Grumnan Panther

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The pilots also appreciated the air conditioned cockpit, which was a welcome change from the humid environment of piston-powered aircraft.

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On 3rd July , Lieutenant, junior grade Leonard H. Plog of U. Navy air victory of the war by shooting down a Yak Two more MiGs were downed on 18th November On 18th November , Lt. This unique feat has remained little-known, due to the involvement of National Security Agency NSA — the existence of which was then top secret — in planning the mission. Following intelligence provided by the NSA, the MiGs had been intercepted during a series of air strikes against the North Korean port of Hoeryong, across the mouth of the Tumen River from the major Soviet naval base at Vladivostok.

Grumman G F9F-3 Panther.

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After losing contact with his wingman, Williams found himself alone in a dogfight with six MiGs; when he was able to land on Oriskany, his Panther was found to have sustained hits from by cannon shells or fragments, and to be beyond repair. Future astronaut Neil Armstrong flew the F9F extensively during the war, even ejecting from one of the aircraft when it was brought down by a wire strung across a valley, in Panthers were withdrawn from front-line service in , but remained in training roles and with U.

Naval Air Reserve and U. Marine Air Reserve units until Some Panthers continued to serve in small numbers into the s. From September surviving operational Panthers were redesignated F-9 within the new combined US tri-service designation system.

Only 24 aircraft were put in service, the rest was used as spares. The first flight of an Argentine Panther was in December , and the last aircraft was put in service in January The catapults on the then only Argentine carrier, ARA Independencia, were considered not powerful enough to launch the F9F, so the aircraft were land-based. The Argentine Panthers were involved in the general mobilization during the border clash between Argentina and Chile but no combat occurred.

They were taken out of service in due to the lack of spare parts and replaced with Douglas A-4Q Skyhawks. The Argentine Navy also operated the F-9 Cougar. Hobbymaster have also announced a great selection of new models which are available to pre-order now. Both were unarmed.

Grumman F-9 Cougar

The second prototype crashed during carrier trials on 28 October , but the development program suffered no real delays. Hedging their bets, Navy brass decided to order both versions of the "Panther", as the new fighter was called, specifying the production of 47 F9F-2s and 54 F9F-3s. The two variants were to be produced in parallel, with the initial production items of both flying in November Initial deliveries of the F9F-2 to service units began in May , and a total of was built, including those that started life as F9F-3s.

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Underwing stores pylons were added about halfway through production; these Panthers were known using the designation of "F9F-2B" for a time -- until all earlier production was refitted with stores pylons, and then all were simply referred to as F9F-2s. The wing featured leading-edge and trailing-edge flaps. The tail assembly was of conventional configuration, with a mid-mounted tailplane. There was a small extensible bumper just ahead of the arresting hook.

The main gear hinged in the wings to retract towards the fuselage, while the nosewheel retracted backwards. There was a split perforated airbrake just behind the nosewheel doors. The nose and tail pulled off for maintenance. The F9F-2 was powered by a JP-8 turbojet with The engine intakes were in the wing roots.


There were two spring-loaded auxiliary intake doors for takeoff and emergency airflow positioned, somewhat surprisingly, on the spine of the aircraft's midsection. The wings folded hydraulically upward from just outboard the main gear; oddly, the wing fold angle was well short of the vertical. The tip tanks were not fitted originally to the prototypes, being initially trialed on the first prototype and rolled into manufacturing with the 13th production F9F Including internal tanks and wingtip tanks, total fuel capacity was 3, liters US gallons.

The pilot sat on an ejection seat in a pressurized cockpit under an all-round vision canopy that slid backwards to open. There was a small step on the lower fuselage that could be slid out to help the pilot get into and out of the aircraft.

Grumman F9F-5 Panther

The F9F-2 was armed with four millimeter M3 Hispano-type cannon with rounds per gun, fitted under the nose. The guns were aimed by a Mark 8 computing optical gunsight. The F9F-2 had no radar. It had four stores pylons under each wing, with a heavy pylon inboard and three lighter pylons outboard, for a total of eight pylons.


The large pylon could handle up to a kilogram 1,pound bomb and was "wet", allowing carriage of a liter US gallon drop tank. The outer wing pylons could each carry up to a kilogram pound bomb or a Total external load was kilograms 2, pounds -- though in practice, the F9F-2 was too underpowered to take off from a carrier deck with anything resembling a full combat load. An improved engine was clearly needed.

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Although the prototypes had flown in natural metal finish, production machines were painted in overall dark sea blue, the standard US Navy and Marine color scheme of the day. Colorful trim was added as desired by various squadrons. The Panther would score its first "kill" on 3 July , when Ensign E. Plog shared credit for the destruction of a Yakovlev Yak-9 piston-powered fighter. Panthers would claim four or five more kills against the MiG and records show no losses of Panthers to the MiG in return -- but air combat statistics are notoriously dodgy, and these figures might be taken with a grain of salt.

The Panther was not generally the equal of the faster MiG in performance and was mostly used in the attack role, but like its Grumman ancestors its was extremely rugged, able to both dish out and take punishment. It became the most heavily used jet fighter of the Navy and Marines during in the war. A number of F9F-2s were field-modified by the Navy to a photo-reconnaissance configuration as a "stopgap solution", seeing service in Korea.

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These machines had no cannon, the nose carrying a suite of vertical and oblique cameras instead, and were designated "F9F-2P". They served through most of the war, operating as a complement to McDonnell F2H-2P Banshee photographic reconnaissance machines.

The F also featured:. The F9F-4 prototype was converted from a production F9F-2 and performed its initial flight on 5 July The JP-6 engine fitted to the F9F-5 provided The initial prototype F9F-5, a converted production F9F-2, performed its first flight on 21 December , with deliveries to the Navy and Marines beginning in November The F9F-5 generally replaced the relatively underpowered F9F-2 in service, and went into combat in Korea in late The Blue Angels had already upgraded to the F9F-5 about a year earlier, in late A total of F9F-5s was built, not counting F9F-4 conversions.

Some F9F-5s were delivered in anodized aluminum finish as something of an experiment, but the metal didn't hold up against corrosion, and Panthers went back to glossy sea blue. A total of 36 "F9F-5P" unarmed photo-reconnaissance machines was built as well. The cannon were removed and replaced by vertical and oblique cameras.

The modified nose stretched the length of the aircraft by 37 centimeters The F9F-9P also included an autopilot to provide stability during photoshoots. The only way to tell them from conventional Panthers was by the presence of a set of blade antennas on the nose. There were a number of other conversions of Panthers:.

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