Author Topic: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird  (Read 300 times)

Offline KiwiZac

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Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« on: November 20, 2021, 01:12:06 PM »
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 pt1_0017 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt2_0064 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0052 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0064 by Zac Yates, on Flickr
Warbirds Over Wanaka 2004 pt3_0028 by Zac Yates, on Flickr

Offline KiwiZac

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2021, 01:45:14 PM »

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 gedmundson

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2021, 02:18:55 AM »
Nice work, Zac!

Offline Borsos

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2021, 03:57:57 AM »
I love the subject and your beautiful detail work!
Andreas
"Deux armées aux prises, c'est une grande armée qui se suicide."
Barbusse.
"Ein Berg in Deutschland kann doch einen Berg in Frankreich nicht beleidigen. Oder ein Fluß oder ein Wald oder ein Weizenfeld."
Remarque.

Offline KiwiZac

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2021, 04:07:25 AM »
Thank you gents! Unfortunately the size photos of the photos don't really do it justice - I promise it looks nicer in person! I just wanted to do a representative plumbing job rather than copy it exactly and I'm very happy with the result.

Offline KiwiZac

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2021, 02:21:01 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 KiwiZac

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2022, 03:35:08 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 Borsos

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2022, 04:26:59 AM »
Lovely! Truely a lovely little bird.
Andreas
"Deux armées aux prises, c'est une grande armée qui se suicide."
Barbusse.
"Ein Berg in Deutschland kann doch einen Berg in Frankreich nicht beleidigen. Oder ein Fluß oder ein Wald oder ein Weizenfeld."
Remarque.

Offline Whiteknuckles

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2022, 08:15:29 AM »
Nice one Zac :)

Andrew
Eternal Apprentice

Online gbrivio

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2022, 02:55:05 PM »
Nice work, the kit looks extremely basic and received great improvements.
Ciao
Giuseppe

Offline Stuart Malone

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2022, 01:27:28 AM »
Zac,

Looks like a fun little build.  Nice job.

Stuart

Offline KiwiZac

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Re: Ark Models 1/48 Lavochkin La-9 warbird
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2022, 05:35:54 AM »
Thank you very much for the kind words, everyone!

the kit looks extremely basic and received great improvements.
I was surprised at how basic it is, but the inclusion of the Quinta Studios 3D decals immediately elevates it. This kit is very much a case of "you get what you pay for" as it was much cheaper than an Airfix or Italeri model in the same scale, but the lack of detail is still surprising for a modern kit.

Looks like a fun little build.  Nice job.
It really has been! The scratchbuilt additions have been fun and an interesting challenge - trying to give the impression of a "busy" wheelwell rather than faithfully replicate every pipe, for example. The fact that it's a personal favourite helps too!

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 once 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 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