Cessna 180 Skywagon
Single-engine four-seat conventional-gear high-wing monoplane, U.S.A.
Archive Photos 
[1954 Cessna 180 Skywagon (N21Y) at the 2000 Santa Paula Airshow, Santa Paula, CA (Photo by John Shupek)]
[1954 Cessna 180 Skywagon (N3683C, s/n 31182) at the 2006 Camarillo Air Show, Camarillo, CA (Photo by John Shupek)]
Cessna 180 Overview 
- Role: Light utility aircraft
- Manufacturer: Cessna Aircraft Company
- First flight: 1952
- Introduced: 1953
- Produced: 1953-1981
- Number built: 6,193
- Variants: Cessna 182, Cessna 185
The Cessna 180 is a four-seat 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 introduced the heavier and the more powerful 180 as a complement to the Cessna 170. It eventually came to be known as the Skywagon. The prototype Cessna 180, N41697, first flew on May 26, 1952. The 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.
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. Cessna 180s produced between 1953 and 1963 have two side windows, while 1964 to 1981 models feature three side windows, as they use the same fuselage as the Cessna 185. Cessna 180s can be equipped with floats and skis.
Operational History 
The Cessna 180 is considered a workhorse of an airplane, and is favored to this day as a bush plane by many who fly to and from remote, unimproved airstrips in places such as Alaska and distant parts of Canada, the Pacific Islands, and Africa. The Cessna 180 was the preferred aircraft of the Colorado Division of Wildlife for monitoring wildlife and re-stocking fish in remote mountain lakes; it was also used by the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation. The New Mexico State Police Aircraft Division was created after it acquired its first aircraft, a fixed wing Cessna 180, on loan from the State Corporation Commission.
The Canadian airlines Lamb Air and Norcanair operated several Cessna 180s. A number of Cessna 180s also played roles at Kenmore Air in Washington, Alaska Seaplane Service, and Brazil's Lider Taxi Aereo.
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.
- 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.
Civil Operators 
- The Cessna 180 is popular with air charter companies and is operated by private individuals and companies.
Military Operators 
- 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: Seven aircraft
- Guatemala: Seven aircraft
- Honduras: Honduran Air Force seven aircraft
- Israel: Israeli Air Force eight aircraft
- Nicaragua: Nine aircraft
- Philippines: Nine aircraft
- Thailand: Royal Thai Navy seven aircraft
- Uruguay: Uruguayan Air Force nine aircraft
Aircraft Type Club 
The Cessna 180 is supported by an active aircraft type club, The Cessna Pilots Association.
Cessna Model 180 Skywagon Specifications and Performance Data 
- One/six-seat cabin monoplane.
- Generally similar in construction to those of the Cessna Model 172.
- Dihedral 1° 44'.
- All-metal semi-monocoque structure.
- Identical to fuselage of Cessna 185, except for firewall and mounting brackets for dorsal fin.
- Unswept cantilever all-metal structure with adjustable-incidence tailplane.
- Normally no trim tabs; but manually-operated rudder trim was optionally available.
- Non-retractable tailwheel type.
- Cessna cantilever spring steel main legs.
- Tailwheel has tapered tubular spring.
- Main wheels and nylon tube-type tires size 6.00 6 (optionally 8.00 6).
- Scott tailwheel size 8.00 × 2.80.
- Tire pressure, main wheels 30 psi (2.11 kg/cm²), tailwheel 55 65 psi (3.87-4.57 kg/cm²) according to load.
- Hydraulic disc brakes.
- Parking brake.
- Alternative Edo Model 628-296 floats, snow ski or amphibian gear.
- One 230-hp Continental O 470 S six-cylinder horizontally-opposed air-cooled engine, driving a McCauley 2A34C203/90DA 8 constant-speed metal propeller.
- Two fuel tanks in wings, with total standard capacity of 65 US gallons (246 L) and usable capacity of 60 US gallons (227 L).
- Optional long-range tanks with total capacity of 84 US gallons (318 L), of which 79 US gallons (299 L) are usable.
- Oil capacity 3 US gallons (11.5 L).
- Standard seating is for a pilot only, with a choice of three optional arrangements.
- Maximum seating is for six persons in three pairs, without baggage space.
