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Author Topic: La-5 of Cooperativa  (Read 7175 times)
Massimo Tessitori
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« on: October 06, 2005, 05:04:47 PM »

Hi, I am building a model of La-5 of Cooperativa. It is well accurate and detailed, but its plastic is extremely brittle and broke in many unexpected ways.
 Sad
I think that it is the same mould as Eastern Express. Is anyone in possess of this kit? I would understand if this characteristic of the plastic is of a part of the production or it is of all the built kits of La-5. Huh

Massimo
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Audrius
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« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2005, 11:02:44 AM »

hi Massimo
this kit was one of the first models I made few years ago after the long break in modelling. I was painted even with brush. It's quite ugly now judging by nowdays standards, nevertheless it's lovely for me Smiley

Anyway, this kit is one of best for La-5 in 1/72 otherwise you should make a conversion from La-7 by Eduard as AR did: http://vvs.hobbyvista.com/ModelGallery/la5_72.php

BR Audrius
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John Thompson
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« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2005, 12:54:55 AM »

Hi Massimo! I have worked on several of the La-5 kits, and I do not remember seeing the brittleness that you describe - perhaps the styrene which was used to manufacture this batch of kits did not have enough plasticizer in it. It might help, if possible, to let the parts sit in warm (or even hot) water for a few minutes before you try to bend them.

All the current La-5 (or LaG-5) kits (VES, Cooperativa, Eastern Express, and Maquette) are made from the same moulds. The kit was first produced by VES in Russia. I suspect the Gran La-5 kit, which is to be released next year, will also be the same. The continued popularity of these moulds for so many years proves that we badly need *new* and accurate 1/72 kits of the La-5, La-5F, and La-5FN!

The Maquette version of this kit is worth buying just to get the decal sheet. The decals were produced by Anna & Co., and are very well printed. The clear carrier film is extremely thin, so it might be safest to coat the decals with acrylic floor polish (e.g., Future) or Microscale Liquid Decal Film before soaking them. Four versions are given:
(1) La-5, White 66, camouflaged Black/Green/Blue; a "Valeriy Chkalov" aircraft, well illustrated on this site and on Erik Pilawskii and Matt Bittner's site;
(2) La-5, red 20, painted in white distemper for winter; another Chkalov-inscribed aircraft, but one which I have not seen referenced anywhere else, and for which there is no historical description on Maquette's instructions, only a port side-view;
(3) La-5, unnumbered, white winter finish; this is the Tula Komsomol aircraft presented to Spanish volunteer Francesco Merono. I have seen this aircraft illustrated with a yellow outline to the red presentation inscription where it crosses the red fuselage star; unfortunately, the decal sheet is printed in only two colours (red and white), so this outline is missing;
(4) La-5, White 40, Black/Green/Blue; another Chkalov aircraft. There is some disagreement over whether the inscriptions were white or yellow; on this decal sheet they are given in white. Regardless of colour, the sheet correctly makes available both a port-side Chkalov inscription (although intended for White 66, above) and the starboard-side presentation inscription, although only the starboard side is shown and described on the instruction sheet.

I am building this kit right now; I have modified the cowling as you described in your excellent research article on the cowling shapes of the La-5 family - *thank you* for publishing this valuable information about my favourite VVS fighter! I am also using the wings from a Toko LaGG-3 series 66 to build this model.

Regarding the cowling shapes on these aircraft, I think the Voronin drawings (and therefore the VES/Cooperativa kit, which seems to have been based on these drawings) actually show the cowling shape of the LaG-5. I believe that the relatively few LaG-5 (or LaGG-3/M-82) aircraft which were built were converted from existing LaGG-3 airframes. These aircraft would have had narrower fuselages than the full production version of the La-5, and therefore the cowling was "onion-shaped" to allow it to match the narrow LaGG-3 fuselage. When the aircraft was redesigned for production of the true La-5, the fuselage was widened and the cowling made without the tapered shape, perhaps for greater ease of manufacture. I have no way of proving this - it is only my theory, after reading your research article and the La-5FN cowling article by Erik Pilawskii!

