A friend (of Farris Lind’s) from the Navy had heard about the pest control business. He called Farris and offered to sell him three Piper Cub airplanes for $2,500 each to use for spraying crops.
In the years after the war, many pilots had the idea of making a living through crop dusting. Some of them were in Idaho and already in the skies, but Farris Lind had an advantage over those men when it came to setting prices. He could get fuel at wholesale.
As it turned out, he could also get cut-rate airplanes. Farris was able to bend the ear of Senator Glenn Taylor who lined him up with some war surplus planes. Taylor was an entrepreneur himself and probably felt Lind was a kindred spirit. After serving one term in the U.S. Senate and failing to win reelection, Taylor invented and marketed a toupee called "The Taylor Topper," buying cheap ads in men's magazines all over the country. The "Toppers" were a success, and the company is still in business today.
Lind was also buying ads in the local paper for his new crop-dusting service. He bought enough that the Twin Falls Times-News didn't mind giving him a little free publicity. The paper ran an article that said in part, "Farris Lind… recently discharged Navy flier, will operate an aerial dusting service for Magic Valley farmers this season. He will maintain headquarters in Twin Falls for his fleet of six new planes that have been ordered." They also ran a picture of the smiling young pilot.
Finding pilots to fly his planes wasn't difficult for Lind. He knew many of them from his days as a Navy trainer. The pilots coming out of the war were mostly young men, some with more skill than judgment. It did not escape the notice of pilots that people often pulled off the country roads to watch them swoop down over the fields. It was like a free air show.
Some of the young men couldn't resist showing off. Benny Buchanan was an excellent pilot, and he loved proving it. On June 3, 1946, Buchanan had quite an audience. Several cars were parked on the road outside of Eden near the alfalfa field he was spraying. He even attracted a Greyhound bus full of onlookers. Rather than making a low-level run over the field and looping around for another run, Buchanan did hammerhead or stall turns at the end of each run. In a hammerhead, a pilot heads straight up into the air until the plane stalls, then jerks the rudder to bring the plane around 180 degrees, straight down. The dramatic maneuver at the end of each run and the beginning of the next had the crowd entranced until Benny lost control and slammed into a canal. He might have drowned if the impact had not killed him.
Less than a week later another of Lind’s pilots, Rudolph Klunt of Nampa, caught a wing on a turn and crashed into a field seven miles south of Twin Falls. He was not badly injured.
In 1948, a string of crashes culminated in the death of another crop-duster, Charles Gallaher, 39, of Coeur d'Alene. His plane nosed into the ground northwest of Jerome. Earl Allen, another Fearless Farris crop duster, crashed two planes in the same 10-day period as the Gallaher crash. He was not badly injured in either incident. Allen said he was "through with crop-dusting flights" after the second crash.
In three years, the pilots crashed seven of the company's 12 planes, and two pilots were dead. By 1949 there were a lot of people getting into the crop-dusting business; legal expenses were mounting up. It was time to get out. Lind sold
his fleet of airplanes to a company in California and closed up shop. He was done with crop dusting, but not with flying. He took a Staggerwing Beechcraft as partial payment for his fleet. The enclosed biplane became his personal conveyance.