1/72 Cooperativa La-5

Gallery Article by Andrew Desautels (a.k.a. "Andrew D. the Jolly Rogers guy") on Aug 4 2021



The plane
During the Great Patriotic War (WW2 to Westerners), Soviet fighter designers invested an astonishing amount of work trying to mate better engines to existing airframes. The great success story to emerge from this was the La-5, in which the LaGG-3 was reworked with the M-82 radial engine, replacing the former's inline powerplant. Thus began a remarkable lineage, starting with the La-5, then leading to the improved La-5F, La-5FN and ultimately the superb La-7. 

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The build
The Cooperativa 1/72 La-5 is quite dated but with some effort can be made into a very nice replica of this important Soviet fighter. It was built purely out of the box.

I discovered too late that the green I used was actually an inaccurate shade which was purported to be the right stuff. Can't win 'em all. Kit decals were used, of a very dramatic-looking plane flown by Georgii Kostylev during his service with the 4 GIAP. Two sets of identical decals were used to connect the gaps from the left side to the right side of the shark mouth, by cutting small sections of the second set to match what had already been applied.

All in all, a decent kit. The best improvement I can suggest would definitely be a replacement canopy. Enjoy the photos!

Andrew Desautels

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Photos and text by Andrew Desautels