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Cadet_Bobo
08-16-2005, 03:31 PM
So...any Japanese plane experts can help me here...what do the words 'Ko', 'Hei', 'Otsu', and 'KAI' and the like mean. You see them after the aircraft name... Ki-61 Hei for example. Please enlighten me http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif Thank you!

Bobo

JG53Frankyboy
08-16-2005, 05:11 PM
Ko=A like P-51A
Otsu=B
Hei=C

KAI means "improved"

Chuck_Older
08-16-2005, 05:51 PM
Quick related erratta:

The Zero was called many things by the US.

"Hap", until someone remembered "Hap" Arnold's name, then "Hamp". Also "Zeke", tying into the Hill-billy naming pattern of quickly recognisable, short names like "Nate" and "Rufe". Japanese called it "rei-sen": Zero Fighter. 'Zero' because of it's date of acceptance: 2400 to the Japanese, 1940 to the US. This had previously been done in cases like the Ki-27 or "type 97", or "I-97" to many US servicemen

JG53Frankyboy
08-16-2005, 05:55 PM
only the Model 32 , with the clipped wings, was called for a short time "Hap" than "Hamp" - till the US intelligence get aware that these fighters were just a variant of the "Zeke".

Cadet_Bobo
08-16-2005, 09:33 PM
Thank you folks, I knew I could find help here http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif And I love the Jimmy Clark sig!

Bobo

LEBillfish
08-16-2005, 10:15 PM
Hi All;

I'm going to address this to Nippon Rikugun Koukuutai (Japanese Army Flying Corps) designations as the Navy had a different method. In kind know what I'm about to say is what I understand thus far, tomorrow something more plausible may arise.

Using the Ki-61 as an example....

First off, Japanese did not refer to their planes in speech as say a Ki-61, though on serial number placards and elsewhere that would have been marked on it along with the following. Japanese Army naming conventions were based upon "Type" designations. "Type" naming is based off of the year something was accepted into service. However the Japanese calendar is 660 years ahead of western systems. So Up to the year 2599 (1939 in the West) the last two digits formed the type number. In 2600 (1940) the number 100 was used, and from 2601 (1941) only the last digit of the year was used.

This would make a Ki-61 a "Type 3 Fighter".

In addition, a "Kitai" or "fuselage" number was given the aircraft shortened to "Ki" So a "Type 3 Fighter" had a number of Ki-61.

Added to this would be a "Model number", the model number often using Roman numerals. So what we would call a Ki-61-1 on their placards would read only Ki-61, however, once they added an improved fuselage style or change might change to Ki-61-II.

So essentially it would be spoken "Army Type 3 Fighter, Model II" or Ki-61-II.

You would also add to that a "Kaizo" designation if the model made some drastic change....We see that as "Kai".

So the Ki-61-II would have on it Ki-61-II-Kai, yet would still be called a "Model II, Type 3 Fighter"

As to "Ko, Otu/Otsu, Hei, Tei", in actuality I can find no where credible that gives a "solid" explanation of these....Only that they were further designations to state different types "much like but not" a,b,c, etc.. They are actually Kanji characters, though their exact meaning pertinent to aircraft to me not yet discovered....However..The terms were used to denote some "minor change" like with armament.

So in the case of a Ki-61, Ko would be the first version of armament, Otu/Otsu the second, Hei the third and sometimes Tei the fourth.

However, "A,B,C,D," really makes no sense, as that is English, not Japanese. So it would be doubtful such characters would be used.

So what we know in PF as a Ki-61-Hei, and most call a Ki-61-1c, the Japanese would have stamped on the placard "Ki-61" only. If speaking of it would have called it a "Type 3 Fighter, Model I, Hei"

However, know none of this to be "fact" all of it heavily still debated. Other then "Type 3, Model I or Ki-61" nothing is positive. It is often said the 1a & 1b versions were both called "ko" instead of Ko then Otu/Otsu. It is also debated that the 1d was designated Tei, yet that not solid. It is also stated that the 1c, or Mauser modefied versions were called "Otu/Otsu" in that the 1b was just a minor evolution from the 1a. So you may very well find a Ki-61-1d listed as a "type 3 fighter, model I, Kai Tei" or "Ki-61-I-Kai Tei" or "Ki-61-Tei".....

