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René Hieronymus
23 articles

Grumman F9F-3 Panther with Emerson turret BuNo.122562 Patuxent River 1953 1:72

March 26, 2017 · in Uncategorized · · 11 · 2.1K

Hi there
well my job is keeping me busy and due to this I cannot spend that much time with other work, so I hope you'll understand that I reserve my precious free time for building models. Fortunately I still have some couple of finished articles in my files and if time allows I will post some of them here from time to time.

I first saw a photo of this one of a kind aircraft a couple of years ago and as you can imagine, I was really interested in this strange and exotic machine. Short time later someone posted a photo of this one again and as a result I immediately ordered the Sharkit to recreate this aircraft.

I received the conversion kit within a few days and it looked quite good to me. The kit consists of 3 resin parts, the nose cone and a little plug which goes inside the nose and the gunsight for the cockpit. Additional 4 brass barrels for the machine gun are provided. To whole affair looks be fairly easy to build and shouldn't take much time. They recommend the Panther kit in 1:72 for starters.

So far so good but as soon as I got the kit unpacked I decided to convert the conversion to be fully workable. Actually this was easy done. I drilled a large whole inside the plug-part and inserted a small piece of cylindrical hard wood. In this I drilled 4 tiny holes, perhaps the hardest part was to make sure all those holes were perfectly aligned. The nose cone received another axle and a washer plate at the end, Finally all I had to do was to put the whole thing together and attach it to the nose of my meanwhile finished HB Panther which went together beautiful and without a hitch.
Some color, some decals and here it is, a fine model of the one and only Grumman Panther with a fully operational (well at least its rotating and traversing) Emerson turret.

I can only recommend both, the HB Panther as well as the Sharkit conversion for this unusual aircraft.


Reader reactions:
8  Awesome

17 additional images. Click to enlarge.

11 responses

  1. Don't think I've ever seen one of these, If I understand correctly from your photo montage, the guns are able to traverse in all directions as the nose cone actually revolves? I'm betting this modification didn't "catch on" due to the difficulties encountered trying to actually HIT something. 🙁
    The build itself turned out quite well - a nice addition to any collection. 🙂

  2. Rene, thanks for doing and posting this one of a kind aircraft. I remember seeing the photo of this, and thinking "What?" But, the 50s were this period, looking back, where they'd try anything, at least once. All sorts of wierd and wonderful and truly awful contraptions were flying around. This on looks like it could fling some lead around to the detriment of whatever the target was.

    I'm reminded of the Sgt. York gun system, which was finally stopped due to a demonstration. The attendees were in bleachers, waiting for the show to begin, and the first thing the gun did- not on the program- was to whirl around from facing downrange and take aim on the audience. All by itself. NIce little Dalek moment.

  3. Very nice conversion neatly done. Good to see that one of a kind Panther modeled.

  4. Very nice! I also have seen pics of this, and you have to ask "what were they thinking?!" Trying to sustain a winning position in a dog fight while also trying to whirl the guns around in multiple dimensions... sure bet to lose that one!

  5. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :
    Very nice work on that Panther René , and the fact that this has the Emerson system makes it MUCH more valuable. In my view ... a piece of NAVAL AVIATION history.
    Thank you for sharing this one René .

  6. Nice work

  7. Nicely done Rene.

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