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The Nakajima Ki-58 was a long range escort fighter based on the Nakajima Ki-49 Donryu heavy bomber. It was similar in concept to the American B-40 and B-41 escort fighters, which were produced from the B-17 Flying Fortress and B-24 Liberator, and were designed to make up for a lack of long range fighter aircraft. Just as the American bombers suffered heavy losses over Europe, the Japanese Mitsubishi Ki-21 (Army Type 97 Heavy Bomber) was suffering heavy losses over China. As no fighter with sufficient range was then in production, Nakajima designed the Ki-58 to provide some support for the Ki-49, which was about to enter service.
The Ki-58 carried five flexible 20mm Ho-I cannons and three 12.7mm Ho-103 machine guns, some in a ventral gondola that replaced the bomb bay. On operations they would have flown on the flanks of the bomber formations, providing some extra protection. Three prototypes were constructed between December 1940 and March 1941, but they never entered service. Instead the problem was solved by the service entry of the Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa Army Type 1 Fighter, which had the range to escort the bombers.
Engines: Two Nakajima Ha-109s
Armament: flexible 20mm Ho-I cannon and three 12.7mm Ho-103 machine guns
Nakajima Ki-27 (Nate)
The Nakajima Ki-27 "Nate" (known early on as "Abdul") was a successful low-monoplane, all-metal with stressed skin fighter design employed by the Empire of Japan throughout the Second World War. Initially conceived of as a private venture design by the Nakajima corporation, the Ki-27 was soon debuted and accepted by the Japanese Army.
The single-engine, one-man fighter was Japan's first monoplane design, becoming a sort of bridge from the old and new fighter development strategies. Qualities that showcased the Ki-27 to the old ways of fighter design including the very identifiable static land gears. A tail skid was still being used when the Ki-27 reached full production. At the cost of self-sealing fuel tanks, pilot protection and other aircraft amenities at the time, the Ki-27 became a nimble and fast fighter, armed with 2 x 12.7mm heavy machine guns.
In the early years, the Ki-27 enjoyed a period of success against the Chinese and Allied fighter pilots in the Pacific. As Allied fighter designed continued to improve, aircraft like the Ki-27 would begin to lose out to the advanced technologies and be relegated to homeland defense, pilot training or kamikaze use.
In the end, the decision to not protect the pilot nor his fuel tanks became the premise for the aircrafts undoing. The light and nimble Ki-27 would cease to become a factor, in much the same way that its A6M Zero counterpart did, and help the Allied make their push throughout the Pacific. Nevertheless, the Ki-27 enjoyed a long period of success when it was initially delivered and would stay a major part of the Japanese Army movements until the end of the war - albeit in limited fashion by then.
Nakajima Ki-58 - History
The Nakajima Ki-49 Donryu ("Storm Dragon") was the first heavy bomber in the Japanese army to have a tail turret. Aside from this feature, there was nothing exceptional about the plane the Allies called "Helen". The Ki-49 was designed at the time the Mitsubishi Ki-21 was going into service. It was intended as the Ki-21's successor, but the Ki-49 never surpassed the older plane's performance and never completely replaced it. Its chief defect was insufficient power, which limited its performance. And the plane was inadequately armed, making it easy prey for enemy fighters. The Ki-49 did, however, have good armor for the crew, and the fuel tanks had fine safety devices. Production was sporadic, but in the course of four years, from December 1940, to December 1944, a total of 819 aircraft were built in a variety of models. One interesting variant was the Nakajima Ki-58, which was a design that came out of a perceived need for a long range fighter escort that could protect bombers throughout their missions in China. In late 1940 and into 1941 Nakajima built three prototypes of the Ki-58, which was basically a Ki-49 with increased armor, more guns (a total of five 20mm cannons and three 12.7 machine guns), and the elimination of the bomb bay. The Ki-58 project was abandoned, however, when the Ki-43 "Oscar" fighter went into service, filling the Ki-58's intended role.
Additional information on this aircraft can be found at Wikipedia HERE .
