Saturday, 31 December 2011

2012

This year was especially hard for all of us living in Japan but also for Greece. We would like to express our gratitude to all those who stood beside us sending messages of friendship, care and support. We hope the new year of the dragon to be better in every way than the year before.



良いお年をお迎え下さい
BEST WISHES FOR THE 2012!
ΤΙΣ ΚΑΛΥΤΕΡΕΣ ΕΥΧΕΣ ΜΑΣ ΓΙΑ ΤΟ 2012!

Friday, 30 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #6 "HARU ARASHI"

Seaplane Fighter Bomber "Haru Arashi" (Spring Storm)
Span: 12.37m
Length: 10.598m
Weight: 2675kg
Max Speed: 590km/h @ 5600m
Range: 1200km
Armament: two 20mm cannons on the wings, two 20mm cannons in the cowling, one 250kg bomb
Crew: 1
Art: Imura Shinji
Another seaplane with retractable floats that resembles a lot the "Kyofu" and the "Shiun".

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #5 "RAIYO"

Seaplane Attack Fighter "Raiyo" (Thunder of the Pacific)
Span: 15.2m
Length: 11.00m
Weight: 4050kg
Max Speed: 610km/h @ 6000m
Range: 3000km
Armament: one 800kg torpedo or three 250kg bombs, two 20mm cannons under the belly, one 13mm machine gun in the rear gunner position
Crew: 3
Art: Imura Shinji
 
Cover art: Takani Yoshiyuki

An interesting retractable (!!!) flotplane version of the Toryu equipped with radar and able to act as torpedo bomber. Can't figure out where the third crew member would fit.
What kits would you use to make this conversion?

Monday, 26 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Twin-engine Zero

In a Manga series with the title "Gale over Rabaul - Air Battle History", released '99-'00 and written by Kawamata Chiaki, a Zero of quite interesting design is roaming the skies of South Pacific.

What if the all-well-known Zero design had a pair of engines on it's wings leaving the nose free to install different kinds of cannons and machine guns? It certainly looks cool to me and I wouldn't mind experimenting with a couple kits from the spare box.

Manga cover illustration by Takani Yoshiyuki (Born 1935)
 

Story illustration by Wada Satoru

Sunday, 25 December 2011

Nipponki '46: IJNAF Focke-Wulf Fw-200 Condor by George G. Crozier

The rumored IJNAF Focke-Wulf Fw-200 Condor with four 2000hp Homare engines borrowed from the Nakajima G8N "Renzan" (Rita) project. The Fw-200 so modified was used as an engine test bed. This particular aircraft was found damaged at the end of the war.
Model by: George G. Crozier







Deep Blue Fleet

Thank you all for your support.
More designs from the manga series to follow from next week.
Please note that, as mentioned in the first posting, the artist is Imura Shinji.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #4 "SENKI"

Carrier Tank Buster "Senki" (?)
Span: 13.8m
Length: 10.88m
Weight: 4960kg
Max Speed: 6725km/h
Range: 1360km
Armament: 1X35mm cannon, 6 air-to-ground rockets
Crew: 1 
 
The wings resemble a lot the "Ryusei" but how about the fuselage and jet engine? Any ideas? 

Friday, 23 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #3 "DENSEI"

Carrier Fighter "Densei" (?) Model VI
Span: 11.24m
Length: 11.20m
Weight: 4960kg
Max Speed: 750km/h
Range: 1540km
Armament: 2X20mm, 2X30mm cannons
Crew: 1
From Model V the engine changed to turbo-prop.

A carrier fighter based on the Hayate but with contra-rotating propellers, all-round vision canopy, extra armament and more. The nose of Model V reminds me a bit of the Hawker Sea Fury. 

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #2 "SEIHO"

Carrier Strategic Combat Aircraft "Seiho" (Star Phoenix)
Span: 20.00m
Length: 15.00m
Weight: 7265kg
Max Speed: 570km/h @ 5900m
Range: 5650km
Crew: 5


Obviously based on the Yokosuka P1Y1 "Ginga" (Frances) the "Seiho" is operated from large size aircraft carriers and is equipped with various radar systems.

Nipponki '46: Deep Blue Fleet #1 - 紺碧の艦隊 (Konpeki no Kantai)

This is the first in a series of postings about Japanese X-planes, what-if and fantasy projects.
We would love to hear your feedback and ideas as well as feature your models and artwork.
 
