Jump to content

  • Log in with Twitter Log in with Windows Live Log In with Steam Log In with Google      Sign In   
  • Create Account

Photo
- - - - -

Duel: Nakajima Ki-84 vs. Vought F4U Corsair


  • Please log in to reply
40 replies to this topic

#1 Romantic Technofreak

Romantic Technofreak

    GOT Custodian

  • Forum Guru
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,015 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 9 Months and 14 Days
  • 293 topics

Posted 09 January 2005 - 11:48 PM

I would like to reopen the "Duel" series with the following two:

The Nakajima Ki-84 "Hayate" rsp. "Frank"

23526b78.jpg

and the Vought F4U "Corsair"

f22a05f2.jpg

The performance of the Corsair is beyond decision. About the Hayate, I would like you to concern about the following:

1. Some time ago, our friend Tenmmike opened a thread about the Ki-84 tested at Wright Field. Measurements there showed that the Ki-84 in fact flew a speed of 427 mph = 687 kph. The following discussion was inconclusive with the only exception that the higher octaned American fuel may have boosted the Hayate. I have another book that states the following: "In February 1945, two airplanes of the version Ki-46 IV (yes, I talk about the "Dinah" here, RT), performed a reconaissance flight from Fussa (today Yokota) near Tokyo to Peking. The two machines, cruising at a height of 8,000 to 9,000 m, achieved an average speed of 685 kph!" What I want to say is, if you go from the Ki-46 II flying 604 kph with 2 x 1,030 hp to the Ki-46 IV with 2 x 1,500 kph and use the cubic root formula to find out the speed it should have, you get 687 kph!
For me, the speed of Japanese fighters generally (maybe with exceptions) looks underrated. The reason may be a conscious intelligence disinformation. If you correct the speed by a factor of 685/630 = 1.0873, you get a value appropriate to the performance of their engines and what you would expect if you look upon an Allied or western Axis fighter.
As I like to see myself as advocate of all underrated people and machines in the world:D;), I ask you to take 685 kph as speed comparison value for the Hayate.

2. Please don't put too much weight on lousy Japanese aircraft producing and maintenance skills, causing undue mechanical troubles, nor on the late-war notorious Japanese rookie pilotage.

3. Could you also see the Ki-84 not only as Army, but also as Navy plane? What if not the Mitsubishi A6M5, but the Nakajima Ki-84 would have been the main Japanese fighter during the Marianas battle of June 1944 (prerequisited of course it had been in service in sufficient numbers already at that time, maybe with a weaker engine that now makes it run less than 685 kph).

OK, gentlemen, your comments please!



#2 andyo2000

andyo2000

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 186 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 8 Months and 6 Days
  • 5 topics

Posted 10 January 2005 - 12:42 AM

Pertaining to the Marianas Battle:

I don't think the Ki-84 would have made much of a difference. Though it was better armed, with at least 2 20 mm. cannons, it still would not have made any greater impact when you consider what happened during the Marianas Turkey Shoot.

After Japanese reconaissance locates US Task Force 58, they launch 4 waves of 372 aircraft. Including aircraft on Guam, their air strength is 550 planes. American air strength is 950 planes. Besides the obvious numerical advantage, US radar allows its planes to raid Guam before the Japanese arrive. USN planes intercept the Japanese 50 miles before the task force, and when fewer Japanese planes do pass over their floating targets, naval AA guns shoot down many more. Only one Japanese bomb is dropped; on the USS South Dakota. Overall, the Japanese lost 290 aircraft and 2 aircraft carriers; the Americans lost only 29 planes.

I don't think any plane would have been successful in this situation. In addition, I don't believe the Ki-84 could ever have been a naval fighter. Without catapults, airplanes on carriers have to accelerate and lift off quickly. This is where the A6M has the advantage. The heaviest version weighted 4740 pounds when empty. The empty Ki-84 weighed 5864 pounds. While the Ki-84's engine was more powerful, it's very likely the plane would never have risen off the deck.

