Exploring the Great Planes J3 Cub: History, Features, and Performance

Exploring the Great Planes J3 Cub: History, Features, and Performance

The Great Planes J3 Cub is a classic model airplane that has been enjoyed by aviation enthusiasts for decades. Similar to the Piper J3 Cub, the Great Planes model delivers a timeless design with enhanced performance and handling. The J3 Cub remains well-loved for its simple and versatile design, making it an excellent choice for pilots interested in aerial training or leisurely flights. It has been in continuous production for almost 70 years and has become a cherished part of aviation history that has helped shape the hobby of model airplane flying. Whether it’s the nostalgia of the original design or the incredible performance capabilities of the Great Planes J3 Cub, this model airplane is a popular choice amongst aviation enthusiasts of all ages. Its classic look and versatility are unmatched by other models, which only adds to its appeal and makes it a model worth flying for many years to come.

History of the Great Planes J3 Cub

The Great Planes J3 Cub is a remarkable model airplane with an interesting history. Here are some facts and milestones:

  • The original Piper J3 Cub was first designed in 1937 by C.G. Taylor and certified by the Civil Aviation Administration in 1938.
  • The J3 Cub was widely used by the military and civilians during World War II for flight training, reconnaissance, and transportation.
  • After the war, the J3 Cub continued to be utilized for pilot training as well as for crop dusting and glider towing.
  • Today, the J3 Cub is still being produced by various aircraft makers, including Great Planes, and is enjoyed by many hobbyists all over the world.

The history of the Great Planes J3 Cub can be traced back to the desire to recreate the classic design of the Piper J3 Cub, with improved features and better handling. Great Planes is a company that specializes in producing high-quality model airplanes, such as the J3 Cub, that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Great Planes has taken care of all the details of the Cub’s design, from the materials used to the quality and precision of the components. Collectors and hobbyists everywhere can find an extensive range of products related to the J3 Cub, including model kits, accessories, and spare parts, on various websites and stores.

What is the history of the Piper J-3 Cub?

The Piper J-3 Cub was a small, two-seater airplane that burst onto the aviation market in the 1930s. The prototype first flew in 1930, and was promptly sold to a wealthy businessman. The J-3 was initially designed as a private aircraft, but soon proved to be a hit with flight schools due to its ease of handling and relatively low cost.

The Cub quickly gained a reputation as a dependable and sturdy airplane, and was used extensively during World War II by the military for various purposes including training, reconnaissance, and liaison flights. It is estimated that over 80% of allied pilots learned to fly on a Piper Cub during the war.

After the war, the J-3 Cub continued to be used for civilian purposes and became a popular airplane among hobbyists due to its maneuverability and accessibility. A number of variants were produced, including the PA-11 and PA-18, and more than 20,000 Piper Cubs were built over the years.

Today, the J-3 Cub is considered a classic and has a dedicated following of collectors and enthusiasts. Despite being more than 80 years old, its simple design and reliable performance have ensured that it remains a beloved aircraft to this day.

The Great Planes J3 Cub is a beloved and exceptional model airplane that offers numerous features that make it stand out from the rest. Here are some noteworthy features:

The Great Planes J3 Cub is made with balsa wood and plywood construction, which provides a lightweight and durable materials and makes for seamless handling in flight.

The airplane also features a lightweight aluminum landing gear, which provides excellent ground handling and aerodynamics while being built to last.

A two-piece wing design makes transportation and assembly of the plane easier and more convenient. Additionally, there are both electric and gas-powered versions available, offering flexibility and the option to choose the best fuel type for the pilot’s needs.

For added adventure, there is also the option to add floats for water takeoffs and landings, making the flying experience even more exciting.

The Great Planes J3 Cub also has a steerable tail wheel, which enables the pilot to handle the plane more confidently and safely. Its dependable build ensures low maintenance and minimal repairs, making it a practical choice for hobbyists and enthusiasts.

Furthermore, the Great Planes website offers free building and flight videos for J3 Cub owners, making it easy for beginners to get started with their new model airplane.

How much is a Piper J-3 Cub?

The Piper J-3 Cub is a legendary aircraft that has captured the hearts of aviation enthusiasts around the world. It’s a classic, timeless design that has stood the test of time, and it continues to be a popular aircraft for pilots seeking an affordable, reliable, and fun flying experience.

When it comes to the cost of a Piper J-3 Cub, there are a number of factors that can influence the price. These include the aircraft’s condition, age, and history, as well as any modifications or upgrades that may have been made.

At the time of writing, Piper J-3 Cubs are available for purchase in a wide range of prices, from around $20,000 for a well-used, older model, to over $100,000 for a fully restored, low-time example.

Of course, the purchase price is just one aspect of owning a Piper J-3 Cub. Maintenance, insurance, fuel, and other associated costs can also add up over time. However, for those who are willing to make the investment, the Piper J-3 Cub is a rewarding and unforgettable aircraft that offers a unique flying experience that is hard to match.

Performance of the Great Planes J3 Cub

The Great Planes J3 Cub delivers an excellent flying experience, with impressive handling and flight characteristics. Here are the key performance features of the J3 Cub:

  • Slow and graceful flying
  • Crisp and clean maneuvers such as loops and barrel rolls
  • Steady and stable flight in most weather conditions
  • Lightweight design for efficient use of power
  • Can stay aloft for long periods with minimal effort
  • Easy to control and maneuver in flight

The J3 Cub is a superb model airplane that performs exceptionally well while still being easy for pilots of all skill levels to handle. It’s a great plane for practicing different flight maneuvers, and the lightweight design allows for improved flight time and range. With its reliable build and dependable handling, the Great Planes J3 Cub is sure to become a favorite among RC model enthusiasts.

For those who want to enhance their J3 Cub’s flying performance, Great Planes provides a range of replacement parts and performance accessories. These include different propellers, batteries, and even lighting kits that can help customize and improve the performance of the plane. With numerous options to choose from, pilots can tailor their Cub to fit their specific needs and preferences.

How much is a Piper J3 Cub?

The Piper J3 Cub has become an iconic aircraft in the world of aviation. Its classic design and simple engineering have made it a favorite among pilots, collectors, and enthusiasts alike. The cost of a Piper J3 Cub, like any aircraft, can vary greatly depending on a number of factors such as condition, age, and modifications. Currently, a Piper J3 Cub in good condition can cost anywhere from $20,000 to $60,000 depending on the specific aircraft’s history and upgrades. However, prices can fluctuate based on market demand and availability. Despite the cost, owning and flying a Piper J3 Cub is a unique and rewarding experience that can provide hours of enjoyment for aviation enthusiasts.


The Great Planes J3 Cub is a classic model airplane that has delighted pilots for decades. Its simple yet brilliant design, combined with its impressive handling and flight performance, make it a top choice among RC model enthusiasts. Whether you’re a beginner pilot or an experienced aviator, the J3 Cub offers a rewarding flying experience that is sure to entertain and challenge you.

Building and flying the Great Planes J3 Cub is a fun and educational activity that can provide hours of entertainment. With its lightweight design, efficient performance, and dependable handling, the plane is a great option for those looking to hone their skills or simply enjoy a day out at the field. Plus, with a wide range of replacement parts and accessories available, pilots can customize their Cub to suit their individual flying style and needs.

Overall, the Great Planes J3 Cub is a fantastic model airplane that is sure to please both hobbyists and aviation enthusiasts alike. Its timeless design and excellent performance make it a true classic in the world of model aviation. So, if you’re looking for a fun and rewarding flying experience, consider the Great Planes J3 Cub – it won’t disappoint!