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"Enemy at the Gates: Panic Fighters of the Second World War"

Justo Miranda

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The Japanese Aggressor (January 28, 1932 to August 15, 1945)

Nakajima Ki.43 Hayabusa (Oscar)


The excellent results obtained by the Nate during the early years of WWII delayed the decision to replace it with a more modern, more expensive aircraft and of a more difficult maintenance. Therefore, when the manufacturing of the Ki.43 started, all Oerlikon FFL cannons, produced under license in Japan, had already been assigned to the IJN as standard weapons for the Zero fighters. Throughout its whole operational life, the Oscar was armed with only two machine guns.



In the course of combats against American planes, the Japanese aircraft exhausted all its small-calibre ammunition without obtaining an appreciable effect on the target. The armour and robust construction of the airframe of Airacobras, Curtiss, Fortress and Liberators operating in the Far East were responsible for the little success of the Japanese units. The IJA pilots, veterans of the China and Khalkin-Gol combats against the Soviet fighters using ‘Taran’ tactics, were forced to perform ramming attacks to achieve results, especially when fighting the four engine bombers.



On March 26, 1943, a Beaufighter of the 27th Sqn RAF was rammed by an Oscar of the 64th Sentai, piloted by Lt. Sanae Ishii, over Shwebandaw-Burma. On May 1, a B-24 of 492nd BS was rammed by a Ki.43 of the 64th Sentai piloted by Sgt. Miyoshi Watanabe over Rangoon. On the 8th of the same month, the B-17 "The Fighting Swede" 41-24520 was rammed by a Ki.43-II of the 24th Sentai piloted by Sgt. Tadao Oda, near Madang. On the 19th of that month, the Liberator 41-24269 was rammed by an Oscar of the 24th Sentai, piloted by Sgt. Hikoto Sato, over Karkar Island. On October 8, Sgt. Satoshi Anabuki, of the 50th Sentai based in Mingaladon, shot down a B-24 near Rangoon using a ramming attack. On the 26th, another Liberator of the 436th BS was rammed by a Ki.43 of the 64th Sentai piloted by Cpt. Tomio Kamiguchi, over Rangoon. On December 27, a Ki.43 of the 25th Sentai piloted by Cpt. Nakazaku Ozaki, rammed a P-40 of the 14th AF on Suichan-China. On June 6, 1944 an Oscar of the 50th Sentai, piloted by Sgt. Tomesaku Igarashi, rammed a P-38 of 459th FS over Burma. On August 4, 1944, a Ki-43 of the 25th Sentai rammed a B-25 over Hengyang-China.



On November 2, the IJA ordered all air defence Sentais formed a Shinten Seiku Tai unit to be specialized in ramming tactics to confront the American heavy bombers. A group of selected pilots received special training in the Army Flying Schools of Akatsuki (1st Hakko Tai), Hitachi (2nd and 10th Hakko Tai) and the 244th Sentai (4th Hakko Tai), mainly using Ki.43 and Ki.44 fighters.



On December 7, the B-29 Georgia Peach 42-63356 was rammed over Manshu-Mukden by a Ki.43 of the 4th Training Sentai, piloted by Lt.Fumiro Sou. On day 21 of the same month, another Superfortress, the Old Campaigner 42-24715, was rammed by an Oscar of the Manchurian Air Force piloted by WO Takei Matsumoto over the same area.



The emphasis placed by the Japanese designers in the lightness of the airframes of their fighters, to save weight and gain manoeuvrability, acted against all attempts by Nakajima to equip the Oscar with a more powerful armament. The wing structure simply could not resist the vibrations produced by the recoil of the cannons of 20 mm.



By mid 1944, some launch tests were conducted at the Army Aero Test Department using 10 cm air-to-air rockets Ro-San Dan Ro.3 suspended under the wings of a Ki.43-III-Ko. The Ro.3 was a scaled down version of the 12 cm AA naval spin-stabilised rocket barrage fired from a wire basket made of welded wires or from an iron tube. As happened with their German counterparts Föhn and W Gr.21, the launch tests from airplanes showed that this type of rocket, without fins, lacked the precision necessary to be effective in air-to-air combat.



In the summer of 1945 tests were made with two prototypes of the Ki.43-III-Otsu with extensive modifications on wing and fuselage structure and two Ho-5 cannons mounted, theoretically suitable for propeller synchronization, without obtaining good results. To improve the destructiveness of the Oscar, it was also tried to use Ta-Dan bombs. They were submunition containers, originally designed to bomb airfields, produced for the IJA in two versions (HE and Hollow Charge) that were widely used in air-to-air bombing tactics by the Ki.43, Ki.44, Ki.45, Ki.46 and Ki.84.

