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  A6M3 Model 22 Zero Manufacture Number 3852 (Replica Two Seater)  
Replica

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Justin Taylan 2004

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Greg James 2007

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Ryan Toews 2009

Restoration
This is a replica Zero manufactured with new materials and modified as a two seat version. Manufactured with new materials. Assigned the "historical identity" of A6M3 Model 22 Zero 3852.

Components recovered by Bruce Fenstermaker from Babo Airfield in 1991 served as a basis for this restoration. A few original parts, including the landing gear and wing trim tabs are original parts used in the finished restoration.

One of three reproduction Zeros built in Russia between 1994-1997 for the Santa Monica Museum of Flying for approximately $300,000 USD. Construction occurred between 1994-1997.

Afterwards, shipped to California as a bare airframe, without wiring, instruments or armament. When Santa Monica Museum of Flight closed, this aircraft was sold.

Purchased by Vulcan Warbirds, Inc the buying company for Paul Allen / Flying Heritage Collection (FHC). Registered with the FAA as N3852 on May 12, 2004 with the owner listed as Vulcan Warbirds, Inc.

This Zero was moved to The Fighter Rebuilders for further restoration during 2003-2007 to finally bring it to safe airworthy status. The price of this re-restoration equaled or exceeded the original Russian restoration.

Around 2007, restoration work was completed and the aircraft was moved to the Flying Heritage Collection in Arlington, WA.

Ryan Toews visited in October 2009:
"I was able to spent a couple of hours examining this plane The only discrepancy, apart from the modification to a two seater, is the lack of the adjustable rudder trim tab as well as the servo tabs on the ailerons. However, the plane has the firewall set in the position found on the Model 22. I think the plane is thus more a 22 than a 21, but then as it is modified to be a two-seater the whole issue of what the plane actually is become very problematic. There are a few original parts in the plane, including the landing gear and wing trim tabs, but most of the plane is built from new components."

During 2011, this Zero was moved to Wenatchee, WA for additional restoration to prepare it for airworthy status.

References
Flying Heritage Collection A6M3 Model 22 Zero

FAA Registry - Aircraft N Number N3852
Air Classics, Volume 27, No 8 (August 1991) "Zero Starts Major Restoration Program" by Michael O'Leary. Pages 34-40
Warbirds International, Vol 14, No 8, November 1995. "Zero Exclusive! Flight Magic lets us take a look at its newly restored Mitsubishi A6M2 Zero by Michael O'Leary. Pages 8-11.
Thanks to Cory Graff (curator, FHC), Edward Maloney, Steve Hinton, Bruce Fenstermaker and Jim Long for additional information.

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Last Updated
January 31, 2018

 

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