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Thread: Cessna 180 engine options

  1. #1
    skukum12's Avatar
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    Cessna 180 engine options

    Howdy Gents

    My 54 Cessna 180 has a tired O-470 J11. I hear that a K or an R motor will drop in with out changing the cowl or the motor mount. There are minor exhaust and intake changes, but overall it is a quick clean swap from what I am told.

    Is this true? I need input so I don't go throwing away money on wrong ideas.

    Thanks, Joe
    "Always looking up"

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    Steve's Aircraft (Steve)'s Avatar
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    No, it is NOT a straight drop in for an R motor. A K motor may fit in OK with little mods but an R is a different matter. The motor mount is different, the exhaust is different, the intake riser system is different, the carb is different, and the baffle system is different. The STC leaves a lot to be desired on the instructions for installation. We did a J to R change out about a year ago and ran into all of those problems.

    Steve

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    skukum12's Avatar
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    Thanks Steve
    What is the real reason behind "if it's a J, walk away" besides lower than rated HP? Can the J be powered up? I hear if the studs are correct, the J can take K jugs. I'd think this would be a good way to go without changing a boatload of other items.
    "Always looking up"

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    SJ's Avatar
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    I always heard A or J walk away. The J I had ran great and unless I am mistaken we used that motor mount on the IO520e case we did my PPonked with.


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    aktango58's Avatar
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    My memory says there is a stud difference and cylinder difference from j to K, and there might be a better crank in the K and newer...

    I had a K, and when I needed the engine I went to Texas Skyways and had them put one on. Same cowl, and other stuff, but by the time we inspected engine mounts and such I had almost a new fwf...

    never regretted it after I wrote the check.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

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    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skukum12 View Post
    Thanks Steve
    What is the real reason behind "if it's a J, walk away" besides lower than rated HP?
    I believe it's because the J and A jugs have less cooling fins. Here in Ak, it's no issue. Elsewhere??????

    You'll need new baffling if you go to the later jugs. The J/A style will NOT work.

    PS, I know a story about a guy (everyone knows the guy) who turbo'ed some J's. Probably the highest HP/Weight ratio EVER. He liked the J's cause he said the bottom ends were really strong. D

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    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartB View Post
    ....are not compatible with the Pponk upgrade if that's in your future.

    SB
    umm.... wasn't there a pponk model year cutoff about then as far as built in fuselage engine mount structure/design.... or something... not that I have not seen it, but as far as using the STC directly???

  8. #8
    180Marty's Avatar
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    I have a K that replaced an A. No STC needed. You can use an R if you use the oil pan and induction "Y" that the carb bolts to from a J. My friend's 1955 had a J and it's bottom end with big though bolts was just like an R and he could have bolted K,L,R, or S cylinders on.

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    I'm running the J in mine, it has the new style steel insert pistons in as well as the new exhaust guides. The only problem I have is keeping the oil cool here in FL in the summer, below 80 OAT it does fine. I have a standard size stand up cooler but may go to a long one. The temps are manageable in the summer, I just have to leave the cowl flaps open till I get to cooler air. Like everyone else, I wish it had more power but I probably wouldn't be be happy with 400hp if I had it.

    On the swap to a K, You can keep your mount by swapping the legs from the J and you will need to put new flanges on the exhaust as the J is 2 bolt and K is 4.

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    FdxLou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartB View Post
    As far as I know the Pponk engine upgrade applies to all 180s. I think the early 182s weren't covered but it's been a while since I did mine and I really didn't pay much attention to the 182s on the list. At that time my engine mod STC was Pponk but there was another STC required from a guy in Oregon to install it. I think Pponk owns the installation STC now. Maybe the model list has changed? Thinking back it seems that Texas Skyways' STC was more focused on 182s than 180s. Maybe that one has some 180 models not included. A friend has the TS big motor on a '59 but he's the only guy I know with a TS engine.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continental_O-470

    SB
    My 1964 G model 180 is a Texas Skyways O-550FTS.

    Lou

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    FdxLou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartB View Post
    Nice! Now I know TWO guys. Finished that interior yet?

    Stewart
    Not yet. I've made it my life's work. Hope to have it done by mid April....too many things keep getting in the way!

    Lou

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    SJ's Avatar
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    Like the ballet?


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    SteveE's Avatar
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    I'll help u out anytime Lou.


    Mobile SteveE, Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    aktango58's Avatar
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    SteveE,

    You dance Ballet?

