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Thread: PA-18 Changes by Year and S/N

  1. #1
    S2D's Avatar
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    PA-18 Changes by Year and S/N

    Well somebody needs do it, So I will start a thread on the
    Changes Piper made to the Supercub over the years and add to it as time permits

    Please add known changes or correct me when wrong and I will put them on the orginal Post
    * means unknown or unverified.

    1949 S/N 1 ..............................Piper built first Super Cub C-90 equipped
    *1950......................................105 Lycoming and Flaps listed as option
    1950 S/N 18-357 and up............Reinforcement channel added under brake pedals
    1950 S/N 18-469 and up............ Revised Fuel system
    1951 S/N 18-549 to 18-1214...... 125 HP available
    1951 S/N 18-549 and up.............Revised trim system
    1951 S/N 18-665 and up ........... Battery installation behind rear header tank **
    1951 S/N 18-1059 and up...........Revised Fuselage Fitting -TW attach bracket
    1952 S/N 18-1215 to 18-1969.....135 HP Available
    1952 S/N 18-1262 to 18-2146...... A model available with 125 HP and 135 HP*
    1952 S/N 18-1281 and up .......... relocated Data Plate to cabin floorboard (PA-18A S/N 1270 and up)
    *1953 S/N 2891.........................125 engines no longer available
    1953 S/N 18-1970 to 18-3013......135 HP available
    1953 S/N 18-1970 and up ............Changed Control Stick shape
    1953 S/N 18-2147 to 18-3013.......A model available with 135 HP
    1953 S/N 18-2168 and up............ Air Vent added to top of boot cowl
    1953 S/N 18-2191 and up............ Carb Heat and Cabin Heat Controls changed
    1953 S/N 18-2214 to 18-2456 ......105 Special military trainer produced
    1953 S/N 18-2520 to 18-2524 ......Equipped with Special flap handle, seat and toe brakes per SK449
    1953 S/N 18-2945 and up............. Added grease zerk to front stab trim link
    1954 S/N 18-3014 and up ........... Changed to aluminum door handle
    1954 S/N 18-3381 and up ............Changed fuel selector mounting bracket (incl 10 earlier cubs)
    *1954 S/N 18-3781.....................Added 150 HP, Beefed up Fuselage,Gross Weight Changed, Added more Ribs to Wing, changed flap return spring and Changed VNE
    1955 S/N 18-4315 and up............Replaced Rudder pedal stops with Heel Plates
    1957 S/N 18-5434 and up............Scott 3200 installed on all PA18A models
    1959 S/N 18-6964 and up.............Changed to Round Style Air Filter
    ....... S/N 18-7633 and up ............ 90 hp versions no longer offered or eligible
    *1961 S/N ?................................Metal Belly option on standard 18's
    1963 S/N 18-8020 and up ............Changed boot cowl and instrument panel to Verticle
    *1965 S/N ?................................ Fuselage zinc chromated
    *1965 S/N ? ...............................Fuselage Heliarc Welded
    *1965 S/N ? ...............................More 4130 tubing used in fuselage
    1971 S/N 18-8920 and up............. Switched to Ceconite covering
    1974 S/N 18-7409140 and up ........Alternator equipped
    *1975 S/N 18-7509001 and up.......Scott 3200 installed on all Model
    1977 S/N 18-7709199 ..................Revised Electrical System
    *1978 S/N ? ................................ Cleveland Wheels and Brakes
    *1978 S/N ? ................................Metal Ailerons and Flaps

    All I have Time for tonight
    Last edited by S2D; 03-26-2018 at 08:57 PM.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  2. #2
    S2D's Avatar
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    Couple Things I'd Like To Find

    1. When Fuselage S/N plate was moved from overhead tube to behind instrument panel
    2. When Clevelands became standard equipment
    3. When An Alternator became an option
    4. What S/N were the control surfaces changed to metal.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  3. #3
    S2D's Avatar
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    Also I have virtually no Knowledge of changes past 1978 so if anyone that does would like to chime in, please do so
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.
    Likes lancef53 liked this post

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    giangab's Avatar
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    One interesting point to know: I understand esrly fuselage frames had no providion for flaps. When flapped versions were introduced provisions were made for flap control keeping distinct fuselage frames for non flapped and flapped.
    At a certain time fuselage frames were standatdized with flap control parts welded on all.
    ??????


