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MiG-3s during fall 1941
Last modified on August 16, 2005                           file name:fall.html
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During the summer and fall 1941, Zavod 1 was producing MiG-3s at a rate of about 500 for month; the aircraft was widely diffused in VVS units.
The production was reduced after October 1941, due to the moving of the factory from Vnukovo, near Moscow, to Kuybyshev, in the Urals, to save it from air raids and from a possible occupation by advancing German troops.

This late type MiG-3 was found by advancing German troops. On the back side of the photo there is written
"Shot downed "Rata" on the way to -Karatscher- 7.10.41".
For German soldiers, all single fighters were "Rata", all SBs were "Martin Bombers".
The plane looks to have had an hard landing.
On the tail, we see traces of a star and of a dark number 9, possibly deleted with a lighter shade of paint.

from Barbarossa victims

from Migi Stalina

This plane, captured by the Germans, features the "za rodinu" ("for homeland") inscription on its side. 
The photos were taken in different times, probably during fall 1941. Although its tail wheel doors are still of the early style and the lack of its engine cowling, some details of the engine cowling are typical of late type MiG-3s. 
Note the apparent deletion of the star on the tail with green paint.

Moscow front

from Aviacija n.3

These  aircrafts are flying over Moscow, probably during the fall of 1941. Note the underwing rockets, the fixed tail wheels and the opened canopies. The camo is green and black.
Pilots of unknown unit before night combat mission. Moscow front.
At first, only few pilots of the Moscow PVO were trained for night operations.
Sometimes pilots were unable to find the airbase in the darkness to land, and leaved the aircraft by parachute.
.from D. Hazanov book "Unknown war in the Moscow's sky 1941-42" vol.1

photo  from Alex Ruchkovski via Ilya Grinberg, colorized by Massimo Tessitori

This excellent unpublished photo shows many Soviet pilots and ground crew with different styles of uniforms, some of archaic army type.
The aircraft is a late production MiG-3 with pipe for inhert gas near the exhaust stack, with radio mast,  with slats and underwing gun pods. Note the unusual painted propeller blades and the compressed air bottle on the ground.
The aircraft and the pilots are of 180 IAP (later made a Guard regiment as 30 GIAP), 6 IAK PVO, on the Borki airfield near Moscow..
In August 1941 the 180IAP faced combat in Rzhev region.   On October 13th, 1941 the regiment was located in the airfield Yorshi, north to Rzhev. After this airfield was sieged by Germans the regiment moved into Taldom, near Tver. They landed at Borki airfield on 17th of October 1941.
As a date for the photo, one could hypothize late October or November 1941 because of traces of snow in combination with some archaic elements (uniform and gun pods) and the apparent absence of mud.

An aircraft with the slogan "Smert nemetskim okkupantam!" (death to the German occupants!). 
The aircraft has a thin outline around the stars. The front part of the spinner appears slightly lighter; it could be white or red.
from Red Stars


Here is another shot of the same aircraft. On the background is visible another aircraft, probably yellow or azure 1. 
Note the partially white spinner. 

from "Unknown battles on the Moscow skies" of Hazanov

Northern Front

Here is a MiG-3 of the 7 IAP, Leningrad front, in October 1941. 
The stars look white, but this could depend on the type of film used; it can be seen on many photos of that period. 

from Red Stars

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