|This page is about the Soviet fighter LaGG-3-8. For other versions, see LaGG-3 (Family).|
The LaGG-3-8 is a rank II Soviet fighter with a battle rating of 2.3 (AB) and 2.0 (RB/SB). It was introduced in Update 1.33.
The LaGG-3-8 is one of the first aircraft in the game to be armed with a cannon. It is also one of the earliest fighters in rank II to be armed with a cannon, along with the LaGG-3-11 and the Yak-1. As the first monoplane fighter for many rank I Soviet pilots, a big change from the reserve biplanes, it is an introduction to a whole new range of tactics and armaments.
The LaGG-3-8 has decent responsiveness. It climbs fairly well, and gets to speed quickly. Roll rate is good, and it doesn't compress much. However, the turning circle is subpar to Yak counterparts.
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 5,000 m)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 380||< 380||< 380||> 323|
|Optimal altitude||100% Engine power||WEP Engine power|
|2,000 m||1,100 hp||1,232 hp|
|Optimal altitude||100% Engine power||WEP Engine power|
|4,000 m||1,050 hp||N/A|
Survivability and armour
- 8 mm Steel plate behind the pilot.
Modifications and economy
The LaGG-3-8 is armed with:
- 1 x 20 mm ShVAK cannon, nose-mounted (150 rpg)
- 1 x 12.7 mm Berezin UB machine gun, nose-mounted (200 rpg)
Usage in battles
The LaGG-3-8 should be flown mainly as a fighter. It can be used as a bomber hunter, but it is not well suited to this role due to its average rate of climb and fragile engine.
Due to the average rate of climb, this aircraft is best used in diving attacks, booming and zooming in and out of the fray. When performing BnZ fighting it is essential to monitor your airspeed. Diving at ~700 km/h with your wings vibrating is clearly not a good idea. The control surfaces will be extremely compressed over ~600 km/h, especially the rudder. This not only makes it very awkward to pull off the lead, but also can lead you crashing due to low handling responsiveness. So cut throttle if needed, or even abandon the attack and set up a new one. Remember to zoom up at approximately 45° and avoid extending away horizontally, since the LaGG-3-8 seems to lose quite some speed in level flight. Zooming away at higher angle will turn some speed that would otherwise be wasted into altitude, which you can use for another dive.
If up against a fighter or single engine aircraft, aim for the main mass of the plane, the fuselage. If up against a heavy fighter or bomber, aim for a single engine or wing. Usually a burst of cannon fire into these areas will do critical damage. If you happen to come up against an aircraft with similar armament (central cannons), take a few pot shots, roll and dive out of the fight to a safe distance. However, against most other planes, the nose mounted armament of the LaGG-3-8 excels. Another thing to watch out for is the plane's fragile engine, as it can be easily knocked out by aircraft with heavier armament.
At this low rank, there are many planes that can out-turn the LaGG-3-8. Although this aircraft can pull a very fast initial turn, in a sustained turn-fight it will start to show its faults. Its weak engine combined with a heavy airframe means that this aircraft bleeds energy very quickly in tight turns, nosing down during long, low speed turns. Once at this state of low energy, its average climb rate and acceleration worsens, posing it as an easy target for even the slowest of fighters.
In summary, the main points to take note of when flying this aircraft are:
- Keep your speed and energy up
- Use your dive speed and nose mounted cannon to your advantage
- Go for unsuspecting targets when alone or in furballs
- Don't engage in a sustained turn fight
- Try not to get the engine damaged
Enemies worth noting
- Ki-43-II: this is a fast and agile light fighter found in Japanese, Chinese, and US tech tree. Its speed is competitive against the LaGG-3-8, and has superior climb rate and shorter turn time, meaning it can easily outclimb and outturn the LaGG, and beat the LaGG in a dogfight. However, the Ki-43 has a very fragile airframe that can be damaged easily by the LaGG-3's ShVAK and Berezin. Its armament of 2 x 12.7 mm Ho-103 is also poor at dealing sufficient damage to cripple the LaGG quickly. Therefore, a LaGG pilot might want to avoid fighting the Ki-43 directly, and instead ambush it when it is not paying attention, destroying its weak body with your hard-hitting guns.
- Ki-44: the Ki-44 is better than the Ki-43 in terms of speed and armament. Now it is noticeably faster than the LaGG-3 and climbs better too. Its armament doubled: from the Ki-43's 2 x 12.7 mm to 4 x 12.7 mm, meaning that it can damage the LaGG more easily now. Again, do not enter a tight dogfight with it as it will most likely out-turn, out-climb and out-roll you. Stay away if it is higher, and find a chance to ambush it. Note that it has severe rudder compression at high speed, and its speed retention is quite inadequate due to the rather light airframe, so consider how you can use these to your advantage.
- SBD-3: this dive bomber might appear weak and chubby, but never let this look fool you. The SBD-3 is actually very good at turning especially when flaps and/or airbrakes are deployed, meaning it is very likely to out-turn the LaGG-3-8 in a sustained turnfight, so do not turn with it. While its climb rate is quite bad, it gets airspawn as a dive bomber so it may even be higher than you, although most of the times it will be on the deck strafing ground units. Attack from its underside where its gunner cannot aim at, or from behind if the gunner is unconscious. Its 12.7 mm M2 can be dangerous when they hit your vital components like engine and cooling systems. You can use your level speed and climb rate advantage against it, but you might not out-dive it considering that Soviet planes have wooden structures that compress and rip off quite easily in a deep dive.