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  5. #5
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    I saw a couple late 50’s 90hp with the flap pulley brackets and flap seat frame but no flaps


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    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2D View Post
    Couple Things I'd Like To Find

    1. When Fuselage S/N plate was moved from overhead tube to behind instrument panel
    2. When Clevelands became standard equipment
    3. When An Alternator became an option
    4. What S/N were the control surfaces changed to metal.
    And the later 1979 and later had the frame tag welded to the rear seat cross tube. I cut them off and weld them on the frame when doing the removable cross tube.
    Steve Pierce

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    Thanks StuBob thanked for this post

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by giangab View Post
    One interesting point to know: I understand esrly fuselage frames had no providion for flaps. When flapped versions were introduced provisions were made for flap control keeping distinct fuselage frames for non flapped and flapped.
    At a certain time fuselage frames were standatdized with flap control parts welded on all.
    ??????


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    That has not been my experience. I have a 1952 L18C/PA18-95 and it has all the flap pulley stuff including the handle attachment to the seat. Like Tom have seen the same on a lot of the 90 hp Super Cubs.
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

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    Mine is a ‘56 90hp PA-18 still with original fuselage. I don’t have flaps but fuselage has flap pully fittings welded in. Original seat base has flap lever mount welded on also.

  9. #9
    giangab's Avatar
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    Well, the one I am restoring is a PA18-95 1954 has all welded flap parts and no flaps. I thought the fiselage fram had been replaced for any reason, but instead it could well be the original one!

    Another question: there is a small plate welded on the upper cross tube, above the pilot seat, with a punched number on it. This number is different from the 18xxxx s/n: what does it mean? Is there a cross reference with s/n ?

  10. #10
    scubber's Avatar
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    I had a conversation with the late Frank Swinehart, Sr. regarding the same fittings that our 59' had, when it left Lock Haven w/ a C-90. Frank had been the lead welder on the Super cub line for many years. He said in late 50's/early 60's there was only -1- line for the frames Common practice was that a frame was pulled off that line when an order came in, say for a C-90. He pointed out that our frame even has a few tabs for the spray hopper. Meaning it had been pulled for "ag ", and was pulled again to complete a different order that most likely had an earlier delivery date. Larry C.
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  11. #11
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giangab View Post
    Well, the one I am restoring is a PA18-95 1954 has all welded flap parts and no flaps. I thought the fiselage fram had been replaced for any reason, but instead it could well be the original one!

    Another question: there is a small plate welded on the upper cross tube, above the pilot seat, with a punched number on it. This number is different from the 18xxxx s/n: what does it mean? Is there a cross reference with s/n ?
    That is the build number. The door has the same number since they were custom fit to each from. usually a few numbers off of the serial number. Clyde Smith has the original build documents for $10 with these numbers, optional equipment etc.
    Steve Pierce

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  12. #12
    giangab's Avatar
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    Thanks all.
    How to contact Clyde Smith?


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    I don’t recall Piper offering the metal belly option on standard cubs until about 76 -77 rather than 1961. We wanted them for our sprayer conversions but was not an option. I think it was offered same year that Cleveland wheels and brakes became standard along with the new paint designs and colors. Blue, green, orange or red trim. Interiors were any color you wanted as long as it was black. Toggle switches for mags and stall warning came along about then as well I think.
    Ed

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    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giangab View Post
    Thanks all.
    How to contact Clyde Smith?


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    http://www.cubdoctor.com
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

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    S2D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cubpilot2 View Post
    I don’t recall Piper offering the metal belly option on standard cubs until about 76 -77 rather than 1961. We wanted them for our sprayer conversions but was not an option. I think it was offered same year that Cleveland wheels and brakes became standard along with the new paint designs and colors. Blue, green, orange or red trim. Interiors were any color you wanted as long as it was black. Toggle switches for mags and stall warning came along about then as well I think.
    I've got a 75 with the metal belly, so that might have been the start.
    Also has an alcor alternator but I need to see if htat was added after.
    I need to find the pilots handbooks. it lists the S/N that the electrical system was changed. I know it was before the 77 model
    Lot of mid 70's had clevelands but again that might have been a customer requested conversion.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  16. #16
    giangab's Avatar
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    Wow found stamped number on right window frame matching number on frame welded plate.


