Large aluminum “billets”, specially tailored for 
aeronautical strength, in their raw form.
We dreamed about owning a Pilatus,
so great to finally make it to the
headquarters in Stans, Switzerland.
We can see where our baby was born!
Danke to Dieter Zingg, Project Manager at Pilatus,
who tirelessly answered all our questions.  The main

wing spar is a single 80 lb. piece of aluminum
milled from a 2,000 lb. billet, rather than the structurally
weaker alternative of riveting multiple pieces of
aluminum together. 

Beautifully milled wing rib.  Airplane geek out.
Aluminum shavings are collected and formed into
9 inch long plugs for recycling.

The original PC-12, serial number ONE,
which took flight in May 1991.  Many improvements

have been made since then, including doors,
winglets, and landing gear.  And it now boasts
a paperless cockpit, unattainable back in ’91.
The Pilatus team wear gloves to handle super cooled
plane parts.

Dieter modeling the latest in composite hats.  This
is really a part of the PC-12 that is at the bottom
of the rudder.
An experienced and extremely loyal crew of talented
crafters roll, mold, bend and cut the aluminum
with amazing speed and precision.  The factory

in Stans employs about 1,400 people, and is in 
the process of a major expansion with several
new buildings.

Check out the wiring that goes behind the Pratt
and Whitney engine.  Pilatus has a very active

apprenticeship program so young airplane
enthusiasts can consider a career.
Precision hand sanding of the intake manifold. Every inch
 has been over-engineered as a point of pride.
We watched breathlessly as the team attached a wing to
the fuselage.  Incredibly heavy, the wing is held
by cranes and pulleys so the team can perfectly
position and balance before bolting it into place.
World class made in Switzerland!  Now up to
serial number 1480, Pilatus is producing about
100 new PC-12s per year.
A tip of the captain’s hat to Pilatus on their 75 year
 anniversary.  After their start building airplanes for
 the Swiss military, they’ve expanded their line. 
 Now they’re used by commercial operators (including
 commuter planes and medical airlift), military (including
Canadian Mounties and US Customs and Border
Patrol), nonprofits (including the Red Cross)
and some very lucky personal pilots!