The Cougar was a swept-wing development of the earlier G-79 Panther. The fuselage was similar but the wings and tailplane were swept at 35°. First flown in prototype form on 20 September 1951, the initial production version was the F9F-6 armed with four 20 mm cannon and powered by a 32.25kN Pratt & Whitney J48-P-8 turbojet engine. The F9F-6P was an unarmed photographic-reconnaissance version with a longer nose to accommodate K-17 and tri-metrogon cameras. Next came the F9F-7, similar to the previous version except that it was powered by a 28.25kN Allison J33-A-16A engine.
The first production F9F-8 flew on 18 January 1954. Powered by J48-P-8 engine, it was a development of the F9F-6 with increased speed and range. Movable leading-edge slats were replaced by fixed cambered leading-edge extensions outboard of the wing fences. Total internal fuel capacity was increased by 530 litres. A photographic-reconnaissance version (the F9F-8P) flew for the first time on 21 August 1955 and had an extended nose for the cameras. The F9F-8 went out of production in 1957.
The final version of the Cougar was the F9F-8T two-seat fighter-trainer, first flown on 4 April 1956. Production of this version ended on the last day of 1959 after 399 had been built. Total production of the Cougar was 1,985 aircraft. Many F9F-8Ts were flown operationally in Vietnam.
|A three-view drawing of F9F-8 Cougar (1278 x 926)|
| ENGINE||1 x Pratt & Whitney J48-P-8A turbo-jet, 32.0kN|
| Take-off weight||9344 kg||20600 lb|
| Wingspan||10.52 m||35 ft 6 in|
| Length||13.54 m||44 ft 5 in|
| Height||3.73 m||12 ft 3 in|
| Ceiling||15240 m||50000 ft|
| Range||966 km||600 miles|
| ARMAMENT||2 x 20mm cannon, 907kg of weapons on external hardpoints|
|Ron Kolstad, 15.11.2011|
I reported to VT-21 at Kingsville, TX in Dec of 1966 straight out of boot camp. Worked as a plane captain, tire changer and then AE shop. Saw the first snow in Kingsville in 26 years in 1967. Only us Minnesotan's dared to drive! Also went through hurricane Beulah which took out every car window in the parking lot when the gravel blew off the roof. Left VT-21 in Dec of 1968 for VF-103 NAS Oceana, Va. Beach, Va. F-9's to F-4J's
|Dick Burke, 30.10.2011|
VF 32 was 1st sqdn to get the Cougar We deployed on a 'round the world cruise Sept. '53 to Sept.'54 Mayport, Fla. USS Tarawa CVA 40, straight deck.Very exiting! Shortly after returning we received the new F9F8.A beauty!
|Ray Altmann, 13.10.2011|
Does anyone know who supplied brake systems for F9F in the early 50s? We need info to help a Vet.
|Jim Ostergren, 01.10.2011|
I too am a lover of the F9F-8T. I originally flew the -8T as an instructor in FAWTUPAC at North Island refreshing returning deployed pilots the latest in the FAA, vertical gyro usage doing the loft maneuver and spacial disorientation recovery. School was transferred to VF-121 as part of the new RAG training concept at Miramar. Flew as CAG Dale's driver. Later flew as instructor in VT-25, Chase Fld. Great memories in a great airplane.
|Dick Cook, 29.09.2011|
I was in the Navy during the Korean War and we started out with F4U Corsairs then F9F Panthers and finally F9F Cougars. In my opinion they were all great Aircraft and helped us immensly to win the war, so to speak. Was sationed at Miramar Naval Base in San Diego Cal when ashore and on Carriers for half the year when at Sea.I'll say it again we did have great Aircraft.
|Tom Riddel, 30.07.2011|
I waqs the "pool" reporter for the Radio-TV area around Barksdale AFB, when I rode the rear seat. My pilot, learning I was a private pilot, allowed me to fly for a few minutes. I did a chandelle and then went inverted and pulled back on the stick, and the energy when I pulled out absolutelly scared me. I did not black out, but the hour I spent with the Blue Angels is still an exerience I live over and over now in my "golden years". Thank you, U.S. Navy for the chance to fly in 1968, at the 50th Anniversary of Barksdale AFB. May God bless our current force!
|Jeff Schirle, 26.05.2011|
I, too, was at NAS Kingsville with Holden from 1968-70 at VT-23. I worked in ground support, driving tow tractors, NC-5 jet starters, and the "Stud Mobile" van that took instructors and student pilots out to the line. I was able to fly back seat through the OMIAS program whenever there was an open seat and a willing instructor. What a ride! Got to ride along on gunnery & bomb training runs, tactgical dog-fights, navigation hops, and formation flying training. I learned early on to not eat much before going out with Lt. Alvarez...he loved hearing me groaning back there, and that I never asked him to back off.
|Steve Holden, 24.05.2011|
I was at NAS Kingsville Feb. 68- Oct. 70 in VT-23.
