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  A6M3 Model 32 Zero Manufacture Number 3032 Tail V-190
IJN
Tainan Kōkūtai

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U. S. Army Dec 1942

Aircraft History
Built by Mitsubishi on July 3, 1942. At the factory, painted overall gray with a black cowling. Delivered to the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) as Type 0 / A6M3 Model 32 Zero Manufacture Number 3032.

This aircraft was assigned a Houkoku Gou (Navy Patriotic Presentation Number). Donated by Sadahei. Assigned Houkoku Gou 874 (Patriotic Presentation Number 874) in black on both sides of the rear fuselage.

Wartime History
Assigned to the the Tainan Kōkūtai (Tainan Air Group). Tail code V-190 in black with two horizontal white stripes on the tail, one above and below the tail code. The rear fuselage had a red diagonal stripe behind the Hinomaru and around the Houkoku Gou 874 markings.

During August 1942 this Zero operated from Buna Airfield. At some point between the middle of August 1942 to early September 1943 this Zero sustained damage that tore off approximately six feet of the right wing, possibly from a bad landing.

Wreckage
This Zero was abandoned largely intact at Buna Airfield (Old Strip). On December 27, 1942 captured by the U. S. Army in the airfield area. This largely intact aircraft had some shrapnel holes or bullet holes in the fuselage from damage sustained in the air or while parked on the ground.

This Zero was selected by Allied intelligence for further evaluation for a rebuild. By January 1943, moved to the beach and loaded onto a barge then transported to Brisbane arriving on February 19, 1943 then trucked to Eagle Farm Field.

Restoration
Between February 1943 to July 1943 Allied personnel at Eagle Farm Field built a flyable A6M3 Zero (Hybrid) using from components of three Zeros salvaged from Buna Airfield, including this aircraft. For the rebuild, the rear fuselage of this Zero was used plus other components.

The rebuilt process disassembled this Zero and any surviving parts were likely discarded. The ultimate fate of any surviving parts is unknown, likely scrapped or otherwise disappeared.

References
Production figures of the Mitsubishi/Nakajima A6M Zero by Jim Long
Technical Air Intelligence Report No. 163, Headquarters Allied Air Forces, Directorate of Intelligence, APO 925, Subject: Recovery and Reconstruction of Type 0 Mk 2 SSF HAP, 16 September 1943
Sekai no kessaku ki (A World Masterpiece Airplane)
Yokoi Houkoku List - Houkobku Gou 1-994 (List 1)  Houkoku Gou 874
AWM Collections P02875.493, P02875.494 and P02875.4945 have the incorrect date and location for this Zero
Thanks to Jim Long and Jim Lansdale for additional information

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Last Updated
August 8, 2019

 

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