Zvezda 1/48 La-5
|NOTES:||Eduard p.e. belts added|
I was really happy when this kit came out. I honestly did not think I would ever see a mainstream, injection-molded kit of this aircraft. When a friend sent me this kit direct from Russia, I started it immediately.
On this build, I had to first decide whether to build the engine compartment open or closed. The decision became a non-issue when I attached the halves of the first row of radial cylinders. In order to clean up the seam on each cylinder head, I would destroy the detail of the head finning. Why did Zvezda include all of this detail only to have it unpresentable in the end? Needless to say, I built it closed up. I still had to assemble the engine and exhaust, since the exhaust was visible and the engine located the prop. The assembly process was as fiddly as it looked in the instructions – think Eduard Fw 190A with lax quality control!
Gray for the interior. I then brush painted the cockpit details and gave the
interior a thin black wash. Once the wash had dried, I drybrushed the
interior with a slightly lighter shade of gray. Next, I added the
photoetched seatbelt for the pilot’s seat. I then closed up the fuselage. I
had to do a lot of dry-fitting to get the fuselage closed up cleanly (too
many stringers – each with a nasty mold-seam).
ael Gray for the interior. I then brush painted the cockpit details and gave the interior a thin black wash. Once the wash had dried, I drybrushed the interior with a slightly lighter shade of gray. Next, I added the photoetched seatbelt for the pilot’s seat. I then closed up the fuselage. I had to do a lot of dry-fitting to get the fuselage closed up cleanly (too many stringers – each with a nasty mold-seam).
|COLORS & MARKINGS|
I chose the boldest of the three kit-offered markings. It represents La-5 “White 04” flown by V.M. Dmitriev, 4th IAP, in the summer of 1943. The big-lipped mouth added some flash to the standard black/green/blue camouflage.
The landing gear and other final bits were added at this time. Final detailing was then completed.
I’m left scratching my head over this one. I’m stoked about the subject, but the decals are junk, the kit is overly complex and fiddly, and the mold-seam on the parts in my example required extensive cleanup. I can see lots of modelers starting this kit only to get discouraged and quit at some point along the way. This is a shame because the finished kit really does capture the pudgy look of the La-5 fighter. On the plus side, the surface detailing is great and the interior is the best yet on any 1/48th scale Lavochkin. Overall, I think that Zvezda’s La-5 is representative of current Russian made model kits. It compares on equal terms with ICM’s LaGG-3 (similar pros & cons). I’m very happy to have the option of building an accurate La-5, and I can’t wait to build Zvezda’s La-5FN. Recommended for modelers with some experience.
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