Built by Nakajima in early June 1942 (estimated).
Abandoned or destroyed on August 7, 1942 off Tanambogo. Captured by American forces at Tulagi Seaplane Base (Gavutu / Tanambogo).
This wreck was one of two wrecks recovered and transported to the United States for technical evaluation by the US Navy at NAS Alameda, California, arriving in early 1943.
Jim Long adds:
"I have seen photos of two Rufes that were shipped to the U.S. They may have been planes recovered at Tanambogo."
Air Progress Magazine "Minus Zero" June 1943
JICPOA Bulletin No. 51-43, 16 November 1943, entitled "Notes on Production Rate of Japanese Float Fighter Rufe Type Zero Mark 1 and Type 2." No. 821 was identified from a photo of the fuselage stencil.
Japanese Aircraft Makers' Plates and Markings Report No. 68 "Life of Japanese Combat Airplanes," March 20 1945 listed two Rufe aircraft: 821 (this aircraft) and 739. The data from this report is as follows:
Serial No. 821
Date of Assembly: Early Jun 42 [estimate]
Date of Crash: 7 Aug 42
Life in Months: 2
Place of Crash: Tanambogo, Florida Is.
Thanks to Jim Long and Richard Dunn for additional information.
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October 23, 2019