Author Topic: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird  (Read 491 times)

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« on: November 20, 2021, 10:42:51 AM »
Hi all,
My most recent build, the Special Hobby Kittyhawk, was my birthday present to myself last year. This year's was the new Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 which I got from a Russian store on eBay for a song. It's surprisingly basic for a 2021 kit - inside the cockpit there should be frames and stringers, the panel lines are deep and fairings/plates are too tall:
Ark Models 1/48 AK48049 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 AK48049 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

However it was evened out by the inclusion at no extra cost of the 3D decals by Quinta Studio. These are a true delight and very easy to use. And necessary as there is no detail on the IP or consoles. Plus if you put them in the wrong place they're easy enough to relocate if you've used PVA/craft glue rather than CA. I'll be trying to replicate some sidewall boxes missing from the kit and made the choice to add the missing brake lever to the stick.
Ark Models 1/48 AK48049 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 AK48049 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

There's an airworthy example of the La-9 which was restored here in New Zealand for the late Ray Hanna. It first flew after restoration in 2003, appeared at one airshow and was off to Duxford where it wowed (I think) everyone who saw it. Likewise its pilots. Ray then brought it back to NZ and entered into a partnership with P-40N owner Garth Hogan to operate it here. It appeared at Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 (my family attended for the first time) and as soon as it went past me on the takeoff roll this sixteen-year-old fell in love. Photos by my Dad:
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt2_0064 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0053 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0064 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0022 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0028 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt1_0017 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
« Last Edit: January 10, 2022, 10:18:24 AM by KiwiZac »

Offline apophenia

  • Patterns? What patterns?
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2021, 05:33:51 AM »
Looking forward to this. The La-9 has been a favourite of mine too (since first seeing a sketch of one looong ago in a William Green Fighters series book).

As you say, the lack of internal detail is surprising in a 1/48 kit. But those freebee Quinta Studio decals look really sharp. Good score  :smiley:
The doorbell's ringing, could be the elves
But it's probably the werewolf ...

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2021, 11:45:13 AM »

I didn't realise I hadn't posted in so long - progress has progressed! The fuselage sidewalls were far too bare for a 1/48 aircraft, even with the canopy closed, so I added some bits and bobs based on photos of the restored ZK-LIX:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

The cockpit (with added throttle and propeller levers replacing the 3D decal's blobs) was installed along with some styrene bits to act as alignment tabs as the kit's joining surfaces are all smooth:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

Fuselage joined. Note the hole in the spine aft of the cockpit: this appears as a clear-glazed area on drawings and the restored La-9, but is not present on the kit. I also replaced the kit's gunsight with a crash pad.
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

For some bizarre reason my SIX attempts to upload a photo to Flickr have failed, but the wheel well in the kit is very bare with one junction box the only extra part to be added. But as seen in these photos of ZK-LIX taken by Phillip Treweek you can see the well's rather busy:
Lavochkin La-9 ZK-LIX by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Lavochkin La-9 ZK-LIX by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Lavochkin La-9 ZK-LIX by Zac Yates, on Flickr
(note the abovementioned junction box)

So I set to work with stretched sprue and gubbins from my spares and I'm happy with the result:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

Unfortunately Flickr's autosizing does my scratching work no favours but I am very, very pleased with the outcome. The wheelwell is now mounted in the lower wing.

Stay tuned for another update, hopefully in better time!

Offline apophenia

  • Patterns? What patterns?
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2021, 12:46:59 PM »
... progress has progressed! ...

 ;D

Good work on the gubbins. Both wheel wells and 'front office' are looking much more convincing. The OOB 'features' on this kit remind me more of a 1/72nd scale model from the '70s!

Actually, it is amazing what a visual difference you've made to the cockpit. Having added the cockpit tub with its seat, side consoles, and main instrument panel,  your added features to the side walls really do punch above their weight visually  :smiley:
The doorbell's ringing, could be the elves
But it's probably the werewolf ...

