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Thread: PA-18 vs. PA-12?

  1. #1

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    PA-18 vs. PA-12?

    Hi - having only owned a 180hp PA-18 can anyone tell me how the two compare? Someone wants to trade me a PA-12 for my dissambled Widgeon. I just don't know how a 12 will stack up against an 18. Isn't the wing incidense less, thus longer T.O. roll but higher cruise speed? Not sure thats a good thing in a bush plane. Casey

  2. #2
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    I have had both.

    There are all sorts of 12 mods including a change of the wing AOI.
    IF, the 12 has all sorts of 18 parts to include gear legs, cub AOI and tail feathers, then it really will not be any faster than most SCs.

    It will be roomier,(is that a real word) and not land or take-off quite as short, but fairly close.

    It all depends on what sort of 12 she has been built into. There are a few out there with speed props that cruise right along and still give good short field performance compared to other planes.

    You did not say what type of engine and setup the 12 has.

    After that 180hp SC you will have a hard time finding anything else that trips your trigger.

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    Reckon a Husky might trip it too?

    Mike

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    Yes the 180 SC was nice! Oh well. Don't think I would take a Husky, but a Scout might be of interest, just because they are so cheap relative to a Cub. Then I could have cash for the balance.
    This guy has several 12's, one with most of the Cub mods and a 150hp engine. He thinks it will go for 90K or so. Then he has some older ones not fabiced or finished. Parts projects.
    So in a nut shell, the 12 won't ever beat an 18 into the air(at the same weight). But what is the actual T.O. roll difference going to be? Enough to worry about in the real world?

  5. #5
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    My 12 was 300ft take-off and around 400ft landing roll since my brakes were shot. Loaded.

    My PA-11 will get off in 290 ft and land around 300ft.

    My neighbors VG super cub will get off in 200 and land around there as well.

    I could beat some SCs drivers with my 12 because of technique. But would get my butt kicked when a real hot SC driver would come along.
    A Husky will get off as fast a SC, but not land as well in the real bush.

    I have seen Steve Bryant get one of his Producers off the ground faster that many SCs,,, so technique has a LOT to do with it.

    12s are usually more comfortable than a 18 or Husky and the back seat has lots of room. Most fly hands off due to the wide place in the body. \
    But then again it all depends on the seats, and the set-up.
    A full glass seaplane door on a 12 is pretty cool and it is great for loading gear and moose quarters.

    A 90 grand 12 would have to be extremely tricked out to be worth that...They do not yet have the weird cult following that drove the SCs prices into the stratosphere

  6. #6
    SJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark
    They do not yet have the weird cult following that drove the SCs prices into the stratosphere
    Hey! I resemble that remark!

  7. #7

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    I was curious about the 90K price to. A run down of T-A-P show 4 from 33-43K. All rebuilt b/w 94 and present. There is one in there for 90K in Montana that is supposed to be the Super Cub mod version. I can't go for it though. They don't even have 180 hp engines. Thanks for that input on performance. It sounds like a good 12 not far behind a SC. Were those perforances with full loads? I understand the legal Max Gross on a 12 is 1950 vs 1750 for a SC. Is this true. Thanks.

  8. #8

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    None of you guys know anyone who wants a Widgeon huh?

  9. #9
    Marc Olson's Avatar
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    At what price?

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    100k for the Widgeon. Will consider trading a Cub and cash or C-180 and cash.

  11. #11
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    I would love to have a widgeon. I have some kids, a dog, and a house I could trade. I could park the widgeon next to the cub and live there until the lawyers find me.

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    You NEED a Widgeon in Homer Alex. Come on, lets work a deal.

  13. #13
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    Little Floats, turn me on
    Cuz, it just barley floats em

    But a Widgeon, would be like heaven
    My excitment ,stiff and tall like a totem

    But cash in the hundreds, I won't likely see
    Unless I rob a bank on my off time, and manage to stay free

    Then down in central America, I'll be be forever in hiddin
    Livin in a broke-down old Widgeon, on a jungle river a-riddin

  14. #14
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Is that a 300' takeoff in a 12 loaded????

    Help me, how are you getting that?

    Some 12s have a 1750 GW, but got the mod to 1935.

    Husky: (sorry to offend) It really SUCKS when you slow down to 40, have the steelhead stream under you as you are getting ready to touch down on the beach, and the very light wind off the hill touches that outside wing and tips you ever so slightly.....

    AND YOU RUN OUT OF ALIERON AND CAN NOT GET IT BACK!!!

