Type A1

As seen in 1942

Pit Road no.W16

Scale 1:700 Water Line Series

Click on the pictures to enlarge.



2 3 4


6 7 8







A1 Type

The first boat in this class (I-9) was laid down in January 1939. A Type submarines were intended to act as headquarters boats to coordinate the operations of submarine squadrons. This was the embodiment of the Imperial Navy's doctrine to operate its submarine forces in conjunction with the main fleet. The class was based on the J3 Type, but was provided with additional personnel accommodations and spaces for the command staff and special communications equipment. As in the J3 class, aircraft handling facilities were provided, but the Al class moved the catapult forward of the conning tower and faired the hangar into the sail. This much reduced the time required to prepare the aircraft for launch, and for recovery and stowage. Extra fuel and storage capacity provided this class with a patrol duration of up to 90 days. The first two boats in the class were completed before the start of the war; I-11 was not completed until May 1942. Two additional boats were ordered in the 1942 program but were canceled before construction began.


Six 21-in. bow torpedo tubes and 18 torpedoes; one 5.5-in. deck gun mounted aft; two twin 25mm antiaircraft guns fitted on the sail.

The hangar had room for one "GLEN" floatplane.

War service:

The A1 boats were used extensively in their intended role as submarine squadron command ships. Both I-9 and I-10 were deployed off the Hawaiian Islands at the start of the war, but the only success was I-I0's sinking of a freighter. I-9's E14Yl floatplane was used to reconnoiter Pearl Harbor on February 24, 1942 and later the aircraft also surveyed Kiska Island in the Aleutians. I-9 was lost off Kiska in June 1943 to US destroyers without sinking a single ship.


A 1 Type:

  • I - 9
  • I - 10
  • I - 11



I - 9


Kure Navy Yard

Laid down

25 January 1938


20 May 1939


13 February 1941


15 June 1943 Presumed lost with all 114 hands off Kiska

Technical specification:

Displacement 2,919 tons / 4,149 tons
Length 108.4m pp, 112.0m wl, 113.7m oa
Width 9.55m
Draught 5.36m
Machinery 2 diesels: 12,400 hp electric motors: 2,400 hp
Speed 23.5 knots / 8 knots
Armament 6x533mm TT fwd  (18 Torpedoes) 1x14cm/50 cal. 4 (2x2) 25 mm AA guns+ one Glen seaplane carried
Complement 114


Building the model of I-9:

The kit contains one boat from the submarine-class I-9 and one RO-35 (please see RO-46 also)

The building of the model kit was mostly straight forward, as the quality of the Pit Road models is high. I used the PE-set's from Tom's model Work's and IJN. crew from Eduard. The 25 mm AA gun is from Fine Mould "Nano dread" series. The rangefinder on the sail is borrowed from PitRoad surplus spur.

The scratch building on the kit is: 

Collapsible mainmast on the foredeck and periscopes etc. (0.3mm) silver wire. Rigging made by invisible tread painted with very thin layer of grey. The "balls" on the wires is added with thicker layers of paint (radio wire and insulators)  The radio antenna from the collapsible mast is PE-set IJN. 2-bar railing from Lion Roar.

This time I put the model on a art frame with a black plastic garbage bag as water. Further I wanted to show I-9 in northern waters as Kriska, therefore I added the rendezvous with IJN light cruiser KISO. The icebergs was just made of Styropor. 



5 stars out of 6 for: Fit, details, exciting ship-class.



Books form my own library :  

Japanese Naval Warship Photo Album Submarines and depot ships

from Diamond Sha books.  


Submarines of the Imperial Japanese Navy 1904-1945 from Conway Maritime press

(Pictures and history)

History of IJN Submarines
Ships of the world no. 469

(Pictures, drawings and history)


Imperial Japanese Navy  Submarines 1941-45 from Osprey publishing

(Pictures and history)

I-9: Tabular Record of Movement:

Visit Combined fleet website here:


The building time was 4 days. 

May. 2010

If you have any questions, remarks or things you will share, please don't hesitate to contact me.



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