Manual Engine Control
Not auto controlled
Auto control available
Auto control available
Pros and cons
- Relatively fast against biplane fighters like I-153
- Good diving speeds
- Usable turn time
- Fairly good roll rate
- Armament centred in nose, easy to aim and do head-ons
- A combination of a ShVAK and Berezin is powerful against most opponents like Ki-43
- Rate of climb is average at best due to weight and weak engine. Is usually outclimbed by Ki-43 and Bf-109
- Can be out-turned easily by biplanes such as I-15
- Tend to nose down in sustained low speed turns
- Low ammunition capacity limits its sustained damage potential
- Cannon and machine gun rounds follow different trajectories
- Engine overheats and can be knocked out quite easily (liquid-cooled)
- Poor over-the-nose visibility and awful rear visibility in simulator mode
The LaGG-3 was designed by Soviet engineers Lavochkin, Gorbunov, and Gudkov to replace the LaGG-1. The original LaGG-3 prototype was made almost entirely out of wood. The airframe was made out of special multi-ply wood bonded with resin. The wings were similar to that of the Yak-1, the difference being the LaGG wing was made in two sections. The fuselage was similar to another Soviet fighter, the MiG-3. Armament includes a 20 mm ShVAK rapid-fire cannon with 150 RPG mounted in a hollow shaft. A 12.7 mm Berezin machine gun was synchronized and mounted on the engine cowling with 170 RPG. The LaGG-3 had many problems during production, the Klimov M-106 engine was powerful but unreliable. The Klimov M105, however, was more reliable but weaker. This led to the LaGG-3 being severely underpowered and disliked by many pilots. This led to Lavochkin's decision to install a more powerful Shvetsov M-82 radial. Which gave birth to one of the most feared fighters in the game: the La-5.
The breakneck rush to produce fighters in 1941, in tandem with an influx of unqualified personnel to aircraft plants, led to an unavoidable drop in quality in the assembly and machining of planes. The situation was worsened by an emerging shortage of Bakelite plywood, which had to be replaced with standard pine and birch. As a result, the LaGG-3's weight increased again, and its aerodynamic properties and flight characteristics decreased.
Designers attempted to counteract the increased weight by weakening its weaponry yet again. The LaGG-3 Series 8 had its synchronized 7.62 mm ShKAS machine guns removed.
The plane's armament now consisted of a 20 mm Shpitalny-Vladimirov ShVAK cannon in the cavity between the engine cylinders with 150 shells, and a 12.7 mm synchronized Berezina BS installed in the nose section of the fuselage above the engine and to the right with 200 rounds each.
This airborne armament configuration became standard, and remained unchanged (except for series 34 planes) until LaGG-3 series production ceased.
Externally, the LaGG-3 Series 8 planes differed in the absence of the now unnecessary ShVAK cannon fairings on the engine hood.
The LaGG-3 Series 8 went into production at the end of 1941. LaGG-3 fighters of this model were produced right up until series 11 was launched.
Consequently, in less than a year, the LaGG-3 went from being a plane with excellent firepower to a fighter with a relatively average armament. Unfortunately, its "disarmament" only slightly improved its flight characteristics. The LaGG-3 still weighed nearly 300 kg more than the Yak-1, which was superior in speed, maneuverability and ascension rate. But worse still, it was not only inferior to its fellow Soviet Yak, but also to the German Messerschmitt, particularly its new Bf.109F model.
Nonetheless, in spite of its drawbacks, the LaGG-3 was actively used on the front starting in August 1941. In the autumn of 1941, it was used on the Bryansk, Kalinin and Western fronts and in the Moscow Air Defense Force.
Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:
- reference to the series of the aircraft;
- links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.
|Lavochkin Design Bureau (Лавочкинa Опытное конструкторское бюро)|
|LaGG-3*||I-301 · LaGG-3-4 · LaGG-3-8 · LaGG-3-11 · LaGG-3-23 · LaGG-3-34 · LaGG-3-35 · LaGG-3-66|
|La-5/7||La-5 · La-5F · La-5FN · La-7 · Dolgushin's La-7 · La-7B-20|
|La-9/11||La-9 · La-11|
|Jet Fighters||La-15 · La-174 · La-200|
|Export||␗La-9 · ␗La-11|
|*Lavochkin-Gorbunov-Gudkov (Лавочкин-Горбунов-Гудков), head designer V. P. Gorbunov|
|I-15||I-15 WR · I-15 M-22 · I-15 M-25 · I-15bis · Krasnolutsky's I-15bis|
|I-153 M-62 · Zhukovsky's I-153-M62 · I-153P|
|I-16||I-16 type 5 · I-16 type 10 · I-16 type 18 · I-16 type 24 · I-16 type 27 · I-16 type 28 · I-180S|
|I-185||I-185 (M-71) · I-185 (M-82)|
|MiG-3||MiG-3-15 · MiG-3-15 (BK) · MiG-3-34|
|LaGG||I-301 · LaGG-3-4 · LaGG-3-8 · LaGG-3-11 · LaGG-3-23 · LaGG-3-34 · LaGG-3-35 · LaGG-3-66|
|La||La-5 · La-5F · La-5FN · La-7 · Dolgushin's La-7 · La-7B-20 · La-9 · La-11|
|Yak-1/7||Yak-1 · Yak-1B · Yak-7B|
|Yak-3||Yak-3 · Yak-3P · Yak-3T · Yak-3U · Yak-3 (VK-107)|
|Yak-9||Yak-9 · Yak-9B · Golovachev's Yak-9M · Yak-9T · Yak-9K · Yak-9U · Yak-9UT · Yak-9P|
|Other countries||▂P-40E-1 · ▂P-47D-27 · ▂Hurricane Mk IIB · ▂Fw 190 D-9 · ▂Spitfire Mk IXc|
|P-39||▂P-39K-1 · ▂Pokryshkin's P-39N-0 · ▂P-39Q-15|
|P-63||▂P-63A-5 · ▂P-63A-10 · ▂P-63C-5|