About Mitchell Wing, It's founder, It's History and It's Current Owner
A Scottish immigrant who came to the U.S. in 1922, Don Mitchell attended the Boeing School of Aeronautics and then was employed by several aircraft companies during World War II. He made design contributions to the northrop flying wing (YB-49) and collaborated with aviation notables including "Dutch" Kindelberger, Donald doubles, and John Northrop.In he mid-1970's he was asked to produce a flying-wing hang glider that was safer and with increased performance over other designs of that era. The Mitchell Aircraft Corporation was founded in 1976 in Porterville, California to accomplish this goal. When the foot launched Mitchell Wing B-10 flew in the 1977 USHGA Nationals, the hang gliding world was completely astounded. the Mitchell Wing B-10 went on to set and hold every world record in it's class. In 1980, George worthington soared to 17,000 feet and then glided 105 miles, setting two new rigid-wing records.
Mitchell aircraft was swamped with orders from all over the world. With the addition of a tricycle gear and a power plant, the B-10 became an ultralight aircraft. In this configuration, the B-10 won awards for design and performance in the early 1980's. Soon two other designs were added, the U-2 and the P-38, diversifying the company's offerings in the market. These three designs was available in plans from Richard Avalon, Richard was a close personal friend of Don Mitchell and was wealth of information as well as being an all-round good guy.All of these Mitchell models were built from either plans or factory supplied component kits. They were of wood and fabric construction and took an average of 500 to 700 hours to complete. Many kits were sold, with a relatively low percentage of them every completed and flown. the airworthiness of these home-built aircraft depended on the skill and experience of the individual builder.
In 1982 two new designs were developed to better meet the growing demand for these high performance ultralights. The A-10 was a refined upgrade of the B-10 with the same airfoil and performance characteristics, but with an aluminum-clad wing, and new main gear suspension, a beautiful fiberglass pod, and the control stick on the floor. AND it came from the factory ready to fly. It was Grand Champion at Oshkosh in 1983 and continued the unmatched performance of the earlier Mitchell models.The T-10 MitchellWing was developed as a two-place, side-by-side ultralight instructional vehicle. It provided dual controls so that students might quickly and safely learn to fly "the wing". Again, demand soared until in 1983 Mitchell Wing, Inc. of Porterville sold manufacturing rights for the A-10 and T-10 models to a group in Tulsa, Oklahoma for a price of $1,250,000. The sale included all tooling, molds, and patterns and only enough raw materials to complete ten Mitchell Wing A-10's, plus three months of hands-on training to teach the Tulsa personnel the techniques for building this high-tech ultralight.The Tulsa Mitchell Wing, Inc. company was well capitalized by its principal, Dr. Robinowitz. their goal was to produce one new A-10 off the assembly line each day, and at their peak employment of 100 employees, they were about to accomplish that goal. During this peak production period, much testing, research, and development was accomplished. Also, vast supplies of raw materials and component parts were acquired. An extensive dealership network was developed. They envisioned law enforcement and military markets and the nearing reality of personal aircraft for practical transportation as well as pleasure. Sales remained strong through 1985 with 125 units sold that year. However, absentee ownership and management problems persuaded Robinowitz to sell.In mid-1985 John connor, manager of the wong production department purchased Mitchell Wing, Inc and all production rights for the A-10 and T-10 models.
Unfortunately Connor was injured in an industrial accident. In near continuous pain it became nearly impossible to attend to the business and orders began to fall. This caused him to seek out a buyer for the company.In 1992 Higher Planes, Inc., a Kansas Corporation was formed to save the floundering Tulsa Company. All tooling, component parts inventory, and raw materials were relocated to the rural Kansas site - an old missal facility. Connor provided technical assistance as new personnel learned the production process. A full parts line became again available. Advertising efforts led to a restoration of sales with 11 units produced and sold in the first year of renewed business. Flight instruction in the T-10 Mitchell Wing was again offered with persons traveling from all over the country for flight orientation in this unique aircraft.
Requests for information packs soared. However, the missal facility business began to interest the president of Higher Planes more and more as people began to contact him as to how they too could purchase such a facility. This caused him to give his attention less and less to building ultralight aircraft and ultralight trainers. It was time for a new owner. In 1997 Larry Smith, America's only business broker who had dedicated himself to selling aircraft businesses was asked to find a buyer for the Mitchell Wing. After six months of offering the business to the buying public and finding many interested buyers who had no money - he bought the company himself. On April 15, 1998 Smith took possession under the corporation name of AmeriPlanes, Inc. and moved the company to Iowa. While continuing as AeroBusiness Broker the company has once again attracted the attention of the ultralight and experimental aircraft industry. Owning all the original jigs, molds, forms, equipment, etc., that had been produced to manufacture these aircraft. Each aircraft or kit is built to the buyer's personal requirements. The original A-10 and T-10 have been renamed A-10D and T-10D - the "D" to reflect the word "Deluxe". this was necessitated by the addition of the new A-10B. "B" stands for basic. It is identically the same aircraft as the A-10D but does not have any of the fiberglass parts except those necessary to the completed construction.
Tom Cook and Jim Gordon of Mid-Indiana, Our goals bring manufacturing of the Mitchell Wings up to date. We will still handle the A10 T10, and the New LsC10 Raptor aircraft and adding high-performance, and possibly offering the M10 Mitchell and RPV’s to the list.
Jim Gordon has over 30 years dealing with gas turbines and is the one that built the Jet Powered Mitchell B10J that picked up Technical Innovation at Sun N Fun 96, and Special Achievement Award Ultralight/Lightplane at Oshkosh 96! Tom Cook has over 30 years in the airline industry manufacturing and troubleshooting.
We are a big fans of the Wing!
Empty Weight 254 lbs
Gross Weight 550 lbs
Wing Area 156 sq. ft.
Wing Loading 3.5 lbs/sq.ft.
Power Loading 19.6 lbs./hp
Stressed 6g's + 5.5 G's
Engine Zenoah G25B
Power 23 hp
Cruising Speed 55 mph
Top Speed 73 mph
VNE 80 mph
Stall Speed 28 mph
Rate of Climb 850 fpm
Glide Ratio 16:1
Min. Sink 240 ft/min.
Service Ceiling 12,000 ft
Take Off roll 150 ft
Fuel Usage 1 gal./hr.
*Kit Assembly Time 80-120 hrs
Empty Weight 400 lbs
Gross Weight 835 lbs
Wing Area 170 sq. ft.
Wing Loading 4.9 lbs/sq.ft.
Power Loading 18.2 lbs./hp
Stressed 5g's + 4.5 G's
Engine Rotax 467
Power 55 hp
Cruising Speed 65 mph
Top Speed 75 mph
VNE 80 mph
Stall Speed 32 mph
Rate of Climb 650 fpm
Glide Ratio 14:1
Min. Sink 260 ft/min.
Service Ceiling 12,000 ft
Take Off roll 190 ft
Fuel Usage 2.3 gal./hr
*Kit Assembly Time 100-150 hrs
*Those wishing to license as "Experimental", factory will complete less of the aircraft kit allowing the builder to complete more of the aircraft than the traditional kit will allow.
Stalls and Rudder only
Check out this great video
1996 MitchellB10J Jet mitchell wing
Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long delirious, burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew -
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untresspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.
Pilot Officer Gillespie Magee
No 412 squadron, RCAF
Killed 11 December 1941HIGH FLIGHT