TYPE: Four-seat kitbuilt.

PROGRAMME: Developed during 1980s by Alaskan bush pilot Rick Schneider to replace his Piper Super Cub. Initial design based on Merlin Explorer. Original production ceased in 1990 but restarted in 1997.

CUSTOMERS: 12 original examples and one new-build version flying by April 2001, at which time 10 further aircraft on order. One registered to Southland Holdings of Wilmington, Delaware, in July 2002.

COSTS: Kit US$22,500, excluding engine, propeller, instruments and upholstery.

DESIGN FEATURES: Piper Tri-Pacer family development. No welding, machining or heavy forming required during construction. Quoted build time 600 hours.

FLYING CONTROLS: Conventional and manual. Stainless steel control cables. Horn-balanced elevators and rudder; flight-adjustable tabs in both elevators.

STRUCTURE: Fabric-covered fuselage and tail of welded 4130 steel tube; fabric-covered extruded aluminium wings, flaps and ailerons. Wings braced with two extruded aluminium lift struts; tailplane and fin braced by wires.

LANDING GEAR: Tailwheel type; fixed. Spring aluminium main legs and tailwheel. Bungee cord suspension. Mainwheels 8.50-6. Options include Tundra tyres, Schneider Wheel Skis, skis and floats.

POWER PLANT: Prototype had 149 kW (200 hp) Textron Lycoming O-320 flat-four engine driving a two-blade fixed-pitch propeller; recommended engine power between 112 and 224 kW (150 and 300 hp), inluding engines from Teledyne Continental and LOM. Standard fuel capacity 114 litres (30.0 US gallons; 25.0 Imp gallons) per tank; option of two, four or six wing tanks, taking maximum possible capacity to 681 litres (180 US gallons; 150 Imp gallons).

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot and three passengers in two pairs of seats. Dual controls. Door each side, plus freight door to port, rear.