- With fewer seats there is space at rear of cabin for up to 400 lb (181 kg) of baggage.
- Door on each side of cabin, plus optional cargo door and baggage compartment door on port side.
- Starboard door has quick-release hinge pins so that it can be removed when loading bulky cargo.
- Passenger seats can all be removed when aircraft is to be used for freight carrying.
- Hinged window each side.
- Instrument lighting controls are transistorized.
- Heating and ventilation standard.
- Fully-articulating seats for pilot and co pilot, child's foldaway seat for the rear cabin and safety belts for rear-seat passengers are available optionally.
- Hydraulic system for brakes only.
- Electrical system powered by 14V 60A alternator.
- 12V 33Ah battery.
- Oxygen system, 48 ft3 (1.36 m3) capacity, optional.
Electronics and Equipment:
- Optional electronics include: Cessna Series 300 360 channel com transceiver; 360 channel nav/com with 160 channel nav and remote VOR indicator; 720 channel com and 200 channel nav with remote VOR/LOC indicator or VOR/ILS indicator; ADF with digital tuning; Marker beacon with three lights and aural signal; Transponder with 4096 code capability; DME; Nav-O-Matic single-axis autopilot with heading control and VOR intercept and track; or Series 400 720 channel com transceiver; 720 channel nav/com with remote VOR/LOC or VOR/ILS indicator; Transponder with 4095 code capability; Glideslope receiver and ADF with digital tuning.
- Standard equipment includes: Audible stall warning indicator; Instrument panel red floodlights; Control locks; Windscreen defroster; Cabin dome light; Landing and taxi lights; and Baggage restraint net.
- Optional equipment includes: Blind-flying instrumentation; Boom microphone; Electric clock; Control wheel with map light and microphone switch; Dual controls; Carburetor air temperature gauge; Outside air temperature gauge; True airspeed indicator; Economy mixture indicator; Rate of climb indicator; Turn coordinator; Turn and bank indicator; Instrument panel post lights; Rudder pedal extensions; Flight hour recorder; Pilot and co pilot headrests; Twin beverage pack; Cargo tie-down fittings; Deluxe interior; Inertia-reel shoulder harness; Bubble windows; Amphibian kit; Floatplane kit; Jack pad; Strobe light; Tailwheel lock; Ski axles; Ski provisions; Map and auxiliary instrument light; Courtesy lights; Copilot's seat; Stretcher installation; Sun visors; Emergency locator transmitter; Tinted windows; Heated pitot; Non-congealing oil cooler; Oil dilution system; Engine winterization kit; Internal corrosion proofing; Navigation light detectors; External power socket; Omni-flash beacon; Quick oil drain valve; Overall paint scheme; Photographic provisions; Agricultural sprayer system; Tailplane abrasion boots; Static dischargers; Alternate static source; and Cabin fire extinguisher.
Electronics and Equipment:
- Wing span: 35 ft 10 in (10.92 m)
- Wing chord at root: 5 ft 4 in (1.63 m)
- Wing chord at tip: 3 ft 71 in (1.11 m)
- Wing aspect ratio: 7/52
- Length overall: Landplane, ski-plane: 25 ft 9 in (7.85 m); Floatplane: 27 ft 0 in (8.23 m); Amphibian: 27 ft 6 in (8.38 m)
- Height overall: Landplane, ski-plane: 7 ft 9 in (2.36 m); Floatplane: 12 ft 2 in (3.71 m); Amphibian: 12 ft 8 in (3.86 m)
- Tailplane span: 10 ft 10 in (3.30 m)
- Wheel track, landplane: 7 ft 8 in (2.33 m)
- Propeller diameter: Landplane, ski-plane: 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m); Floatplane, amphibian: 7 ft 4 in (2.24 m)
