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Yak-36 "Freehand"

52.2k SimplyPlain  10 days ago
Auto Credit Based on KnightOfRen's SPSC 3rd Generation Jet Fighter CHALLENGE [Open]

Yakovlev Yak-36 “Freehand”

(Soviet Navy version - You can also get the "Soviet silver" prototype version right here... that one has an instrumentation mod, though.)

I wanted to try a VTOL plane this time, and I was initially aiming for the Yak-38 “Forger”. In the end, its predecessor the Yak-36 “Freehand” seemed like more fun, since it’s infinitely more Soviet-ish looking and ugly as hell.

As a VTOL-capable fighter, the Yak-36 is a contemporary of the Harrier, both having been officially introduced in 1967. In response to a contract for the development of a single-seat V/STOL fighter in 1961, Yakovlev proposed a twin-engined aircraft with a large nose air intake, engines in the forward fuselage and swivelling exhaust nozzles, one for each engine on either side of the lower fuselage near the centre of gravity of the aircraft.


In the end, the Yak-36 didn’t make the final cut, and the Soviet navy had to wait for the Yak-38 to get its first operational V/STOL fighter. The Yak-36 mostly worked as intended, but with its two Tumansky R-27’s it lacked the power to carry a meaningful weapons load, making it quite useless in combat… and truth be told, the Yak-38 wasn’t all that much better; it just came at a moment when the Soviets needed something flashy for their propaganda posters. Had the Freehand’s engines been slightly more efficient, the plane could have seen service as the Soviet’s answer to the UK’s “jump jet”; as it is, only four were built. That makes it a real plane though, so it qualifies (kind of) for the challenge.




Features

What kind of custom stuff does it feature? Well, it has custom landing gear, VTOL nozzles, weapons, recirculation dams (or whatever they’re called) and so on. Because no mods are allowed, what it doesn’t have is a custom cockpit/dash; I’m not a big fan of blocky dials & gauges, so I prefer to use a mod for those. For the “mod-less” version I’m leaving the dash blank, since it’s only there for cosmetic purposes… personally, I prefer the “chase” point of view when playing anyway.

The business end of things

More to the point: weapons. The Yak-36 was supposed to get cannons as well as hardpoints for bombs/missiles/rockets; the version presented to the public had no cannons, and only sported two underwing hardpoints for rocket launchers. Because the plane was underpowered, every pound counted.
My Soviet Navy version (slightly fictional, a “what if” the engines had a bit more thrust) gets a pair of UPK-23 gun pods as main armament, each equipped with a 250-shot GSh-23 double-barrel autocannon. The UPK-23 was standard equipment for Soviet planes and helicopters in need of firepower when it hadn’t been built in at the factory. Additionally, the plane gets two UB-16-57 rocket launchers to strafe ground targets –something a hovering VTOL plane is quite good at.


The standard “Soviet silver” version only has the rocket launchers on its hardpoints; this is how it was shown to the public, although I suspect those rocket launchers were just empty shells to save weight.

Flying/Controls

Nothing fancy, since the Yak-36 wasn’t a fancy plane at all. Standard controls for pitch, roll and yaw; VTOL controls the exhaust nozzles, trim=trim, and for lack of another slider control the flaps have a simple on/off control with AG1… I suppose you won’t use those much anyway, since it’s more fun to take off and land (quasi) vertically. AG7 toggles nav lights, and AG8 toggles the RCN’s (puffer nozzles) –although I don’t know why you would want to turn those off.
Everything else, such as it is, is automatic.

Taking off is easy; VTOL down all the way, power up to 100%, and away you go –albeit somewhat slowly. Watch out with the transition to horizontal flight; do it too quickly when the plane has insufficient forward speed, and you’ll simply drop out of the sky. Start by switching to a 45-degree nozzle setting when airborne, pick up speed until some 200 kph, then go to horizontal flight… but keep your hands on the controls at all times.

When going from horizontal flight to hovering, just VTOL down and keep the plane somewhat in check with pitch control. Forget about coming to a complete standstill or flying backwards; it’s not a helicopter or Harrier. It does the hovering job quite well, though… great for taking shots at ground targets, but you’ll also be a sitting duck.

Like the Harrier, this is no flashy supersonic fighter; you can push the limit at altitude, or go supersonic in a dive… but don’t expect too much of low-altitude level flight. It’s fast, but not that fast. Again, the plane is rather underpowered for its role; add a single 500 kg bomb and it probably won’t even leave the ground.



