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Author Topic: LaGG-3 series reference?  (Read 4555 times)
Aaronw
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« on: December 18, 2012, 06:29:22 AM »

I have seen the drawings that go along with many of the series changes of the LaGG-3 along with the explaination of how the different factories did not switch at the same time, or even build all variations (some skipping over intermediate directives).

http://mig3.sovietwarplanes.com/lagg3/lagg3drawings/lagg3drawings.html


What I can't seem to find is a clear easy to read listing of what was involved the changes, a 1-66 listing addressing the features of each or at least each of the major variations, approximate dates and depth of use (a handful or a major production run). Understand these numbers are somewhat tied to batches of aircraft so the more popular adaptions may be represented by more that one series number.

Anyone know of something like that or am I going to have to sit down with a pen and paper and sift through the link above to put it in an order that makes more sense to my brain.

Thanks
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2012, 08:17:48 AM »

Hi Aaronw,
I know that this work is still uncomplete. It is from a Russian author, I think it has prosecuted it but now I haven't time enough to research on this subject.
Here is the address of a page that I made on the model of Toko/Roden some time ago. http://mig3.sovietwarplanes.com/lagg3/toko/toko.html It is more superficial than the work of the Russian researcher, but it covers all versions with reference to the pieces of the model.
Regards
Massimo
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John Thompson
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« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2012, 06:37:25 PM »

This might help as a starting point, with Massimo's excellent Toko 1/72 LaGG-3 article for more details:


I made this table about 15 years ago to try to sort out the physical differences among the various LaGG-3 series. It's based on the information in the Squadron "LaGG Fighters in Action" by Hans-Heiri Stapfer, published in 1996; I haven't reviewed it since then to see if any new information could be added.

John

PS - Windscreen shape for series 66 should read "Like La-5", not LaGG-5; also for series 66, there are 6 exhaust stacks on each side (like Yak-9), although it may appear that there are only 4 because of the way they're shaped.

Comments/criticisms/corrections are all welcome!
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 06:53:23 PM by John Thompson » Logged
KL
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« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2012, 07:44:53 PM »

...What I can't seem to find is a clear easy to read listing of what was involved the changes, a 1-66 listing addressing the features of each or at least each of the major variations, approximate dates and depth of use (a handful or a major production run). Understand these numbers are somewhat tied to batches of aircraft so the more popular adaptions may be represented by more that one series number.

Anyone know of something like that or I amgoing to have to sit down with a pen and paper and sift through the link above to put it in an order that makes more sense to my brain.

Hi Aaronw,
you should try!  There should be some useful info at scalemodels.ru forum.  Avoid Squadron's book; it's somewhat confusing...

Although the meaning of the "Series" is explained at Massimo's page, I'll try to explain it again.  You may find it useful...

"Series" were production batches of 50 (usually in the beginning of production) or 100 fighter planes (normal series size).   Planes within a series were supposed to be identical; same airframe, same equipment.  Modifications in airframe design, changes engine type, equipment, etc, were supposed to be introduced only at the beginning of the new series.  If there were no modifications, after 100 planes were completed, a new series (with a consecutive number) identical to the previous one would be started.

Production in batches i.e. "Series" was introduced in mid-thirties.  Its primary purpose was to minimize slowdowns of the production caused by endless changes coming from design bureaus.  Production in batches also avoided having "a handful" of planes with unique equipment etc.

In LaGG-3 case, every factory started production with its own "Series 1".  Gorkiy factory was the main production facility; OKB was based there and most modifications originated there.  Taganrog/Tbilisi and Leningrad factories were "shadow" factories, those were supposed to follow modifications introduced by Gorky OKB.  But, engineers in "shadow" factories were also allowed to introduce their own modifications to the "Series" produced in their factories...  

Gorkiy factory series are somewhat better understood; modifications mentioned in manuals and other original techn literature refer to Gorkiy "Series".  It would be useful/interesting to find Taganrog/Tbilisy equivalents to the Gorkiy "Series".

HTH,
KL  
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 07:50:18 PM by KL » Logged
Aaronw
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« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2012, 04:17:06 AM »

Thank you, that is quite helpful. I am kind of a visual person even when looking at writing, so the charts with their add this, remove that feature works well for me.

