Veteran modeller John Haas from the Netherlands has very kindly shared these stunning images of three of his 1/48th scale models of Japanese experimental types. No kits were harmed in the production of these masterpieces - they were all built from scratch in a variety of materials, including wood and plastic, which John declares provides more fun and satisfaction. As the photographs show John is no mean photographer either!
Yokosuka R2Y-1 Keiun
The Yokosuka R2Y-1 Keiun (景雲 - Scenic Cloud) was a Navy prototype reconnaissance aircraft with coupled engines driving a single six-bladed propeller. A turbojet powered light bomber version was also envisaged but the prototype was destroyed in a bombing raid after only one test flight in May 1945.
Tachikawa's Ki-94-II was a very large single engined fighter developed from an earlier twin boom design and featuring cockpit pressurisation and a turbo supercharged engine for high altitude bomber interception. A heavy armament of two 30mm Ho-155 and two 20mm Ho-5 wing mounted cannon cannon was planned. The first prototype, with a four bladed propeller was being readied for a preliminary test flight when the war ended, whilst the second prototype, intended to have a six bladed propeller, was still under construction.
Nakajima J5N-1 Tenrai
The Nakajima J5N-1 Tenrai (天雷 Heavenly Thunder) was designed as a fast twin-engined single seat multi-role fighter for the Imperial Navy and John's model represents the third of six prototypes built, two of which were completed as two seat aircraft possibly with the intention of incorporating radar. The first prototype flew in July 1944 but despite Tenrai's good looks its performance did not match its expected potential.
Image credits: Models and photographs all © 2014 John Haas