Grumman G-164 "Ag-Cat" as "Anti-Insect Weapon System" (1959)

Stargazer

ACCESS: USAP
Senior Member
Joined
25 June 2009
Messages
13,765
Reaction score
3,019
A military version of the Grumman G-164 Ag-Cat?! An "Anti-Insect Weapon System"?? You've gotta be kiddin' me!

And indeed, the only photo I had of this would-be project was captioned as "a humorous proposal to the Air Force calling for a military version of the G-164 as an anti-insect weapon system"...

But then I happened on the entire set of photos for the same model, and it made me wonder:
  1. Was it customary for industry companies to practice humor with their DoD customers?
  2. Would Grumman have made the effort to actually build and paint such a model when a simple picture could have done the trick?
  3. Would a military version really be incongruous, or are there be instances when such an aircraft could be required?
The use of the term "weapon system" does make one think of a joke alright. But I'm not so sure the military would have been prone to humor from its contractors... Possibly an inside joke at Grumman? That would be more plausible to me... As to the possibility of a military use for the Ag-Cat, this 1959 proposal came right after the Korean war. Perhaps by then the U.S.A.F. had acquired some solid experience of the difficulty to operate in equatorial areas infested by mosquitoes and such?

Although there is a good chance that the model was a joke, I'd be glad to hear opinions on those hypotheses.

(photos from the Cradle of Aviation Museum at the New York Heritage Digital Collections)
 

Attachments

  • 'humorous proposal'.png
    'humorous proposal'.png
    466.1 KB · Views: 21
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (1).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (1).jpg
    42.6 KB · Views: 18
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (2).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (2).jpg
    37.3 KB · Views: 17
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (3).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (3).jpg
    33.5 KB · Views: 19
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (4).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (4).jpg
    36.4 KB · Views: 20
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (5).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (5).jpg
    40.2 KB · Views: 21
  • Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (6).jpg
    Anti-Insect Weapon System US Air Force (6).jpg
    41.3 KB · Views: 24
A military version of the Grumman G-164 Ag-Cat?! An "Anti-Insect Weapon System"?? You've gotta be kiddin' me!

And indeed, the only photo I had of this would-be project was captioned as "a humorous proposal to the Air Force calling for a military version of the G-164 as an anti-insect weapon system"...

But then I happened on the entire set of photos for the same model, and it made me wonder:
  1. Was it customary for industry companies to practice humor with their DoD customers?
  2. Would Grumman have made the effort to actually build and paint such a model when a simple picture could have done the trick?
  3. Would a military version really be incongruous, or are there be instances when such an aircraft could be required?
The use of the term "weapon system" does make one think of a joke alright. But I'm not so sure the military would have been prone to humor from its contractors... Possibly an inside joke at Grumman? That would be more plausible to me... As to the possibility of a military use for the Ag-Cat, this 1959 proposal came right after the Korean war. Perhaps by then the U.S.A.F. had acquired some solid experience of the difficulty to operate in equatorial areas infested by mosquitoes and such?

Although there is a good chance that the model was a joke, I'd be glad to hear opinions on those hypotheses.

(photos from the Cradle of Aviation Museum at the New York Heritage Digital Collections)
 

Similar threads

Back
Top Bottom