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Wed, Oct 20, 2010

American Legend Adds Another Grand Champion Award To Its Restoration Roster

Classic Airplane Was Built In 1947

American Legend Aircraft Company announced Monday that one of its customers is the recipient of the 2010 Grand Champion Award at Sentimental Journey Fly-In for the company's work on restoring a classic Piper J3 Cub. The 63-year-old aircraft was originally manufactured in Ponca City, Oklahoma, in 1947.

Edmund Katzen and Tim Dahlen, co-owners of the 1947 Piper J3C-65 Cub, were recognized as Grand Champion at the 25th Annual Sentimental Journey to Cub Haven Fly-In awards banquet held on June 19, 2010, at William T. Piper Memorial Airport in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. The awards recognize owners for their aircraft's condition being scored on workmanship, appearance, and authenticity. Grand Champion is the highest honor given at Sentimental Journey Fly-In. For the complete award winners list click here.

Katzen and Dahlen purchased the Piper J3 Cub in 2007, adding it to their collection of vintage aircraft, including five biplanes, an amphibian, a helicopter, an aerobatic plane, plus two antique projects. The formerly retired J3C-65 Cub was purchased from a collector of aviation related items in Long Island, New York. The plane had last flown in 1968. FAA records show it to have had 17 owners in 21 years. The Cub served primarily as a trainer and a club-operated aircraft. According to Katzen, "It led a hard life and no doubt it was badly in need of a rebuild in 1968. When it was stored, all openings were sealed with screening to keep out mice, and a bag of charcoal occupied rear seat, who knows why? Interestingly, the old cotton fabric still punched in the green."

1947 was the last year of J3 production, although variations including the Legend Cub and Classic J3 by American Legend are still being manufactured today. Nearly 20,000 J3s were built by Piper since its inception in 1938. Upon completion of its restoration, the award-winning Cub made its maiden 1,200-mile journey to Palm Beach, Florida. Months later the Cub flew another 1,200 mile trip from Florida to Long Island, New York, where the plane is now based.

The 2010 recognition follows a Grand Champion Gold Lindy awarded at EAA AirVenture 2008 for work on another customer-owned 1946 Piper J3C-65 Cub. American Legend Aircraft Company founder Darin Hart received an EAA Lindy Award in 1991 for his restoration work on a 1946 Piper J3C-65 Cub. Hart also owns Alpha Omega Jet Services, a company involved with the fabrication of cabinetry and seating on business and VIP aircraft.

Kurt Sehnert, general manager at American Legend commented, "We have been doing aircraft builds and restorations for over five years, on some 200 aircraft, actually much longer when you consider the experience of our personnel. We often get requests for recovering and refurbishing of various components. I always tell our customers that no matter what part of the job is involved, at American Legend our work is always grand champion quality. From the paint to the smallest button, we do things one way and that means award-winning quality at every step even if you don't restore the complete plane."

American Legend Aircraft Company manufacturers the sport certified Legend Cub and Legend AmphibCub, and the Texas Sport kit-an amateur-built aircraft based on the Legend Cub. The company's Restoration Services division performs work on most tube-and-fabric aircraft, and manufactures parts to original manufacturer's specifications. The Legend Cub and Texas Sport are designed for sport, recreation and training.



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