CubCrafters Delivers 1,000th Aircraft

This week, the Yakima, Washington-based builder of backcountry aircraft reached a major milestone: delivery of its 1,000th new production aircraft.

CubCrafters’ 1,000th new production aircraft is painted in red and yellow firefighting livery in tribute to the Bridger Aerospace fleet. [Courtesy: CubCrafters]

This week, CubCrafters, the Yakima, Washington-based builder of backcountry aircraft, reached a major milestone: delivery of its 1,000th new production aircraft.

According to CubCrafters, on December 19 the Part 23-certified CC19-215 XCub was handed over to Tim Sheehy, CEO of Bridger Aerospace in Bozeman, Montana.

The landmark aircraft is painted in red and yellow firefighting livery, the paint scheme itself a tribute to the Bridger Aerospace fleet of Canadair CL-415 “Super Scooper” water bomber aircraft. Sheehy, who founded Bridger Aerospace in 2014, is an active pilot, retired Navy SEAL, and Republican candidate in the 2024 Montana primary for the U.S. Senate.

“Bridger Aerospace and CubCrafters have a relationship going back to 2016 when we worked together on a project for the U.S. military," said Sheehy. "We frequently base near their factory in Yakima, Washington, during fire season, and I have always admired the passion the entire CubCrafters team has for aviation. I’m honored to welcome the 1,000th aircraft to our fleet.”

Sheehy pointed out the utility of the aircraft is a bonus in remote areas.

"This is CubCrafters top-of-the-line flagship model,” he said. “We will definitely put it to good use in support of our mission of protecting the American West from the threat of wildfires."

About the Aircraft

The CC19-215 XCub sports a 215 HP Lycoming IO-390 engine with dual electronic ignition and a modern lightweight Garmin glass avionics panel with autopilot. Company officials note the XCub useful load is 1,084 pounds with a range of approximately 800 miles and top speed of 160 mph. The fully FAA-certified aircraft is popular with government agencies, commercial operators, and backcountry aviation enthusiasts.

About CubCrafters

CubCrafters was founded in 1980 by experienced backcountry pilot Jim Richmond. At first the company produced mods for the Piper Super Cub, then created the Top Cub, the first of many models based on the Piper Cub and tailored to the needs and desires of pilots seeking a utility vehicle for remote airstrip operations.

New technology has led to the creation of CubCrafters Carbon Cubs, Sportcubs, and XCubs/NXCubs, which are among the company’s more popular designs. The Carbon Cub is most popular with backcountry pilots. The XCub is available in both tailwheel and nose wheel configurations.

More information on CubCrafters airplanes is available here.

Meg Godlewski has been an aviation journalist for more than 24 years and a CFI for more than 20 years. If she is not flying or teaching aviation, she is writing about it. Meg is a founding member of the Pilot Proficiency Center at EAA AirVenture and excels at the application of simulation technology to flatten the learning curve. Follow Meg on Twitter @2Lewski.

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