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Mitsubishi A6M


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Glog97 #1 Posted 24 October 2011 - 01:52 PM

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Zero was a Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service (IJNAS) army long range fighter. When it was introduced early in World War II, the Zero was considered the most capable carrier-based fighter in the world, combining excellent maneuverability and very long range. In early combat operations, the Zero gained a legendary reputation as a "dogfighter", achieving the outstanding kill ratio of 12 to 1, but by mid-1942 a combination of new tactics and the introduction of better equipment enabled the Allied pilots to engage the Zero on more equal terms.




General characteristics

    Crew: 1
    Length: 9.06 m (29 ft 9 in)
    Wingspan: 12.0 m (39 ft 4 in)
    Height: 3.05 m (10 ft 0 in)
    Wing area: 22.44 m² (241.5 ft²)
    Empty weight: 1,680 kg (3,704 lb)
    Loaded weight: 2,410 kg (5,313 lb)
    Powerplant: 1 × Nakajima Sakae 12 radial engine, 709 kW (950 hp)
    Aspect ratio: 6.4

Performance

    Never exceed speed: 660 km/h (356 kn, 410 mph)
    Maximum speed: 533 km/h (287 kn, 331 mph) at 4,550 m (14,930 ft)
    Range: 3,105 km (1,675 nmi, 1,929 mi)
    Service ceiling: 10,000 m (33,000 ft)
    Rate of climb: 15.7 m/s (3,100 ft/min)
    Wing loading: 107.4 kg/m² (22.0 lb/ft²)
    Power/mass: 294 W/kg (0.18 hp/lb)

Armament

    Guns:
    Divergence of trajectories between 7.7 mm and 20mm ammunition

        2× 7.7 mm (0.303 in) Type 97 machine guns in the engine cowling, with 500 rounds per gun.
        2× 20 mm Type 99 cannon in the wings, with 60 rounds per gun.
    Bombs:
        2× 60 kg (132 lb) bombs or
        1× fixed 250 kg (551 lb) bomb for kamikaze attacks


A short video of the Zero




Hope you like it...


Because tomorrow, today will become yesterday,
just as yesterday, today was tomorrow...

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TheoG #2 Posted 24 October 2011 - 11:46 PM

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Zero looks a little weak, fast scout. Its maneuverable, but not good armor. I The guns look ok. Anyways nice intro.

And as always, have a nice day!


Signature made by CrashTailSpin, above.
И как всегда, есть хороший день!
And as always, have a nice day!

METAL_BAWKSES #3 Posted 25 October 2011 - 05:59 PM

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Excellent choice for the video.  Battlefield is perhaps the best World War II documentary series I have ever seen.  I highly recommend anyone with even a passing interest to check them out.

I had a chance to see a Zero up close and personal a few years ago.  Our city held an airshow, and it was one of the planes that attended.  After a quick fly-by with an F6F Hellcat, the plane taxied over to the rest of the aircraft so people could check it out in greater detail.  It had a dark green paint job with a white outline around the rising sun emblems on its wings and fuselage.

Truly an elegant plane.  It's a shame there are so few airworthy ones nowadays.

Glog97 #4 Posted 25 October 2011 - 07:36 PM

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View PostMETAL_BAWKSES, on 25 October 2011 - 05:59 PM, said:

Excellent choice for the video.  Battlefield is perhaps the best World War II documentary series I have ever seen.  I highly recommend anyone with even a passing interest to check them out.

Glad to see someone knows of it :D


Because tomorrow, today will become yesterday,
just as yesterday, today was tomorrow...

DxDiag


AceCombatrix #5 Posted 24 November 2011 - 09:24 PM

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Posted Image
The Mitsubishi A6M was the main fighting aircraft of the Japanese Empire during the war in the pacific. The A6M is best known by the name "Zero", which the allies gave it. Altough the official allied reporting name was "Zeke", soldiers soon started to call it Zero.

Note: The name A6M comes from: A for Aircraft Carrier(because it was to be a carrier plane) 6 for the sixth model of this type and M for Mitsubishi, the manufacturer

Development

The development started soon after its predecessor, the A5M entered service

First of all,both Mitsubish and Nakajima were given the task of designing a fighter plane. Since it was to be a Carrier Plane, the Imperial Japanese Navy was given the task of specifying the requirements

They included:

At least a speed of 500km/h which is 310,69 mph
Capable of reaching 4000m of altitude (about 13.000 feet)
Two 20mm autocannons and two 7mm machine guns
Capable of carrying two smaller 30 kg bombs or one bigger 60 kg bomb (70 and 130 lmb respectively)
Small wingspan( under 12 m-39 feet) to be able to land on aircraft carriers

In the end Mitshubishi managed to win the contest.

