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P-40 Warhawk vs Ki-43 Oscar: China 1944-45 (Duel) Paperback – March 18, 2008
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“I recommend this book to all military aviation enthusiasts. Like many Osprey books, P-40 Warhawk vs Ki-43 Oscar should be a useful title as reference for modelers as well.” ―C. Peter Chen, World War II Database (May 2008)
“This is excellent book as far as I am concerned. It not only relates the technical details and development of each aircraft it also informs on the actions that took part in this less than centre stage theatre of World War Two. Recommended.” ―Rodger Kelly, Hyperscale (May 2008)
“In all, a superlative inclusion to this series and one that I know you will find useful.” ―Scott Van Aken, modelingmadness.com (April 2008)
“Both early designs that were outdated by other types, [the P-40 and the Ki-43] still had plenty of fight in them when they clashed during the air war supporting the Japanese Ichi-Go campaign in 1944. During this campaign, the P-40 and Ki-43 engaged in some of the toughest dogfights in China... [A] great companion to the other titles detailing the specific aircraft and can become an important part of any aviation reference library.” ―Chris BanyaiRiepl, Internet Modeler (April 2008)
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P-40 Warhawk vs. Ki-43 Oscar begins with a 10-page section that details the design and development of both aircraft. Essentially, the Americans opted for pressing a Curtiss fighter into production as quickly as possible to deliver a multi-purpose aircraft. Unlike the Oscar, which the Japanese optimized for air-to-air combat, the P-40 was more of a workhorse that was designed for air-ground as well as air-to-air combat. This section also includes color plates of both aircraft. The next section on technical specifications spells out the details on the various models of each aircraft, although the only real direct comparisons are the author's mention of the Oscar's superior maneuverability and the P-40's superior firepower.Read more ›
There are also many fine, clear, period photos of the combatants and their machines. I don't remember seeing these in my other books on the Oscar and Warhawk. The text by Carl Molesworth is well worth absorbing. Lastly, there are maps, a bibliograpy, and an index.
I have to give Osprey credit for their "Duel" Series. So far, I've collected three of these titles, and I think they represent some of the very best that Osprey offers, of all their various publications.
The book follows the standard Duel format in providing a decent (but succinct) overview of the aircraft from their early development through the variations that each underwent throughout the war, including strength and weaknesses. The KI-43 and P-40, were very different in that they were both designed and fulfilled two very different purposes. The KI-43 was designed, almost exclusively, to fulfill the role of air-to-air combat fighter. The P-40, on the other hand, was designed and fulfilled the role of a more general workhorse (i.e., ground attack aircraft as well as fighter).
The book then discusses pilot quality through the war. This was basically that Japanese pilots were better than US (in general) in the beginning of the war but by the period covered by the war attrition and poor training gave the advantage to the US. Eventually the Japanese were, like the rest of the axis powers, simply overwhelmed by allied resources. Even the P-40 itself was not reduced in number by Japanese resources but by replacement with superior US aircraft (i.e., P-51).
The book is also very well illustrated with photographs and illustrations.Read more ›
The Oscar was light, nimble and wonderful to fly. The P-40 was heavier, slower and not nearly as good in a climb. But the P-40 was rugged, heavily armed and could easily out-dive the Oscar. If both planes were flown intelligently the contest overall was likely to be pretty evenly matched.
However there was one other major difference between the two that played a major role in deciding the contest. The Americans out-produced the Japanese by a large margin. As the contest went on, the Japanese found it hard to replace their losses. Worse, both planes were pretty much obsolescent by the time they met. The Americans were able to flood the China theater with the more modern P-51 Mustang. The Japanese also had an equivalent in the Hayate "Frank", but they could only provide a trickle of them.
I found this account fascinating.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A Talented,meticulous effoting Author always make
Masterpiece, even difficult Osprey "Vs" Series !
Excellent attractive P-40 Vs Ki-43. Read more
Worthy addition to any WWII aviation buff's library, especially if you're interested in the Pacific. Read morePublished on October 14, 2008 by Sully
Carl Molesworth applies the Osprey 'Duel' concept to two WWII aerial stalwarts, the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk and Nakajima Ki-43 Oscar, in this informative, well-written 2008 Osprey... Read morePublished on July 27, 2008 by Mike O'Connor
Would have been happier if the book were twice as long and showed more detail with regards to the men who flew these warbirds.Published on July 17, 2008 by George Russell