French Cub completes lengthy restoration story

Now flying on the French civil register as F-PSVZ, Piper L-4 Cub (in reality a Wag-Aero Sport Trainer Cub replica) is being operated from the country’s Caen-Carpiquet airport

The history of the machine is somewhat shrouded in mystery. Its current owners believe that it first flew during the latter years of World War Two – notably, its interior contains strap fasteners for an observer. What remained of the original airframe was recovered in early 2015 by Serge Marlot and Philippe Verrier from an airfield at Saint Girons-Antichan in the south-west of France.

Parts of the structure had been cut or were slightly twisted, but along with many remaining elements of the wing, there was the basis for a thorough reconstruction, with the help of Wag-Aero plans. The project was officially classified ‘CNRA’ – an Experimental Aircraft. Some 3,000 hours of work followed, including a rebuild of the wings with new spars, and a triumphant debut flight occurred on September 3, 2021.

Since then the aircraft has officially joined the French register as F-PSVZ and has been painted in a British military livery. The owners felt there were already numerous USAAF and French-marked Pipers resident in France, so aimed for something different. After completing its return to flight programme, Victor-Zulu is now a regular sight in the skies near Caen. With thanks to Eric Janssonne

L-4 Cub/Sport Trainer F-PSVZ is pictured at Brienne le Château airfield earlier this year
L-4 Cub/Sport Trainer F-PSVZ is pictured at Brienne le Château airfield earlier this year Eric Janssonne