And I won't mention Japanese production or maintenance;)

#3 ickysdad

ickysdad

    Regular Member

  • Regulars
  • PipPipPip
  • 890 posts
  • Joined 14 Years, 2 Months and 4 Days
  • 40 topics

Posted 10 January 2005 - 05:17 AM

Japanese planes may have been faster if they had better fuel however it's not fair to Allied airforces who spent great sums of money and conducted a great amount of research to develop such fuels to compare them side by side with planes of the Axis using the same fuels whoose airforces didn't develop better fuels.. What about spark plugs? and other technologies? Furthermore Japanese engines may not have taken the extra strain from over-boosting and higher octane fuel that Alied planes were modified to do , at least in operational conditions as opposed to a test conducted at Wright field.
I'm afraid we have to bring up lousy maintenance and production standards though since they are every bit as much a part of an airforce as the planes & pilots themselves.
I'd also like to comment on something else the Axis far more than the Allies would try to incorporate every little improvement or new design into thier airforces. What I mean is that the Allies could have had an improved interceptor version of the P-47,the P-47J or even the P-72, in operation well before the likes of the KI-84 or FW-190D-9 or TA-152 but they didn't need superb interceptors they needed long range fighters. The P-38K would clearly have outclassed most Axis fighters but the USAAF didn't or wouldn't shut down production lines to re-tool figuring that quantity was more important than absolute quality.The P-51H's predecessor the P-51F's & G's also would have clearly outclassed their Axis counterparts and very well could have in service earlier than their counterparts if pushed ,the Ki-84,190D-9 or TA-152. The Allies took thier standard designs and made them better . Furthermore it's inconclusive if even the advanced Axis designs I mentioned were clearly superior to the P-51B/C/D,P-47D,P-38J/L,F6F,F4U or Spitfire IX or XIV even though the axis fighters are much later designs, especially when the Allies benefit from thier fuel superiority.


  • CORSNING and TheArtOfFlight like this

#4 JoeB

JoeB

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 166 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 3 Months and 22 Days
  • 0 topics

Posted 10 January 2005 - 09:17 AM

quote:Originally posted by Romantic Technofreak


1. Some time ago, our friend Tenmmike opened a thread about the Ki-84 tested at Wright Field. Measurements there showed that the Ki-84 in fact flew a speed of 427 mph = 687 kph.


There have many discussions about that many places. But in the most recent on J-aircraft.com a poster had original documents (he posted images of) which seemed to pretty conclusively show that the 427 was an estimate from US air intel calculations, not an actual result of a real plane in a test; there's no actual documentation supporting a test of the Ki-84 for speed at Wright-Patterson contrary to what many books say. This doesn't mean the Frank couldn't go that fast, just that there isn't a live test proving it. The consensus of that discussion (pretty knowledgeable posters there) is the 388mph quoted in for example Francillon's book is low however, represents power output below that of 1 minute rating of operational Ki-84's. Anyway still somewhat of a mystery it seems.

On the operational experience side it doesn't seem as if the Frank or George made such a big impact on the US air arms; they were aware of these new planes but not that they represented some huge step up in Japanese capability. As R Leonard posted here a while ago, the USN's stats of claimed kill ratio by type don't differ really noticeably for the Frank compared to other fighters. Of course that's based on identifications in combat which could have been wrong (for example in combats described in Sakaida's "Genda's Blade" about the George equipped 343rd Air Group, they were sometimes identified as Tojo's in the US records that seem to correspond in time and place). But it kind of reinforces the same basic point, consciousness on US side of much more capable types in Frank and George was not that clearcut.

A reason could be that fuel, technical immaturity of the Homare engine, and general manufacturing quality in 1945 meant actual field examples of the Ki-84 may have usually had somewhat lower than theoretical performance. Plus of course the relative lack of skilled Japanese pilots in 1945.

Joe

#5 ickysdad

ickysdad

    Regular Member

  • Regulars
  • PipPipPip
  • 890 posts
  • Joined 14 Years, 2 Months and 4 Days
  • 40 topics

Posted 10 January 2005 - 10:21 AM

Why is it though that the Allies develop things like better fuel,better turbo-chargers, better propellors,spark plugs and I'm sure quite a few other technical things for thier aircraft to make them perform better and then it seems the Axis planes have to have these things added to MAKE IT A FAIR COMPARISON between the aircraft? I mean even amongst the Allies there is a huge difference in manufacturing and technical comparison's ,VVS fighters for example had very impressive stats using augmented power however thier engines didn't hold up that well when using it compared to UK/US engines, for example WEP was supposed to be limited to 5 minutes but in actual operational conditions some pilots setup thier aircraft to be able to run on WEP for up to 15 minutes and the engines seem to hold up to the punishment. The Russians also had to import the lightwieght alloys necessary for the Yak-III and I don't think it was just the fact of lacking ceretain strategic materials but also the lack of expertise in the matter.
On actual operations look at the rumor going around about KI-100's shooting down 14 F6F's over Okinawa with no loss to themselves but there seems to be no reliable record of it.


