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  N1K2 George Manufacture Number 5341 Tail A 343-35
IJN
343 Kōkūtai

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Norm Blagbrough c1958

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c1990

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Justin Taylan 2004

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Justin Taylan 2008

Aircraft History
Built by Kawanishi in 1944. This aircraft has the facilities for the four 30-kg or four 60-kg bombs or two 250-kg bombs. Therefore it is an N1K2-Ja.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 343rd Kokutai with tail A 343-35 to pilot CPO Katsue Kato. On April 12, 1945 took off from Kanoya Airfield on an interception mission against carrier aircraft over Amami/Kikat, but aborted the mission. At the end of the war, captured at Yokosuka Airfield.

Postwar
During November 1945, this aircraft was transported aboard the USS Barnes to the United States for technical evaluation. It was probably evaluated at the Naval Aircraft Factory at Philadelphia.

Display
During 1946 moved to NAS Willow Grove and displayed outdoors. During the 1950s it was in natural aluminum finish with tail ヨ111. During the 1960s painted in dark green and gray scheme with fuselage number 91 and tail 111.

Restoration
During 1983, the Smithsonian Institution acquired this aircraft and placed it into storage at NASM Paul Garber Facility.

Display
During December 1991, loaned it to the Champlin Fighter Museum where further restoration was undertaken unti at least February 1998. Afterwards, returned to storage at NASM Paul Garber Facility.

Today, this aircraft is display at NASM Udvar-Hazy Center.

References
Genda's Blade, page 201
NASM N1K2 Shinden Profile

Thanks to Jim Long for additional information

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Last Updated
January 31, 2018

 

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