- Aircraft History, Specification and Information -
Piper PA-18 Super Cub
Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub - HB-PHZ
1980 Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub
HB-PHZ (sn 18-8009039)
Owner: Desair AG
This Super Cub is equipped with wheel-skis for glacier landings in the Swiss alps.
Photo taken Sep. 2009
Speck-Fehraltorf Airport, Switzerland (LSZK)
Photo Copyright
Marcel Siegenthaler

The Piper PA-18 Super Cub is a two-seat, single-engine monoplane. Introduced in 1949 by Piper Aircraft, it was developed from the Piper PA-11, and traces its lineage back through the J-3 to the Taylor E-2 Cub of the 1930s. In close to 40 years of production, over 9,000 were built. Super Cubs are commonly found in roles such as bush flying, banner and glider towing.

Design and development

While based on the design of the earlier Cubs, the addition of an electrical system, flaps (3 notches), and a vastly more powerful engine (150 hp), make it a very different flying experience. Although the "standard" Super Cub was fitted with a 150 horsepower (112 kW) Lycoming engine, it was not uncommon to see them equipped with a 180 hp (134 kW) powerplant. The high-lift wing and powerful engine made the Super Cub a prime candidate for conversion to either floatplane or skiplane. In addition, the PA-18A (an agricultural version) was produced for applying either dry chemical or liquid spray.

The Super Cub retained the basic "rag and tube" (fabric stretched over a steel tube frame) structure of the earlier J-3 Cub.

The first true "Super" Cubs had flaps, dual fuel tanks, and an O-235 Lycoming engine producing about 108 hp (115 hp for takeoff only). However, a 90 hp Continental without flaps and an optional second wing tank was available. Their empty weight was, on the average, 800-1000 pounds with a gross weight of 1,500 lb. These Cubs would take off in about 400 feet (at gross weight) and land in about 300 feet (thanks to the flaps). The Super Cub is renowned for its ability to take off and land in very short distances. The O-290 Lycoming powered Cubs (135 hp) followed and would take off in about 200 feet. The landing distance remained the same at about 400 feet, or 300 feet using flaps. With the use of the Lycoming O-320 at 150-160 hp, the Cub's allowable gross weight increased to 1,750 lb while retaining the capability of a mere 200 feet for takeoff.

Military operators

- Belgium
- Iran
- Israel
- Netherlands - Royal Netherlands Air Force
- Sweden
- Turkey
- Uganda
- Uruguay
- United States
- Norway
- Portugal

Specifications (PA-18-150 landplane)

General characteristics
Crew: 1
Capacity: 1 passenger
Length: 22 ft 7 in (6.88 m)
Wingspan: 35 ft 2½ in (10.73 m)
Height: 6 ft 8½ in (2.02 m)
Wing area: 178.5 sq ft (16.58 m²)
Empty weight: 930 lb (422 kg)
Max takeoff weight: 1,750 lb (794 kg)
Powerplant: 1× Lycoming O-320 air-cooled flat four, 150 hp (112 kW)

Never exceed speed: 132 knots (246 km/h, 153 mph)
Maximum speed: 113 knots (208 km/h, 130 mph) at sea level
Cruise speed: 100 kts (185 km/h, 115 mph) (75% power)
Stall speed: 38 knots (69 km/h, 43 mph) flaps down
Range: 399 nmi (735 km, 460 mi)
Service ceiling: 19,000 ft (5,595 m)

Last updated December 20, 2009
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Piper PA-18".
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