Bearhawk Launches Two-Seat Taildragger

While the first Bearhawk Companion has not been built yet, its exterior will be nearly identical to this 4-Place. Bearhawk Aircraft

Austin, Texas-based Bearhawk Aircraft has launched a new taildragger kit, named the Companion. Unlike many taildragger designs, the Bearhawk Companion features a side-by-side seating arrangement, making for a more social flying experience. The configuration also provides both occupants of the airplane a full view of the instrument panel and improved forward visibility through the windshield compared with tandem-configured airplanes.

Bearhawk’s owner Mark Goldberg said a request from a customer in Massachusetts spurred the final decision to go ahead with the design, which had been in the making for a while. The customer was choosing between Bearhawk’s two-seat Patrol and the 4-Place model, but ultimately he wanted something in between. “Since most of my flying is local, or medium distance cross-country with a single passenger, the new Companion is a perfect fit,” he said.

Like Bearhawk’s other models, the Companion will feature a steel-tube fuselage structure and flush-riveted aluminum wings. Max gross weight is expected to be 2,200 pounds and the airplane will be capable of carrying at least 220 pounds in the baggage area. Several engine options will be available, ranging from 150 to 210 horsepower. With a lot of the design work already complete, the first kit is expected to ship in October. Pricing runs $44,000 for the full Companion Quick Build kit. To get one flying would cost from $70,000 (with an overhauled Lycoming O-360 with a fixed pitch prop) to $90,000 (including a new engine with a constant speed prop).

Along with the Patrol and 4-Place models, Bearhawk offers a tandem-configured two-seat LSA kit. All of Bearhawk’s airplanes are designed by Bob Barrows, who began designing these taildraggers in the early 1990s as a replacement for his Cessna 170.

Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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