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  A6M2 Model 21 Zero Manufacture Number 5459  
IJN
? Kōkūtai

Aircraft History
Built by either Nakajima or Mitsubishi. If built by Mitsubishi, the estimated date of assembly was December 1941. Alternately, if built by Nakajima, the estimated date of assembly was December 1942.

Delivered to the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) as A6M2 Model 21 Zero manufacture number 5459. At the factory, this Zero was painted overall gray with a black cowling.

Wartime History
Assigned to an unknown Kokutai. No known tail code or markings. During 1943, this Zero operated from Ballale Airfield and abandoned on Ballale Island, likely due to damage or was destroyed on the ground.

Wreckage
Until 1968, the wreckage of this Zero remained in situ on Ballale Island. In 1968, Robert Diemert salvaged portions of this Zero including the left wing. It is unclear if more pieces or parts were recovered by him at that time, or if portions of the aircraft were left.

During 1990, parts of this Zero were sold to Blayd Corporation to John Calverley and Earl Calverley and placed into storage. The only large identifiable piece was the deskinned left wing from from this aircraft.

References
Production figures of the Mitsubishi/Nakajima A6M Zero by Jim Long
A Brief History of the Blayd Zero and Its Markings by Ryan Toews June 15, 2014 page 1
"The recovered Zero artifacts bore the serial numbers... 5459..., all of which were Nakajima-built A6M2 21s."
Thanks to Jim Long and Ryan Toews for additional information

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Last Updated
November 10, 2018

 

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