerted and fully armed, their guns could savage torpedo attackers.

Consequently, torpedo attack at Pearl Harbor was slated to occur at the very start of the assault so they could strike before American guns were crewed and ready, but a mix-up in signals led to dive bombers attacking the PBYs on the southern tip of Ford Island two minutes before the first torpedo bombers arrived at [Aiken]. Despite this near-absence of warning, some of the guns on the battleships quickly got into action.

In fact, several pilots and teisatsus marveled at the amount of fire they received [Aiken, Fuchida , King ]. Since April , each battleship constantly manned two 5-inch dual-purpose guns and two. The 5-inch guns had a locked but quickly accessible, ready supply of 15 shells [Gannon , Wallin ].

The machine gun had to rounds of locked, ready ammunition [Wallin , Zimm ]. The machine guns got into action almost immediately, the 5-inch guns about four minutes later [Wallin ]. Unfortunately, the 5-inchers were slow-firing guns, and their central director was not manned during the attack.

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1/72 Wet Decals - Nakajima B6N Tenzan Jill

Referred By Get the scoop on coupons, sales, and new releases. Close Create Account. Store Showcase Bundles Extended License. Privacy Notice This site uses cookies to deliver the best experience. A final version of the aircraft, designated B6N3 Model 13, was planned for land-based use as, by this point in the war, all of Japan's large carriers had been sunk and those few smaller ones remaining lacked catapults for launching heavier carrier-borne aircraft like the B6N.

Two B6N3 prototypes were completed but Japan surrendered before this variant could be put into production. Production never exceeded more than 90 planes per month. General characteristics. Love this plane so much! I wish they could add the B6N3, however they might not have enough data on what it looks like or its performance. Considering he straight up copy pasted everything but the images from Wikipedia, I highly doubt it.

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