Yokosho E1Y Type 14 Reconnaissance Seaplane

The Yokosho E1Y Type 14 Reconnaissance Seaplane was based on the earlier Yokosho Type 10 Reconnaissance Seaplane, and was a single-engined biplane that remained in service into the early 1930s.

Work on the Type 10 began in 1921 and the first two prototypes were completed by 1923. They proved to be too heavy and unsatisfactory, and so was the single improved Model A of 1924. The designers persisted, and the single Model B of 1925 showed enough promise to justify further work. This finally resulted in a version that was accepted for production, as the Type 14 Reconnaissance Seaplane Type 14-1.

The E1Y1 was considerably smaller than the Type 10 Model B. Wingspan was reduced by around 7 feet, length by 3 feet and loaded weight by over 600lb, or 10%. As a result the aircraft's top speed rose to 111mph, while its climb rate doubled - the Model B had needed an hour to reach 8,202ft while the E1Y1 could get to 9,843ft in 35min 25sec.

The Type 14 was a two bay biplane, with a fabric covered wooden framework and wooden floats. It used long single-step twin floats, originally wooden, but with a metal version from the Type 14-2 E1Y2. Three main versions were produced, all powered by the Lorraine engine. Early aircraft carried a crew of two, but most had space for three.

The E1Y was used by shore based units and training units, and as spotter aircraft on battleships and seaplane tenders.

The E1Y2 and E1Y3 were the most successful of the series, and remained in service for longer than originally expected. They were still in use during the Shanghai incident of 1932. At the start of the fighting between China and Japan the seaplane tender Notoro was carrying a number of Type 14s, and they saw combat over Shanghai.

Many of the surviving aircraft were later turned into transport aircraft, often by installing a three or four seat cabin in the rear fuselage. Most were used by the Nippon Koku Yuso Kenkyusho (Japan Air Transport Research Association) near Osaka, where they were used for sight-seeing and advertising.


A total of 320 were built in three main versions. Yokosho built 17 of the E1Y1 in 1925-28 and six E1Y2 in 1929-30. Nakajima produced forty-six of the E1Y1 and E1Y2 in 1925-27. Finally Aichi built 148 of the E1Y1 and E1Y2 and all 102 of the E1Y3, with production of that model ending in 1934.

Type 14-1 Reconnaissance Seaplane E1Y1

The Type 14-1 E1Y1 was the first production version, and was powered by the 400hp Lorraine engine.

Type 14-2 Reconnaissance Seaplane E1Y2

The Type 14-2 E1Y2 introduced new all-metal twin floats, and used a 450hp Lorraine engine. It was accepted in January 1926.

Type 14-3 Reconnaissance Seaplane E1Y3

The Type 14-3 E1Y3 was accepted in January 1931, after a number of attempts to replace the Type 14 had failed. It had a 450hp geared Lorraine engine with four-bladed propeller, a new tail unit and other more minor changes. As a result top speed, cruising speed and rate of climb all improved.

Type 14-2 Reconnaissance Seaplane Model Kai-1-C and Kai-1-D

These two aircraft were produced by Yokosho to compete with Aichi, Nakajima and Kawanishi designs for an aircraft to replace the Type 14. They had a welded steel tube fuselage, with a new wing design. The Kai-1-C used a 450hp Jupiter VIII radial engine, the Kai-1-D a 450hp Jupiter engine. This became the basis of the Yokosho Type 90 Reconnaissance Seaplane E5Y1.

Engine: Lorraine 1 12-cylinder V water cooled engine
Power: 400hp
Crew: 3
Span: 45ft 11in
Length: 35ft 9.5in
Height: 13ft 7.5in
Empty weight: 2,659lb
Loaded weight: 5,732lb
Max speed: 111mph
Climb Rate: 35min 25sec to 9,843ft
Service ceiling: 11,482ft
Range: 610 miles
Armament: Twin flexibly mounted 7.7mm machine guns in dorsal position
Bomb load: Two 242lb bombs or four 66lb bombs

Engine: Lorraine 2 12-cylinder W water cooled engine
Power: 450hp
Crew: 3
Span: 46ft 8in
Length: 34ft 9in
Height: 13ft 7.5in
Empty weight: 4,164lb
Loaded weight: 6,062lb
Max speed: 110mph
Climb Rate: 28min 13sec to 9,843ft
Service ceiling: 13,123ft
Range: 718 miles
Armament: Twin flexibly mounted 7.7mm machine guns in dorsal position
Bomb load: Two 242lb bombs or four 66lb bombs

Engine: Lorraine 3 12-cylinder W water cooled geared engine
Power: 450hp
Crew: 3
Span: 46ft 8.5in
Length: 35ft 2.5in
Height: 13ft 7.5in
Empty weight: 4,255lb
Maximum take-off weight: 6,172lb
Max speed: 117mph
Climb Rate: 20min to 9,843ft
Armament: Twin flexibly mounted 7.7mm machine guns in dorsal position
Bomb load: Two 242lb bombs or four 66lb bombs

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (11 June 2015), Yokosho E1Y Type 14 Reconnaissance Seaplane , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_yokosho_E1Y.html

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