Hi! I'm Dane Carlson, and welcome to the Business Opportunities Weblog. I've been publishing this website, by myself, and sometimes with the help of others for over twelve years now. You'll notice two things about this site right away:
Bouncing cartoon-fat arctic tires across a clover-covered grass runway near Brandon, pilot Wes Hebert gunned the Piper Super Cub 18′s 160-horsepower engine, pulled back on the stick and lifted effortlessly into the air at a harsh, 50-degree angle of attack.
“That was about 100 feet, I’d guess,” Mark Erickson, owner of Dakota Cub Aircraft, said of the length of grass Hebert needed to get the blue-and-white two-seater airborne. “I can get any of these airplanes off the ground in the length of my building. That’s 105 feet.”
Dakota Cub manufactures Federal Aviation Administration-approved replacement parts for Piper aircraft, the only company in the state that can make that claim. The six-person operation also received its FAA certification to sell its Super 18-180 kit aircraft to civilian pilots.
But what makes Erickson’s aircraft business soar is his extended slotted wing design, a replacement part that allows Piper aircraft to take off and land at slower speeds and in shorter distances.
“Where most of these planes take off, whether it’s a gravel bar in a river or a community airfield, there’s one thing that is at the end of that runway – trees,” Erickson said. “These planes will climb right off the ground at a 50-degree angle, no problem. It’s really quite phenomenal what this slotted wing can do.”
Photo from Dakota Cub Aircraft