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2021, 08:58:24 AM »
Thank you! Honestly, I was going to leave it with the 3D decals of the canopy handle and switchboard and my little first aid box, but I just couldn't do it. There's so much empty real estate on those sidewalls and if you buy the boxing without the 3D decals you'll need to put in even more work as you're given a literal blank slate. I wrote an in-box preview of this kit for Modeling Madness where you can see sprue shots.

Wheel well in place, the lower wing may be in position later today. You can't tell but I've already painted the underside light blue, a custom mix I'm afraid I cannot recall!
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
« Last Edit: December 09, 2021, 09:03:59 AM by KiwiZac »

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2021, 12:19:47 PM »
So as of yesterday evening this was the state of play:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

One of the many oversights in this kit (I keep reminding myself it was cheap, so it's kind of understandable) is that there are no exhaust stacks in the box. I trimmed some surplus P-40 parts and they work well:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

And between appointments, training for work and Christmas shopping she now sits thusly:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

The stretched sprue is for brake lines because evidently I passed the point of no return some time back.

Offline Old Wombat

  • "We'll see when I've finished whether I'm showing off or simply embarrassing myself."
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Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2021, 10:53:06 PM »
So, you're going for Full Detail Alchemy, are you? ;)
"This is the Captain. We have a little problem with our engine sequence, so we may experience some slight turbulence and, ah, explode."

Offline Frank3k

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Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2021, 12:11:17 AM »
That's looking good, Zac! The 3D decals look great and so does your scratchbuilding.

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2022, 10:13:59 AM »
Flash forward and progress has certainly progressed!! Paint was applied in the days leading up to the New Year:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

The kit decals (including the silver straps? around the cowling) performed perfectly:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

And a fellow modeller and former OFMC employee kindly sent me some Breitling Fighters shield decals to add to the nose:
Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

I need to get some more red paint so I can do the rudder stripes and source the 28s for the fuselage sides, but the end is in sight!

Offline Old Wombat

  • "We'll see when I've finished whether I'm showing off or simply embarrassing myself."
  • "Define 'interesting'?"
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2022, 01:52:51 PM »
That's looking fantastic, Zac! :smiley: 8)
"This is the Captain. We have a little problem with our engine sequence, so we may experience some slight turbulence and, ah, explode."

Offline GTX_Admin

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Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2022, 01:47:01 AM »
 :smiley:
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it.

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2022, 09:30:53 AM »
Thank you gents!

Offline ysi_maniac

  • I will die understanding not this world
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2022, 09:44:55 AM »
Top notch modelling ! :-* :-* :-* :-*

Offline apophenia

  • Patterns? What patterns?
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2022, 09:45:22 AM »
... progress has certainly progressed!! ...

Progressing progressed is really the best sort of progress! Lavochkin is looking slick Zac  :smiley:
The doorbell's ringing, could be the elves
But it's probably the werewolf ...

Offline KiwiZac

  • The Modeller Formerly Known As K5054NZ
Re: RW: 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2022, 03:36:52 AM »
Thank you both for your kind words!

... progress has certainly progressed!! ...
Progressing progressed is really the best sort of progress! Lavochkin is looking slick Zac  :smiley:
Progression is the name of the game!  ;D

I should point out that this isn't the first time I've build a model of this aircraft. As soon as I saw ZK-LIX fly I knew I needed a model of her. I scoured all the vendors tents at the airshow, we stopped at every hobby shop on our family tour around the lower and eastern South Island, all to no avail. Dad (understandbly getting exasperated with all this running around) said "It looks like a Focke-Wulf 190, why don't you try and make it out of one?" I wouldn't have any of that!

It wasn't until our ship took us back to the North Island that the proprietors of Modelcrafts & Hobbies in Wellington - one of whom would become a pivotal figure in Wingnut Wings - said he could order in a 1/72 Eastern European kit (I think by Gran?) of this very unknown aircraft for me. A month or two later it arrived and 17yo Zac very excitedly tackled his first short-run kit. This is the result, and I'm so glad it's survived the intervening years!! And yes, I now want to put the missing markings in place!
1/72 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
1/72 and 1/48 La-9s by Zac Yates, on Flickr
« Last Edit: January 14, 2022, 03:44:23 AM by KiwiZac »