R.Mikesh, A.Shorzoe Japanese Aircraft, 1910-1941 (Putnam)
Making a sharp break away from the Farman pushers, the PMBRA began the design in July 1917 for what would be the Seishiki-2. It was designed by Lt Morikichi Sakamoto with the help of Assistant Engineer Shiro Yoshihara who had just returned from aircraft design studies in Europe. In charge of construction was Lt Takazawa at the Association's factory at Tokorozawa.
This aeroplane was only intended as an experimental high-speed tractor design to help the development of other types, and was to be powered by a 100hp Daimler watercooled engine produced by the Tokyo Army Artillery Arsenal. The fuselage was fairly large, being constructed of wood and having a contoured plywood covering. Radiators were mounted close to the fuselage sides like those of the Seishiki-1. Completed in December 1917, it made its first flight on 11 January, 1918, piloted by Lt Sakamoto. When making the second flight on 17 January, at a height of about 50m after take off, it was reported that the engine emitted heavy black smoke and lost power. Sakamoto attempted a tight turn back, which resulted in a spin and the aeroplane crashed on the north side of the Tokorozawa Airfield, killing Lt Sakamoto. Like its predecessor the Seishiki-1, the Seishiki-2 was the sole example. Although the PMBRA began design work on a Seishiki-3 in March 1918, it was taken over by the Department of Research at Tokorozawa Aviation School because of Army reorganization but the aircraft was not completed.
Designers and engineers believed that the maximum speed of the Seishiki-2 could have been 70kt (80mph) but for the continuing problems with the Japanese-built Daimler engine. Others felt that the design was too advanced for Japanese manufacture, and as a result the twin boom pusher Type Mo-4 and Type Mo-6 Farmans remained the standard Army equipment until the French Aviation Mission visited Japan in 1919.
Single-engine high-speed tractor biplane. All wooden construction with ply-covered fuselage and fabric-covered wings and tail. Two seats in open cockpits.
100-110hp Daimler six-cylinder inline water-cooled engine, driving a two-bladed wooden propeller.
Span 9.86m (32ft 4in); length 6.7m (21 ft 11 1/4in); height 2.60m (8ft 6 1/4in); wing area 31sq m (333.692sq ft).
One built in December 1917.