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Wes Pennest
31 articles

La La Lavochkin Land! 1/48 Zvezda La-5s

January 27, 2021 · in Aviation · · 6 · 2.4K

I get inspired by the planes I fly in flight simulators. Go figure. I've flown the LaGG-3 in IL2-GB and hated every minute of it. Once I stepped up to the I had something approaching the same revelatory moment pilots had when they traded in their "Varnished Guaranteed Coffins" for the La-5. It can "boom and zoom!" It can pull out of dives! And it can actually maneuver! I was finally seeing enemy tracers flying PAST me, instead of the all-too-familiar "tink-thud-crack-bang-splinter" refrain from the LaGG-3.

The La-5 model from exhibited areas of severe short-shot molding and had to be patched with any and all manner of filling material.

Worst of all was the lack of plastic around the base of the windshield, which really stretched my modeling skills. Despite that, I think I pulled it off.

White 04, V.M. Dmitriev, 4th IAP, summer 1943

The La-5FN model was relatively trouble free, but the exhaust stacks are very fiddly, very small and cannot be left off.

Unlike the Yak-3 kit, you have to build up the radial engine here in order to provide support for the propeller and fan at the front of the cowling.

If you build it with the cowling closed up, you don't have to worry about detailing the engine at all because absolutely none of it will be seen. Just make sure the geometry is good otherwise the cowling and cooling flaps won't fit right.

White 68, Senior Lieutenant Georgy Baevsky 1st Guards Fighter Regiment, VVS, December 1943. Weathering with, again, whatever I had in the box. Mud is from Abteilung and MIG. Paints are Vallejo Model Air.

A nice, fun kit, despite the quality control problems.

Reader reactions:
14  Awesome

6 responses

  1. I'm really surprised about the QC problems. I've built several of these without any of that. I think you could have contacted Zvezda about the La-5 and gotten a replacement.

    That said, your modeling skill saved the day and yoyu got a great model out of it. I really like the Zvezda La-5 series, even to the extent of getting the Loon resin conversion - using the necessary part from the La-5 - to do an La-5F.

    Really nice work on these two.

  2. Love both of them, Wes.
    Nice save on the short shot one!

  3. Great save on that molding issue, Wes.
    At least from the fotos it is not visible at all.
    Both builds look fantastic.

  4. You would never know you started with such a handicap, from what you achieved in the end! They look great.

  5. Two more lovely Russian planes from you Wes, great work on these two, definitely liked again.

  6. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :
    Amusing work on both of these model Wes.
    Very good work on fixing the lack of plastic on the tail section of the La-5,
    your skills paid off, nice results.

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