    So many talents!
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!

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    skukum12's Avatar
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    Thank you gentlemen. After much questioning, and reading your replies, things look like this: my J case has the right studs to go to K, L, or R jugs. I also have the correct crank to use the R jugs. Any jug change (K, R, etc) will require 4 bolt intake and exhaust flanges. Since I am able to use my J case, I can use my mount, my intake Y, cowl, and will exchange my carb for a newer version.

    So the next project is finding out what 'seaplane' prop will go with the project. Looks my stocker prop was built in '59 and the boys at Dominion Prop in Anchorage (Jerrry was out of the shop, will call him tomorry) say it is obsolete and not worth the time and money to find parts. Evidently much more cost effective to get a new or a good used prop.

    Soooo, what is the seaplane prop you boys like for a 180 that will never see floats? A side note: the prop was OH'd in '91 with a 5 year or 1200 hour tbo, is this tbo somthing that is like the engine tbo, in that you can fly it forever as long as it passes inspection and not for hire?
    "Always looking up"

  16. #16
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Yes, on the prop TBO.

    I have a couple of choices for your motor, maybe. 88" and 90" two-blade McCauley.

    D

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    skukum12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Calkins View Post
    Yes, on the prop TBO.

    I have a couple of choices for your motor, maybe. 88" and 90" two-blade McCauley.

    D
    So Dave, you have one of each as spares in the hangar? For sale at a great price?! btw, where are the smileys?
    "Always looking up"

  18. #18
    Matt 7GCBC's Avatar
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    Dave, Seems you recently had some ideas on fuel injection on the 0520 engines. Are you working on an STC or know a route for field approval? Other than FI is there opinion or preference about using a 520 case as I am starting with the 470? I notice that's what el gran poobah did with his PPonk.... Anyone have a line on a good IO-520 case?

    Skukum, A friend has been very happy with his smooth running J with R jugs. Will be interested what you pay for your prop. Don't think mine will apply to your swap or be available in time as I'll be doing things this summer/fall. Would still be helpful to know what a good 88" Mac is worth in trade in.

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    Rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt 7GCBC View Post
    Dave, Seems you recently had some ideas on fuel injection on the 0520 engines. Are you working on an STC or know a route for field approval? Other than FI is there opinion or preference about using a 520 case as I am starting with the 470? I notice that's what el gran poobah did with his PPonk.... Anyone have a line on a good IO-520 case?
    I think Steve knopp has the STC to do this. I also believe it takes the PPonk up to 300 hp. Depending on what case you start with I don't see why there would be a concern about using an O-470 case?

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    Matt, I did a Bendix fuel injection on my 180 with P-ponk motor in 2007. I had Steve put in the fuel pump gears when he built the engine for me using a 470 that he had in 2006, believe it was a U case. I talked to Bob at BJ custom aircraft in Alaska and he did the 337 for me. He went off a old STC from Bendix corporation, he was very helpful in getting this done.

    I know why not just buy a 185? I have a very nice low time airframe and liked what I have so thats what I did. The injection system works great and would do it again! I also had Steve put in 8.5-1 compression pistons in and Lycon did there magic on the ECI cyls.

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    As far as the prop, I did the 83inch MT two blade. I would do it again. Took 40 pounds right of the nose of the plane and pulls harder with less vibration than the 401 3 blade mac. Once you recover from writing the check you'll never look back.

  22. #22
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superchamp View Post
    As far as the prop, I did the 83inch MT two blade. Once you recover from writing the check you'll never look back.
    Until you hit a itty-bitty twig..........or a snowmachine trail marker.

    .....big tires fling a rock forward.

    ......

    ..just joking. I'm really quite jealous.

    SKukum. PM me. I've got a couple in the shed. A 90" that does not go with your crank/counterweights, and an 88 with great blades that might go on your engine. Yes, the price will be right.

    Matt, that's a field approval for an IO-470 on an early 180. There are several 520's with Bendix injection field approved on 180's around here. Absolute RIIPPPPPERS! Seriously great takeoff and climb performance. The ones I'm thinking of have the original compression ratio. It would be hard to beat your later Robby 180 airframe with 300 or more HP's.

    Whether you go from 230 HP to 260 or 300........you WILL notice a difference....but, hey, if you're changing things, and will run 100LL anyway, then go for 300 HP!!

    .....wait.......wait for the smileys DAVE
    Last edited by Dave Calkins; 04-14-2011 at 12:03 PM.

