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Mitsubishi A6M3-32 Zero Project...
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The following users give thanks for this topic neoasel - Thu Sep 15, 2011 09:50 AM
Fight2FlyPhoto
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Post Post subject: Mitsubishi A6M3-32 Zero Project...
Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:50 AM
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I mentioned in another post that I got to take a look at a new project that is going to be going on near where I live and wanted to post some pictures of it here. The company that is getting their replica Me-262 ready to deliver to its customer any time next week is anxious to get started on their next project. A flying Mitsubishi A6M3-32 Zero with a Nakajima Sakae 21 engine.

So far not a lot has happened, since they are still trying to get the 262 out of there. They have, however, started unpacking, sorting, identifying, and organizing this project that they inherited, trying to make sense of what has been done already, and what still needs to be done.

They began unpacking the remains of the zero they are restoring, one that was shot down near the Marshal Islands and was recovered (IIRC) in the 90's. Upon further inspection, however, they found they don't have the remains of one Zero, they have a collection of remains from up to four Zeros, including parts of Models 21, 31, and 52.

I got to take a look at these pieces and I must say, it was quite remarkable!


This is a shot of the amazing work that has already been done on the fuselage. My camera would be just above where the trailing edge of the wing meets the fuselage, looking forward.


Basically the same picture as above


This is now looking approximately where the pilots feet/rudder pedals would be, looking to the back of the aircraft.


Same as above


Here is the wing in its jig for skinning. I told the guys they really should just leave the clear plastic on for flight! Or at least keep it transparent on one side, then everyone could see all the moving parts!

Unfortunately they didn't buy it. Smile




Now the real goodies!!

Check this out! This is the bulkhead right behind the cockpit, just like you can see in our restoration!


Here is yet a different aft bulkhead, a bit closer up. The framework around it is part of the canopy frame.


Here is a wider angle on the canopy frame


Here is a leading edge of a wing, still with its yellow paint on the leading edge!


Here is a drop tank. Think it got those crumples from pressure as it sank perhaps?


More treasures outside! This is inside the top cowling of one of the Zeros.


Here is a grab-bag of various Zero parts! To the right is a main landing gear wheel cover

So far that's all I've got! They have a ton of new parts that are still packaged up and in bubble-wrap. In the coming weeks and months things will start to come together pretty quickly. I hope to be able to keep folks up to date, either through these posts, or (crossing my fingers) through publication.

Enjoy!

P.S. I'll try to find some of the pieces that have bullet-holes in them!


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EoW_WhamO_CO
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Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:53 AM
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thats so totally awesome, you're really lucky to have gotten to see that. can't wait for this bird to be back in the air. thank you for sharing Very Happy

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DeltaNiner
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Posted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 05:11 AM
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It kind of looks like something hit it in this picture. That drop tank also has a hole in the left side that looks neat and round like you would expect from a bullet. Wish I had the chance to look it all over myself. You are one lucky guy.

Keep the pictures coming, I'll be watching for them

DeltaNiner

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Fight2FlyPhoto
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Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 05:47 PM
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With the summer flying season back in full swing, I will be able to head over there and get some pics of their progress. With the 262, FW-190, and Texan break-down complete, they've been able to focus all energy on this plane. From their FB page I can see they've made a lot of progress.


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Yeager_1946
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Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 10:08 PM
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Great stuff! Looking forward to seeing more pics of this awesome project! Very Happy

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