For several very nice scale color drawings of this aircraft, see here (5 versions available on left).
Additional color schemes for this aircraft can be found here.
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Performance [ edit | edit source ]
A Ki-115 shortly after the war. After the Japanese surrender, propellers were commonly removed from aircraft to prevent unauthorized kamikaze missions Ε]
The aircraft had a top speed of 550 kilometres per hour (340 mph) and could carry a bomb weighing as much as 800 kilograms (1,800 lb), large enough to split a warship in two. However, it was otherwise unarmed and, heavily laden with its bomb, would have been an easy target for the enemy fighter aircraft.
The controls were crude, the visibility terrible, and the performance abysmal. Tsurugi had very poor take-off and landing performance and could not be safely flown by anyone other than experienced pilots. There were fatal crashes during testing and training. Α] However new, better versions Α] with improved controls and better visibility were under intensive development. The Japanese High command had plans to construct some 8,000 per month in workshops all across Japan.
The war ended before any flew in combat. Individually, they would have been rather inefficient weapons, but used in waves of hundreds or thousands they could have been quite destructive.
The Edsel Proved Why You Should Never Design a Car by Comittee
Ford had big ambitions for Edsel. Unfortunately, they were too big.
Ford in the 1950s was nothing if not ambitious. Unfortunately, this ambition gave birth to the Edsel, whose name became synonymous with abject corporate failure after the nascent brand was killed in 1959. The Edsel's short history makes a fascinating cautionary tale for anyone in business&ndashnot just the car industry.
Our pals at Regular Car Reviews got into the history of Edsel in a new documentary podcast. It's a great listen for anyone interested in the car business.
Under the leadership of Henry Ford II, the Ford Motor Company hired some of the brightest minds in America as executives. This group, dubbed the Whiz Kids, wanted to increase Ford's market share in the U.S. with a new brand to slot between Ford and Mercury.
Only trouble is, they couldn't come up with a good name. After literally thousands of names were suggested, they eventually settled on Edsel, the first name of Henry Ford's son, Henry II's father&ndash"settled" being the key word here. They threw lots of new technology at the Edsel too, but no one really had a clear vision for what the car was supposed to be. To make matters worse, the first Edsels built were plagued with production problems, enraging dealers.
The public didn't really understand this bizarrely-styled, badly-named, poorly-conceived car either. Whatever small chance of success the Edsel had when it debuted in 1958 was killed by an economic recession. To their credit, Ford executives realized how much of a failure they had on their hands, killing the Edsel brand at the end of 1959.
Bad circumstances played a big role in the Edsel's demise, but in hindsight, it seems the car was doomed from the start. Ford had a wealth of smart executives at the time, but with too many hands working on the Edsel, the project had no direction.
It's no coincidence that world's most successful cars&ndashthe Model T, the Beetle, the Mini, and others&ndashwere conceived by individuals or small groups. The more people working on a car, the more its intent gets muddied. Even if you have the brightest, best-intentioned minds in the business.
Nakajima Ki-49 Donryu (Helen)
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/10/2016 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.
The Nakajima Ki-49 Donryu (meaning "storm dragon" and codenamed "Helen" by the Allies) heavy bomber was intended as a replacement for the out-classed Mitsubishi Ki-21 series of medium bomber. In reality, the newer Ki-49 design proved to be something of a disappointment to the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force as the type was a slow performer that - like most Japanese aircraft of the war - was ill-armed and under-armored. As a result, the type saw very limited production numbers (being limited to just over 800), appeared in a few variants and quickly was dismissed as a partner to the successful ki-21 instead of its direct replacement.
The Nakajima Ki-49 was drawn up by 1938 as a very utilitarian heavy bomber design. The term "heavy bomber" in this instance was carried quite loosely as the production Ki-49 could carry barely above 2,000 pounds of internal ordnance. The aircrafts design followed along the same lines of previous twin engine bomber attempts of Japanese ordnance that saw a slender fuselage with clean lines, a middle-mounted monoplane wing assembly, various gun positions adorning the design and a single vertical tail surface. Crew accommodations amounted to seven (or in some cases eight) personnel. Defensive armament (always an issue with Japanese bomber aircraft designs throughout the war) consisted of a nose-mounted 7.7mm machine gun, a 7.7mm machine gun in a tail gun position, 2 x 7.7mm machine guns in beam positions (1 gun per side), a 7.7mm machine gun in a ventral position and a 20mm cannon in a flexible dorsal mounting.