Can't remember the exact date, but somewhere toward the end of this time we went to the TA-4J, but the old F-9s were always my favorites. Tear 'em down, fix 'em and put 'em back together in a heartbeat. Probably couldn't crawl down the intake with the engine running like I used to do, but I'll never forget it. Whole lot more stories than I can tell here, but I'll bet all of you do, too.
|Hank Davis, 11.05.2011|
I was the flight surgeon for VF-126 at Miramar 1966-67, when we were still flying the TF-9J. I taught Spatial disorientation Avoidance and was fortunate enough to be augmented to the Front seat and logged quite a few flights. Cdr Russ Mc Junkin was the Skipper and monitored my first cross country to Beale AFB in CA and we sent pheasant hunting with my relatives. We used to make 'Crab runs to Whidbey IS to load the nose with 10# boxes of King Crab, then costing $5 per box. Life was good. Handle " Quack".
|Darrell Oberlies, 15.03.2011|
I graduated from Avionics school in 1962 and was assigned to VMT-2 at MCAF El Toro. We had 12 to 18 TF9J's. Very basic avionics systems, UHF radio, Tacan, IFF/SIF, compass and gyro.
Deployed to Yuma, and Litchfield Park for war games.
|Carl Newman, 07.03.2011|
I flew the TF-9J at NAS Chase in 1970. I remember when it got above about 95 degrees, we stopped flying because the "Lead Sled" was too under-powered to fly in hot humid weather. The article above doesn't mention this trainer version or the engine, but it definitely had a Westinghouse centrifugal flow engine which could take an eagle in the intake and not have much effect on the 6900 pound thrust engine. It wasn't the safest plane to fly. In the 6 months I flew it, the base lost at least 4 planes that I remember, three were fatal - one my classmate and one a friend I had dinner with the night before.
|Donald Allen, 05.03.2011|
We had Cougars......VF-144 Miramar
Chase Field and the supersonic F-9 Great fun and a v good instructou ? Forgot his name. No ship to land on so-Shame on me, I went from USMC to USNR. Last one ever to do this and the corps was not happy! Off to GMGRU-1 at Barbers Pt. Hawaii. F9-5 and FJ-3/4s. More fun.
|Charlie Tannehill, 14.01.2011|
I was a sim tech (TD2) attached to VF126 at NAS Miramar in 1965 to 1968 and was fortunate enough to fly back seat. The purpose of this was to train F4 crews for Viet Nam. I was even fortunate enough to get some stick time in the back seat to and from the exercise area. One time, on the way back to Miramar, I was flying back seat and noticed a lot of right wing down trim required. I found I had an F8 flying just underneath our starboard wing tip. Was a great opportunity. Can't do that now of course unless you are assigned to a flying billet.
|leroy McVay, 12.01.2011|
1953 First swept wing F9F came into North Island. I was posted as armed guard with loaded 45. Told only people with security card could come near the plane. Piolet left and returned shortly with an Admiral. I did n ormal challange and asked to see their cards. Seems the Admiral didn't have his so I told him he could not approch the plane. As he was getting into his car to go back to his office I realized maybe that wasn't the right way to handle it. Wrong! Got an attaboy for standin g my mpost as ordered.
|Fred Kaler, 06.01.2011|
Great airplane. I started at NAAS Chase field, Beeville, TX as an E3 airman in an engine check crew. I was there from 1958-1961. Finished up there as a crew leader ADJ2. I loved taking that F9 apart, inspecting, and then running it up. I will never forget crawling down the intake with a small allen wrench to set the fuel pumps to 99% in emergency with the engine at idle. I am now 75 yrs old. Anybody out there remember me?
|Ed Mattocks, 28.12.2010|
I was a plane captain at Kingsville '58 and later went to the P/P shop. Also worked on the "bowser" crew awhile. Washed and polished a lot of F-9's. Darned blow-in doors would get your "boys" if your weren't careful crawling over the spine.
|Elmer (Al) Mingle, 22.12.2010|
AE2,VA36 ATTACK, we had 14,F9F-8 and 2 trainers.great aircraft. taxied many to compus row to set the mag. compuses,back in 1957,I am now 76 years old.
|Elmer Cranton, 16.12.2010|
Flew this bird as a weekend warrior while attending premed on the GI bill at the University of Colorado in 1957-1959 era. Flew out of NAS Denver (old Henderson Field). On a hot summer day it took all of 10,000 feeet to get into the air and still blew dust off the prairie for a few miles before starting to climb. Noseed over straight down at 40,000 feet, full throttle and after a bit the mach needle bounced through 1.0, shaking and shuddering. We did our summer 2 week active duty at Miramar before it bacame the Top Gun school. Underpowered but fun to fly.
|ROBERT G HOWARD, 03.11.2010|
I WAS PART OF THE RESCUE TEAM THAT PICKED UP TWO MARINE
PILOTS SHOT DOWN IN TH A'SHAU VALLEY..CHRISTMAS 1967
CALL SIGN "FUR BRITCHES.." MAJOR RG HOWARD USAF RET
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