Aviation of World War II

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On August 25, 1941, six months before the first flights of La-5, M.I. Gudkov reported to A.I. Shakhurin about the readiness for testing the first flight prototype of the LaGG-3 converted by him with the M-82. Armament consisted of two synchronous BS machine guns and two synchronous ShKAS. On the second copy, it was planned to install ShVAK guns instead of BS, and BS instead of ShKAS machine guns. The aircraft received the name Gu-82 and made its first flight at LII on September 11, 1941.

The first Gu-82 in flight tests showed a speed of 573 km / h, which was slightly more than that of LaGG, but the flight range turned out to be much higher. Until September 24, test pilot A.I. Nikashin made 12 flights on it. However, the air-cooled fighter jet so needed by the military will never appear in mass production.

Six months later, Lavochkin's fighter will appear with the same engine, which had a slightly higher top speed, mainly due to better engine nosing ... The first La-5, like the LaGG-3, did not have slats and had a tendency to stall onto the wing. By August 1942, all La-5 aircraft were produced with slats.

In the photo above is the Gu-82 before rework.

Soviet fighters with M-82
Gu-82 La-5
Crew 1
Length, m 8.71 8.67
Wing span, m 9.80
Wing area, m² 17.50
Weight, kg
Empty 2,700 2,681
Loaded weight, kg 3,000 3,360
1 PE M-82 M-82A
Power, h. p. 1,450 1,700
Maximum speed at altitude, km / h 573 580
Service ceiling, m 9,600 9,500
Service range, km 680 500
Cannons ShVAK 20 mm 2 2
Machine guns BS 12.7 mm 2 -

On October 11, 1941, Mikhail Ivanovich Gudkov reported to Stalin: "... According to preliminary data, the Gu-82 has a maximum speed of 580 km / h at an altitude of 6400 m and rises to an altitude of 5000 m in 7-7, 5 minutes Thus, the serial machine I took from the factory number 21 after the installation of the M-82 engine has an advantage in speed by 25 km / h and in the time to climb 5000 m - 1-1.5 minutes.

Moreover, the machine has gross errors and defects in serial production of the Gorky plant, due to which the serial LaGG lost 45-55 km / h against the prototype. Therefore, if we correct and eliminate the defects of the production car, then we will have a maximum speed with the M-82 engine 615-620 km / h.

Currently, I am carrying out a whole range of developments, which give reason to believe that I will be able to increase the speed of my car from M-82 to 600 km / h, without taking into account the elimination of batch production defects ... front, I quite clearly imagine that we need to be armed with an airplane with an air-cooled engine, since the use of fighters with a liquid-cooled engine both in air battles and especially when attacking enemy ground units brings a large percentage of losses in flight personnel and materiel, because of the great vulnerability of the water system of the motor ... Having a fighter with an air-cooled motor, we will not have such losses, since the survivability of an air-cooled motor is 9 times greater.

Based on these considerations, I ask you, in order to gain time, without waiting for the end of the test of the machine, to allow me to introduce my aircraft from the M-82 at one of the serial plants producing LaGG aircraft ...

Today, it remains only to regret not introducing into serial production the fighter so needed by the Soviet Air Force back in 1941. Probably for the same reasons, Polikarpov, who had much more authority, was also unable to organize the production of his much better I-185 fighter.

Photo Description

Lavochkin La-5 fighter drawing

Scheme of the Gudkov Gu-82 fighter after alterations.

Pay attention to the shape of the cockpit canopy and antenna after the rework of the Gu-82. It is this design that these elements will have on the next modifications of Lavochkin's aircraft.

May 11, 2019.

In fact, the Gu-82 was not an aircraft of Gudkov, but was an aircraft of a triumvirate of designers under the abbreviation LaGG with a new engine (in a letter to Stalin, Gudkov calls the aircraft his own). LaGG-3 was created in OKB-301 under the leadership of V.P. Gorbunov, whose head he was from 07/15/1939 to 12/14/1940 After the adoption of LaGG-3 in the series from December 14, 1940, the head of OKB-301 was appointed M.I. Gudkov.
It hardly makes sense to describe the confrontation between Lavochkin and Gudkov, as a rule, in such assessments the emphasis is often shifted, changing the essence of the story exactly the opposite.
To Lavochkin's credit his plane with M-82 was originally called LaGG-5.

May 12, 2019.

It remains a mystery why Gudkov assigned the serial number 82 to "his" aircraft. For example, Tupolev, who was imprisoned for the political, article 58, assigned his front-line bomber serial number "58" , but where did Gudkov, who later created Gu-1, such a large serial number ...


May 14, 2019.

From 1941 to 1944 (until the end of aircraft production) V.P. Gorbunov was engaged in the improvement and modernization of LaGG-3, being the chief engineer at the plant in Taganrog and the chief designer and chief of OKB-31.


May 15, 2019.

When creating a new aircraft (installing the M-82 engine on the LaGG-3), the Lavochkin Design Bureau was mainly concerned with preserving the maximum number of parts from the serial LaGG-3.
The question of the use of drawings by N.N. Polikarpova S.A. Lavochkin should be removed - the VMG of the experienced LaGG-3 with the M-82 had more similarities with the similar installation of the Yak-7 than with the I-185.
The engine hood was designed with side exit flaps. At the same time, the help of A.I. Valedinsky, Shvetsov's representative sent to help Lavochkin, proved to be irreplaceable. Only an experienced air engine specialist could quickly and correctly change the serial deflections of the cylinder heads to provide more uniform airflow in the side-flap bonnet scheme. Valedinsky right in the shop at the place "by eye", without any calculations and tests, bent the deflectors as required by the new engine hood. This provided the M-82 motor with a normal temperature regime and, as a result, its reliable operation.
The more "compressed" engine hood in comparison with the hood from the Su-2 on the Gu-82 aircraft made it possible to provide the Lavochkin fighter with greater speed.



  • The history of designs of planes in USSR 1938-1950 /Vadim Shavrov/
  • Attack aircraft of the Red Army / V.I. Perov, O.V. Rastrenin /