The Kawanishi N1K1-J (Shinden, Violet Lightning, known as George by the Allies) was a highly effective Japanese fighter of World War II. It suffered from several problems and was replaced by the refined N1K2-J late in the war.
The Kawanishi N1K1-J was a landplane version of the earlier N1K1 floatplane fighter.
By the time the N1K1 entered service in 1943 the Imperial Japanese Navy had no use for it but development of the landplane version commenced in late 1941 and the prototype made its first flight on 27 December 1942.
It proved to be a formidable fighter, the equal of most American fighters, but it was difficult to fly with an unreliable motor and fragile undercarriage – more were lost in landing accidents than enemy action.
Because of these problems a simplified version, the N1K2-J, was developed to replace it after 1007 N1K1-Js had been manufactured.
This model represents a Kawanishi N1K1-J of the 341st Fighter Squadron, 402nd Fighter Group of the Imperial Japanese Navy in 1944.
MPM 1/72 kit. Completed in November 2013.