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  Ki-43-II Oscar Manufacture Number 6430  (Hollandia Oscar #2)
JAAF
? Sentai

Click For Enlargement
Marty Bohls 1944

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via Bob Rocker

Aircraft History
Built by Nakajima during January 1944. uncoded serial number 1430 (unconfirmed). Delivered to the Japanese Army Air Force (JAAF) as Ki-43-II Oscar manufacture number 6430 (unconfirmed). This aircraft was assigned to an unknown Sentai. Painted overall green with an unidentified motif on the tail.

Wartime History
This Oscar operated from the Hollandia area. During early 1944, abandoned largely intact at either: Hollandia Airfield, Cyclops Airfield or Sentani Airfield.

Wreckage
During late April 1944, this Oscar was captured by the U. S. Army in the Hollandia area at one of the three dromes: Hollandia Airfield, Sentani Airfield or Cyclops Airfield. Afterwards, inspected by Air Technical Intelligence Unit (ATIU).

Repair
During the middle of 1944, this Oscar, Ki-43-II Oscar 5894 and Ki-61 Tony (XJ002) were repaired at Cyclops Airfield by American personnel from the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) 84th Airdrome Squadron. The line chief for both rebuilds was SSgt William Garza who was assisted by SSgt Hall.

Both aircraft were repaired using spare parts found in the area and parts from other Oscars. This Oscar was stripped to bare aluminum finish and painted with U. S. star and bar markings and a red and white tail rudder. The cowl had a circular motif with "84" for the 84th Airdrome Squadron painted on both sides.

By September 1944, this Oscar was test flown in the Hollandia area. Later, this Oscar was loaded aboard a ship and transported to the United States for technical evaluation, accompanied by SSgt Hall.

Technical Evaluation
Later, it was sent to the United States for technical evaluation. The plane was identified by the Wright Field technical intelligence unit as T2-6430. But this number is not the original Japanese manufacture number.

Jim Long adds:
"The EAA Ki-43-II is unique in having the cockpit enclosure from a Ki-43-I grafted onto it. This probably happened when the Americans rebuilt it and couldn't find a serviceable canopy of the right type. The serial number purported to be that of the EAA Ki-43 is 6430, but it is doubtful. I think the real manufacture number of the EAA Ki-43 is lost to history. If you have FAOW No. 13 of 1988, you can see the Ki-43-II with the Ki-43-I cockpit enclosure in the upper photo on page 70. I believe this is the plane which became the EAA Ki-43-II. It had red or blue stars on its wheels, large rudder stripes, the star-and-bars insignia set well back on the sides of the fuselage, a fuselage flare in an unknown color along the right side (maybe both sides), and a unit insignia on its cowling (perhaps on both sides)."

Today
After the war, this aircraft was in storage. Later, donated to National Air & Space Museum (NASM). This aircraft includes parts from at least two aircraft, with manufacture numbers: 6430 and 5894. The mix of parts was either during production or more likely during repaired by American personnel in the middle of 1944.

Refurbished by the Wisconsin Air National Guard and painted in the markings of the 63rd Sentai with 13 on the tail and a white fuselage band. (The 63rd Sentai was one of four Sentai flying Oscars at Hollandia).

Displayed at the EAA Museum.

References
This aircraft is known as Hollandia "Oscar #2" in recent analysis
Ki-43 production data by Jim Long
FAOW No. 13 page 70 (photos)
J-Aircraft - EAA Museum Nakajima Ki-43-II by Ryan Toews
J-Aircraft - The Captured Oscars of Hollandia by Dave Pluth (photos)
Thanks to Jim Long and Dave Pluth for additional information

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Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

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