- Aircraft History, Specification and Information -
Cessna 180
Cessna 180 Floatplane - C-FITY
1956 Cessna 180 Floatplane
C-FITY (sn 32438)
Photo taken July 28, 2010
Oshkosh (EAA AirVenture Seaplane Base), WI - USA (OSH / KOSH)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler

The Cessna 180 is a four- or six-seat, fixed conventional gear general aviation airplane which was produced between 1953 and 1981. Though the design is no longer in production, many of these aircraft are still in use as personal aircraft and in utility roles such as bush flying.

Cessna 180 SeaPlane - N2221C
1953 Cessna 180 SeaPlane
N2221C (sn 30521)
Picture taken Jul. 28, 2010
Oshkosh (EAA AirVenture Seaplane Base), WI - USA (OSH / KOSH)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Cessna 180H Taildragger - N180LV
1968 Cessna 180H Taildragger
N180LV (SN 180-51993)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2007
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler

Development

Cessna introduced the heavier and more powerful 180 as a complement to the Cessna 170. It eventually came to be known as the Skywagon, a name first applied only to the more-powerful 185.

The prototype Cessna 180, N41697, first flew on May 26, 1952. Cessna engineering test pilot William D. Thompson was at the controls.

In all its versions, 6,193 Cessna 180s were manufactured. In 1956, a tricycle gear version of this design was introduced as the Cessna 182, which came to bear the name Skylane. Additionally, in 1960, Cessna introduced a heavier, more powerful sibling to the 180, the conventional gear Cessna 185. For a time, all three versions of the design were in production.

Design

The airframe of the 180 is all metal, constructed of aluminum alloy. The fuselage is a semi-monocoque structure, with exterior skin sheets riveted to formers and longerons. The strut-braced wings, likewise, are constructed of exterior skin sheets riveted to spars and ribs. The landing gear of the 180 is in a conventional arrangement, with main gear legs made of spring steel, and a steerable tailwheel mounted on a hollow tapered steel tube.

The Continental O-470-A of 225 horsepower (168 kW) was installed in the 1953 model, which uniquely has no baggage door. The Continental O-470-J, also of 225 horsepower (168 kW), replaced the -A model in 1954 and 1955, and was succeeded by the 230 horsepower (170 kW) O-470-K from 1956 through 1961, by the O-470-R from 1962 through 1972, by the O-470-S from 1973 through 1976, and by the O-470-U from 1977 through the end of production.

Cessna 180s produced between 1953 and 1963 have two side windows, while 1964 to 1981 models feature three side windows, as they feature the same fuselage as the Cessna 185. Some late production 1962 Cessna 180s were also known to have the three windows as well.

Operational history

Record flight
The Cessna 180 gained recognition as the aircraft chosen by Geraldine Mock, the first woman pilot to successfully fly around the world. The flight was made in 1964 in her 1953 model, the Spirit of Columbus (N1538C), as chronicled in her book Three-Eight Charlie. The Cessna factory obtained the aircraft and kept it at the Pawnee (Wichita, Kansas) manufacturing plant after the epic flight, suspended from the ceiling over one of the manufacturing lines. It is currently on display at the National Air and Space Museum.

Variants

  • Cessna 180
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 225 hp (168 kW) Continental O-470-A, O-470-J, or a 230 hp (172 kW) O-470-K engine, landplane gross weight 2,550 lb (1,157 kg) and first certified on 23 December 1952.
  • Cessna 180A
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-K, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 17 December 1956.
  • Cessna 180B
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-K, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 22 August 1958.
  • Cessna 180C
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 8 July 1959.
  • Cessna 180D
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 14 June 1960.
  • Cessna 180E
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 21 September 1961.
  • Cessna 180F
    Four seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,650 lb (1,202 kg) and first certified on 25 June 1962.
  • Cessna 180G
    Six seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,800 lb (1,270 kg) and first certified on 19 July 1963.
  • Cessna 180H
    Six seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-L or O-470-R, landplane gross weight 2,800 lb (1,270 kg) and first certified on 17 June 1964.
  • Cessna 180I
    There was no "I" model Cessna 180.
  • Cessna 180J
    Six seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-R or O-470-S, landplane gross weight 2,800 lb (1,270 kg) and first certified on 13 October 1972.
  • Cessna 180K
    Six seat high wing light aircraft powered by a 230 hp (172 kW) Continental O-470-U, landplane gross weight 2,800 lb (1,270 kg) and first certified on 19 August 1976.

Operators

Civil

The Cessna 180 is popular with air charter companies and is operated by private individuals and companies.

Military

  • Australia
    19 Cessna 180s were in service with both the Australian Army and RAAF from 1959 to 1974.
    • Royal Australian Air Force - No. 16 Air Observation Post Flight RAAF
    • Australian Army Aviation - No. 16 Army Light Aircraft Flight, No. 161 Independent Reconnaissance Flight - The Australian Army operated a number of Cessna 180s as surveillance aircraft with the 161 Reconnaissance Flight (call sign "Possum") during the Vietnam War.
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Israel
    Israeli Air Force
  • Mexico
  • Nicaragua
  • Philippines
  • Thailand
    Royal Thai Navy
  • Uruguay
    Uruguayan Air Force

Specifications (1978 Cessna 180 II landplane)

General characteristics
Crew: one
Capacity: five passengers
Length: 25 ft 9 in (7.85 m)
Wingspan: 35 ft 10 in (10.92 m)
Height: 7 ft 9 in (2.36 m)
Wing area: 174 sq ft (16.2 m2)
Empty weight: 1,700 lb (771 kg)
Gross weight: 2,800 lb (1,270 kg)
Powerplant: 1 × Continental O-470-U , 230 hp (170 kW)
Propellers: 2-bladed constant speed, 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) diameter

Performance
Maximum speed: 148 kn (170 mph; 274 km/h)
Cruise speed: 142 kn (163 mph; 263 km/h)
Stall speed: 48 kn (55 mph; 89 km/h)
Range: 890 nmi (1,020 mi; 1,650 km)
Service ceiling: 17,700 ft (5,400 m)
Rate of climb: 1,100 ft/min (5.6 m/s)

Last updated November 28, 2010
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Cessna 180".
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