    Flew a Husky (modle before the gw increase) and It ALWAYS was out of alieron before touchdown. Had to wheel land fast at all times......
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

  15. #15
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    It had the AOI mod, SC tail, SC trim, SC gear, and 82 inch prop on a 150 horse, droop tips, ext flaps.

    As for the 300 I did it at a measured 99s short take-off clinic in Wasilla, with full tanks, two guys and two packs. It was not at super gross weight, and the inside of the plane was stripped down for bush flying.

    Hold brakes, full power, (or spin on one tire for the shot put method)raise tail, let roll, at 40 push the stick forward until the tail was real high, THEN yank bank like crazy, (gets the wing to really swing up) the tail wheel would sometimes bounce off if I was a second too fast.

    I agree about the Huskys. They are the answer to a question that was not asked.

    I can land a C-206 in darn near any place that a Husky will go, IF there are steep approcahes. That's an Alaska 135 modified C-206 for you non-AK types.

    If I had that much money, I wold buy a beater bush cub and a 180 horse 172 or 180. Then you would have two planes to answer the (go slow or go fast), question.

  16. #16

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    It sounds like a -12 will make a workable bush / hunting machine. More rommy then a Super Cub, not quite as quick into the air. The dollar value seem to be an issue though. Do I get an old -12 and try and modify it myself or get with one that is already close to what I want. I may have to go with the least expensive option up front so I can put the cash into my house. A house with no payments is the goal and we are close. Selling the Widgeon should get us in all paid off. Then I could afford to get the plane I wanted. So, the question is, after the house is paid for do I want to put money into a -12 or into a -18? I think it will be harder to sell a -12 for the money you have into it. A tricked out Super Cub would eventually sell for that money though. What are you guys thinking? One more wrench in the works...I have kids that like to go hunting too. -12 carries more people....choices, choices!

  17. #17
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    If you need lots more room with Bush performance, Get with Steve Bryant and have him build you a Producer.

  18. #18
    mvivion's Avatar
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    AKtango58, not to be defensive about Huskys, but:

    I don't know what was up with the Husky you flew, but powerful and effective ailerons are one of the real positive aspects of Huskys. The Cub runs out of aileron, not the Husky. I have had a wing picked up in the Husky often at very slow speeds (40 mph or less), and the ailerons will put it right back where I want it. If you really want to run out of aileron, fly a Cub that's had the wings extended, but kept the stock ailerons. If you extend the wings on a Cub, you really should extend the ailerons as well.

    Alex, the Husky will get in short, even with a steep approach, but it requires specific technique and skill on the part of the pilot. It isn't that easy to do, and if you try to do it like you would with a Cub, it won't work. The Cub is definitely the easier airplane to work in that sort of situation, though.

    As to your buying a bush ratted out Cub and a 180 hp 172 or 170 both for the price of the Husky (or a top end Cub, for that matter), you may not have priced those lately, and in any case, you'd be spending lots of time and money fixing what you owned, as opposed to flying it.

    One of the greatest things that's happened with Cubs is the proliferation of new fuselages, which will keep these airplanes flying for decades and decades. Not having to worry about what's lurking inside that tubing counts for something, and there's a lot of "stuff" in a lot of Cub fuselages. The Huskys will get there eventually, as well, though. Sometimes, new really is better, but bring your checkbook.

    As to the 12 vs 18 comparison, I would wager that 99 % or more of the recreational pilots out there wouldn't notice the difference in performance between a good solid 18 and a 12 with the 18 mods. My old 12 (bone stock) was a delightful and utilitarian airplane, and would do everything I needed it to do. With a bigger motor, flaps and Cub tail, I'd personally rather have the 12, simply for the room and speed.

    There are lots of reasons to own a Super Cub or a Cruiser, but if a difference of 50 feet in takeoff run is your prime criteria for the decision, you really better bring a good bankroll or understanding insurance company, cause you're working pretty tight. Doesn't mean that's a bad idea, but most folks simply would never be concerned about that sort of performance difference, since they never go into places that tight.

    For what it's worth, I have always loved the 12. Kinda chunky, not unlike some of the rest of us, but its a nice little plane.

    That said, you can buy a wide body Cub, etc, etc, and $170,000 later, you can have an airplane that's both an 18 and have a little more room.

    It all depends on what you want, and how much you're willing to pay for it.

    MTV

  19. #19
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    During the last month I flew two Huskies that were totally decked out with IFR gear and fancy (non-adjustable )seats. They were $160-$170 K birds.