The first Ki-49 prototype went airborne in 1939 with Nakajima Ha-5 KAI radial engines of 950 horsepower each. Pre-production and the first production models would be mated with 2 x Nakajima Ha-41 radial engines of 1,250 horsepower each, increasing performance capabilities as a result. The Ki-49 would enter service in 1941 with mixed results, forcing the aircraft to undergo some much needed upgrades to armor and armament by 1942. The "improved" Ki-49 appeared in form as the Ki-49-IIa and was followed by another improved version in the Ki-49-IIb variant.
The Ki-49 was fielded extensively against China, Australia and the Burma region but the aircraft was generally outclassed by the latest crop of American and British fighters. As a result, the Ki-49 suffered heavy losses throughout the conflict and their reach was lessened by 1944. Afterwards, the Ki-49 - like most of the mid-sized Japanese aircraft of limited potential - could be seen focused on kamikaze attacks against Allied interests.
The Nakajima B6N Tenzan (Japanese: 中島 B6N 天山 , “Heavenly Mountain”, Allied reporting identify: “Jill“) was the Imperial Japanese Navy’s commonplace carrier-borne torpedo bomber in the course of the ultimate years of World War II and the successor to the B5N “Kate”. Due to its protracted improvement, a scarcity of skilled pilots and the United States Navy’s achievement of air superiority by the point of its introduction, the B6N was by no means in a position to totally reveal its fight potential.
A ultimate model of the plane, designated B6N3 Model 13, was deliberate for land-based use as, by this level within the conflict, all of Japan’s massive carriers had been sunk and people few smaller ones remaining lacked catapults for launching heavier carrier-borne plane just like the B6N. Changes included set up of a Kasei Model 25c engine, a extra streamlined engine cowling and crew cover, strengthening of the principle touchdown gear, a retractable tail wheel and removing of the tail hook. Two B6N3 prototypes have been accomplished however Japan surrendered earlier than this variant might be put into manufacturing. 
Starting within the fall of 1943, one among each three B6N2s manufactured was geared up with 3-Shiki Type 3 air-to-surface radar for detecting enemy ships. Yagi antennas have been put in alongside the wing main edges and in addition protruded from the edges of the rear fuselage. 
After solely 133 B6N1s had been produced by July 1943, the Japanese Ministry of Munitions ordered Nakajima to halt manufacture of the Mamori 11 engine so that the Navy scale back the variety of completely different engines then in use. Pending availability of the 18-cylinder Nakajima Homare engine, Nakajima was requested to substitute the 1,850 hp (1,380 kW) Mitsubishi MK4T Kasei 25 engine on the B6N1 airframe, the very engine the Navy had initially requested them to make use of. As the Mamori 11 and Kasei 25 have been related in dimension, set up was comparatively easy, requiring solely that the nostril be prolonged to take care of the plane’s middle of gravity and minor alterations to the oil cooler and air intakes on the engine cowling. A smaller 3.4 m (11 ft) diameter four-bladed propeller and shorter spinner have been additionally put in presently, leading to a small weight-savings, and the retractable tailwheel was fastened completely within the down place. Finally, the only exhaust stacks on both facet of the engine cowling have been changed with a number of smaller stubs to cut back glare at evening and to provide a minor quantity of ahead thrust. The ensuing modification was designated Navy Carrier Attack Aircraft Tenzan Model 12 or B6N2. 