- Passenger doors (each): Height: 3 ft 31 in (1.01 m); Width: 2 ft 11 in (0.89 m)
- Wings, gross: 174 ft² (16.16 m²)
- Ailerons (total): 18.3 ft²t (1.70 m²)
- Trailing-edge flaps (total): 21.23 ft² (1.97 m²)
- Fin: 9.01 ft² (0.84 m²)
- Dorsal fin: 2.04 ft² (0.19 m²)
- Rudder: 7.29 ft² (0.68 m²)
- Tailplane: 20.94 ft² (1.94 m²)
- Elevators: 15.13 ft² (1.40 m²)
Weights and Loadings:
- Weight empty, equipped: Landplane: 1,565 lb (710 kg); Floatplane: 1,875 lb (850 kg); Ski-plane: 1,710 lb (776 kg); Amphibian: 2,130 lb (966 kg)
- Max T/O weight: Landplane, ski-plane: 2,800 lb (1,270 kg); Floatplane, amphibian: 2,950 lb (1,338 kg)
- Max wing loading: Landplane, ski-plane: 16.1 psf (78.6 kg/m²; Floatplane, amphibian: 17.0 psf (83.0 kg/m²)
- Max power loading: Landplane, ski-plane: 12.2 lb/hp (5.53 kg/hp); Floatplane, amphibian: 12.8 lb/hp (5.80 kg/hp)
Performance at Max T/O weight:
- Max never-exceed speed: Landplane: 167 knots (192 mph; 309 km/h)
- Max level speed at S/L: Landplane: 148 knots (170 mph; 274 km/h); Floatplane, amphibian, ski-plane: 129 knots (149 mph; 240 km/h)
- Max cruising speed (75% power) at 6,500 ft (1,980 m): Landplane: 141 knots (162 mph; 261 km/h); Floatplane, amphibian: 128 knots (147 mph; 237 km/h); Ski-plane: 125 knots (144 mph; 232 km/h)
- Econ cruising speed at 10,000 ft (3,050 m): Landplane: 105 knots (121 mph; 195 km/h); Floatplane: 99 knots (114 mph; 183 km/h); Amphibian: 99 knots (114 mph; 183 km/h); Ski-plane: 88 knots (101 mph; 162 km/h)
- Stalling speed, flaps up, power off: All versions: 53 knots (61 mph; 98 5 km/h)
- Stalling speed, flaps down, power off: All versions 48 knots (55 mph; 88 5 km/h)
- Max rate of climb at S/L: Landplane: 1,090 fpm (332 mpm); Floatplane, amphibian: 990 fpm (302 mpm)
- Service ceiling: Landplane: 19,600 ft (5,975 m); Floatplane, amphibian: 16,000 ft (4,877 m)
- T/O run: Landplane: 625 ft (190 m); Floatplane: 1,280 ft (390 m); Amphibian, on land: 1,360 ft (415 m); Amphibian, on water: 1,280 ft (390 m)
- T/O to 50 ft (15 m): Landplane: 1,205 ft (367 m); Floatplane: 2,070 ft (631 m); Amphibian, on land: 2,185 ft (666 m); Amphibian, on water: 2,070 ft (631 m)
- Landing from 50 ft (15 m): Landplane: 1,365 ft (416 m); Floatplane: 1,720 ft (524 m); Amphibian, on land: 1,490 ft (454 m); Amphibian, on water: 1,720 ft (524 m)
- Landing run: Landplane: 480 ft (146 m); Floatplane: 735 ft (224 m); Amphibian, on land: 1,025 ft (312 m); Amphibian, on water: 735 ft (224 m)
- Range at econ cruising speed, with long-range tanks, no reserve: Landplane: 1,055 nm (1,215 miles; 1,955 km); Floatplane: 946 nm (1,090 miles; 1,754 km); Amphibian: 946 nm (1,090 miles; 1,754 km); Ski-plane: 829 nm (955 miles; 1,537 km)
- Range at max cruising speed, standard fuel, no reserve: Landplane: 603 nm (695 miles; 1,118 km); Floatplane, amphibian: 547 nm (630 miles; 1,014 km); Ski-plane: 538 nm (620 miles; 998 km)
- Range at max cruising speed, with long-range tanks, no reserve: Landplane: 803 nm (925 miles; 1,489 km); Floatplane, amphibian: 725 nm (835 miles; 1,344 km); Ski-plane 712 nm (820 miles; 1,320 km)
- Photos, John Shupek, Copyright © 2009 Skytamer Images (Skytamer.com). All Rights Reserved
- Wikepedia. Cessna 180
- Taylor, John W. R. (ed.) Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1975-76. London, Jane's Yearbooks, 1975, ISBN 0-531 03250-7, pp 303-304.
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