...What I can't seem to find is a clear easy to read listing of what was involved the changes, a 1-66 listing addressing the features of each or at least each of the major variations, approximate dates and depth of use (a handful or a major production run). Understand these numbers are somewhat tied to batches of aircraft so the more popular adaptions may be represented by more that one series number.

Anyone know of something like that or I amgoing to have to sit down with a pen and paper and sift through the link above to put it in an order that makes more sense to my brain.

Hi Aaronw,
you should try!  There should be some useful info at scalemodels.ru forum.  Avoid Squadron's book; it's somewhat confusing...

Although the meaning of the "Series" is explained at Massimo's page, I'll try to explain it again.  You may find it useful...

"Series" were production batches of 50 (usually in the beginning of production) or 100 fighter planes (normal series size).   Planes within a series were supposed to be identical; same airframe, same equipment.  Modifications in airframe design, changes engine type, equipment, etc, were supposed to be introduced only at the beginning of the new series.  If there were no modifications, after 100 planes were completed, a new series (with a consecutive number) identical to the previous one would be started.

Production in batches i.e. "Series" was introduced in mid-thirties.  Its primary purpose was to minimize slowdowns of the production caused by endless changes coming from design bureaus.  Production in batches also avoided having "a handful" of planes with unique equipment etc.

In LaGG-3 case, every factory started production with its own "Series 1".  Gorkiy factory was the main production facility; OKB was based there and most modifications originated there.  Taganrog/Tbilisi and Leningrad factories were "shadow" factories, those were supposed to follow modifications introduced by Gorky OKB.  But, engineers in "shadow" factories were also allowed to introduce their own modifications to the "Series" produced in their factories...  

Gorkiy factory series are somewhat better understood; modifications mentioned in manuals and other original techn literature refer to Gorkiy "Series".  It would be useful/interesting to find Taganrog/Tbilisy equivalents to the Gorkiy "Series".

HTH,
KL  


Yes, the article I linked to was very interesting, but the way it jumped around was confusing to me. Added to the info in the posts above it is more clear to me.

Understood the series were batches of aircraft, did not fully understand the why but it makes sense. Also understood the Gorky factory essentially set the series changes, and due to delays some factories could skip entire series, but did not realize that the other factories had their own sort of subseries going on.

Confusing, yes, but the history of VVS aircraft can not be called boring.  Grin
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KL
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« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2012, 07:39:24 PM »

... the Gorky factory essentially set the series changes, and due to delays some factories could skip entire series, but did not realize that the other factories had their own sort of subseries going on.

"Shadow Factories" couldn't skip the series...  They may have skipped a modification introduced by the "Main Factory".

In theory, if a factory produced, 3000 planes, that would make 30 series of 100 planes.  Those series were marked from "Series 1" to Series 30".
In reality, some series were smaller:  initial series were usually 20 planes, some equipment (like large callibre guns) was available in small numbers, some (smaller) factories produced planes in batches of 50.

The problem that modellers and historians face today is that VVS did not use distinctive designations for different modifications.  VVS did not have a designation for Lagg-3 equipped with automatic slats - modern modellers and historians are calling it Lagg-3 Series 35, although the modification was only introduced from Series 35...

HTH,
KL

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Aaronw
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« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2012, 05:59:14 AM »

This makes a lot of sense. I basically read everything you just said in the linked article, but had not put it together in my head the way you just did. 

So one factory could be in their series 4, another on series 7 but both are building to the same standard Gorky introduced with their series 11?.
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KL
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« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2012, 07:02:00 PM »

This makes a lot of sense. I basically read everything you just said in the linked article, but had not put it together in my head the way you just did. 

So one factory could be in their series 4, another on series 7 but both are building to the same standard Gorky introduced with their series 11?.

Yes, correct.
Series are not modifications as most people think - if you see a photo of a LaGG-3 with underwing RS rockets, it is really "Series 11 or higher (maybe 12 or 13...)" if made in Gorkiy factory.  In VVS service those planes were called something like "LaGG-3 with RS rockets", not "LaGG-3 Series 11".

