Roelf

Kawanishi N1K-J Shiden

While the design an attractive float-equipped fighter, the Kawanishi N1K1, was still in progress Kawanishi undertook a wheel-landing gear version, designated the N1K1-J Shiden (violet lightning). The prototype of the new fighter was flown on 27 December 1942. Despite being plagued by constant engine troubles and an inherently weak landing gear, the Shiden was an excellent aircraft in combat, proving an equal match for the Grumman F6F Hellcat; given the reporting name 'George' by the Allies, it was widely considered to be one of Japan's best wartime fighters. A new version, the N1K2-J, with improved landing gear, redesigned airframe structure and cleaner engine cowling, appeared during the last year of the war and proved even better than the N1K1; an instance occurred when a single Japanese pilot, Warrant Officer Konsuke Muto, fought off 12 Hellcats, shooting down four. A total of 1,435 N1K Shiden landplane fighters was produced, Info: Aviastar http://www.aviastar.org/air/japan/kawanishi_n1k-j.php Profiles: Wings Palette http://wp.scn.ru/en/

Kawanishi N1K-J Shiden
Roelf, Jun 13, 2011
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