So that brings us to the following;
(note in actuality "model" would not be stated till a second version had developed...In addition, Ko, Otu/Otsu etc. would have rarely if ever been stated....It simply a Type 3 Fighter and there some debate as to the Ko designation being used for both 1a & 1b, the 1c Otu/Otsu, Hei never used)

Japanese Name = Kitai No. = English Designation = (what it was)

Type 3 Fighter = Ki-61-I = Ki-61 (prototype)
Type 3 Fighter, Model I Ko = Ki-61-I Ko = Ki-61-1a = (first released version)
Type 3 Fighter, Model I Otu/Otsu = Ki-61-I Otu/Otsu = Ki-61-1b = (second armament version)
Type 3 Fighter, Model I Hei = Ki-61-I Hei = Ki-61-1c = (third armament version)
Type 3 Fighter, Model I Kai/Tei = Ki-61-I Kai = Ki-61-1d = (Considerably changed version)
Type 3 Fighter, Model II = Ki-61-II = Ki-61-2 = (New Prototype)
Type 3 Fighter, Model II Kai= Ki-61-II Kai = Ki-61-2 = (Newer Prototype)
Type 3 Fighter, Model II Kai = Ki-61-II Kai = Ki-61-2a = (First production model, none further made so "Ko" not used)

Lastly there is slang. For the Japanese they had various methods of naming aircraft for civilian propaganda. In the case of the Ki-61 it was "Hien", or Flying Swallow. For the allies it was "Tony".

Kocur_
08-16-2005, 11:02 PM
And for IJN: double system of planes designations:
in first Zero name is: "A6M2":
A-carrier fighter,
6-sixth project of Japanese carrier fighters,
M-Mitsubishi
2-second modification of the sixth project.

In second, more detailed its:
"Carrier fighter Type 0 Variant 11", in Japanese short:

"Reisen 11"

0 (zero) is for date of standarizing, here 2600 in Japanese calendar, i.e. 1940, like said above.
"Variant 11" says:
first "1" for variant of airframe
second "1" for variant of engine.

"A6M" is not enough detailed, for there was A6M3 Reisen 32 and A6M3 Reisen 22 for example.

If one asks why differnt systems in IJA and IJN, I will answer thats for the same reason Army built its own escort carriers, and Navy built its own tanks...

gombal40
08-17-2005, 11:20 AM
@ LEBillfish

the are rebuilding a ki 61 http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

to flying condition http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

http://forum.keypublishing.co.uk/showthread.php?t=46775

LEBillfish
08-17-2005, 12:05 PM
Originally posted by gombal40:
@ LEBillfish

the are rebuilding a ki 61 http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

to flying condition http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

http://forum.keypublishing.co.uk/showthread.php?t=46775

Kewl, have seen some earlier pics....Would be nice if they would "take the time" and have the folks that did the "Aero Detail #29 Hayabusa" do a book on the Ki-61

gombal40
08-17-2005, 12:10 PM
well mail the company, They always need another dollar to pay for the restauration. Could be an idea, mail squadron signal etc. also.

Maybe it will help to get the swallow flying that bit sooner.

Cadet_Bobo
08-17-2005, 01:38 PM
Thanks to all of you for your incredibly astute answers to my question. I'd like to know what you have read so I might do some book shopping.

Bobo...enlightened

Chuck_Older
08-17-2005, 04:15 PM
Originally posted by Cadet_Bobo:
Thanks to all of you for your incredibly astute answers to my question. I'd like to know what you have read so I might do some book shopping.

Bobo...enlightened

I like a book called "Clash of Wings" a lot. A good primer to WWII in the air

LEBillfish
08-17-2005, 04:33 PM
Add to the list below what I'd guess are roughly quite a few hundred websites, a number of Japanese monographs, De-classified U.S. reports and so on...Plus..a WHOLE LOT of direct answers from Jim Long, Jim Lansdale, Ken Glass, Masa and others who have really helped me more then I can describe....

J.I.Long's Airtell Research Report #99-3 Ki-61/100 Serial Numbers, Dates of Assembly & Characteristics
J.I.Long's Airtell Field Notes Japanese Army Fighter "Tony"
J.I.Long's Airtell Research Report #86-1 Estimated Assembly Date For A WWII Japanese Aircraft/A Relic of the Air War over New Guinea/Type 3 Fighter Tony # 640
J.I.Long's A PacFront Extra, Cockpit Layout- Type 3 Fighter Model 1
J.I.Long's Airtell Letter Report Correspondence w/ R.E.Cowley (Japanese inline engine comparisons)
J.I.Long's Airtell Letter Report Correspondence w/K.Weeks (Type 3 Fighter Reference Drawings)

