Air Enthusiast 2007-05
M.Huggins - Falcons on Every Front /World war two/
Early Ki-43-Ia of the Akeno Fighter Training School. Note emblem on tail and all-aluminium finish, apart from the anti-glare panel in the front of the cockpit. No fuselage Hinomaru (national insignia) present, but individual airframe number visible.
The 50th Sentai prepares for an operational sortie. This unit was the second most important regiment to serve in Burma with Ki-43s, after the 64th Sentai.
Ki-43-Is of the 3rd Chutai, 50th Sentai, on the flight-line at Tachikawa in the summer of 1942. The unit was converting to the type following a recent combat tour in Burma, when it flew the Ki-27.
Probably the most easily recognisable tail marking of any IJAAF Regiment was the downward-pointed arrow of the elite 64th Sentai, as seen on this Ki-43-I in Malaya.
Ki-43-I of an unidentified unit pictured in China, or French-Indo-China, in 1942.
A Ki-43-I of an unknown unit runs up its engine inside its blast pen at a frontline airfield.
Сценка на аэродроме 1-го истребительного сентая в Ханое, ноябрь 1942г. На заднем плане самолет командира сентая майора Такеды
A Ki-43-I of the 1st Sentai, in French-Indo-China during late 1942. The elaborate markings show that this is the personal mount of Major Kinshiro Takeda, Regimental Commander before World War Two and until March 1943.
Maintenance on a Ki-43-I at a frontline airfield. Of interest here is the mottled green overspray on the bare metal finish - the commonest camouflage within the IJAAF.
Close-up detail of the Ki-43-I telescopic gunsight. Although this had become obsolete by the time Japan entered World War Two, nearly all Ki-43-Is carried this outdated sighting design.
The graceful design of the Ki-43 Hayabusa shown to perfection in this unusual view of a Ki-43-I in flight. Note the position of the raised undercarriage, slightly abutting into the wing-roots.
A Ki-43-I in 1943 after the type had been replaced at the front by the Ki-43-II. Many of the earlier models were relegated to training cadres such as the Akeno Fighter Training School in Japan, to which this aircraft belongs.
Air-to-air view of Ki-43-Is of the 50th Sentai. White Sentai markings denote these aircraft as belonging to the 3rd Chutai.
Air-to-air 'propaganda-type' photo of an impressive formation of Ki-43-Is of the 1st Sentai, over French Indo China in early 1942. The unique tail markings consisted of different colours on the rudders for each Chutai - later over-painted with white stripes denoting the individual aircraft's position within the formation, as seen here.