  23. #23
    SuperCub MD's Avatar
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    If you put in the Bendix FI, do you need to put in the 185 fuel system?

    I really like the IO550, and will strongly concider the Airplains conversion when my 470 wears out unless I find something better.

  24. #24
    Dave Calkins's Avatar
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    Mark, the Bendix doesn't have a return.......no header necessary.

    The early 180 with IO-Continental I did (and am waiting another week for the approval) returns to a "T" in the main tank crossover vent line........no header necessary for Continental injection on this FA'ed installation.

    Airplanes system requires header. PM me.

    D

  25. #25
    180Marty's Avatar
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    Until you hit a itty-bitty twig..........or a snowmachine trail marker.
    I was showing my spray pilot friend my MT prop on the 180. He has a new Citabria with MT also. He said someone told him about someone tossing a ball for a dog to retrieve and the dog was so intent on the ball that it ran into the prop and broke a blade off.

  26. #26
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    just an FYI.. but I don't remember the exact details, maybe someone can fill in....

    concerning converting a real 520 to a pponk... BJ did one for a customer, who everyone assumed it would get the higher TBO of the PPonk, but ended up stuck at the 520 TBO..... this was an airtaxi guy, so maybe his fed had something to do with it?

    anyone?

  27. #27
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike mcs repair View Post
    just an FYI.. but I don't remember the exact details, maybe someone can fill in....

    concerning converting a real 520 to a pponk... BJ did one for a customer, who everyone assumed it would get the higher TBO of the PPonk, but ended up stuck at the 520 TBO..... this was an airtaxi guy, so maybe his fed had something to do with it?

    anyone?
    was emailed this
    I saw your post about the Pponk TBO. A buddy of mine got bit by that. His was a Texas Skyways motor advertised with a 2500 hour TBO. FSDO said 1700 hours per the original engine manufacturer’s specs. He’s part 135 so he had to buy a new engine. Ouch!

  28. #28
    skukum12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt 7GCBC View Post
    Skukum, A friend has been very happy with his smooth running J with R jugs. Will be interested what you pay for your prop. Don't think mine will apply to your swap or be available in time as I'll be doing things this summer/fall. Would still be helpful to know what a good 88" Mac is worth in trade in.
    Jerry at Dominion Prop here in Anchorage just quoted me $6800 for the new C203 including shipping. Not bad.
    "Always looking up"

  29. #29
    Charlie Longley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skukum12 View Post
    Thank you gentlemen. After much questioning, and reading your replies, things look like this: my J case has the right studs to go to K, L, or R jugs. I also have the correct crank to use the R jugs. Any jug change (K, R, etc) will require 4 bolt intake and exhaust flanges. Since I am able to use my J case, I can use my mount, my intake Y, cowl, and will exchange my carb for a newer version.
    Skukum I have a friend with a higher time J. And I have some O470R cylinders. Your mods sound good! What are you doing for paperwork? Thanks

  30. #30
    skukum12's Avatar
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    honestly i am not a ppw expert. i do know it is a straight forward mod and is fairly common, so ppw 'should' be easy. i will call my engine guy and get the info from him and post monday for you.

    prolly a boatload of guys here that already have the answer who are more than welcome to chime in.
    "Always looking up"

  31. #31
    1954C180's Avatar
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    The saying I'm familiar with is "If it's an A, you walk way. If it's a J, it's OK". I don't mind sitting behind the J engine in my 180 at all. The only things "wrong" with the O-470J are: It has 2-bolt exhaust flanges at the cylinder heads instead of the 4-bolt flanges found on later engines. This is easily rectified by having thicker / 1/4 inch flanges welded onto the stacks.... The 2-bolt flanges tend to warp and you can get leakage at the port (bad thing if you let it go un-checked...).

    As others have mentioned, the J also has "lightweight" cylinder heads when compared to the later K, L, R etc. engines. This is "rectified" by being "nice" to your cylinders! (watch CHT / EGT temps carefully, operate in "conservative" mode (run a bit more fuel through the engine, don't operate lean of peak, etc.), Be mindful of shock-cooling, ensure the baffling is in good condition, and never take off with your cowl flaps closed....

    If a J still has the 3-ring pistons, oil consumption can be "elevated" when compared to later engines. Maybe I'm lucky, and I don't know if I have 3-ring pistons or 4-ring pistons, but mine goes 20+ hours before I have to add a quart of oil (I think it leaks more than it burns!).

