Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Three from three equals?

Liam's next door neighbour in East New Britain has a great garden ornament in his back yard. Can you guess what it is?

Just under 300 Mitsubishi A6M3 Reisens, better known as Zeros, were shot down between October 1943 and March 1944 in the skies of Rabaul. The Zeros, considered one of the most famous fighting planes of the Second World War, were for a long time the symbol of Japanese air power.


The aeroplane had a wingspan of 12 metres, was 9 metres long and weighed 1680 kilos when empty. Capable of reaching a maximum speed of 545 kilometres per hour, it was usually armed with two small 20 mm cannons installed in the wings and two 7.7 mm machine guns behind the engine hood. If needed it could also carry up to 120 kilograms of bombs. This plane’s exceptional maneuverability and its range gave the Japanese a distinct air supremacy for the first months of the war in the Pacific.


Information taken from this site.


It's interesting to note that parts that couldn't be manufactured, were taken from these Zero components and used to assemble the Zero in the War Museum in Canberra.

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Sorry this is late - it was in draft all done, waiting to be posted but my server has been very slow and freezing and I was unable to upload anything all day.


34 comments:

The Texican said...

Hi Jules, Thanks for coming by and visiting with Pappy. You are a brave soul. I burned out on traveling during my career and have stayed mostly stateside since. I also hate all the professed security measures at airports. I taught English for one year after college. I enjoyed the portion of your blog I read this morning. I love pictures from afar. Scotty Graham of Indograhams is one of my favorite photobloggers also from your side of the globe. Come back and visit anytime. Pappy

Willow said...

Ah yes. WWII relics. They're amazing, arent' they? Still there in the jungle and on the beaches all over New Guinea. My kids regularly swam in an American Officers Club pool, left over from WWII, on the site of their school.

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Jules :)

Many thanks for this informative post along with great photos.

Even though I am not an aeronautical engineer, I could understand the fighter plane quite well.

How I wish I could fly a ZERO, go to Pakistan and bomb all the terrorists hide outs. I will be a great hero here in India and my statues will be erected in all important towns :) :) :)

But then, I know and you know that IF WISHES WERE HORSES, BEGGARS WOULD RIDE.

Many thanks for sharing this excellent information along with crisp and clear photos.

Have a wonderful day :)

Gresham Photo Blog said...

Very cool subject!

Tim said...

Hi Jules, the pics are great and I visit your site most days! I went to school in Rabaul many years ago now. I remember playing with all the war relics that we found.
The zero you have in your photos is an A6M2. (The cowling in the photos is actually upside down). Keep posting the great images! I want to go back one day. Best regards,
Tim

JM said...

This must be unique!!! How many people do you know who have a WWII relic on their yard?!? Just amazing!

Donna said...

Amazing! And they're Still laying there! Wonder who the pilot was...Happy night sweetheart!!hughugs

babooshka said...

The top shot is such a haunting image. How strange to have these just lying around.

ancient one said...

So interesting...everytime you post on local history during world war II... I learn something... so hard to imagine that all those relics are just laying around...

Jules said...

Hi All - thanks and yes it is amazing isn't and something we take for granted up here!!!

Tim - yes quite a few ex-Rabaulites visit here which is great. Where do you live now?? Being so mechanical I will need to go and ask someone what a cowling is!!!I do know that the engine is from another wreck and apparently the middle of the plane is missing.

dive said...

Wow! Stunning shots, Jukes!
I want one of those in MY garden!

Rob said...

Hi Jules,
Thanks for the photos of the 'Zero'. I am quite fascinated by WW11 in the Pacific and especially with the fighter aircraft. If you tap the metal skin of a Zero it is very thin, not like on a P-51 Mustang, Spitfire or Kittyhawk. There is a wreck of a Zero in the Darwin Air Museum which I have 'tapped' and now I understand why the Zero has been written up to have such a good performance. It was a light weight aircraft that afforded its pilot very little protection and was unable to sustain much damage.

Love visiting RDP, as usual, keep the stories coming.

alicesg said...

Wow fantastic. An open air musuem. We used to have these planes too in Sentosa but I wondered where they were being moved to now. During my teenage years, I would cycle round the planes. Now I have to find the planes...lol.

USelaine said...

I would rather have something like this in the yard than a freaking gnome any time! So interesting that it hasn't rusted away.

Anonymous said...

Jules, the Zeroes were designed to be excellent fliers and had finely made 14 cylinder engines. The skins were a high tensile strength alloy, plated on both sides with pure aluminum to stop corrosion.
Richard(SAN)

Marie said...

Great post. But it is sad to think the people who were in the plane died when it fell.

lynn said...

Amazing, Jules.

lynn said...

Amazing, Jules.

Jules said...

Dive - if I find one it's yours!!!

Hi Rob & Richard - thanks for the extra info!!

Hi Alice - if you find them - post them!!!

Hi Marie & Lyn

USelaine - I hate them too!!!!

Tim said...

Hi Jules,
I'm in Canberra now, nowhere near as exciting as PNG unfortunately. I went to R.I.P.S and then later on to the International Correspondence School when I lived in Rabaul.
Any chance you might have some pics of the old township handy?
P.s Cowling is the engine cover ;)

Jules said...

Hi Tim
Canberra hey - not a bad spot really!!!! I have taken some photos of Rabaul as it was last year (at the moment it is in a terrible way with heavy ash falls all year) and they are posted on my Rabaul Daily Extra Photos Blog. I have been here 8 years and didn't know the old town as it was BE (before eruption). Funny thing is I work part-time at RIPS (which is now situated outside Kokopo at Takubar) as an English Support Teacher.
Cheers

Anonymous said...

Check out the village of Ramalmal north coast Road

Anonymous said...

Check out the village of Ramalmal north coast Road

cat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Phil Kroll said...

Hi Jules, Nice blog...brought back some fond memories for me... I was in Rabaul in 1964/5 .... Rabual still a going concern then....
Would love to go back to retrace.... I live in UK now.... BIG differential..! :)

This my blog www.pjk123.blogspot.com many shots of Cotswold where I live now....

Enjoy, I think you are very brave!.

Cheers
Phil

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Jimmy said...

Awesome! :) I'm sad you are not updating anymore :(

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Robin said...

what a great garden feature. Wouldn;t have liked to be around when it crashed though..
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