Well, this is quite a long post - I hope it doesn't seem like I am trying to be an "expert" on this topic! It is only because, as I said, the La-5 family is my favourite among all VVS subjects, so I have tried to read and absorb everything I can find! :-)

John Thompson
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2005, 11:13:36 AM »

Hi John, Smiley
your notes are extremely interesting. In first place, I am happy that the brittleness of plastic is not common to all kits, else I should have to not recommand it. I suffered breakages on engine cowling, tail, landing gear...... everywhere! Of course, if one knows to have a epoxy kit, he can behave in prudential way. But this should be plastic... perhaps they injected it at too high temperature.
Your notes on the decals sheet of the Maquette kit are interesting too, all these versions are attractive. The Cooperativa kit has decals for 66 and for the sharkmouthed n.15, but there is the inscription "Eskadilya VCh" on both sides; the real planes should have a different inscription there. How is the sheet of Maquette on this respect?
I am painting my kit as "red 57"; in absence of good decals for the numbers, I have adapted other ones by brush, but I am still not sure that this is fully satisfying. Perhaps I'll try to print them by a printer in some way.
About n.20, I would be interested to see a photo of it, I didn't.
About your idea on LaG-5 cowling shape, it could be interesting to look to check it. It is possible that they were different.
Don't worry to seem as "being expert". I think that there are not expert or unexpert persons, but only facts that are waiting to be discovered, or shown as right or wrong.  Smiley Any idea is welcome as a base of discussion.
Massimo
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2005, 11:25:37 AM »

Hi Audrius, Smiley
the kit of Cooperativa is nice, apart for plastic brittleness Undecided and other not so heavy defects.
However I am considering to build the La-5 of KP. I bought a second La-7 of Eduard with the idea to convert it into La-5FN, but in first place I wasn't fully satisfied for the model, and in second place I think that the most part of its good characterisics will be lost in the conversion work. So, now I am thinking to build the second one as it is, or to convert it into a twinseater utilizing the wide amount of advanced canopies from two kits.
I have still to deal with the canopy that was described as unsatisfactory by some authors, but I have only one vacuformed canopy of Falcon for two kits, so probably I'll avoid to make things difficult.
Massimo
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Dark Green Man
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« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2005, 02:03:27 AM »

I agree with John Thompson.

the Maquette is definately the better version.(I do not have the VEhS / Cooperativa version)
even if it it is just for the decals.

the EE version is dark green and the Maquette version is black.

what color is yours?
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"when we lose the right to be different, we lose the priviledge to be free"--Charles Evans Hughes
Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2005, 09:58:38 PM »

Color? A sort of bluish black.
Massimo
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Audrius
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« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2005, 02:07:08 PM »

Hi
mine was by VES- a green plastic.
BR Audrius
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Audrius
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« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2005, 11:53:23 AM »

hi John

(1) La-5, White 66, camouflaged Black/Green/Blue; a "Valeriy Chkalov" aircraft, well illustrated on this site and on Erik Pilawskii and Matt Bittner's site;(

Not only!  Grin Check this page on the subject: http://mig3.sovietwarplanes.com/la5/chkalov/chkalow.html  Cool

(2) La-5, red 20, painted in white distemper for winter; another Chkalov-inscribed aircraft, but one which I have not seen referenced anywhere else, and for which there is no historical description on Maquette's instructions, only a port side-view;

John, the decal for nr.20 - doesn't it resemble to this profile by Massimo?

I suppose that Maquette just changed number on the base of our research that is published on the page of Massimo. Are you able to provide the scan of the decal, please?
Just curiuos to see
BR Audrius
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Massimo Tessitori
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« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2005, 09:19:56 PM »

Hi Audrius, Smiley
if I don't miss, n.20 was also published on a page of EP, but I haven't photos of it.
The n.22 was hypothetical, on the text there is written why I consider it as the most likely. I have suspected that it could have been the same plane, but the position of writings on the profile of EP was a bit different from the one visible on the photos. So, or it was badly drawn, or they are different planes.

Now I would show scans of the decals sheet?(sorry, it's on its side) and instructions of the model of Cooperativa.



Massimo
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