Conclusion:  Modifications should be defined as "From Series X to Series Y of Factory Z"

HTH,
KL
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2012, 07:54:41 PM »

Hi,
the conventional suddivision in series as if they were versions is based on the drawings of Voronin, that took some examples of planes from different series; it is not anything comparable to the versions E, F,G, K of Me-109s, that were officially named in such way.
Anyway, this classification is widely known and allows to describe syntetically the characteristics of LaGG-3s, exactly as Il-2M3 describes a two-seater Il-2 with swept back wings in much more synthetical way than the description itself, in absence of an official name of this variant.
Regards
Massimo
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KL
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« Reply #9 on: December 21, 2012, 12:15:52 AM »

..suddivision in series as if they were versions is based on the drawings of Voronin, that took some examples of planes from different series; it is not anything comparable to the versions E, F,G, K of Me-109s, that were officially named in such way.

Massimo, good you mentioned origins of the confusion:  LaGG-3 series were first used by Voronin in mid-1980es.  Voronin labeled his dravings as examples of planes from various series.
Western and Polish authors started to use Series as modification names later in 1990-es.  Eventually, Rusians followed this practice.

the conventional suddivision...
Anyway, this classification is widely known and allows to describe syntetically the characteristics of LaGG-3s, exactly as Il-2M3 describes a two-seater Il-2 with swept back wings in much more synthetical way than the description itself, in absence of an official name of this variant.

You probably meant "convenient subdivision"   Smiley
IMHO, hystorical facts (the truth...) is more important than convenience!

Widely known or not, there is absolutelly no justification for the use of fictional designations like Il-2m3.
Regards,
KL  
« Last Edit: December 21, 2012, 12:18:24 AM by KL » Logged
learstang
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« Reply #10 on: December 21, 2012, 04:54:22 AM »

I agree with Konstantin as regards the Shturmovik.  The problem with the designation Il-2m3 is that it looks like an official designation, but it was nothing of the sort.  It would be somewhat like calling the bubble-top P-47D's, the P-47E to distinguish them from the earlier razorback versions.  Easier to use, but inaccurate.  In terms of your site, Massimo, you of course can use the terms you wish, especially if you make clear that they are used only for convenience sake, but I don't use any of the postwar invented designation of the Il-2's in my book, except to make clear that they are postwar inventions, and were not official designations used during the war.  I'll admit that it's certainly much easier to call the straight-winged two-seater the Il-2M, but I don't.

Regards,

Jason
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #11 on: December 21, 2012, 07:54:26 AM »

Hi,
of course the most exact way to indicate a Soviet plane is the factory and series number, but in the most of the cases they are simply unknown, or are known only for few planes and, in absence of a general knowledge, it's difficult to give it a meaning.
The conventional classification of LaGG-3s  allowed to put some order in the lack of knowledge that there was before, and is useful anyway, waiting for a more exact documentation. I hope than AR or some other expert will suggest more informations on both the planes in next future.
Regards
Massimo
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2012, 10:27:19 AM »

Hi, here is an answer of Alex Ruchkovsky to my questions on LaGG series:

Quote
Hi Massimo,
1) series numeration for different LaGG factories was absolutely different. I mean, series 7 of zavod 153 is not same as series 7 of z 21 and its timing was different as well. Production changes at different factories were more or less same/similar but not coinciding in timing. Production volumes at different sites also differed. Z23 in Leningrad built, generally, a handul of planes before evacuation. These were serialled 01100xx, the biggest I've seen is 0110072 (IIRC), and I cannot say if there were any series at all.

2) Numeration format sometimes changed suddenly within the same factory. For example, zavod 31 started with serials formatted 2731xx (where 27 was the a/c "type" and 31 was factory number) but later on (probably after evacuation to Tbilisi) they switched to 4-digit format (xxyy) where xx was a series number and yy a/c number within the series. Moreover, after introducing improvements for late-prod LaGGs at z31 (sometimes referred to as "series 66") numeration abruptly jumped from 2xxx (the biggest z31 LaGG 2xxx number I have is 2666) to 6xxx (starting from 6001), this means there was no Tbilisi LaGG of series 30, 40, 50. In its turn, z21switched from to La5 after LaGG series 37 and there were no zavod 21 series 40-50-60.

3) it is important to remember series in Soviet a/c production is not a modification but just a batch of aircraft (from 10 to 100, depending on the type). Because there is no other way to designate modifications, they started speaking of LaGG-3 series 4, 7, 11, 35, 66 to explain production mods. But in wartime regiment documents, losses, or anywhere, you dont find those series numbers, just "LaGG-3" and, where relevant and known, full factory series number.

Any questions are more than welcome Smiley
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