Newsletter of American Legend Aircraft Company


NEWS Virginia Legend Cub Flyers Unite

A growing group of pilot/owners in Virginia share a common interest—they all fly Legend Cubs. In March 2016, Larry Setti was announced a new member following his purchase of a factory renewed AL3 from its original owner. At that time the group comprised of four others. Bill Fosdick, Charlie Davis, Chuck Boyd, and Ralph Kew. Now they are six.

Legend Cub
Six Legend Cubs on the ramp in Warrenton (Midland), Virginia with their pilot/owners.

Setti commented, “I owned a J-3 Cub for over 20 years. I decided to go with a Legend Cub for the ease of flight, reliability and performance.” Kew added, “Our group is possibly the largest concentration of Legends in the USA.”

Jose Soncini is the newest addition. He's a retired World Bank senior officer from Washington D.C. who got his pilot’s license in Manassas, Virginia in 1968. Soncini has owned 14 different aircraft including acrobatic and taildragger models. He now has over 5,000 hours of flight time and is licensed both in Argentina and the U.S. with commercial, multi-engine and instrument ratings. Soncini has flown extensively through South America and the Caribbean and has ferried aircraft to Argentina, his native country.

Soncini always wanted to own a Piper Cub but did not like having to fly from the rear seat. Along came the Legend Cub with its ability to fly solo from the front seat. Soncini also relished in its modem avionics, specifically a Dynon FlightDEK-D180 state-of-the-art EFIS. Soncini says, “There’s nothing like flying low and slow with both doors open and the smell of flowers in the springtime.”

Legend Cub
A covey of Legend Cubs gather often at Warrenton-Fauquier Airport for flying and fellowship.

Two-time Legend owner Bill Fosdick chimed in, “After four wondrous years of flying our AL3, my wife Linda and I decided it was time to upgrade to a Super Legend AL18. Not because we needed to upgrade; it was more of a want.

“Our journey started almost six years ago when we began our search to upgrade from a flying boat/hull amphibian to a more robust float plane. We decided on a Super Cub and research brought us to our manufacturer of choice, American Legend Aircraft Company. The only glitch was the company hadn’t started building the Super Legend yet and were only offering the AL3 version.

“We purchased a new AL3 on floats and flew it for four years from our home on Lake Anna, Virginia to many places in the U.S. as well as the Bahamas. It was a great airplane but along came the Super Legend. So we decided to sell the AL3 in order to finance our dream purchase. We ordered the Super Legend HP with a 180 hp Titan engine and Legend Floats. We took delivery a year ago and have accumulated almost 100 hours on it,” Fosdick concluded.

Charlie Davis said of his reasons for buying a Legend Cub, “I retired after 39 years of working in the aircraft maintenance and manufacturing fields. When the Light Sport Rule became effective I ordered American Legend Cub N58388 and took delivery of it in March of 2006. It’s an AL3-100, powered by a Continental Motors O-200, and was 26th off the production line. It currently has 542 hours on it, is well constructed, and has been free of any major problems. I love the appearance of the Cub; and it’s great fun to fly.”

When asked about his choice of the Legend Cub, Chuck Boyd responded, “I’m a farm boy from Iowa that has made it here so far....” He doesn’t like to talk about his accomplishments, which are numerous, and he gets hot if you call him General. “Call me Chuck,” he says. Nevertheless, he painted his Legend Cub in semi-military regalia. It’s got an Air Force star and bars insignia in combination with a Cub lightning bolt.

Legend Cub
A Super Legend HP painted in a combination of military and J-3 Cub regalia.

Charles (Chuck) Boyd is a retired four-star general of the United States Air Force and a highly decorated combat pilot who served in Vietnam. He also happens to be the only Vietnam War prisoner to reach the four-star rank.

Boyd entered the United States Air Force in April 1959 and was initially commissioned as a second lieutenant through the aviation cadet program in July 1960. He would go on to serve in a variety of assignments in Europe, the Pacific, and the U.S. A command pilot, with over 2,400 flight hours, he flew F-100s and F-105s in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. Boyd was shot down in April 1966. For seven years he was held prisoner at the Hoa Lo Prison in North Vietnam, infamously known as the Hanoi Hilton.

Following his retirement from the Air Force in 1995, Boyd has remained active in the national security realm serving as executive director of the U.S. Commission on National Security. He was an advisor to Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the House. Other posts include program director of the Council on Foreign Relations, president of Business Executives for National Security and member of the guiding coalition of the Project on National Security Reform. Today, he’s chairman of the Center for the National Interest, a public policy think tank in Washington, D.C.

In addition to a Legend Cub, Boyd also flies a T-34 Mentor, the same plane he flew in pilot training. “It’s part of my soul. It’s who I am,” Boyd said. “I could always imagine the freedom, the release of gravity to fly like a bird, even though I hadn’t actually flown an airplane myself until I got into Air Force pilot training. But somehow that picture emerged and developed in my mind before I actually flew an airplane.”

