Download a FREE Piper J-3 Cub model airplane

Download a FREE Piper J-3 Cub model airplane.
This download includes detailed instructions for building this legendary airplane.

Piper Cub J-3 model airplane.
Finished model - wingspan 17.7cm.

The Legend
The Piper J-3 Cub, the best-known light plane of all time, became the Model T of aviation. Built by the thousands for both civilian and military use, the J-3 has been flying since prewar 1938. By December 1941, one-third of all the airplanes in America, and nearly two-thirds of all the light planes, were Piper Cubs.

Instructions for the Piper Cub J3
Instructions and pattern on one 8 1/2" x 11" sheet.

Download the"Cybermodel"
The download is an Adobe PDF file (510 K). This download is a courtesy of Fiddler's Green.

Download PDF file from source #1
Download PDF file from source #2

Don't have Adobe Acrobat?
Download the latest version of the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. The Adobe Acrobat reader allows you to download, view and print PDF files. You must have Adobe Acrobat 4.0 or higher installed on your computer to view and print this project.

Use an ink-jet printer or laser printer. Print the PDF file on ledger paper or light card stock. After printing you may notice that the ink has saturated the paper where there are solid colors. You can set your printer on medium quality and try again. This causes the printer to use less ink. Wait for the paper dry before starting your project.

Simulated flight of the Piper Cub J-3
Model shown in simulated flight.

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Close up details of the finished Piper Cub J3
Details of the finished model.

You will be proud to display this highly detailed, easy to build paper model.

Interesting tidbits
about this historic airplane.

Photograph of a Piper Cub J-3
A REAL Piper J-3 Cub

Buying a real Piper Cub
The model that's still considered the generic general aviation airplane by many non-pilots still has an enormous attraction to pilots, as well. In fact, it's so popular, it has taken on classic status and assumed a price tag out of all proportion to its talents. Today, sharp J-3s start at around $20,000 and, if you must have a show-stopper, expect to pay $30,000 or more.

Cub downs Messerschmitt Bf-109
During World War II, some Piper Cubs were equipped with rockets. One even was credited with downing a Messerschmitt Bf-109 that was chasing the Cub which could turn on a dime and the German couldn't. In spite of wartime heroics, the 'Cub' will always be remembered as the airplane that gave wings to thousands of pilots all over the world.

Newfangled contraption
A Cub brings a message to Major General Innes P. Swift, commander of the U. S. 1st Cavalry Brigade. Apparently the old warrior could understand horses and even tanks in a pinch, but what the hell, he thought, is the U. S. Army doing messing around with airplanes, and pretty flimsy-looking ones at that? So to the pilot he growled: "You looked just like a damn grasshopper when you landed that thing out there in those boondocks."

"Grasshoppers" they remained to him from then on, and eventually the U. S. Army capitulated and called them Grasshoppers, too.

Important passengers
World War II brought new orders for the J-3. painted in olive drab and redesigned the L-4, for the army artillery spotting and liaison. Besides that workhorse task, the L-4s served as transports for Generals Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, Clark and others. They landed on beachheads and back roads, in pastures and plowed fields, and gave the ground forces a degree of communication they never had before.

Download fun! Fiddler's Green
The cybermodel download and some information and photographs on this page is a courtesy of Fiddler's Green. Fiddler's Green has downloadable paper models of airplanes, buildings, cars, trains, boats, critters and other neat stuff. FREE samples!! Fiddler's Green has 154 accurate yet easy to build card stock display model airplanes, available as inexpensive downloadable "CyberModels" or on CD.

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URL: - Revised: Oct. 5, 2013