Cessna 180F Skywagon
Single-engine six-seat conventional-gear high-wing monoplane, U.S.A.

Archive Photos

Cessna 180F Skywagon (N2146Z, c/n 18051246) at the Tillamook Air Museum, Tillamook, OR (Photos by John Shupek)

Cessna 180 Overview 2

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.

Development 2

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.

Design 2

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 2

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.

Variants 2

Civil Operators 2

Military Operators 2

Aircraft Type Club 2

The Cessna 180 is supported by an active aircraft type club, The Cessna Pilots Association.

Cessna Model 180 Skywagon Specifications and Performance Data 3




Tail Unit

Landing Gear

Power Plant



Electronics and Equipment

Electronics and Equipment


Weights and Loadings

Performance at Max T/O weight


  1. Photos, John Shupek, Copyright © 2009 Skytamer Images (Skytamer.com). All Rights Reserved
  2. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Cessna 180
  3. 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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