Bearhawk Aircraft Make First Flights in Brazil and New Zealand and Log Win in New Zealand STOL Contest

AUSTIN, TEXAS, MAY 11, 2020 – Bearhawk Aircraft announced today the first flight of a Bearhawk Patrol in Brazil and a Bearhawk LSA in New Zealand. The Patrol and LSA are tandem two-place aircraft designed by engineer Bob Barrows. Delivering superior strength and durability, these aircraft fly fast and land slow. Bearhawk aircraft are also known for their short field capability, gentle slow speed manners, and hauling capacity. Also announced, a New Zealand based Bearhawk wins a STOL competition down under for the second year in a row.

The Brazilian Bearhawk Patrol was completed in January. First flight followed after “some time waiting for official paperwork.” The aircraft received its official release on April 10th. Build customer was Fernando Frahm, along with his son Andre and co-owner/builder Roberto Lindner.

First Bearhawk Patrol makes first flight in Brazil.

“Boa tarde Mark,” was the message sent from Alexandre Henrique de Barros of Magnólia Cubs, the Bearhawk Aircraft representative in Brazil. Alex continued, “Brazil’s first Bearhawk Patrol flew on 4/10/2020 out of Lontras, Santa Catarina, Brazil (ICAO SSLN).” The Quick Build kit was purchased during EAA AirVenture 2014 by Fernando Frahm of Rio do Sul, Santa Catarina, Brazil. “A few months after the arrival of the kit, Fernando sold a share of the kit to his friend Roberto, who joined him in the construction. The average time spent working on the aircraft was about four hours a week, eventually increasing up to eight hours during the covering and painting phases. The basic configuration includes a Superior IO-360 180-horsepower engine with a Dual Plasma II Ignition system [from Light Speed] and a constant speed propeller from MT-Propeller [of Germany]. According to Roberto, the Patrol exhibited takeoff and climb performance never before experienced in any aircraft of its class.”

Roberto also highlighted the handling characteristics, especially concerning the Patrol’s predictability. He attributed this to the “harmony and balance of the flight controls and well-dimensioned surface areas,” adding, “It truly felt that we had had been flying this aircraft for a long me.” Speaking on the construction, Roberto emphasized the high quality of the welding and kit components in general, its ease of assembly, and constant support from Avipro, Bearhawk Aircraft’s kit manufacturer.

Though not as ubiquitous as the “corner bar” in Brazil, the number of Bearhawks in the country is expanding. Fernando’s kit, being the first shipment of a Bearhawk Patrol to Brazil, unites with another local operator of a 4-Place Bearhawk model. Also using an IO-360 Continental engine, this 4-Place Bearhawk was the first to fly with that engine.

As a rancher in southern Brazil, Fernando knew immediately this was the aircraft for him. His decision followed a demo flight at AirVenture. A Patrol was just the airplane he needed to land at the short strip on his ranch, and it would also allow him greater travel flexibility at better cruise speeds than similar STOL/utility aircraft he had been considering.

This two-minute video, created by Mike Silvernagle of Bearhawk Aircraft Canada, highlights the Bearhawk Patrol’s capabilities and modern equipment, illustrating why its perfect for unimproved fields and travel expeditions…

Nic Roberts of Plane Torque Ltd. in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, built and recently flew the first Bearhawk LSA aircraft in New Zealand. The aircraft was purchased as a Quick Build kit. According to Nic, “The LSA has produced a large amount of interest from local aviators. The Bearhawk line of aircraft have become well known for their capability. They perform well in New Zealand.” He noted that other 4-Place Bearhawk aircraft are flying in the island country and making impressions. “A point of difference is these aircraft have a presence more like standard category aircraft than amateur-built.

Nic Roberts with his recently completed Bearhawk LSA.

“We have flown just over ten hours in our Bearhawk LSA aircraft, completing the mandatory test flight period. After the first flight, our test pilot said, ‘What a fantastic little aircraft,’ along with an enormous grin on his face. The aircraft is performing very well with its Continental O-200-D and Catto propeller. The test flying creates much attention during takeoff and landing on the local airfield, Hastings Aerodrome.

“We are yet to push the Bearhawk capability to establish it absolute limits. However, my test pilot of 3500-plus-hours experience states, ‘Your Bearhawk LSA is the fastest to get airborne from all the aircraft I have flown.’ The taxi roll of the Bearhawk LSA is incredibly smooth and soft as the landing gear strut/shocks provide fantastic support. I am really enjoying the journey this Bearhawk LSA aircraft provides. I look forward to seeing the Bearhawk aircraft fleet grow.”

The first Bearhawk LSA to fly in New Zealand.

In related news, Jonathan Battson has taken top honors, for two years running, in his Bearhawk in a New Zealand STOL Competition. The regional contest takes place each year in February. Battson and his Bearhawk continued their winning ways by a wide margin. “We managed to clean up the heavy touring category again this weekend, convincingly this time with a total combined distance of 71m compared to 108m and 131m for second and third place. There was less wind than usual, so I was pleased with the landing,” he commented.

Jonathan Battson wins the New Zealand STOL competition two years in a row.

“This year we had a couple of key people from the Valdez STOL contest here, Lon and Bob. Lon organizes the Valdez event, and Bob and his son Bobby (Breeden) have won numerous times. They liked the event and said the flying was as good as they see in Valdez… except here the action is faster and the crowd is much closer to the action which they seemed to like. They said we have less Super Cubs than in Alaska.” For event details, visit… 

The Bearhawk Patrol is a tandem two-place aircraft, available in kit or plans, that excels at accessing remote airstrips. A side-by-side seating version is the Bearhawk Companion. Both are renown for their rugged construction and large cargo areas. The Patrol and Companion are capable of carrying twice their empty weight. The Companion offers 2,200 lb. gross weight, while the Patrol offers 2,000 lb. gross. Avipro / Bearhawk Aircraft manufactures high quality Quick Build kits for the Bearhawk 4-Place, Bearhawk Patrol, Bearhawk Companion, and Bearhawk LSA. All models are available for immediate shipping.

For more information on Bearhawk Aircraft, visit, or contact Bearhawk at or 1-877-528-4776.

– Bearhawk –

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