    Then I jumped into my buddies 52K plus another 10K in upgrades, sorta IFR Super Cub with VGs. That cub will kick the heck out of the Husky any day of the week UNLESS it is in speed. The Husky is much faster.
    Granted I have only flown 3 different Huskies, but I do not like their heavy weight, and mushy controls at stall. Maybe you have one with some sort of super rigging or something.

    As for me , you could not give me one of the things (Husky). EXCEPT, AS A FLOAT PLANE. THEY MAKE A GREAT FLOAT PLANE WITH THE ROOM OF A CUB and lots of get up and go. The floats let a Husky slip like a cub.

    A $70K cub and a $85K C-180 still come out to two planes for the price of a tricked out IFR Husky.

    Or you can go even less expensive like I did. I have a nice rebuilt, 170 smoh, PA-11-90 with tundra tires, skiis and floats, for $42,500 total.
    (I have put 200 float hours on it this summer)
    For another $60K I can buy a C-170 with a 180 horse conversion, or a 160 horse C-172 for around $50k. Or the rebuilt C-170 145 horse that is for sale down here for $42K.
    Thus two planes for around $100k. One to go fast to Anchorage only to discover I still need a car there, and one to slip in and out of lakes in the mountains.

  20. #20
    bearsnack
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    We run a PA-12 with 180 horse, AOI changed, 18 wings, Charlie Center droop leading edge, extended wings with 8' flaps, 18 tail, 18 gear, pawnee prop, on a 135 certificate. In my opinion if I could afford the same for a personal airplane over a super cub I would take the modified 12. But your going to pay $80,000 plus to get this, and you need most of those mods to get in that SC performance range. If you already have a Super Cub you should try the 12, you can always sell it, they are holding their value.
    Your neighbor in the valley,

  21. #21

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    That sounds like the -12 I want. Plus a belly pod for cargo. After 6 years with out a cargo pod on my SC, I really am looking forward to having one on my next plane. Even if I have to go over to the "Dark Side" and get a C-180!

  22. #22

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    Just so somebody keeps you grounded a C 180 won't be 1/10th the fun of a piper cub. Remember why you bought it, that first day. I own two but if I had to give up one the heavy iron goes.

  23. #23
    Redbaron180's Avatar
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    I have a Cub and a C 180, if one had to go it would be the Cub. That is not because of the fun factor though, the cub is defiantly more fun, But I live on an Island and I need the speed and load caring ability of the 180. For my purposes the heavy iron stays, But I sure hope the Cub does too.
    Ron

  24. #24

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    12 & 18

    My Dad and i have owned a 12 and currently own an 18 the 12 was more of a work horse than the 18. 18 takes off about 50 feet shorter than the 12 full loaded. Both are good airplanes.

  25. #25
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    IF, Piper had put a big engine and had flaps on the original PA-12, then they would have sold them like crazy.

    The only reason they never made as many was because of the stock undersized engine (originally only a 100 horse 0-235 C or a 115 horse 0-235 C1) and the lack of flaps. This made sales kinda sluggish.

    They only made 3758 PA-12s...

    Fortunately a heavily modified J-5 will fill the bill but the paperwork will alway have that damned J-5 max gross weight.

  26. #26

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    we had a 150hp engine and extended flaps on our 12. it was a beast.

  27. #27

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    Great conversation...I have a J5C...original...with 850's...approx 950lbs...with a 0235C...at around 2200' ---80 F day with full tanks (36 gal) ..2 people...myself and my instructor .I as a relitively new pilot can get it off the ground in 600'... I am sure of this because my instructors strip in not much longer than that... One day ...after practicing spins with my instructor...we got down low and slow and went looking for some sheds...after finding what looked like a good shed...I decided to land on a near by gravel bar....lucky I was with a real bush pilot...after coming to a stop and over shooting my mark by 100 ' ...we got out of the plane looked at the strip....My instructor said ...wow...that was short.( for me )...I tooked out my GPS and marked the spot where my plane was sitting...and walked to the other end of the gravel bar and looked at the distance from my plane....
    it was .10 of mile...yah...520 feet...It was a very warm day in the Copper Basin ... well over 80...2400' elev...and much higher density alt...needless to say...after picking up the shed...I quikly hopped in the back seat...looked at Art and said... I'm ready....Art got us out...about 450' T.O. roll he estimated...my J5...with a good bush pilot performas well....and the learning goes on...and on ...and on...

    The J5 keeps me very happy...even stock...

  28. #28

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    I just put pictures if the cub i just build with my dad. it on page 58, blue and white. has 29 inch tires, 150hp engine with the leading edge tuned exauhst, dakota cub wings, and a custom panel..