The first prototypes were immediately used against the Chinese in 1940

The results of these prototypes were so good that production immediately started

Combat performance
Posted Image
Two A6Ms flying in China

When the A6M was created, it was probably the best fighter in the world. It was faster and had more maneuverability than many other World War 2 Planes.
However, these advantages came at a high price, since Mitsubishi decided to remove all armor, for the plane as well as for the pilot himself, to increase the speed.
Another very serious problem was, that the Zeroes did not use self sealing fuel tanks. Due to this, Zeroes were extremely flammable and tended to explode if they were shot at, risking the pilot's life

At their first deployment, 13 Zeroes managed to shoot down several chinese fighters, without losing a single plane.

The most famous sortie the Zeroes had, was the infamous assault on Pearl Harbor, where more than 100 of them were involved. Over 400 A6Ms were active in the whole pacific. Since their Operational Radius was very high, Allied Officers believed that there were even more.

The Zeroes soon proved to be deadly to even the legendary Supermarine Spitfire, since it managed to easily outmaneuver the british fighter.

In 1942 however, the Zeroes became endangered themselves.
Allied Pilots discovered several tactics of easily finishing off the fragile fighters, for example the very sturdy, heavy P-40 Warhawks learned how to use their heavier armor against the A6Ms, attacking them while diving down, then pulling up again. Against this technique, the Zeroes could not use their high speed, making them vulnerable.

The fatal blow was when a US Army Team managed to secure an almost intact A6M which tried to crash land.
The Americans soon learned the Mitshubishi's weaknesses.

Later in the war, the situation became even more desperate for the Japanese, when the new P-38 Lightnings and especially the Vougt F-4 Corsairs entered service.
Since those planes were newer they had more powerful engines, making them faster than the Zeroes, however without having to remove the armor plates. The Zeroe's motor was outdated and stronger motors were scarce, the A6Ms lost their most important strengths
The Japanese Empire's newest creations could not be constructed in large numbers, because Japan lacked the ressources.

Finally, due to the lack of armor, many experienced and valuabla pilots died in larger battles, while the US Forces, well armored and equipped with parachutes, had much less casualties.

In the end, because they were almost useless in regular combat, especially without trained pilots, Zeroes were used as "Kamikaze" Japanese 神風- translated as "divine wind".
Kamikaze operations were intentional crashes into enemy ships, bases etc. using aircrafts full of explosives and ammunition.
Though the psychological impact was big, the direct damage was often low, never justifying the high price of sacrificing a trained pilot.

Technical Data

Posted Image
Number built: 10,939( most produced japanese fighter)
First flight: April 1939
Entered Service: July 1940
Retired: 1945( End of the war)
Crew: One Man( Pilot)
Lenght:around 9 metres
Wingspan:around 12 metres
Height: 3 metres
Wing area: 22m²
Weight (empty) 1680 kg
Weight (loaded) 2410 kg
Engine: Nakajima Sakae Radial Engine (709 kW)
Aspect ratio: 6.4

Never exceed Speed( highest limit, if you fligh with higher speed, aircraft will be damaged) 660 km/h
Max. Speed: 533km/h
Operational Range: 3105 km
Highest reachable altitude: 10.000 km
Climb rate: 15.7m/s
Max. Loading on wing: 104.7kg/m²
Power: 294W/kg

Weaponry:
Posted Image

Double 20mm Type 99 autocannon (520 rounds/min) 60 rounds per gun

Double 7.7mm Machine gun Rounds: 500/each

Bombs:
2x 30 kg Bomb( later replaced with double 60kg)
250 kg Kamikaze Bomb

Variants

Even though there was a large number of variants, the changes were often minimal

A6M2 Type 0 Model 11
"Standard" early war model

Type 0 Model 21
Posted Image
Introduction of foldable wingtips for use on carriers

A6M3 Type 0 Model 32

Fitted with better engines, had smaller size and smaller fuel tank
Was not liked by pilots due to smaller range

A6M3 Type 0 Model 22
Posted Image

Model 22 was correction of 32's faults, larger fuel storage to regain the range lost

A6M4 Type 0 Model 41

Two prototypes built. Included new superchargers

A6M5 Type 0 M 52
Posted Image
Model 52s at Kyushu, ready for a Kamikaze assault

Designed to counter Hellcat and Corsair
Among other features improved exhaust, better wing skinning
Considered the most effective model

A6M6 Type 0 M 53

Finally including self-sealing fuel tanks,different engine

A6M8 Type 0 M 64

Different engine,modified cowling, different nose, removal of fuselage mg, mounting of a large spinner.

