N728DC received its “Special Airworthiness Certificate” on August 5th, 2008. After 13 years of building, model number 001 was now approved by the FAA for flight tests. The airplane is a replica of the famous Piper PA-14 Family Cruiser in which only 238 were made between May 1948 and September 1949. There are now less than 100 PA-14s still flying and most of them are in Alaska serving as Bush Planes. The Family Cruiser is often described as a four place Super Cub with side by side seating and a larger useful load. The Wag-Aero company of Lyons, Wisconsin who manufacture and sells numerous Piper Cub PMA parts (Parts Manufacturing Authorization) also developed and sold an extensive set of plans and various material kits to build a PA-14 Replica as an “Experimental Aircraft” which they renamed as the “SPORTSMAN 2+2”.
I have been a pilot since my early twenties but not until I was 44 and earned my Seaplane rating did I realize the Fun and Joy of flying a Piper Cub. In August 1995 my journey began when I purchased a set of Wag Aero SPORTSMAN 2+2 plans to build my “Perfect Piper” and that’s what this FLIGHT bLOG is all about. N728DC took 13 years to build and had it’s maiden flight on September 13th 2008 and I have several photos and stories of the build experience that I would like to share. But the fun does not end there. That’s because the flight test program starts up and when you find out what works and what doesn’t! My FLIGHT bLOG will also include various flight test videos and photos and stories about various repairs and adjustments made during the flight test period.
Please bear in mind that I am not an Aeronautical Engineer or a Certified Airframe and Powerplant Mechanic. The FAA allows amateur builders such as me to construct their own Homebuilt Airplanes under the “Experimental” category. I created my FLIGHT bLOG for entertainment purposes only and no information shown herein should be used on how to build, repair or fly other aircraft.
My Flight bLog is dedicated to my family – Diane, Nick and Tony who me helped me in so many ways to complete this project.
Sincerely, Chuck Helmholdt