Mitsubishi G3M "NELL"
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Doug Focer, e-mail, 12.01.2022 05:25

I just watched the first season of Survivor which takes place in Borneo. There was a wrecked aircraft on the beach. The contestants ran past the tail section in the jungle and the twin tails were close together like the Nell. It had a greenhouse nose. The number 15 is painted on the fuselage behind the nose.
Who knows, this might be something interesting.

Scott Ritchey, e-mail, 30.11.2021 22:00

Working out on wake island and we have recovered part of a prop. We believe it to be Japaneese. Does anyone have the specs on the prop, or where to look to find any info on it.

Klaatu83, e-mail, 22.01.2021 18:15

These aircraft had no real counterpart in the U.S. Navy. During the 1930s the basic strategy of the Japanese Navy was based upon the notion that the U.S. Navy would attack Japan across the Pacific, during which the Japanese Navy would whittle down the American Fleet by means of torpedo attacks delivered by submarines, destroyers and long-range strike aircraft such as the GM3. By the time the weakened American battle-fleet arrived across the Pacific the Japanese battle-fleet would be able to face it on more-or-less equal terms. That was the strategic idea around which the design of the G3M and its' successor, the G4M "Betty", were created. The U.S. Navy had nothing in that category in their inventory. Perhaps the closest Allied equivalent was the RAF's Bristol Beaufort twin-engine torpedo-bomber, although the Beaufort was not capable of anywhere near the range of the G3M or G4M.

Oldgysgt, e-mail, 17.01.2016 03:09

The Mitsubishi G3M Nell was an example of a “Colonial” aircraft, much like the Italian Breda Ba.65. A Colonial aircraft is one that is designed to drop high explosives and rain aerial machinegun rounds down on people with bare feet who have nothing more than dirt clods and single-shot rifle bullets to throw back in return. Because of this, range is reasonable important, but bomb load and defensive armament can be relatively light. The G3M Nell’s suffered seriously from the few serviceable Marine F4Fs on Wake, but as mentioned above, one of the G3M’s shinning hours was its part in the Naval Battle off Malaya; proving the folly of operating capitol ships without air cover while in range of opposing bombers. Once the “New” wore off of the Pacific war however, the Nell’s limited bomb load was revealed for the serious handicap it really was.

Klaatu83, e-mail, 17.11.2012 22:47

Built for maximum range (3,800 miles), which was impressive, but at the sacrifice of fuel protection. These planes caught fire easily when hit by enemy fire.

Mykola, 20.10.2010 23:55

Not a bad plane.

David Wesely, e-mail, 05.03.2010 05:16

SOme souce said this was the first "intercontinental" ot "trsns oceanic" strat4egic bombing mission, and everyone lese just has to repeat it. Sorry guys, the Germans were bombing London from Germany with Airplanes (as well as with Zepplins) in the First World War, at least 20 years before the 1937 mission from Japan to China. Neither of these missions is transoceanic (yeah, the South China Sea is part of the Pacific, but only in the same twisted way that the the North Sea is part of the Atlantic) or intercontinental.
If we want to really get legalistic, at least one mission was probably flown from Egypt (Africa) 100 miles over to Palestine (Asia) during WWI or from the Panama CZ to bomb the Sandinistas Nicaragua in the 30's. But the G3M missions to China just don't make it.

Bowen Kerrihard, e-mail, 08.02.2010 23:57

For Henry Dittman: "Mitsubishi Green" may be a cousin of "Savoia Marchetti Green" and refer in both cases to the zinc chromate paint used on many WWII airplanes to retard salt-water corrosion. PBYs used lots of it, too. I've never found an exact color match, but zinc chromate was generally a kind of pea green, leaning toward chartreuse.
I hope this helps,
Bo Kerrihard

Prof. Henry Dittman, e-mail, 17.01.2010 05:39

I am a scale model airplane builder and am currently building a "Nell". What was the cockpit/interior color in this airplane? I have read that it was "Mitsubishi Green", but that doesn't give me a very good idea of the shade. Can you be more specific than that?
Prof. H. Dittman

Barry, 17.12.2009 16:48

3853 miles with a maximum fuel load i.e. minimal war load, hardly what one would call intercontinental if you wanted to return that is. I suppose flying across the Bering Straights could be classified as intercontinental but this plane did not do that.

Gordon Isaacson, e-mail, 11.10.2009 22:24

When did the Kanoya Kokutai get its name? Or better yet what was their Kokutai name in China? I have what I believe is the Kanoya Kokutai 1940 year book yet they do not call themselves Kanoya Kokutai. They are named after their Commanding Officer. Any ideas?

ss, e-mail, 05.07.2009 16:04


Mick Dunn, e-mail, 23.11.2008 06:42

World's first true Intercontinental Bomber! Combined with the Zero...a world beating long range Weapons System!

Scott Russell, e-mail, 05.03.2008 02:06

I am preparing a public exhibit at the Saipan International Airport that will present an overview of the development and use of Aslito and Isely Fields. I would very much like to acquire a high resolution scan of the photo of the Mitsubishi G3M that appears on this page. I am prepared to cover reproduction costs.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you.

Scott Russell

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