Nakajima E8N DAVE
|RECONNAISSANCE FLOAT-PLANE||Virtual Aircraft Museum / Japan / Nakajima|
Designed to replace the company's E4N2 in navy service, Nakajima's MS submission was basically an updated version of the E4N2. Of similar biplane configuration, with a central float and underwing stabilising floats, it was powered by a 433kW Kotobuki 2 KAI 1 radial engine, and differed from its predecessor primarily by having revised wings and tail unit. Seven prototypes were tested from March 1934 and, following evaluation against competing aircraft from Aichi and Kawanishi, the MS was ordered into production in October 1935 as the Navy Type 95 Reconnaissance Seaplane Model 1 (Nakajima E8N1). An E8N2 with im proved equipment and a more powerful engine was introduced before production ended in 1940, when a combined total of 755 had been built by Nakajima (707) and Kawanishi (48). Used successfully, during the Sino-Japanese War in roles which included artillery spotting and dive-bombing as well as reconnaissance, some were still operating from navy vessels at the beginning of the Pacific war, gaining the Allied codename 'Dave'. They were soon diverted to secondline duties such as communications, liaison and training.