Boyd continued, “When I did fly, it pretty much reinforced what I had imagined, except it had a greater reality to it. There was a sense of power, freedom, maneuvering and liberty. To this day, I have found nothing else in life that scratches that particular itch.”

Why a Legend Cub – #6 and Counting

“I currently also own a 1946 Taylorcraft BC-12-D which competes for flying time with the Legend Cub. Both taildraggers are great performers, each one in their own niche,” said Ralph Kew. “But with the Legend, it was love at first sight.

Legend Cub
A showcase of Legend Cubs all based in historic Warrenton, Virginia.

“My first encounter with a Legend Cub was a few years ago at the Warrenton-Fauquier Airport. Charlie Davis, our Legend Cub Commander, was taxiing his Legend Cub after an afternoon flight. I followed him to his hangar, just around the corner from mine, to admire his AL3. Charlie gave me a tour of his plane as well as some brochures and information from American Legend Aircraft Company.

“A few weeks later, I got a ride with Charlie, and that did it. What a plane, what visibility. It flew smooth with sharp and responsive controls. I was hooked, but the price was out of reach at the time.

“Months went by, even a few years as I recall. Always on the lookout until finally one day, opportunity knocked and there it was, the chance of a lifetime to acquire a newly restored 2006 AL3. It had a small fight on landing with a ‘badger hole’ in south Texas… and it lost. Darin Hart, owner of American Legend Aircraft Company, and his team did a great job restoring the plane to its original factory condition, ‘better-than-new’ as they put it.

“Down payment went out in December 2015 and final payment a few months later. Chuck Tippet—a Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame and Flying Circus performer—and I flew to Dallas in March 2016. We drove to the factory where we got a tour and they showed us the plane in detail. The next morning we left Sulphur Springs, Texas for Warrenton, Virginia. Two full days of just plain flying enjoyment.

Legend Cub
A cluster of six Legend Cubs, possibly the largest concentration of Legends in the USA.

“The plane has performed like no other. It’s been nine months and some 40-plus hours, including a trip to Oshkosh 2016. The Legend Cub is built like a tank and with the extra cabin width, it is very comfortable.”

Photos by Tim Loehrke,

For more information on the Legend Cub, visit or call 903-885-7000.

NEWS Power Up Front and Prowess In The Panel

When exploring options in the Legend Cub lineup it can be easy to overlook their significance. This is an airplane that, in the final assessment, is loved wholly for the simple pleasure of flying it. For decades flying a Cub has been a problem solved. To enhance it further might seem inconsequential. The moment already speaks, "it doesn't get any better than this."

Legend Cub
Flying the Legend Cub for the primary purpose of pleasure.

Nevertheless, the Legend Cub from American Legend Aircraft Company continues to improve with each passing moment. Since its introduction, the now standard inclusions of a wider cabin, electrical system and double doors are amended with gentle strokes of progress. The enduring Legend Cub keeps improving with age. Two reasons stand out.

First Comes Power

From the outset, each Legend Cub has been keen on power playing a part in both its personality and a role in its versatility. By continually increasing the Legend Cub's power the company has given literal meaning to having an engine up front that leaves the dust behind.

In fact, today's Legend Cubs offer three powerful engines, notably from the leading names in general aviation: Continental Motors, Lycoming and Titan (now a part of Continental Motors).

Legend Cub
Simplistic yet stunning, the Super Legend sports a 180 hp Titan engine and Cato propeller.

With so much power up front, a Legend Cub personifies short takeoffs. As a leader in STOL performance, the Legend Cub is light footed and makes short work of getting airborne. From an aggressive 100+ horsepower buck to an audacious 180 horsepower romp, the Legend Cub converts power into pleasure.

Then Comes Prowess

The second significant addition to the Legend Cub, depending on your point of view, is its glass panel. While clearly not a function of simple flying pleasure, it is in simple terms a collection of "smart" objects. From the pilot's perspective, a glass panel rounds out the Legend Cub flying experience. With pun intended, some pilots leave in a few round instruments (and for a variety of good reasons).

As a plane, the Cub has never really needed instruments for flying. So a glass paneled Cub may seem the archetype of counterintuitive. Yet at the press of a button today's advanced Legend Cub instrument panel options broadly expand a pilot's navigation and communications capabilities. In an all digital world even the analog Cub's time capsule is getting shattered.

Legend Cub
A Legend Cub glass panel with Garmin aera 796 MFD for 3D navigation and EFB capability.

Smart panel options in the Legend Cub range from the Garmin G3X to the Dynon SkyView. It's also possible to equip with an autopilot and just as easily a full-featured ADS-B for traffic, weather and flight information services. At their fingertips Legend Cub pilots can hand off their workload and unfetter the flying experience.