Have fun with this flying wardrobe…

Spotlights

General Characteristics

Performance

  • Power/Weight Ratio 1.085
  • Wing Loading 42.1lbs/ft2 (205.4kg/m2)
  • Wing Area 369.2ft2 (34.3m2)
  • Drag Points 1991

Parts

  • Number of Parts 1359
  • Control Surfaces 0
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  • Profile image

    @SimplyPlain I don't need a low part build, I have a pretty good pc too, just saying that you build planes with 1300 parts, without cockpit interiors or even the look of a build with so many parts. By "part efficiency" I don't mean low part builds, but builds where the guy who made them really know how to use parts and reduce the part count :)) your builds aren't ugly tho, and I understand that you do not mind because you have a good pc, but if you post something, it's also for people to enjoy it, at least be able to play with it or you know use it against other builds since it's a war plane. People who know how to do part efficiency are the ones who make good builds, because that's why more impressive than a 1300 parts build without a cockpit. goodnight :)

    8 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @ollielebananiaCFSP what can I say... my PC doesn't mind, so neither do I. Too many silly details? Probably, yes. There's lots of other folks who build low-part mobile-friendly stuff, so I don't feel the need to join in :D

    8 days ago
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    the king of no part efficiency

    +2 8 days ago
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    T H I C C

    9 days ago
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    16.7k SneakySniper

    Amazing. Could you make the Yak-38 in the future? You seem to be good with VTOL.

    9 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @ChiChiWerx Thanks! Making it capable of spot landings is probably not that hard... just fool around with the rotators of the exhaust nozzles so they can point slightly further forward. But looking at the Yak-36's nozzles on photos I don't think it could actually do that -ergo, almost impossible to really come to a stop when airborne. The Harrier was probably a smarter design. But I suppose the Yak could indeed land on small-ish carriers, as it was intended to do. You can put this one down on the USS Tiny ;) :D

    10 days ago
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    27.5k ChiChiWerx

    Not incredibly difficult to fly around, takeoff is easy, though one does have to pay attention in transition to the hover and landing. Forget about spot landings, though. I think the RL example was a nightmare to fly, as were all the early VTOL fighters. Nice rendition.

    10 days ago
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    Exceptional build as always just the cannons are super loud lol

    10 days ago
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    32.6k Trainzo

    @SimplyPlain , It's the truth . For beer, with pleasure.

    10 days ago
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    @RandomUser09
    I did mention the F-100 for a reason. Why did so many early Cold War jets look like fish though with their gopping air intakes?

    10 days ago
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    @SimplyPlain Exactly ! Except that the Narval deserved a nice name, the SO 8000 being a beautiful plane ! Not that abominable Soviet plane !!

    +1 10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @SimplyPlain mig-23

    10 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @RandomUser09 The Griffon is a nice piece of work, certainly. But there are already really good ones on SP, no reason to build another one.

    10 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @CharlesDeGaulle that was probably the only way to get a kill with this plane. A real pity the name "Narval" was already taken by the S.O. 8000... it would have fit perfectly for the Yak.

    10 days ago
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    The stick is scary ... They used it to harpoon and destroy enemy planes ?

    10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @SimplyPlain Nord 1500 Griffon

    10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @SimplyPlain it's a legend of clod war.

    10 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @RandomUser09 Probably not. The '27 doesn't interest me at all, so...

    10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @SimplyPlain em can you build a su-27 in near future.

    10 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @RandomUser09 sure...

    10 days ago
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    Fun fact about the Yak-38 though. It was the only fixed-wing aircraft to be operated from the Kiev-class aviation cruisers, and the Kiev was actually specifically built for use with the Forgers.

    +2 10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @SimplyPlain em can you talk to me in an unlisted build.

    10 days ago
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    18.1k RandomUser09

    @AuroraPolaris stop hating Soviet crafts.

    10 days ago
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    52.2k SimplyPlain

    @Trainzo Ah.., thanks, you're almost making me blush ;) remind me to pay you a beer (or a glass of wine) next time I'm in France...

    +1 10 days ago
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    32.6k Trainzo

    Very great build . No kidding, I think you are one of the best builder .
    Very great builder .

    +2 10 days ago
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