- Aircraft, parts, services
- Colonial Aircraft Corporation 1962 (Eagle)
Colonial Aircraft Corporation stock certificate 1968
Version 2 from this company. Perched American spread-wing eagle with Capitol and city in the th background as the vignette . Issued and cancelled. Dated 1962. Great piece for the aviation stock collector.
In 1946 David Thurston established the Colonial Aircraft Corporation at Sanford Maine to build his design for a small amphibian flying boat, the Skimmer. The first design in the series produced was the Colonial Skimmer. It was derived from an original design produced by David Thurston in 1946 when he was with Grumman Aircraft. Grumman never produced the design, but Thurston formed Colonial Aircraft Corporation as a side business to continue development.
The resulting design, based on the original Grumman G-65 Tadpole, was an all-metal shoulder-wing cantilever monoplane with a single-step hull and stabilizing floats fitted under each wing. A retractable tricycle landing gear allows land operation. The Avco Lycoming engine with a pusher propeller is pylon-mounted above and aft of the enclosed cockpit.
The cabin has side-by-side seating for a pilot and passenger with room behind for another passenger. The prototype XC-1 Skimmer first flew on July 17, 1948. Twenty-four examples of the C-1 Skimmer were built and these were followed by 18 examples of the higher powered four-seat variant known as the C-2 Skimmer IV.
The new owner, M.L. (Al) Alson, renamed the company Lake Aircraft and enlarged the basic design again into the LA-4, a 180-horsepower, 4-seat aircraft, which was the basis for the entire line of aircraft that continues today. Lake aircraft produced in the 1960 - 1980 range are listed by the Federal Aviation Administration as having been built by "Consolidated Aeronautics." For many years the Lake LA-4-200 was advertised as "The world's only single-engine production amphibian."
In January 2009 company owner Armand Rivard indicated that he intended to sell the company and retire. The company had previously been offered for sale in 2001, 2002, via auction in 2005 and in 2007. Lake Aircraft produced one aircraft in 2007 and none in 2008, but continues to make parts for existing aircraft. In 2009 the company employed six people, down from the 200 employees that it had in the 1980s.