No machine was ever completed due to destrution of japanese factories and war end.

Survivors

Posted Image
The Zero at Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo

Due to the high number of built planes, several still exist.
Among others, some are displayed in: Tokyo( Yasukuni shrine), Hiroshima, Aichi
US: Smithsonian Air and Space museum, etc.
UK: Duxford

Some Zeroes were reconstructed to use them in WW2 Movies

Ace Pilots
Posted Image
Several pilots standing in front of the A6M, Photo taken 1943 at Kupang

Hiroyoshi Nishizawa- 84 victories
Tetsuzo Iwamoto- over 80
Shoichi Sugita- 70
Saburo Sakai- 64
Takeo Okamura- 54

Several others

Thank you for taking the time to read my work

Tora! Tora! Tora!( Traditional cry used by Zero Pilots)

PS:
Sry for the size of the images, but i use this forum the first time.
I will rescale them ASAP( as soon as i find out how to post own images, and not from websites)


Topic merged with existing one
~CarlR


AceCombatrix #6 Posted 24 November 2011 - 09:26 PM

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Sry that my pics don't work, i don't know how to put them in

EDIT: Nevermind, fixed it

hondaaccord #7 Posted 13 December 2011 - 06:12 PM

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http://0.tqn.com/d/m...6/-/-/Zero1.jpg





Specifications:
General

    Length: 29 ft. 9 in.
    Wingspan: 39 ft. 4 in.
    Height: 10 ft.
    Wing Area: 241.5 sq. ft.
    Empty Weight: 3,704 lbs.
    Loaded Weight: 5,313 lbs.
    Crew: 1

Performance

    Power Plant: 1 � 950 hp Nakajima Sakae 12 radial engine
    Range: 1,929 miles
    Maximum Speed: 331 mph
    Ceiling: 33,000 ft.

Armament

    Guns: 2 � 7.7 mm (0.303 in) Type 97 machine guns (engine cowling), 2 � 20 mm (0.787 in) Type 99 cannons (wings)
    Bombs: Combat- 2 � 66 lb. and 1 � 132 lb. bombs, Kamikaze: 2 x fixed 550 lb. bombs


Operational History:

Entering service in 1940, the A6M became known as the Zero based on its official designation of Type 0 Carrier Fighter. In early 1940, the first A6M2, Model 11 Zeros arrived in China and quickly proved themselves as the best fighter in the conflict. Fitted with a 950 hp Nakajima Sakae 12 engine, the Zero swept Chinese opposition from the skies. With the new engine, the aircraft exceeded its design specifications and a new version with folding wingtips, the A6M2, Model 21, was pushed into production for carrier use.

For much of World War II, the Model 21 was the version of the Zero that was encountered by Allied aviators. A superior dogfighter than the early Allied fighters, the Zero was able to out-maneuver its opposition. To combat this, Allied pilots developed specific tactics for dealing with the aircraft. These included the "Thach Weave," which required two Allied pilots working in tandem, and the "Boom-and-Zoom," which saw Allied pilots fighting on the dive or climb. In both cases, the Allies benefited from the Zero's complete lack of protection as a single burst of fire was generally enough to down the aircraft.

By late 1944, with most of its aircraft carriers sunk (and its most highly-trained aircrews gone), Japan resorted to desperate measures. These included �Kamikaze� (divine wind) suicide raids, wherein green pilots would turn their early-model Zeros into aerial bombs for attacks on Allied ships during the battles of Okinawa, Iwo Jima and the Philippines. Truly an ignominious end for one of history�s great warbirds




http://www.warbirdal...images/Zero.jpg

http://japaneseaircr...dfdgbzdfzgb.jpg

http://japaneseaircr...pload/awdwd.jpg

http://japaneseaircr...d/asdfedfef.jpg

http://japaneseaircr...ad/sasasa_1.jpg

http://japaneseaircr...d/dsadsefef.jpg



Topic posted in wrong Section, moved to "Aviation of 1930-1950s"
Topic already exists, merged with existing Topic.
~CarlR


dyndo101 #8 Posted 10 January 2012 - 12:26 AM

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The Japanese weren't just kamikazees they were shot down and were going to crash so in the process the idea was to do as much damage as possible to the enemy usually aiming at the location of the gunfire that shot them down if it was land based kinda hard to do if it was another plane.

timbrelaine #9 Posted 17 January 2012 - 08:52 PM

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View Postdyndo101, on 10 January 2012 - 12:26 AM, said:

The Japanese weren't just kamikazees they were shot down and were going to crash so in the process the idea was to do as much damage as possible to the enemy usually aiming at the location of the gunfire that shot them down if it was land based kinda hard to do if it was another plane.

