Thursday 10 May 2012

Japanese Airfield Equipment #1

The Japanese Navy needed equipment to pull their heavy flying boats, especially Kawanishi H6K "Mavis" and Kawanishi H8K "Emily", out of the water and to handle them on land. For this purpose they used 4-wheel (50hp) or 6-wheel (80hp) tractors built by "KATO WORKS CO., LTD." (AKA"Nippon Torakuta Kabushiki Kaisha"). 
The company is still manufacturing heavy construction and agricultural equipment.
Hasegawa included one in 1/72 in their "Emily" kit (if I remember correctly).

An excellent photo from the collection of "LIFE" magazine. Note the Kato tractor pulling a "Mavis".

A Kato tractor makes a brief appearance above during a  rainy scene in the movie "Nankai no Hanataba" (Flower bouquet of the South Seas) of 1942. Inspired by the movie Kato Works released a number of ads in magazines of the time like the ones we feature below.

"KATO TRACTORS - Equipment for: Heavy Lifting, Public Works, Farming.
Wheel or track tractors."

 "Our company recommends with utter confidence this solid-tire-type vehicle able to pull super heavy objects."

"HEAVY! FORCE! KATO Tractors" 


G_Mendes said...

Just find your site!
It's great! Many thanks for sharing your research and findings with us.

By the way, I would like a lot to know more about japanese airfield vehicles and other stuff.

I know that MGM, from germany has some of japanese vehicles, includind a Kato tractor:

Best cumpliments,

G_Mendes said...

I remenbered of this page that show the one of these publicity images:

G_Mendes said...

One site about Kato tractors, I think, in japanese

G_Mendes said...

Just to finish, here is one photoof the kato tractor that come with Hesegawa Emily flying boat.

Best cumpliments,

Arawasi said...

Thank you G_Mendes for your comments and contribution.
More to follow.