View Full Version : Why no more Yak or Lavochkin war planes after WW2? Yet all Migs??

08-16-2006, 03:09 PM
Can anyone pls tell me why there were hardly any new high performance fighters from Yakolov and Lavochkin after 1945 please?

Was the Mig company favoured by the Government?

08-16-2006, 03:24 PM


Lavochkin's fortunes faded after the war, his aircraft consistently placing second in competitions with other design bureaux, notably that of Artem Ivanovich Mikoyan, and upon his death his design bureau was closed.

He became the main designer in 1935, then the chief designer (1956-1984) of aircraft for the Yakovlev Design Bureau.



Maybe both were not political correct enough to get bigger state orders .)

08-16-2006, 03:31 PM
You got me interested so I revived some research I was doing on this.
Yakolev actually survived the war as a design group. Yakolev and his group were actually favoured before and after the war...which is why the vast majority of Russian fighters were Yak's during WWII.


After the war I'm not sure what the complete story is but they built large numbers of trainers...and also the Yak-38 "Forger" (NATO Codename) which was a Russian Navy and Air Force VTOL fighter like the Harrier. Similar in concept even.


Apparently Lavockhin lasted till the 1960s when Lavochkin died and then that was it.

08-16-2006, 03:59 PM
Its a neat story...

MiG set itself up for successs after the war with the "failed" MiG-3 and later wartime experimental high altitude high speed interceptors that were not needed in the low altitude war. That, and the engines MiG needed to use were never brought to successful production. With the British Nene engine, MiG's propulsion problems were solved.

Remember old stories of civilian bomb shelters? The early Cold War became a high altitude, high speed competition between USAF Strategic Air Command's bombers and recon planes on one side, and Soviet PVO interceptors on the other (Korea was a small sideshow). MiG was well prepared for this compared to Yak and La.

Poor La, had the same difficulties he always had -- run down facilities and after the war he had to move several times which crippled his design effort and so was always late. Its telling that the afterburner La made for the RD10 was far better than the burner Yak made. Later La interceptors suffered from extreme complexity and also fell behind schedule, until La (the bureau) was switched to missiles. Also, Krucshev was on a missile kick, along with his twin brother Robert McNamara in the USA (Kennedy's Defence Minister), and cancelled alot of very high performing strategic strike aviation projects in favour of strategic missiles.

Yak was very "conservative" when it came to wing sweep, staying with straight wings after MiG aggresively went swept wings, and fell behind. Thus, MiG "won" with the MiG-15 -- for a short while, until a decade later when a new successful Soviet fighter designer would appear.

Not well known is that Yak actually succeded in one respect during the early post-war years where MiG failed -- design of a complete, long range, all weather interceptor in the Yak-25. In fact, the Yak-25 was the best interceptor of the mid-1950s, possibly better than the F-86D and F-89. Later USA advances in transistor electronics and Mach-3 propulsion made the Soviets fall behind however, but in the end, USA gave up on strategic air defence, for good reason -- the Soviet threat was ballistic missiles and not bombers.

Now, the story gets interesting with Sukhoi. It was the humble Sukhoi who finally buried Yak in the 1960s, largely forcing Yak out of fighters. Basically, in a long running hostile competition between Yak and Su, Yak managed to help bury the Su-11 fighter (actually, bomber interceptor), which *was* slowly getting near the stage of becoming a reliable machine before being cancelled in favour of the Yak-28. Most beyond-the-edge combat aircraft go through this period of becoming reliable and well loved, but Su-11 was shut down before this happened.

Thus, Yak had "won" with his Yak-28, but behind the scenes as a private venture Su had been working on the superior performing Su-15. Now, the Yak-28 and Su-15 were being produced at the same factory (same engine, same basic weapons, etc...) and Yak's engineers, having Zero experience in side inlets, directly copied the Su-15's box inlets and applied it to the Yak-28, hoping to beat the Su-15's XtremE performance.

The New-Yak was even slower than the Yak-28. Yak never tried another fighter, save the carrier Yak fighter. And today the Su-27 is the top Russian fighter.

Well, that's my version of one of the most interesting stories rarely told, and I'm sticking to it, until Oleg makes an early Cold War strategic strike simulation. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

08-16-2006, 04:18 PM
the reason stated my yak9u/p book was the VVS's fighter force pretty much needed tobe rebuilt after the war, as the native designs used alot of wood and fabric, not good for self life, espcialy in russias climate? (very cold, very hot) so the VVS needed new fighters still. plus to modernise the fleet too, i guess.

i think they also hadto return alot of lend lease stuff.

so yak and presumeably LA placed top prioty to postwar props, while MiG had pretty much been a experimental unit for awhile, so was best placed to produce the new jets.

08-16-2006, 04:19 PM
Thanks for the info guys, very interesting. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

08-16-2006, 04:22 PM
until Oleg makes an early Cold War strategic strike simulation

if he carries it to where the vulcan was, we can marvel at how a plane so big can have such a small cockpit (ive sat in one) the view out isnt great either.

08-16-2006, 04:28 PM
The Yak 25 (NATO code name Flashlight) was a very good aircraft. Introduced 1954.


08-16-2006, 04:31 PM
Another thing -- the Soviet design bureaus never "owned" their own private mass production factories, just their own craft shoppes where they snapped together new designes. If the design looked useful to the military, the government would order State factories to manufacture the design, with close working relations with the design bureau's engineers.

So, all the design bureaus were the same "size" -- all very small -- no matter their previous success in having their designs mass produced. Thus even though MiG never had a major production offer since, lol 1941, MiG was able to "get on top" fast as State factories were ordered by the governement aviation ministry to start mass panic production of MiG-15s.

08-16-2006, 05:12 PM
The Yak 25 (NATO code name Flashlight) was a very good aircraft. Introduced 1954.