The Japanese weren't just kamikazes, but it became an accepted tactic towards the end of the war. Attacks of opportunity happened too, but large numbers of zeros went into battle outfitted for the purpose of ramming ships, and with pilots trained and ordered to do just that, often attacking in organized waves. Look up the Battle of Okinawa, for a notable example of the tactic being employed.

I'm really looking forward to piloting this plane. I wonder which allied fighters it will find itself matched against?

Kyono #10 Posted 06 February 2012 - 10:31 PM

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Am I right in thinking that the A6M2 Zero was painted white while the A6M5 Zero was generally painted green?

OldIronsides #11 Posted 07 February 2012 - 07:59 AM

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View PostKyono, on 06 February 2012 - 10:31 PM, said:

Am I right in thinking that the A6M2 Zero was painted white while the A6M5 Zero was generally painted green?

Early in the war the Imperial Japanese Navy used a light grey over all camouflage (not white but really light grey). Later in the war green upper sides and bare metal undersides were the common IJN airplane camo.
So probably you are more or less right.

Mitsosk #12 Posted 21 February 2012 - 07:12 AM

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It must be one of the most tricky and unforgiving aircraft of WWII.
One mistake,few enemy rounds hit your plane and it goes boom(at least for the early marks).

ket101 #13 Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:18 AM

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The Zero was designed for maximum manouvrability and range, which resulted in a light structure, and not much protection, which went for most Japanese fighters in any case early on.  The large amount of fuel was also a heat sink, making the planes pretty cold to fly.  The Flying Tigers in the P40's in China had worked out that if you wanted to get away from a Japanese fighter, you were best off diving away from it, the structure of the Japanese aircraft didn't take the additional speed too kindly, but mixing with it in close combat was a big mistake.  It was that ability of the Jap fighters that led to the replacement of the Polikarpov I-16's with biplane I-153's.  The US P-38 Lightning pilot Bing didn't even bother to manouvre, he restricted turns to a maximum of 15 degrees and kept the speed as high as he could.  Any turns were done when he was out of range.

Nishizawa_Hiroyoshi #14 Posted 20 March 2012 - 09:37 AM

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Zero was once the best aircraft on the sky, but when the Japanese stopped developing other aircraft the dominance soon passed... other developed aircraft where more difficult to fly, and there were a lot of novices in the air-force, so a lot of them got killed when they were training...

Nishizawa_Hiroyoshi #15 Posted 20 March 2012 - 07:11 PM

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Hehe, i win :)

Ariecho #16 Posted 24 March 2012 - 03:39 PM

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@John_Kyro, on 26 October 2011 - 07:14 PM, said:

but for real what made the Japanese Aviators Think that "kamikazee" it's a good way to win a war?  :huh:

There are different cultures all around the world.  Japanese answered "bushido", the code of honor, which meant to sacrifice themselves rather than surrender.

Warrior77 #17 Posted 25 March 2012 - 11:09 PM

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The Japanese respected Honor as the most important thing in life. If a Japanese soldier or pilot faced death, taking the enemy with you even if sacrificing yourself was considered a high respect of honor to the people. And that honor would be pasted down to the soldier or pilots family. Still to this day honor is considered a very high respect in the culture.

Goodse #18 Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:01 AM

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I wouldn't want to get this matched with something like a Corsair or a P-51, weak armor decent speed. If I had to I'd put it in tier 5 or 4.

harakiri87 #19 Posted 29 March 2012 - 11:15 PM

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this and corsair would be my planes


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Fightersmurf #20 Posted 30 March 2012 - 11:25 PM

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Head to head or straight on the Zero was toast. In a turning fight Zero would make you toast. Most of the Zero high scoring aces were against the Chinese air force but a few flew against the U.S pilots and did well. Zero was a good airplane but the Japanese never made it to survive in a prolonged dogfight. The U.S. pilots were taught to shoot at the wing roots and the Zero would go Big Badda Boom. The Japanese thought the war would be won very quickly and the U.S. would want peace. It didn’t turn out that way. Again a good airplane.

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