On February 14, 1944, a Ki.43-II of the 59th Sentai, piloted by WO Kazuo Shimizu, destroyed three Mitchell bombers over New Guinea, using Ta-Dan bombs. He repeated the attack on a Thunderbolt that was also destroyed the next day.
 

gatoraptor

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The Japanese Aggressor (January 28, 1932 to August 15, 1945)

Nakajima Ki.43 Hayabusa (Oscar)
Thank you for that, though if you look at your table of contents in post #77 above, you'll see that the Ki.43 is missing. I'm glad that it will get the coverage that it deserves.
 

riggerrob

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My copy arrived yesterday.
What a fascinating book!
After the "Panic Fighter 1938" thread on www.alternatehistory.com, we thought that we had mentioned all the known panic fighters, but Justo Miranda found another dozen more!
Wow!
It will take months to digest all the new data in this book.
The only panic fighter not mentioned is the Gregor FDB-1 prototype built by Canadian Car and Foundry in Canada.
 

riggerrob

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Thanks Justo.
Your Gregor FDB-1 graphics are up to your usual high standard.
I will forgive you for not mentioning an obscure, Canadian prototype. Canadian Car and Foundry only built a single because it was a company one-off, not in line with RCAF plans to buy Hurricanes. Gregor's Fighter is also off-to-the-side of the Eur-asian theme of "Panic Fighters."

Were the Bell XP-77, etc. Curtiss CW-21, etc. covered in your book on US experimental fighters?
... er ... have you written a book about American aircraft? Are you planning to write a book about American airplanes? Can you recommend a book on American Panic Fighters?
 
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Justo Miranda

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I am currently working on a new book tittled ‘Ultimate Allied Fighters of the Second World War’.

Content of the U.S. seccion is:

The American Fighter

Curtiss P-36 and P-40 evolution


Curtiss H.75R

Curtiss XP-42

Curtiss XP-37

Curtiss YP-37

Curtiss YP-40F

Curtiss XP-40N

Curtiss XP-40K

Curtiss XP-40Q

Curtiss P-40 twin-engine mock up

Curtiss XP-53 and XP-60 evolution

Curtiss XP-53

Curtiss XP-60

Curtiss XP-60A

Curtiss XP-60C

Curtiss XP-60D

Curtiss XP-60E

Curtiss XP-62

Curtiss XF14C

Curtiss XP-55 evolution


Curtiss XP-55

Curtiss CW 24-C jet powered project

Lockheed L-133 and XP-80 evolution

Lockheed L-133-02-01

Lockheed XP-80

Lockheed XP-80A

North American P-51 evolution

North American F.T.B.

P-51 with forward-swept wings

XP-51J

XP-51F

P-51H

ETF-51D naval prototype

North American NAA-133 naval fighter project

P-51D with Ford pulsejets

F-51D with Marquardt ramjets

P-51D rocket-boosted

North American XFJ-1 Fury

North American NAA-140 jet project fighter (October 4, 1944)

North American NAA-140 jet project fighter (August 15, 1945)

North American NAA-140 jet project fighter (April 23, 1946)

North American NAA-140 jet project fighter (October 15, 1946)

Northrop Flying Wings

Northrop N-1M

Northrop XP-56 I and XP-56 II prototypes

Northrop XP-79

Northrop MX-324/334 gliders

Republic P-47 evolution

XP-47H

XP-47J

XP-72

P-47 D-30 with scimitar propeller

P-47 NACA-Langley swept-wing project

P-47 Jet project GOR (11 September 1944)

XP-69 project

Vultee XP-54, XP-68 and XP-81

Davis Manta fighter project

Gluhareff Dart fighter project

NACA Jake’s Jeep Campini fighter project

Allied jet planes comparative
 

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airman

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I supposed that descendants of P-51 are the F-100 with the evolution of North American FJ-1 Fury and Republic F-84 ( descendants ) of Republic P-47.
 

Justo Miranda

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I supposed that descendants of P-51 are the F-100 with the evolution of North American FJ-1 Fury and Republic F-84 ( descendants ) of Republic P-47.
Please see both lineages here
 

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blackkite

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Your activity is surprisingly fast!!:oops:
 

blackkite

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You are surprisingly energetic and handsome Spanish guy. :D
When traveling to Barcelona, the girl at the front of the cheap hotel was an incredible beauty. Such a beautiful woman has never been seen before.
 
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athpilot

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‘Ultimate Allied Fighters of the Second World War’
An absolute must have! Will it be released after the "Fighters of the Dying Sun"? And will the book about the Luftwaffe Night Fighters be out first (or after it)?
Cheers!
AP
 

blackkite

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In Madrid, I was shopping for leather goods at my wife's request, but the female clerk there was also very beautiful and attractive. If allowed, I wanted to bring her back to Japan. Toledo was also interesting. La Barracca's gazpacho and paella are very good and one of the best meals I've ever tasted.;)
 
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Justo Miranda

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‘Ultimate Allied Fighters of the Second World War’
An absolute must have! Will it be released after the "Fighters of the Dying Sun"? And will the book about the Luftwaffe Night Fighters be out first (or after it)?
Cheers!
AP
Night Fighter's book will take longer to be finished...I must draw many antennae!
 

Justo Miranda

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In Madrid, I was shopping for leather goods at my wife's request, but the female clerk there was also very beautiful and attractive. If allowed, I wanted to bring her back to Japan. Toledo was also interesting. La Barracca's gazpacho and paella are very good and one of the best meals I've ever tasted.;)
I hope to visit Kyoto and Tokyo next year. I also like the Japanese food. I use to go the "47 Ronin" restaurant with my wife, It is expensive but the food is excellent.;)
 

gatoraptor

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Justo, I had considered proposing a book called "The Last Piston Fighters" about all the fighter types that actually flew (at least in prototype form) but were too late to see action in WWII. The fact is that some of these appear in "Enemy at the Gates" and others will be in "Ultimate Allied Fighters"! So, in a way, thank you!
 
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