R.Mikesh, A.Shorzoe Japanese Aircraft, 1910-1941 (Putnam)
Shirato Kaoru-go (Shirato 16) Aeroplane
With the assistance of Otojiro Itoh, this Shirato Kaoru-go (Fragrance) Aeroplane owed much to the experience gained with the Takeru-go. It was a simple two-bay tractor biplane with slight backward stagger, and originally it had a skid attached to the undercarriage to prevent nosing over, but this was later removed. It also had later changes made to the engine cowling as well as shortening of the wing span.
When first built, the aeroplane carried its name, Kaoru-go, in japanese on the sides of the fuselage. When modifications were completed and its designation justifiably changed, it then carried the well-known Shirato circular insignia in place of the name, and 16 for Shirato 16 was added to the rudder.
In 1919 Nobuo Takahashi from Hokkaido used the aeroplane to make exhibition flights at various locations in Hokkaido and Karafuto (now Sakhalin in the USSR). In August 1920 the aeroplane was entered in the First Prize-winning Flight Competition at Susaki Airfield in Tokyo where it recorded an altitude of 650m (2,132ft) and a speed of 35.5kt when flown by Takeo Shimada. Although it was the lowest powered aircraft entered, it took 5th place in both of these events.
Single-engine two-bay tractor biplane. All-wooden construction with fabric covering. Pilot in open cockpit.
50hp Gnome seven-cylinder air-cooled rotary engine, driving a two-bladed wooden propeller.
Shirato Kaoru-go Shirato 16
Span 11m (36ft 1in) 10m (32ft 9 1/2in)
Length 7.90m (25ft 11 in) 7.90m (25ft 11in)
Height 2.50m (8ft 2 1/2in) 2.20m (7ft 2 1/2in)
Empty weight 290kg (639Ib) 380kg (837lb)
One built in 1918.