#6 BuzzLightyear

BuzzLightyear

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 222 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 8 Months and 21 Days
  • 12 topics

Posted 10 January 2005 - 10:44 AM

The Wright-Patterson test is bandied about now and then whenever the subject of the Ki-84 comes up. That test wasn't performed until 1946 and there is no telling what was done to the plane before it was flown.

I have a complete copy of the TAIC (Technical Air Intelligence Center) manual on Japanese aircraft. The performance numbers contained in the manual are estimates based on calculations. The manual even states this. They are optimal figures that may or may not have been obtainable under service conditions.


Here are some items that may be of interest:

This is the actual plane that was used in the Wright-Patterson test:
Posted Image

Here is an excerpt fom a test of conducted by the Brits:
Posted Image

Here is some more test results:
Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image







#7 JoeB

JoeB

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 166 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 3 Months and 22 Days
  • 0 topics

Posted 11 January 2005 - 03:17 AM

quote:Originally posted by ickysdad


On actual operations look at the rumor going around about KI-100's shooting down 14 F6F's over Okinawa with no loss to themselves but there seems to be no reliable record of it.


On further looking into that, incl discussion on j-aircraft, seems pretty likely the claim is a garbled version of 244th Sentai's claim of 12 Hellcats for 2 Ki-100's 25 July 1945. 2 VF-31 Hellcats were actually shot down.

Re: Buzz, thanks for posting that. Besides the 427 being an estimate my understanding is that there's no record of any formal speed test in the 1946 flight tests, and authors just jumped to the conclusion the 427 came from those flights, or even that there were side by side flights with US types, apparently not, or not provably so. The real speed potential of the Ki-84-Ia (common op version) was apparently more than 388-392mph type figures, but not really known AFAI can tell.

A real example of a race was the last combat recorded by 5th AF in WWII, P-38L's were able to overhaul Ki-84's at low altitude. But this gets into all questions of manufacturing quality and condition of particular operational planes.

Joe

#8 GregP

GregP

    Forum Guru

  • Forum Guru
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,237 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 11 Months and 20 Days
  • 224 topics

Posted 11 January 2005 - 09:54 AM

About late war Japanese maintenance standards, I have definitely read that they had a very hard time tuning liquid-cooled inline engines, but have nver read that Japanese nechanics had any difficulty keeping air-cooled radials tuned.

That's one reason why many Japanese fighters and bomber HAD radials ... that was their operational expertise.



#9 Romantic Technofreak

Romantic Technofreak

    GOT Custodian

  • Forum Guru
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,015 posts
  • Joined 13 Years, 9 Months and 14 Days
  • 293 topics

Posted 12 January 2005 - 04:19 PM

Thank you for your contributions, friends. But what to begin now? I could have said to myself: Corsair vs. Hayate = 671 vs. 631 kph, so the Corsair is better and finish! I hope you see that this way we cannot start a discussion!

I also ask myself why somebody else than me "assumes" that the Frank ran 427 mph, or on the other hand, with 38 hp less engine power the Frank runs 40 kph less than the Corsair, although looking aerodynamically much more smooth. Andy is of course right with the number argument about the Marianas, but surely not with the weight argument. The Nakajima C6N "Jill" torpedo attacker weights almost in kg (5,200) the weight of the Hayate in pounds (5,864), and did take off from carrier's decks.

The question is, how much deviation from reality (or at least, firmly recorded values) do you allow for to start a discussion, knowing than a firm sticking on reality (this includes production and maintenance problems) prevents a discussion!



#10 Ricky

Ricky

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 2,970 posts
  • Joined 14 Years, 6 Months and 3 Days
  • 138 topics

Posted 12 January 2005 - 04:59 PM

If we assume that a Hayate was produced without defect (it must have happened at least once!) and was in the hands of capable mechanics with access to reasonable spares...

Essentially, if a Hayate that works, and is under the control of one of the remaining capable pilots, meets a Corsair, what would happen?

Once again, I reckon we'll end up saying 'pilot quality'

For me, the Ki-84 looks much nicer (such an important quality!;)), and was *probably* the better dogfighter.
However, I reckon the corsair was more versatile - especially ground attack etc.
Which had the greater range?
Could we have some stats on this please?




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users