The B6N1 was formally accepted for manufacturing standing in early 1943 and given the designation Navy Carrier Attack Aircraft Tenzan Model 11. Modifications based mostly on testing of the preliminary prototypes included: the addition of a versatile Type 92 machine gun in a ventral tunnel on the rear of the cockpit (along with the usual rear-firing Type 92), and a 7.7mm Type 97 machine-gun to the port wing (the latter was finally deleted after the seventieth manufacturing plane) angling the torpedo mounting rack 2 levels downward and including torpedo stabilization plates to stop the torpedo from bouncing throughout low-altitude launch strengthening of the principle touchdown gear.  A proposal by the designers to switch the B6N1’s unprotected gasoline tanks with self-sealing ones would have resulted in a 30% drop in gasoline capability, a loss in vary the Navy determined was unacceptable. 
The B6N1’s Mamori 11 engine was discovered susceptible to extreme vibrations and overheating at sure speeds and was at first judged too unreliable (an vital consideration provided that the airplane was anticipated to fly lengthy distances over open water). Following a collection of modifications, although, the engine’s efficiency was lastly deemed promising sufficient that provider acceptance trials have been begun on the finish of 1942. Subsequent take a look at flights carried out aboard the carriers Ryuho and Zuikaku indicated the necessity to strengthen the tail hook mounting on the airplane’s fuselage. Some makes an attempt have been additionally made to make use of RATOG (rocket-assisted take-off gear) models on a number of B6N1s so as to qualify the plane to be used on smaller carriers however the outcomes have been unsatisfactory. 
The prototype B6N1 made its maiden flight on 14 March 1941. Following continued testing, nonetheless, a number of issues turned evident. In specific, the plane exhibited an alarming tendency to roll whereas in flight, the reason for which was traced to the acute torque developed by the four-bladed propeller. To compensate, the plane’s tail fin was thinned down and moved 2 levels ten minutes to port. This modification drastically improved the airplane’s dealing with traits. 
Constrained by the standard-sized plane elevators then in use on most Japanese carriers, designer Matsumara was obliged to make use of a wing related in span and space as that of the B5N and to restrict the plane’s general size to 11 m (36 ft). This latter restriction accounted for the B6N’s distinctive swept-forward tail fin and rudder. The outer wing panels folded upward hydraulically, lowering the B6N’s general span from 14.9 m (49 ft) to roughly 6.3 m (21 ft) for minimal provider stowage. In order to reduce elevated wingloading because of the heavier powerplant, Fowler flaps have been put in which might be prolonged past the wing’s trailing edge. These have been usually lowered to an angle of 20 levels throughout take-off and 38 levels when touchdown. Despite using these flaps, nonetheless, the B6N had a a lot increased stall velocity than its predecessor. 
The Navy had requested set up of the confirmed Mitsubishi Kasei engine because the B6N’s powerplant however Engineer Kenichi Matsumara insisted on utilizing Nakajima’s new 1,870 hp (1,390 kW) Mamori 11 14-cylinder air-cooled radial on account of its decrease gasoline consumption and larger adaptability. This turned an unlucky alternative because the Mamori engine was plagued with mechanical defects and by no means achieved its anticipated energy score. 
The B5N provider torpedo-bomber’s weaknesses had proven themselves early within the Second Sino-Japanese War and, in addition to updating that plane, the Imperial Japanese Navy started searching for a quicker longer-ranged substitute. In December 1939 it issued a specification to Nakajima for a Navy Experimental 14-Shi Carrier Attack Aircraft able to carrying the identical exterior weapons load because the B5N. The new airplane was to hold a crew of three (pilot, navigator/bombardier and radio operator/gunner) and be of low wing, cantilevered, all-metal development (although management surfaces have been fabric-covered). Further necessities included a high velocity of 250 knots (460 km/h 290 mph), a cruising velocity of 200 knots (370 km/h 230 mph) and a variety of 1,000 nmi (1,900 km 1,200 mi) with an 800 kg (1,800 lb) bomb load or 2,072 nmi (3,837 km 2,384 mi) with out exterior armament. 
Japanese “Army Zero” – Nakajima Ki-43 in 27 Photos
The Japanese Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa was a relatively slow, lightly armed, and fragile land-based tactical fighter plane, but it became legendary for its performance in East Asia during the early years of the Second World War, and was famous for its extraordinary maneuverability and climb rate during its service with the Imperial Japanese Army Air Service.