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    [QUOTE=S2D;714015]I've got a 75 with the metal belly, so that might have been the start.
    Also has an alcor alternator but I need to see if htat was added after.
    I need to find the pilots handbooks. it lists the S/N that the electrical system was changed. I know it was before the 77 model
    Lot of mid 70's had clevelands but again that might have been a customer requested conversion.[/QUOTEhad the updated electric system, a factory installed beacon on the turtle deck, and Cleveland wheels and brakes.
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!

  18. #18
    giangab's Avatar
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    One further question about serial number and frame number: can they be different?


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    S2D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giangab View Post
    One further question about serial number and frame number: can they be different?


    Inviato dal mio iPhone utilizzando SuperCub.Org
    Always are different
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  20. #20
    S2D's Avatar
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    Guess we hit our limit for Edits !!
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  21. #21
    S2D's Avatar
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    I know of one that has PA-18-135 on the data plate but came from the factory with a 150.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  22. #22
    Stew's Avatar
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    I need to find the pilots handbooks. it lists the S/N that the electrical system was changed. I know it was before the 77 model
    These are extracts from the handbooks if they are of any help.

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    I have serial #18-2124 a L18-C. Airworthiness cert has is from 1958 but the FAA registration does not have a manufacture date. Data I have dug up from the FAA has it at Ft. Bliss in 1958. Anybody had any luck getting any data from Piper on manufacturing data. I am curious to the actual MFR year.

  24. #24
    jnorris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2D View Post
    Please add known changes or correct me when wrong and I will put them on the original Post
    * means unknown or unverified.


    ....... S/N 18-7633 and up ............ 90 hp versions no longer offered or eligible
    You can add "1961" to this line. Your serial number is correct. According to my information, the last 90 hp Super Cub was 18-7632. I took some time to try to locate this airplane, but it doesn't seem to exist anymore. At least, I couldn't track it down.

    My 1960 90 hp Super Cub has all the flap stuff in it as well, as per the discussion above.
    Joe


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    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnorris View Post
    You can add "1961" to this line. Your serial number is correct. According to my information, the last 90 hp Super Cub was 18-7632. I took some time to try to locate this airplane, but it doesn't seem to exist anymore. At least, I couldn't track it down.

    My 1960 90 hp Super Cub has all the flap stuff in it as well, as per the discussion above.
    I Maintain 18-5881 and it has all the flap stuff in it, its a 57 90hp full electrics and two wing tanks
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    1979 they switched from the brass plug fuel selector to the plastic plug fuel selector.

    18-1 thru 18-7909039 used brass plug brass valve
    18-7909040 thru 18-8109086 used plastic plug brass valve
    Last edited by Supertwotwo; 06-06-2018 at 04:39 PM.

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    S2D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnorris View Post
    You can add "1961" to this line. Your serial number is correct. According to my information, the last 90 hp Super Cub was 18-7632. I took some time to try to locate this airplane, but it doesn't seem to exist anymore. At least, I couldn't track it down.

    My 1960 90 hp Super Cub has all the flap stuff in it as well, as per the discussion above.
    Thanks. I would but they shut my editing off a long time ago.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  28. #28
    S2D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supertwotwo View Post
    1979 they switched from the brass plug fuel selector to the plastic plug fuel selector.

    18-1 thru 18-7909039 used brass plug brass valve
    18-7909040 thru 18-8109086 used plastic plug brass valve
    Thanks. Maybe one
    of the steves could edit it.
    I may be wrong but that probably won't stop me from arguing about it.

  29. #29
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gravytime View Post
    I have serial #18-2124 a L18-C. Airworthiness cert has is from 1958 but the FAA registration does not have a manufacture date. Data I have dug up from the FAA has it at Ft. Bliss in 1958. Anybody had any luck getting any data from Piper on manufacturing data. I am curious to the actual MFR year.
    Clyde Smith has the original build records. Probably a 1952-54 or so.
    http://www.cubdoctor.com
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

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