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Nakajima Type 91

Nakajima Army Type 91 Fighter
Role Fighter
Manufacturer Nakajima
Introduction 1931
Retired 1937
Status out of service
Primary user Imperial Japanese Army
Produced 1931-1934
Number built 450[1]

The Nakajima Army Type 91 Fighter was a Japanese fighter of the 1930s. It was a single-engine, single-seat parasol monoplane with a fixed, tailwheel undercarriage.


Designed in response to an Army requirement of 1927, the Type 91 was developed from the NC series of fighter prototypes. The prototype was the sixth machine under that designation but was a fundamentally distinct airframe design. Compared to the earlier NC, the Type 91 had a smaller wing, relocated fuel tank and wing-bracing struts, Townend ring-type cowling, new design tail and undercarriage.[2] It first flew in 1931.

Operational history

The Army ordered the new aircraft as the Nakajima Army Type 91 Fighter and the first deliveries took place late in 1931. However, issues arose with both directional stability and centre of gravity, with the result that the type was delayed entering service.

Between 1931 and 1934, 420 aircraft were constructed (including 100 by Ishikawajima; 23 of the total were Type 91-2, powered by a 432 kW (580 hp) Nakajima Kotobuki 2 radial engine. This version first flew in July 1934.

The Type was supplanted in service by the Kawasaki Army Type 95 Fighter in 1936-7.


Nakajima Army Type 91-1 Fighter
Main production version, powered by 336 kW (450 hp) Nakajima built Jupiter radial engine.
Nakajima Army Type 91-2 Fighter
Improved version, powered by Nakajima Kotobuki. 21 built.


  • Kwangsi Air Force purchased two Type 91-1 fighters for evaluation in September 1934, with several more purchased in 1935.[3]
  • Imperial Japanese Army Air Force

Specifications (Nakajima Army Type 91-1 Fighter)

Data from The Complete Book of Fighters [2]

General characteristics
  • Crew: 1
  • Length: 7.26 m (23 ft 9¾ in)
  • Wingspan: 11.00 m (36 ft 1 in)
  • Height: 2.79 m (9 ft 1¾ in)
  • Wing area: 20.0 m² (215.28 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 1,075 kg (2,370 lb)
  • Loaded weight: 1,530 kg (3,373 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Bristol Jupiter VII 9-cylinder radial, 388 kW (520 hp)



2 × fixed, forward-firing 7.7 mm (.303 in) machine guns


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