    The good thing about an O-470J is, depending upon which piece of documentation you believe, the J engine is between 25lbs and 35lbs lighter than any of the later engines.

  32. #32
    lowandslo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kougarok View Post
    Skukum I have a friend with a higher time J. And I have some O470R cylinders. Your mods sound good! What are you doing for paperwork? Thanks
    So do either of you guys have a verdict? I am a few days away from my 180 purchase. It is a '55 and has a high time J. Compressions/oil consumption are fine and it was priced very accordingly. I am planning to fly it home and do the engine when necessary. (hopefully can get a few more hours out of her, but have budgeted just in case) I was thinking the Scootair R swap but from what I am reading it is not as simple as their STC makes it sound.
    thanks,
    Juan
    Last edited by lowandslo; 11-27-2011 at 04:00 PM.

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    Charlie Longley's Avatar
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by lowandslo View Post
    So do either of you guys have a verdict? I am a few days away from my 180 purchase. It is a '55 and has a high time J. Compressions/oil consumption are fine and it was priced very accordingly. I am planning to fly it home and do the engine when necessary. (hopefully can get a few more hours out of her, but have budgeted just in case) I was thinking the Scootair R swap but from what I am reading it is not as simple as their STC makes it sound.
    thanks,
    Juan
    I did the Scootair STC and changed my O470J to an O470R. It actually wasn't that hard!
    Last edited by Charlie Longley; 11-30-2011 at 11:09 AM.

  34. #34
    Redman's Avatar
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    I owned a 57 with a O470 built by BPA, Barrett Precesion Engines. The carb/intake was modified etc. Call them for details. I was swinging a 88" black mac. I regularly beat the pants off of 550 powered airplanes when it came to short field work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Redman View Post
    I owned a 57 with a O470 built by BPA, Barrett Precesion Engines. The carb/intake was modified etc. Call them for details. I was swinging a 88" black mac. I regularly beat the pants off of 550 powered airplanes when it came to short field work.
    Really excellent people, just helped me with my new cylinders http://www.bpaengines.com/
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!

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    So what does it take to drop a IO-470 into a 1959 180? What kind of stuff do you need to add, subtract, etc? How much work is it? Is it really just a field approval and does anyone have the copy of it? Currently have an R that is pushing 1900, so just looking for some options. I can't afford anything new, looking for something mid-time to throw in and would like a couple more ponies.

  37. #37
    180Marty's Avatar
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    So what does it take to drop a IO-470 into a 1959 180?
    The Norland STC takes an IO-470 and puts a carburetor on instead of the FI and I think the HP is still up around 260. I think it can also use a 88 inch McCauley seaplane prop from a 230 hp engine.

  38. #38
    Charlie Longley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 180Marty View Post
    The Norland STC takes an IO-470 and puts a carburetor on instead of the FI and I think the HP is still up around 260. I think it can also use a 88 inch McCauley seaplane prop from a 230 hp engine.
    That sounds interesting! Who is Norland? Do you have a link or contact info for them?

  39. #39
    Charlie Longley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lwraith View Post
    So what does it take to drop a IO-470 into a 1959 180? What kind of stuff do you need to add, subtract, etc? How much work is it? Is it really just a field approval and does anyone have the copy of it? Currently have an R that is pushing 1900, so just looking for some options. I can't afford anything new, looking for something mid-time to throw in and would like a couple more ponies.
    It's pretty involved to put a fuel injected motor into an airplane that's carbuerated! Probably better to go to an O520.

  40. #40
    180Marty's Avatar
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    http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgstc.nsf/0/44b225bc1508fb0585256cc1007dc994!OpenDocument&Clic k=

    Re: thoughts on 182 engine upgrade

    by 66skylane » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:18 am
    The Norland isn't a bad option either. My dad has a Norland in his 180 and I have a Pponk in my 182 and we fly together almost weekly and did prior to upgrading either airplane so he have good pre-upgrade data. He is a teeny bit more fuel efficient than my Pponk but I can out climb him (barely) and gained more speed from the Pponk conversion than he did from the Norland.The Norland isn't well known around the flying community which may give the Pponk an edge come resale time. The other advantage of the Pponk is the low compression pistons which I hear likes 87 octane car gas which I can buy for $3.90 locally (ethonol free), though it's not legal so I would never do this of course...


    http://www.rareaircraft.com/N9661B.htm
    Last edited by 180Marty; 12-02-2011 at 11:53 PM.

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