R.M.Bueschell's Hein
F.A.O.W #17 Hien...Japanese
Modelling Manual Hien...Japanese
Monografie Lotnicze #5 Hien...Polish
Rene J. Francillon, Aircraft Profile "The Kawasaki Ki-61 Hien" #118

R.M.Bueschell's Hayabusa
Aero Detail #29 Hayabusa...
Monografie Lotnicze #48 Ki-43...Polish

Maru Mechanic #43? Nik1/2....Japanese
F.A.O.W. #29 Type 97 Fighter... Japanese

Fraus, 1939-45 Fighters & Bombers of the Japanese Air Force Part 1...Polish
Fraus, 1939-45 Fighters & Bombers of the Japanese Air Force Part 2....Polish
Peter Scott's Emblems of the Rising Sun (IJAAF Markings)
D.W. Thorpe JAAF Camoflauge & Markings WWII...
H. Sakaida's Aces of the Rising sun
K. Janowicz's 68th Sentai
Army Air Force Historical Study #113
Army Air Force Historical Study #116
L.McAulay's MacArthur's Eagles: The U. S. Air War over New Guinea, 1943-1944
Schiffer Publishing, Japanese Aircraft Equipment 1940-1945 (arrived today)
Hata, Izawa, Shores, Japanese Army Air Force Fighter Units and Their Aces 1931 - 1945

All in Japanese
Model Art 263 & 428
Maru Mechanic 2 & 37
F.A.O.W. 98
Watanabe Yohji's, Hien: the Struggle of the Type 3 Fighter
Jiro Kimata's Rikugun Koku Senshi
NIHON KOKUKI SOSHYU, VOLUME 4 KAWASAKI
Gakken Series, No.7 - RABAUL AIR WAR
Airview #???? Ki-61
MILITARY AIRCRAFT #16, Imperial Japanese Army Aircraft of the Pacific War

JG53Frankyboy
08-17-2005, 04:42 PM
Originally posted by Cadet_Bobo:
Thanks to all of you for your incredibly astute answers to my question. I'd like to know what you have read so I might do some book shopping.

Bobo...enlightened

if you can get it:
Rene J Francillon
"Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War"
Naval Institute PRess

its old and have because of that some mistakes in it - but it gives you a bloody hell good overview !

MLudner
08-17-2005, 06:01 PM
Now that the a/c name bit has been cleared up; can any of you enlighten Japanese illiterates like me on their unit titles? I have no way of telling the fighters from the bombers from the recon from the transport units.
While I can handle some Latin, Classical Greek, Aramaic, German and Mexican Spanish (There is a difference, a Mexican can not understand a Spaniard any more than I can understand a Japanese) this is pretty much my entire Japanese vocabulary (I can't spell it, incidentally):
Hai, wokarimas.
Sayonara.
Domo arigato
Arigato
Ninja.
Samurai.
Katana.
Wakizachi.
Nobunaga.
Tanto.
Sepukku.
Hari-kari.
Hai.
Rei-sen.
Mitsubishi.
Kamikaze.
Nissan (I drive one).
Godzilla....or is it gojira?
Bonzai.
Rodan.
That giant, flying turtle whose name is escaping me right now.
Yeah, that's pretty much it.

Daiichidoku
08-17-2005, 08:48 PM
giant flying turtle is a friend to all little boys and girls, and enemy to mutant lizards that want to eat them

his name

GAMERA

http://www.shrineofgamera.com/gamera.html

LEBillfish
08-17-2005, 09:09 PM
Originally posted by MLudner:
Now that the a/c name bit has been cleared up; can any of you enlighten Japanese illiterates like me on their unit titles? I have no way of telling the fighters from the bombers from the recon from the transport units.
While I can handle some Latin, Classical Greek, Aramaic, German and Mexican Spanish (There is a difference, a Mexican can not understand a Spaniard any more than I can understand a Japanese) this is pretty much my entire Japanese vocabulary (I can't spell it, incidentally).

Not quite sure what you're asking....Do you mean a break down from army headquarters down to individual flights?...Or rank?....or what exactly?

LEBillfish
08-17-2005, 10:11 PM
Well I guess I'll try and give this a shot.....

Within the:

Nippon Rikugun Koukuutai = Japan Army Flying Corps

You had directly at the top the:

Kokusogun = Supreme Air Army, which was essentially the Hombu = Headquarters for all Rikugun = Army, air operations.

