Aviation of World War II
La-5 Manufactured by Plant Nr 21
Approved by Ch. Ing. Air Force, Lieutenant General Repin, 26 October. 1942
Leaders of Military Tests of the La-5 Aircraft
Engineer-Captain Alekseenko, Engineer-Captain Zyuskevich, Engineer-Captain Babanin, Engineer-Captain Khvostovsky, Senior Technician-Lieutenant Efanov (armament), senior Technician-Lieutenant Samozvantsev (for special equipment).
Find out the flight, tactical and combat qualities of the La-5 M-82;
Reveal the operational qualities of the aircraft as a whole, engine, VMG, weapons, special equipment;
Checking the reliability of the motor and its components on the La-5 aircraft and identifying defects;
Identification of defects of the VMG, weapons, special equipment, verification of compliance with the aircraft operating instructions.
Aircraft La-5 1, 2, 3 series produced by plant No. 21 with the installation on them of the M-82 motor of the 2nd series manufactured by plant No. 19 and VISH-105 propellers with a diameter of 3.1 meters underwent military trials.
The planes are equipped with armament: 2 ShVAK cannons of 20-mm caliber with ammunition of 340 rounds, 170 rounds per cannon, 2 D3-40 locks under the wing for suspension of bombs up to 100 kg.
Conditions for Conducting Military Tests
Tests were carried out in the conditions of combat operations 15, 27, 297, 437 IAP 8 VA on the Stalingrad Front, and 49 Red Banner IAP 1 VA on the Western Front from August 31 to September 13, 1942.
In the period from August 20 to September 13, 1942, parts of the 287th IAD performed:
A) 226 sorties for reconnaissance of enemy troops. The reconnaissance was carried out in pairs from low level flight;
B) 571 sorties to cover troops and intercept enemy aircraft;
C) As a result of air battles, enemy aircraft were shot down: 51 bombers, Me 109 fighters - 19 planes, Me 109F - 17 planes.
During the period from August 2 to September 14, 1942, 49 KIAP carried out 117 combat sorties in air battles with enemy aircraft to escort bombers.
As a result of air battles during the specified period, the following were shot down: bombers - 7 aircraft, Me.109 and Me.109F fighters - 5 aircraft.
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IAP - Istrebitel'nyy aviatsionnyy polk - Fighter Aviation Regiment
KIAP - Krasnoznamennyy Istrebitel'nyy aviatsionnyy polk - Red Banner Fighter Aviation Regiment
IAD - Itsrebitel'naya aviatsionnaya diviziya - Fighter Aviation Division
VMG - Vintomotornaya gruppa - Propeller group
VISH - Vint izmenyayemogo shaga - Мariable pitch screw
VA - Vozdushnaya armiya - Air Army
On the Stalingrad front, La-5 aircraft with the M-82 engine fought against German fighters and Me.109F-4 aircraft with a Daimler-Benz DB-601E engine and Me.109G-2 with a DB-605A-1 engine. Aircraft armament: 3 MG-151 20-mm cannons with 200 rounds of ammunition for each cannon and 2 MG-17 7.92-mm machine guns with 500 rounds of ammunition for each. Or one MG-151 20mm cannon with 200 rounds of ammunition and 2 MG-17 7.92mm machine guns with 500 rounds of ammunition for each machine gun. And also with bombers Ju.88, Ju.87, Me.110, He.111.
On the Western Front, La-5 aircraft fought against German aircraft Ju.88, Ju.87, Hs.126, Me.109, Me.109F.
1. In terms of flight-tactical and combat qualities.
A) In air combat with the German Me.109F-4 and Me.109G-2 aircraft, the La-5 aircraft is significantly inferior to them both in vertical maneuverability and horizontal speed. As a result, the La-5 aircraft cannot conduct active air combat with the German Me.109F-4 and Me.109G-2 fighters and is forced to conduct a defensive battle.
B) In air combat with German aircraft Ju.88, Me.110, He.111, the La-5 aircraft meets all the requirements of a modern fighter in terms of speed and maneuver. Armament requires increased fire.
C) In the process of performing combat work, La-5 aircraft were used for reconnaissance of enemy troops. Reconnaissance by La-5 aircraft at altitudes from 100 meters to shaving flight is difficult due to insufficient forward-downward visibility (wide engine hood).
D) The camouflage of the La-5 aircraft, like other domestic fighters, is not satisfactory. The La-5 aircraft, in comparison with enemy fighters, with its color in the air, stands out sharply against the background of clear sky and clouds, which makes it easier for the enemy to detect our aircraft. When viewed from the air, on the ground, the color of our aircraft also stands out sharply against the background of the ground.
2. Flight evaluation of the La-5 aircraft.
A) On ailerons at medium speeds, loads are normal. At speeds above 450 km / h (instrumented), loads increase significantly. The depth rudder is neutral when adjusting the trimmer at a speed of 300-320 km / h (i.e., the load is removed). During a dive at a speed of 500 km / h (according to the instrument), loads arise that make it difficult to take the aircraft out of the dive. You must use a trimmer. Steering at high speeds is heavy. Aircraft handling requires good rudder coordination. On the right bend, the plane strives to lower its nose, it is necessary to support it with the left leg. The aircraft's control stick is comfortable, but the brake controls are inconveniently located. The braking loads are large, as a result of which the pilot fills calluses on his right hand (palm and middle finger).
The normal gas sector is underdeveloped. The movement of the sector is jerky, and with a weak tightening of the nut, it moves away, taking the middle position. There is a small gas on planning, provided that the gas sector is kept cleaned by force. And if you do not hold the sector, it goes to the middle position.
Buttons for controlling the landing gear flaps require improvement in terms of their sealing and smooth running.
B) The view from the cockpit forward, with the canopy closed, is satisfactory. Good sideways. There is no backward view, as a result of which it is impossible to observe the enemy aircraft. The canopy cannot be opened at high speeds. And on planning, due to an unsatisfactory lock, the lantern opens itself. When the canopy is closed, aimed fire cannot be fired due to the high position of the sight (the pilot's head rests on the lamp). Therefore, flights on La-5 aircraft in combat conditions are carried out only with an open canopy.
B) Cab ventilation is unsatisfactory. It's stuffy and hot in the cockpit. The existing ventilation does not allow flying without glasses. It does not correspond to its intended purpose.