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Ku-8 "Gander", Japanese Glider


Photograph of Ku-8 Gander glider

U.S. Air Force. Via Wikipedia Commons


Kokusai Ku-8


Specifications:


Passengers 20 soldiers or a mountain cannon with crew
Dimensions 76'1" by 43'8"
23.2m by 13.31m
Weight 7716 lb (3500 kg) fully loaded
Tow speed       139 miles per hour
224 km/h


The Ku-8 was derived from the Ki-59 Theresa airframe. The engines were omitted and the undercarriage was replaced with skids, and the glider had a swinging nose section with loading ramp. It  could accommodate 20 troops or a mountain gun and could be towed at 139 miles per hour (224 km/h) by a Ki-21-II Sally.

"Gander" was never used in combat, but may have seen service flying critical cargoes to the Philippines in the summer of 1944. Because a Ki-59 "Theresa" was deliberately crash-landed at Palembang to bring in an antitank gun, some sources report that "Gander" was used in that assault, but this is mistaken. "Gander" was not ready in time for the Palembang attack.

References

Francillon (1979)

Rottman and Takizawa (2005)



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