Cessna 175 Skylark
Archive Photos 1
[1959 Cessna 175 "Skylark" (N7688M, s/n 55988) at the 2009 Cable Air Show, Cable Airport, Upland, CA (Photos by John Shupek)]
“Hi, just saw my aircraft (N7688m) on your web site,and wanted to give you a little info. When my grandfather bought the plane it came with the GO-300, but in 1969 he pulled it out and put a 220-hp Franklin with a constant speed prop, which it has now. It makes a real performer out of it with a climb rate of 1500-fpm+. The photo of my climb out was 500-ft of roll with two adults and full fuel 4.”
The Cessna 175 "Skylark" is a four-seat, single-engine, high-wing airplane produced between 1958 and 1962.
Production History 2
The Cessna 175 "Skylark" was designed to fill a niche between the Cessna 172 "Skyhawk" and the heavy-duty Cessna 180. The engine of the Cessna 175 "Skylark" was rated at 175-hp (130 kW), or 30-hp (22 kW) more than the engine of the Cessna 172 "Skyhawk." Between 1958 and 1962, a total of 2,106 Cessna 175 "Skylarks" were built. The basic airplane was marketed as the Cessna 175, and the plane with a package of optional equipment and a special paint scheme was marketed as the Cessna 175 "Skylark."
The airframe of the Cessna 175 "Skylark" 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 Cessna 175 "Skylark" is in a tricycle arrangement, with main gear legs made of spring steel, along with a steerable nose wheel connected through an oleo strut used for shock absorption.
While it incorporates airframe changes, the Cessna 175 "Skylark" is very similar in appearance to the Cessna 172 "Skyhawk" of the same vintage. The most noticeable difference is the distinctive bulge in the cowling to accommodate the gearbox of the engine.
The Continental GO-300 Engine 2
An unusual feature of the Cessna 175 "Skylark" is the use of the geared Continental GO-300 engine. Whereas most single-engine airplanes use direct drive, this engine drives the propeller through a reducing gearbox, so the engine runs at 3,200 rpm to turn the propeller at 2,400 rpm. The Continental GO-300 engine suffered reliability problems and helped give the Cessna 175 "Skylark" a poor reputation. Many Cessna 175 "Skylarks" flying today have been converted to larger-displacement direct-drive engines.
The reputation of the Continental GO-300 may not have been deserved, since the problems associated with it were the result of pilots who were familiar with direct-drive engines simply not operating the engine correctly. Pilots unfamiliar with the engine often operated the engine at low RPM settings (2,300) appropriate to direct-drive engines, while the Cessna 175 "Skylark's" Operating Handbook called for 2,900 RPM. This prevented the engine's air-cooling system from operating effectively and resulted in a lack of reliability.
Many of the higher-powered versions of the Cessna 172 "Skyhawk" in fact belong to the Cessna 175 "Skylark" type design. Included in this group are the Cessna P172D "Powermatic", most Cessna T-41s (the T-41B, T-41C, and T-41D models), the Cessna R172K "Hawk XP," and the retractable gear Cessna 172RG.
1959 Cessna 175 "Skylark" Specifications and Performance Data 2
Tail Unit Areas
Weights and Loadings
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