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The Enstrom Helicopter Corporation Back in Business


The Enstrom Helicopter Corporation has received FAA Production Certificate No. 26CE. Doug Smith, Enstrom’s VP of Quality Assurance, was on hand to receive the Production Certificate (PC) in person at the Minneapolis MIDO. The PC authorizes Enstrom to manufacture parts for all models of Enstrom helicopters, an important milestone for any aircraft OEM.

Retiring assigned PMI, Gary Bockman, vice president of product support and quality assurance Doug Smith and assigned PMI, Rick Jantz

“I am so proud of the team at Enstrom,” said Chuck Surack, Enstrom’s owner. “To go from where we started to receive a PC in only six months is just incredible. We are on pace to start delivering helicopters this spring, and in fact, the first new Enstroms are already coming down the line!”

“This is really a testament to the relationship that Doug and Bill Taylor (Enstrom’s VP of Engineering) have with the FAA,” commented Enstrom’s CEO Matt Francour. “It was a tremendous amount of work, but with their experience and knowledge, we were able to get it completed in record time. We had been building parts for the last six months under our Type Certificate holder authorization, which allowed us to support our customers, but with the PC in hand now we can start approving parts under our normal processes, which will really speed things up.”

Smith received the PC from Gary Bockman, FAA Senior Aviation Safety Inspector (SASI) at the Minneapolis MIDO, on a special day for Bockman as it was his last before a well-earned retirement. “I’ve been working with Gary for 9 years, and while he has always been by the book and held us to account, he and everyone at the MIDO have also always spared no effort to support us. The FAA has been a true partner, and together we’ve made Enstrom stronger and our aircraft safer. On behalf of everyone at Enstrom, I want to wish Gary all the best in retirement. He’ll be missed.”

From Rudy Enstrom’s early designs in 1943 to initial testing in a Michigan Quarry in 1957 to aircraft operating on six continents, Enstrom Helicopter Corporation has maintained a reputation for safety, value and performance. Based in Menominee, Michigan and proudly made in the United States, Enstrom has a rich history of design innovation. The goal is to provide helicopters to the customer’s exact specifications and deliver support and maintenance worldwide.

Chuck Surack, the founder of Surack Enterprises, purchased The Enstrom Helicopter Corporation of Menominee, Michigan, last year with a vision to rebuild the Enstrom brand into one of the leading American-made helicopter manufacturers it once was. This development has proved that he is on the right path.

Enstrom has maintained a reputation for safety, value and performance. The immediate goal will be to continue supporting pilots who already own an Enstrom helicopter by providing parts and support. The company is excited to start building helicopters again and is planning to improve and update the Enstrom helicopter fleet.

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