Far from being a comprehensive list, power and panel are complemented by a host of other options. The new breed of Legend Cubs come with a Catto composite propeller; it's lightweight and delivers high performance. Brighter LED lighting in the Legend Cub's leading edges and wingtips will help a pilot see all the while consuming less power. Upsized wheels will allow Legend Cubs to tread on and off a greater variety of Earth's surfaces. Meanwhile, bungee seats upholstered in ultraleather make the seat of your pants less of a pain.

Legend Cub
The Legend Cub excels at takeoff, climb and pleasure.

While there are a multitude of ways to augment the experience of a Legend Cub, the best option of all is getting into one and flying. Following your first exhilarating pleasure flight in a new Legend Cub will be the best time ever to custom create the Cub you've always wanted.

Call today for more information on Legend Cub options, and upgrades, at 903-885-7000, or email us at

LEARNING That Looks About Right

The combination of flying by the seat of your pants with your gaze out the windscreen was the original prescription for a dream brought to life by the Wright Brothers and other great masterminds of flight. They transformed a desire to fly into human reality. Man soon commoditized the notion of flying and began selling it for the pleasure that it was.

Legend Cub
A Legend Cub brings to life the ethereal qualities of flying by the seat of your pants.

Still today the technique of flying by the seat of your pants while gazing out the windscreen is as valid a notion as ever. It is in fact the hallmark of VFR flying. Under visual flight rules, one flies with full awareness of the sensations of sight, sound and touch. Flying in this manner characterizes the experienced pilot, one who instinctively knows when "that looks about right."

Visual Flight Rules by Definition

VFR flying is dependent on weather and published minimums are specific. In their most basic category, daytime class G airspace, the rules state:

  • Clear of clouds 500 feet below, 1,000 feet above, and 2,000 feet horizontal with at least one statute mile visibility.

Low flying rules in the U.S. are even more specifically defined, as with the following 500-ft / 1000-ft rules:

  • An aircraft must maintain an altitude of 500 feet above the surface, except over open water or sparsely populated areas. In those cases, the aircraft may not be operated closer than 500 feet to any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure.
  • An aircraft must maintain an altitude of 1,000 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal radius of 2,000 feet of the aircraft over any congested area of a city, town, or settlement, or over any open air assembly of persons.

Visual Flight Rules in Theory

One might describe VFR flying in another way: That Looks About Right. So coined by pilot, author and educator John King, "TLAR is a skill that every pilot should possess. It becomes especially important when the normal resources used for flight are in short supply."

King goes on to say that learning to fly to the TLAR standard can be achieved and that you'll be a better pilot for it. TLAR's simple rules include:

  • Pay special attention to what 1,000 feet AGL looks like out the window—VFR Rules
  • Focus on pitch attitude when at the proper approach speed and configuration—SIGHT
  • Pay attention to the sound of engine power on final approach—SOUND
  • Keep the airplane yawed into relative wind with awareness to side forces—TOUCH

King suggests when practicing, with an instructor, it's easy to test yourself. "Fly TLAR in the pattern with the altimeter, airspeed indicator and other instruments [selectively] covered up."

Legend Cub
In a Legend Cub instrument landings are seldom the norm—rather sight, sound and touch.

TLAR skills will give a pilot the confidence to quickly create and execute an alternative plan when needed. Maintaining TLAR skills is important and a Legend Cub can be the ultimate TLAR learning device.

To read the full article by John King, visit

For more information on learning to fly, keeping in mind that you are always learning, visit or call 903-885-7000, to learn more about the Legend Cub.

NEWS Legend Aircraft Magazine, Download Your FREE Copy Now

Legend Magazine - SubscribeThe completely revised Legend Aircraft Magazine is in its second printing. Inside, there's knowledgeable advice on choosing the right aircraft, tailwheel training tips, and everything one would expect when buying or building their very own Legend Cub.

Legend Aircraft Magazine, from American Legend Aircraft Company—the premier producer of the finest American-manufactured sport aircraft available today—is a must-read for anyone who appreciates flying for pleasure and going places beyond.

To request your complimentary printed copy of Legend Aircraft Magazine, please visit or call 903-885-7000. View Legend Aircraft Magazine online or download the PDF.

EVENTS Plan to Experience the Legend Cub Today

At the factory... Sulphur Springs Municipal Airport - KSLR, Sulphur Springs, Texas

Sun 'n Fun Fly In in Lakeland, Florida - April 4–9, 2017

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh in Oshkosh, Wisconsin - July 24–30, 2017

See the Legend Cub and Super Legend at these and other great events in 2017. Participation is subject to change. Call 903-885-7000 to confirm an appointment or to arrange a demo flight.

Precious Cub jewelry now available:

Rachel's Jewelry - Legend Cub

Protect your Legend Cub with a custom cover:

Legend Cub Custom Covers

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American Legend Cub - Logo & Gift Items
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1810 Piper Lane, Sulphur Springs, TX 75482
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