Directly below the Kokusogun, you had I believe 5 or 6:

Kokugun = Air Army(s), and within each of these Kokugun which were given essentially portions of the Japan's sphere of influence to control were roughly 3:

Hikoushidan = Air Division, and within each Hikoushidan you would find roughly 3:

Hikoudan = Air Brigade. The Hikoudan had a:
Shireibu Hikodan = Command Section, and was further split up by 3-5 various:

Hikousentai = Air regiments of:
3 Sentoki Sentai = Fighter sections
1 Keibaku Sentai = Light Bomber Section and or
1 Jubaku Sentai = Heavy Bomber Section
1 Teisatsuki Sentai = Reconnaissance Section
with sometimes a:
Dokuritsu HikouChutai = Independent Air Unit thrown in for good measure not directly attached to a particular Hikousentai...Usually specialist groups that went where required. However, as things progressed and wherein ground support had always been seperate units from the flyers themselves, eventually the Hikousentai began to merge into:

A Hikoutai = Air unit
& a:
A Sebutai = Ground maintenence unit
at which point the:
Sentaicho = Unit commander was able to control all aspects related to his pilots via a sub:
Hikoutaicho = air unit commander and a:
Sebutaicho = maintenance unit commander

Never the less, each Hikousentai was broken up further into 3-4:

Chutai = Company of roughly 9 planes (later called Kogektai = Assault Units)
with sometimes a:
Sentai Hombu = Hikousentai Headquarters flight in operation as well. Chutai would further be broken up into 3:

Shotai = Flights of three planes

Ranks within the Rikugun roughly were:

Heicho -- Private
Gocho -- Corporal
Gunso -- Sergeant
Socho -- Master Sergeant

Jun-i -- Warrant Officer

Sho-i -- Second Lieutenant
Chu-i -- First Lieutenant
Tai-i -- Captain

Sho-sa -- Major
Chu-sa -- Lieutenant Colonel
Tai-sa -- Colonel

Sho-sho -- Major General
Chu-jo -- Lieutenant General
Tai-sho -- General

Some other words good to know are:

Hikouki = Aircraft
Kitai = Fusalage
Unit = Butai
Teisatsu = Reconnaissance
Bakugekiki = Bomber
Sentoki = Fighter
Kyoiku = Training
Hikoujo = Airfield

etc.

Cadet_Bobo
08-17-2005, 11:14 PM
Wow...this just keeps getting better. Billfish, you are my new Japanese plane Guru. I hope you can make money somehow knowing all this great stuff!

Bobo

MLudner
08-18-2005, 09:33 AM
Originally posted by LEBillfish:
Well I guess I'll try and give this a shot.....

Within the:

Nippon Rikugun Koukuutai = Japan Army Flying Corps

You had directly at the top the:

Kokusogun = Supreme Air Army, which was essentially the Hombu = Headquarters for all Rikugun = Army, air operations.

Directly below the Kokusogun, you had I believe 5 or 6:

Kokugun = Air Army(s), and within each of these Kokugun which were given essentially portions of the Japan's sphere of influence to control were roughly 3:

Hikoushidan = Air Division, and within each Hikoushidan you would find roughly 3:

Hikoudan = Air Brigade. The Hikoudan had a:
Shireibu Hikodan = Command Section, and was further split up by 3-5 various:

Hikousentai = Air regiments of:
3 Sentoki Sentai = Fighter sections
1 Keibaku Sentai = Light Bomber Section and or
1 Jubaku Sentai = Heavy Bomber Section
1 Teisatsuki Sentai = Reconnaissance Section
with sometimes a:
Dokuritsu HikouChutai = Independent Air Unit thrown in for good measure not directly attached to a particular Hikousentai...Usually specialist groups that went where required. However, as things progressed and wherein ground support had always been seperate units from the flyers themselves, eventually the Hikousentai began to merge into:

A Hikoutai = Air unit
& a:
A Sebutai = Ground maintenence unit
at which point the:
Sentaicho = Unit commander was able to control all aspects related to his pilots via a sub:
Hikoutaicho = air unit commander and a:
Sebutaicho = maintenance unit commander

Never the less, each Hikousentai was broken up further into 3-4:

Chutai = Company of roughly 9 planes (later called Kogektai = Assault Units)
with sometimes a:
Sentai Hombu = Hikousentai Headquarters flight in operation as well. Chutai would further be broken up into 3:

Shotai = Flights of three planes

Ranks within the Rikugun roughly were:

Heicho -- Private
Gocho -- Corporal
Gunso -- Sergeant
Socho -- Master Sergeant

Jun-i -- Warrant Officer

Sho-i -- Second Lieutenant
Chu-i -- First Lieutenant
Tai-i -- Captain

Sho-sa -- Major
Chu-sa -- Lieutenant Colonel
Tai-sa -- Colonel

Sho-sho -- Major General
Chu-jo -- Lieutenant General
Tai-sho -- General

Some other words good to know are:

Hikouki = Aircraft
Kitai = Fusalage
Unit = Butai
Teisatsu = Reconnaissance
Bakugekiki = Bomber
Sentoki = Fighter
Kyoiku = Training
Hikoujo = Airfield

etc.

Danke, mein freund.
Actually, that was more than I was asking for; a veritable encyclopedia of Japanese air terminology. My problem was that when looking at the Japanese squadron names and numbers in Il-2 PF I could never choose an actual unit as I had no idea whether this title or that was a fighter or bomber unit, so I always just left it at "Japanese Army None" as for all I knew I'd have a bunch of Oscars flying over New Guinea assigned to a bomber unit.
I did have a partial Table of Ranks, but yours is much more complete.
I get just enough Russian that I didn't have this problem with VVS designations. I was able to understand right away that IAP was a fighter regiment, GvIAP a Guards Fighter Regiment, BAP a bomber regiment, RAP a reconnaissance regiment (Razvedchiki, my favorite Red Army combat formation), ShAP an attack regiment.
My primary education concerns Western and African History (I have a keen interest in the Zulus in particular), but I still have much to learn about the Far East, including Japan.

MLudner
08-18-2005, 09:39 AM
Originally posted by Daiichidoku:
giant flying turtle is a friend to all little boys and girls, and enemy to mutant lizards that want to eat them

his name

GAMERA

http://www.shrineofgamera.com/gamera.html

Indeed, Gamera was always my favorite Japanese Monster. I was having a brain-fart. I remembered it a half an hour later while eating dinner.
Thank you for the assist.

LEBillfish
08-18-2005, 09:42 AM
Well in actuality in the sim, you can use any unit you want and it does little to affect what plane you get....As an example....

The 33rd Hikousentai only flew Ki-43 out of Burma, then NewGuinea, then I believe possibly Philippines.

The 78th Hikousentai only flew in NewGuinea, and officially only Ki-61 (though they used on occasion other units discarded Ki-43)...

The 244th Hikousentai only flew Ki-61 & Ki-100 in "Home Defense" over Japan....

Yet in the sim, you can have 244th flying A6M7 attacking Hawaii in 1941......Go figure

LEBillfish
08-19-2005, 07:20 AM
bump before it slips into oblivion

MLudner
08-21-2005, 05:43 PM
Originally posted by LEBillfish:
Well in actuality in the sim, you can use any unit you want and it does little to affect what plane you get....As an example....

The 33rd Hikousentai only flew Ki-43 out of Burma, then NewGuinea, then I believe possibly Philippines.

The 78th Hikousentai only flew in NewGuinea, and officially only Ki-61 (though they used on occasion other units discarded Ki-43)...

The 244th Hikousentai only flew Ki-61 & Ki-100 in "Home Defense" over Japan....

Yet in the sim, you can have 244th flying A6M7 attacking Hawaii in 1941......Go figure

Sorry for the delay.
You are quite right, but I can be a tad anal about such things. I don't worry much over whether or not the unit in question was present in the area I am operating in, I don't have good enough Order of Battle listings for Air Units to cope with that question (I have really good ones for Armies, including the Red Army). I have also found a paucity of information on the web concerning the VVS. I know very little about the IJAF except for the basic information about their aircraft. Their Organization and Order of Battle are beyond my knowledge.
I just didn't want Oscars flying around in a bomber unit or vice versa.

Chuck_Older
08-21-2005, 09:40 PM
Originally posted by Daiichidoku:
giant flying turtle is a friend to all little boys and girls, and enemy to mutant lizards that want to eat them

his name

GAMERA

http://www.shrineofgamera.com/gamera.html


See the Turtle of enormous GIRTH
On his back he holds the EARTH

Scrapper_511
08-21-2005, 11:47 PM
Here's a great book I can easily recommend to any afficionado of the PTO: "Japanese Aircraft of the Pacific War" by Rene' J Francillon.