  29. #29

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    sounds like a pretty nice plane j5ron, here your plane would get off in about half of what it is now. what color is it??

  30. #30
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    For a few years I had a J-5A (Miss Margarettaville) that had PA-12 wings and 18 gear and tail. She also had a 0-290 lyc engine and a 78 inch prop. She weighed 1000 empty with an electrical system. She still flys out of Lake Hood. The only proplem was the 1440 gross weight. Lregal anyway. I loaded her up around 1700-1800 (accidentally of course) on more than one occasion.


    For the price, economy and short strips I sure like my little J-3c rebuilt with Atlee Dodge mods to a PA-11-90. Everyone who flys in her cannot believe just how fast a 90 horse can make you climb. She is on floats now and she still can beat lots of other planes off the lakes.

  31. #31

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    We have a lot of Atlee Dodge mods on our cub. Cost a lot of money but worth every penny..

  32. #32
    PA12driver's Avatar
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    My PA-12 is about as utility is they get, built right (only thing I would do different is move the ailerons out further. it has been modified inside to be both light and roomy, on 31 BW, Bush Tailwheel, fresh 160hp, and 42 borer, it does just fine I fly it with what I consider one of the best SC pilots around and with the same load it gets off about 25ft longer consistently. Is a SC better?? all things are relative, I haul a lot more crap into 99% of the places I would take a SC. On floats is where the room really makes it shine!

    (mine is for sale to make room for my experimental) PM for details and have a look in the gallery for photos.

    Tim

    PS: I would have either a 12 or a SC over a husky any day!! (Sorry Matt) but I just hate seeing them trees coming at me faster then I can think!

  33. #33

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    Sounds like a nice 12. Ours had a 150 on it and we could get out of anywhere a cub would. Could fit 3 caribou and a black bear hide with full gas and 1 person.

  34. #34

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    This has is a good thread!

  35. #35
    StewartB
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    Just so somebody keeps you grounded a C 180 won't be 1/10th the fun of a piper cub.
    I took my C-180 hunting past Thursday. People and gear added up right around 1100#, fuel not included. I landed on a 1000' strip cut in the trees in a 30mph plus direct crosswind. Sporty, to say the least. Although the landing required intense concentration, it wasn't dangerous. If I was in my 12, I couldn't have landed once that afternoon, let alone make the two trips that would have been required. Sometimes, big and heavy is a good thing.

    Todays return wasn't much better. Windy, 600' ceiling, and Lake Hood was IFR. One trip was enough.

    Sometimes I fly for fun. Mostly I fly to places in order to have fun. If the Cessna gets me there and my Piper can't, which was more fun? And my 180 is an absolute blast to fly, too.

    There is no such thing as "one best plane." They're all good.

    SB
    (Lover of Spam Cans, and other planes as well.)

  36. #36
    PA12driver's Avatar
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    I personally think one of the best combinations is an C185 on floats and Hydraulic skiis, and a SC/12 on Big Tires.

    Having owned a 53 180, 77-185, 1/2 dozen SC's and currently a 12.

    SB you are absolutely right!

    Tim

  37. #37
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    Stewart: I took my C-180 hunting past Thursday. People and gear added up right around 1100#, fuel not included. I landed on a 1000' strip cut in the trees in a 30mph plus direct crosswind. Sporty, to say the least. Although the landing required intense concentration, it wasn't dangerous. If I was in my 12, I couldn't have landed once that afternoon, let alone make the two trips that would have been required. Sometimes, big and heavy is a good thing.

    SB
    (Lover of Spam Cans, and other planes as well.)
    That said, did you get your moose?? My partner and I both got our moose using my PA-18. That Cub has put more fish and game on the table then anything elas I ever owned. Crash

  38. #38

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    I am glad I have never flown a 180 with a p-ponk conversion, I would probably fall in love and cheat on my cub.

  39. #39
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    Stewartb,

    Good post. Well said.

    MTV

  40. #40
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    1957 180A, Horton Stol, Texas Skyway 250 hp engine, 670' takeoff with 707 lbs. of moose, and fuel for 1.7 hours and survival gear. The bar was soft sand, and the brush was just the other side of the small river. Sporty, but it would do it all day long...

    About the AOI change on a 12, please expand! The bushwheels made the plane fly much better, (angle of attack), so I am looking at extending gear etc to try and get her takeing off better.

    One down side of a 12, if you are not smart enough to limit your load, you can definatly put more in than you have room to get her out.
    ]
    I did get my moose. the 12 struck again.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

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