Although the Ki-43 was officially reported as Oscar by the Allies, it was often referred to as the “Army Zero” by American pilots, owing to the fact that its layout and lines, Nakajima Sakae radial engine, round cowlings, and bubble-type canopy were features very similar to the Mitsubishi A6M Zero long-range fighter, which served with the Japanese Navy.
Propeller, Nakajima Ki-43-II Hayabusa in the “Great Patriotic War Museum”. Photo: Mike1979 Russia CC BY-SA 3.0
Hideo Itokawa was the designer of the Ki-43, and his achievements would later earn him fame as the pioneer of Japanese rocketry. It is important to note that the Ki-43 story did not start out as a success story.Front view of a Japanese Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (隼 Peregrine Falcon), designated as an Army Type 1 Fighter, and referred to by Allied forces as “Oscar”.
The first flown prototype in early January 1939 was a disappointment as it did not offer better maneuverability than the Ki-27, the purpose for which the Ki-43 had been made.
Hideo Itokawa – a pioneer of Japanese rocketry, popularly known as “Dr. Rocket,” and described in the media as the father of Japan’s space development.
To correct the manueverability problems, subsequent prototypes were produced between 1939 and 1940. Major changes were made and many field tests were executed. Experimental changes included a slimmer fuselage, a new canopy, and the introduction of Fowler flaps to improve the lift of the plane’s wings at a certain speed. The Fowler flap was implemented on the 11th prototype and brought about a dramatically enhanced performance in tight turns.
Ki-43 Hayabusa Cockpit (1944)
The 13th prototype combined all these changes, and tests conducted with this aircraft ended satisfactorily. Thus, the Nakajima Aircraft Company was instructed to place that prototype, which was designated Ki-43-I, into production.
Nakajima Ki-43-I Hayabusa aircraft in flight over Brisbane, Queensland (Australia) in 1943.
The Ki-43-I had an amazing maneuverability and remarkable climb rate owing to its light weight. It was powered by a Nakajima Ha-25 engine, and its maximum speed was 307.5 mph at 13,160 ft.
A Japanese Nakajima Ki-43-I Hayabusa (s n 750) in dense jungle 6 km from Vunakanau airfield, Rabaul, in September 1945.
Prototypes for the Ki-43-II had their maiden flights in February 1942. They came with the more powerful Nakajima Ha-115 fourteen cylinder air-cooled radial engine, which was an upgrade from the Ki-43-I’s engine. The wing structure of the Ki-43-I was strengthened in the Ki-43-II, and racks were added to the wings for drop tanks or bombs. Its speed also increased to 333 mph and its climb rate to 3,900 feet per minute.
Nakajima Ki43 II, P-5017, Chinese Air Force
It was equipped with an armament consisting of two fixed, forward-firing 12.7 mm Ho-103 machine guns in the cowl, and two 551 lb bombs.
12.7 mm Ho-103 machine gun.Photo Sturmvogel 66 CC BY-SA 3.0
It had a self-sealing fuel tank and a .5″ armor plate to protect the pilot’s head and back. Its canopy was slightly taller, and a reflector gunsight replaced the telescopic gunsight of the earlier prototype.
By November 1942, production of the Ki-43-II began at Nakajima’s Ota factory.
Nakajima Ki-43 type2 – at Pima Air Space Museum
The Nakajima was the most widely used fighter in the Japanese Army Air Force (JAAF) and fully equipped both the 30 Sentai Flight Regiment and 12 Chutais Independent Squadron. The first unit to be equipped with them was the 59th Flight Regiment, whose Ki-43s made their debut operational sorties across the skies of Hengyang on 29 October 1941.
Japanese Army Air Force fighter plane active in the Pacific throughout the war. The Japanese name for this aircraft was “Peregrine Falcon” and the Allied code name was “Oscar”.Photo Stumanusa CC BY 3.0
Ki-43s fought over the skies of the Japanese home islands, China, the Malay Peninsula, Burma, the Philippines, New Guinea, and other South Pacific islands.