First up is the manga/VHS/DVD series "Konpeki no Kantai" (Deep Blue Fleet).
Story by: Aramaki Yoshio
Art by: Imura Shinji
Published by: Tokuma Shoten (1992-1996) 20 Vols.
From Wikipedia:
"In Konpeki no Kantai's first episode, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto's death on April 18, 1943, still proceeds exactly as in the real event. Just before his damaged plane crashes into Bougainville Island, Yamamoto blacks out, before awakening in a ship quarters. Unclear about what has just happened, Yamamoto speaks with a crewman, and discovers that he is aboard the Japanese cruiser Nisshin. He is then informed that the date is May 28, 1905 and that Battle of Tsushima has just ended. Yamamoto realizes that he has somehow been transported back in time (or to a parallel world).
  After Yamamoto decides to revert to his old name of Isoroku Takano, he vows to use his advance-knowledge of the next 38 years to ensure that Japan does not make the same mistakes as before.
  Yamamoto's first priority is to spearhead a massive naval construction program. It involves building a large fleet of advanced battleships and supercarriers, nuclear submarines based on the design of the real-life I-400 Sen Toku submarine, and advanced combat aircraft that were in prototype or concept form during the late stages of the actual Pacific War.
  His plan for success begins with a coup d'état against the hardline government of Army General Hideki Tōjō in late 1941, on the eve of the Pearl Harbor attack, and installing an ally, Lt Gen Yasaburo Otaka as prime minister. Otaka, who has also been transported back in time, agrees to work with Yamamoto to change history and ensure that the Japanese Empire emerges victorious against the United States in the Second World War."
First VHS of the series.

Cover of the 9th VHS.

Some sample pages from the manga.

 Tomorrow we will post more scans and details about the various airplane types presented in the series.
Stay tuned!

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Vintage book cover

Title: "Tatakau Riku no Arawasi" (Fighting Land Eagles)
Author: Aoki Taizo
Publisher: Shuei-sha, February 1941

Monday, 19 December 2011

Kawanishi E7K1 (Alf) ー 川西94式1号水上偵察機

The old model with the Hiro Type 91 12-cylinder liquid-cooled engine and the four-blade wooden prop. Photo from a vintage magazine.

A dramatic shot showing the perils of lowering the floatplane from a warship. Note the guy at the far edge of the starboard wing tip releasing the attachment cable. I know I wouldn't like to be in his shoes.
Anyone interested to build a diorama out of this shot?


Saturday, 10 December 2011

Kawasaki Ki-48 (Lily) - 九九式双発軽爆撃機

January 1945, Clark airfield, Luson, Philippines.
A Kawasaki Ki-48-IIa "99 shokei", belonging to the 208th Sentai has just been captured by advancing US forces and is put aside for evaluation.

The unit was decimated during the battle for New Guinea, was reduced to transport duties during the Philippine campaign and operated only a small number of Lilys. Considering this, the color of the simplified white tail marking didn't indicate any particular chutai.

Overall color is "hairyokushoku" (gray-green) with green "madara" (mottled) camo applied by airbrush. Brown prop & spinner.
Photo: NARA

Friday, 2 December 2011

Kayaba Ka-Go ー カ号観測機

There are very few photos of this autogyro inspired by the Kellet KD-1A and built by Kayaba.
This one is the Kayaba Ka-go 2 with a Jakobs L-4 M A-7 air-cooled, seven-cylinder engine.
The story goes like this: the IJAAF imported a Kellet KD-1A from the States for evaluation. Unfortunately it was damaged during trials and the Army gave it to Kayaba to repair it. Kayaba installed a Jacobs engine and produced one more experimental test machine designated Ka-2. It was found to be very satisfactory and the Army decided to put it into mass production as the Ka-1 but with a different engine; an Argus As 10c eight-cylinder.
It served as artillery spotter and, according to a Japanese reference, with the 107Sentai.
It also served in the anti-submarine role equipped with depth charges from the Army aircraft carrier (yes, the Army had some of those too) Akitsu Maru. The first in the world to do so.
A rare photo I'm sure X-plane lovers will like.
Those who have the Francillon volume will notice some differences with the text above.

By the way...it's overall orange.