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Japan's Imperial Navy flag

Japan's Kayaba Ka-1 autogyro

Photos

  • Kayaba Ka-1 autogyro

 

Design

The Imperial Japanese Army had an interest in using autogyros as artillery spotters and had an Kellet KD-1A two seat autogyro imported from the United States. It was totaled in an early flight test.

The wreckage of the Kellet was sent to the K.K. Kayaba Seisakusho to develop a copy. The Kayaba design team came up with a two seat autogyro copy that met Japanese production standards.

Prototype

The Ka-1 made its first flight on May 26, 1941 at Tamagawa. It was found it could take off within 98' / 30 m with no wind.

Production

  • Kayaba Ka-1: 240
    • Kayaba Ka-1 KAI: 1
    • Production: ? - May 1941
  • Kayaba Ka-2: 1
  • Manufacturer: K.K. Kayaba Seisakusho at Sendai

Variants

  • Kayaba Ka-1:
  • Kayaba Ka-1 KAI: Had rockets placed on the rotor tips to try and increase its carrying capacity.
  • Kayaba Ka-2: Had a Jacobs L-4MA-7 (240 HP) air cooled seven cylinder engine installed.

Usage

Escort Carrier

The Imperial Japanese Army modified the Ka-1 to be an anti-submarine patrol aircraft to be used from the Akitsu Maru. The Ka-1s were made into single seat aircraft that could carry two 132 lb / 60 kg depth charges.

They were used around the Japanese islands and the Tsugara and Korean channels.

Specifications

  Kayaba Ka-1
Type Autogyro
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Argus As 10c
Cylinders Inverted V 8
Cooling Air
Net HP 240
Propeller Blades 2
Rotor Blades 3
Dimensions  
Length 30' 2 7/32"
9.2 m
Rotor Diameter 40' 5/16"
12.2 m
Weight  
Empty 1,709 lb
775 kg
Loaded 2,579 lb
1,170 kg
Performance  
Speed 102.5 mph
165 kph
Speed - Cruising 71.5 mph
115 kph
Climb to 3,280' / 1,000 m 3 minutes 20 seconds
Climb to 6,560' / 2,000 m 7 minutes 30 seconds
Service ceiling 11,485'
3,500 m
Range 174 miles
280 km
Armament  
Depth Charges 2: 132 lb
2: 60 kg
  Kayaba Ka-2
Type Autogyro
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Jacobs L-4MA-7
Cylinders Radial 7
Cooling Air
Net HP 240
Propeller Blades 2
Rotor Blades 3
Armament  
Depth Charges 2: 132 lb
2: 60 kg

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  2. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site