A captured Japanese Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (Allied code name “Oscar”) fighter at Clark Field, Luzon (Philippines), in 1945.
During their first combat experiences, the Ki-43 exerted some aerial superiority in Malaya, Netherlands East Indies, Burma and New Guinea just as the Zero did, but as the war got more intense, its light armor and less efficient self-sealing fuel tanks would be its weaknesses, causing several losses and casualties. Its machine guns could barely penetrate the heavily armored Allied planes.
Captured Ki-43 Hayabusa on Munda Field 14 June 1944
From October to December 1944, 17 Ki-43s were downed, but to their credit, they scored a total of 25 kills, claiming the fall of Allied aircraft such as the C-47, B-24 Liberator, Spitfire, Beaufighter, Mosquito, F4U Corsair, B-29 Superfortress, F6F Hellcat, P-38, and B-25.
US Ki-43-II Otsu code XJ005 Hollandia 1944
Towards the end of their time, several Ki-43s, just like many other Japanese aircraft, were expended in kamikaze strikes.
Nakajima, Ki-43, Hayabusa ‘Peregrine Falcon’ Oscar ‘Jim’ Army Type 1 Fighter
By the time of its retirements, in 1945 in Japan and 1952 in China, a total of 5,919 Nakajima Ki-43s had been built, with 13 variants.
A Japanese Nakajima Ki-43-I Hayabusa at Brisbane, Queensland (Australia) in 1943.
A Japanese Nakajima Ki-43-II Hayabusa fighter.
Front view, Nakajima Ki-43-IB Oscar at the Flying Heritage Collection.Photo Articseahorse CC BY-SA 4.0
Japanese Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (隼 Peregrine Falcon), designated as an Army Type 1 Fighter, and referred to by Allied forces as “Oscar”.
Ki-84s, Ki-43s on a JAAF base post-war.
Nakajima Ki-43 from “Kato hayabusa sento-tai (Colonel Kato’s Falcon Squadron)”.
Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa fighter, taken as war booty by the Chinese Nationalists and issued to the 6th Group of the Chinese Nationalist Air Force, runs up before a flight.
Nakajima Ki-43-IB Hayabusa taking off at Brisbane, Queensland (Australia) in 1943. After its capture it was rebuilt by the Technical Air Intelligence Unit (TAIU) in Hangar 7 at Eagle Farm, Brisbane.
Nakajima Ki-43-IB Oscar at the Flying Heritage Collection.Photo Articseahorse CC BY-SA 4.0
Nakajima Ki-43-II Hayabusa in the Great Patriotic War Museum.Photo Mike1979 Russia CC BY-SA 3.0
Nakajima, Ki-43, Hayabusa “Peregrine Falcon” Oscar “Jim” Army Type 1 Fighter
The Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (隼, “Peregrine Falcon”) was a single-engine land-based tactical fighter used by the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force in World War II.
Wreck of a Japanese Army Air Force Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa plane (Oscar) in the Southwest Pacific in 1943.
Mass Shootings in the US
Gun violence is also a major issue in the US. There is some debate on whether or not Americans lead the world in mass shootings, but some things are definitely clear. Americans own more guns per capita than people in any other country. People in the US also have a gun homicide rate that is astoundingly over 25 times higher than in other countries with high incomes. It is true that countries in Central and South America have a higher gun-homicide rate, but the US does lead the world in children dying from gunshots.
As analysts note, this is a disturbing trend. In 2019, the US had the highest number of mass killings ever recorded in a single year in the country, with 41 events and 211 people killed. Clearly, something needs to change.
Mass shootings are a tragic part of modern life on our planet. As acts of violence, they result from various circumstances. Sometimes politics and war are the drivers, and in other times, twisted personal revenge is at play. Mental health issues and readily available guns come together to create a toxic combination that targets the innocent. Through stronger, more supportive communities that foster relationships over wealth and stricter gun laws, these atrocities may become a thing of the past.