Legend Cub turns out to be all wet
|Kerry Craig | News-Telegram Assistant Editor|
May 6, 2005 - While it is not unusual to see airplanes landing or taking off from Sulphur Springs Airport, the bright yellow airplane taking off from and landing on the surface of Lake Sulphur Springs attracted more than a little attention this week.
Manufactured at Sulphur Springs Airport by Legend Aircraft Company, Legend Cub No. 2 began flying this week with floats attached, one of the orginal goals of its designers.
The first amphibious flight took off Sunday, and more flights were made Monday from the lake at the northern boundary of the airport. Those first flights proved the new airplane would meet all design expectations.
"Everything we have worked for is what we flew today," said Tim Elliott, one of the founders of the new airplane company. "This airplane was designed to be rugged, to go fly fun places, and one of those fun places happens to be water."
The first floats to be used on the Legend Cub restrict the airplane to landing and taking off from water. A new type of float that also utilizes wheels is being specifically crafted for the Cub by a firm in Czechoslovakia and will enable the airplane to land on the water, then taxi up a boat ramp onto dry ground.
"You can actually taxi it down the ramp, into the water and pull the wheels up and go float flying," Elliott said.
The first flights required the airplane to be hauled to the lake and launched from a trailer, not unlike a conventional boat trailer, and Elliott said he hopes the city would help with construction of a ramp into Lake Sulphur Springs.
"The city has been super receptive to that, and we are looking forward to getting people into Sulphur Spring through a sea-plane base," he said. "We are actually going to work with TxDoT Aviation to help get an engineer to set it up as a sea-plane base ... in fact, one of the few sea-plane bases in Northeast Texas."
Maxwell said he and several city department managers were at the airport Monday to see the Cub in floats configuration and said the city would be seeking a place to add a sea plane ramp.
"We were at the airport Monday looking at the most likely location for a ramp," the city manager said. "We would like to encourage this business to grow and develop."
Tim Elliott said he was hopeful of being able to take the Legend Cub to other lakes in the area, as well.
"We cannot wait to not just get out of this lake, but go to other lakes around us, hopefully real soon," he said.
The company recently returned from a major aviation event in Florida with a large number of orders for new airplanes along with several awards and recognition for Legend Cub.