Mitsubishi A6M5 Type 52, Rei-Sen
This is the beautiful 1/32 Tamiya model of the iconic IJN fighter. The model is depicted as a toughnut veteran of Pacific sun and salt air, Rabaul Fighter Group, New Britain, 1943-44.
Principal paint finishes are White Ensign enamels, over Alclad Aluminium.
The Mitsubishi A6M Zero was a long-range fighter aircraft, manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and operated by the Imperial Japanese Navy from 1940 to 1945. The A6M was designated as the Mitsubishi Navy Type 0 Carrier Fighter (零式艦上戦闘機, rei-shiki-kanjō-sentōki).
The A6M was usually referred to by its pilots as the “Rei-Sen” (zero fighter), “0” being the last digit of the Imperial year 2600 (1940) when it entered service with the Imperial Navy.
The official Allied reporting name was “Zeke”, given in keeping with the practice of assigning male names to Japanese fighters, female names to bombers, bird names to gliders and tree names to trainers.
“Zeke” was part of the first batch of “hillbilly” code names assigned by Captain Frank T. McCoy of Nashville, Tennessee (serving with the Allied Technical Air Intelligence Unit (ATAIU) at Eagle Farm airport in Australia), who wanted quick, distinctive, easy-to-remember names. When, in 1942, the Allied coding system for Japanese aircraft was introduced, McCoy logically chose “Zeke” for the “Zero.” although the use of the name “Zero” was later commonly adopted by the Allies as well.
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