Courtesy AircraftAirport planes
Clark as the new Cessna aircraft dealership and expanded in the 1960s to become a Piper and Champion (Citabria) dealership. Courtesy Aircraft, Inc. was also involved in the sale of selected used aircraft. This was the successful used aircraft business that paved the way for the company's present leadership in quality warbird and civilian aircraft sale.
Courtesy Aircraft, Inc. found itself strongly engaged in the sale of a new business - warbirds - in the early 1970s due to the expertise and passion of the founder's son, Mark Clark, now an experienced pilots and A&P technician. These markets mainly comprised former World War II and Korea epoch army coaches, hunters and airmen such as the T-6/SNJ Texans, P-51 Mustangs and B-25 Mitchells.
However, flourishing businesses flourished and another new postmodern wardirds emerged: the "L" birds, T-34 mentors, O-2 combat skymasters and T-28 Trojans. We are proud of our durability and performance, with over 3,000 aircraft shipped and handed over, and look forward to maintaining our heritage of top performance in the sale of warbirds and civil aircraft.
Wasbirds, etc. ROCKFORD, IL - Publications for Courtesy Aircraft, Inc. "It also sells some P-51 Mustangs and a number of other Warbirds, along with the classic General aviation routes. By 2000, Clark said the firm had shipped approximately 68 aircraft - half vintage, half GA - worth an estimate of $25 million, much of which was sourced.
Courthouse Aircraft, Inc. was established in 1957 by Mark's dad, D.M. Clark, at Greater Rockford Airport as a new distributor of Chessna. Mark bought the business from his dad in 1983 and began to concentrate more on selling classic cars. "We had an interest in the oldtimers and the warbirds, but we didn't give up on the other General aviation planes," Clark states.
"Many of our clients have several planes. "Courtesy Aircraft has over the years delivered around 1,700 aircraft and its specialisation in classic car aircraft has brought it to the seminars series at yearly exhibitions of the Experimental Aircraft Association in Oshkosh and Sun 'n Fun in Lakeland, FL.
Courtesy actually sells aircraft for both EAA originator Paul Poberezny and his sons and present federation chairman Tom, Clark states. "We' ve been selling practically all kinds of General Aviation aircraft, from aeroplanes of 150 to J-3, from quotes to King Airs to Spartan executives," he states. "We have very, very few aircraft specifically designed that we have not resold and flew from this location.
" Today, Clark, 50, and John G. Kraman, 44, Senior Vice President Marketing, lead the Courtesy group. The two men are accredited A&P engineers who, in their opinion, help to address customers in an advisory manner. "When one of us brings an aircraft to a pre-sale inspection," says Clark, "the technician will make a checklist of things that need to be corrected before the transaction is complete.
" He also holds a Bradley University Diploma in Business Administration and says he has FAA approval to pilot practically any kind of high power ex-military excess aircraft. "This means I can get on and off practically any kind of ex-military plane," he says. However, the emphasis is on the sale, often to the same clients they previously serviced, and often on the sale of the same aircraft.
Clark explains: "We keep all the specification in one single data set, all the photos. There' gonna be a dude calling and saying he purchased the plane four years ago and is considering it for sale. So we know the plane; we saw the plane; we probably flew the plane. "Courtesy Aircraft has recently started its 20-year term with a rental at Greater Rockford Airport.
One of his specialties, Warbirds, is a T-28 elementary board. Concerning the Warbirds, Kraman says they sell more than an aircraft and often help a client find an old life's work. "One of the biggest hurdles to Warbird sales, Kraman says, is that they usually don't have the large, in-depth logs that General Aircraft clients are used to.
"When someone buys a warbird and expects to see the same kind of login security, they probably won't find it," he states. Real practical practice can also be difficult to come by, says Kraman, which is one of the main reason Courtesy Aircraft purchased a T-28 floor based Darton International facility in Carlsbad, CA, early this year.
Under the name Warbird Solutions, LLC, it is offering the Trojan Earth with Kraman as trainer for 995 US dollars. It is the only T-28 soil nursery of its kind," he says. Courtsy Aircraft has a solid client basis in the Midwest, says Clark, although its client basis is worldwide and supported in today's markets via the web (www.courtesyaircraft.com).
Although it has had difficulties sustaining profitable traffic, its position approximately 90 nautical miles from Chicago gives it a strong presence with a UPS hubs and various general airline operations. "We have good visibility here, we have good airstrips, an adjacent electronics store, servicing on the other side of the bay and an accessories store on the other side of the ramp," Kraman states.
Clark has just completed its 20-year lease and Clark will retain title to the hall/office furniture.