140 as bush plane

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140 as bush plane

Postby pmgrandnord » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:11 pm

Hi everybody,

i'm living up north of Canada in Kangiqsualujjuaq, a little inuit town. (tundra environment) I'm actually looking to buy my first plane a 140 with fabric wings and 0-200 engine. Of course, i don't expect the performances of a SuperCub or even a Cub. I'm more looking for something "half-bush" on wheels and skis. I want something with not bad crusing speed not bad autonomy. So, the 140 seem to be a good compromise in my budget. I might be wrong too.

Is the plane enough solid to take some bump on skis and on wheels ? How solid is the main gear ? Can i put bigger wheel like 8.00X6 or even Airstreak fromAlaskan Bush wheel ? Do it help to have those big wheels ?

Which kind of prop and engine do you have ?

Which distance can i expect for takeoof on hard snow ?

Any input from your own experience will be more than welcome ? There's any of you using a 140 in the Bush... or half-bush ;-)


Thanks

Pascal
Canada
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Postby cfsmv » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:31 pm

Check out the pic's under "Alaska flying" n the Photos section at the top of the page.
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Postby pmgrandnord » Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:14 pm

Yes, thanks. I really like these photos on the beach. I already sended a email to that owner ntwo weeks ago, but unfortunately never got an anwser. :?

Thanks

Pascal
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Postby txaviator » Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:24 pm

I'm running 8.00-6 tires and an Alaskan Bushwheel tailwheel....but I can't offer any advice on the durability AS a bush plane :)
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Postby pmgrandnord » Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:43 pm

Hi Gary,

was wondering which kind of runway you are using your plane (grass, gravel, asphalts, sand)

Thanks

Pascal
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Postby txaviator » Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:10 pm

I've only owned the plane for a little over a year, and have used only asphalt. However, the previous owner (from Minnesota) was based on a grass strip and flew it often from that home field. I even have a photo of my plane after landing on a frozen Minnesota lake (I'll try to find it and post it).

Take care,
Gary Robertson
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Postby Chris Buerk » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:29 pm

Pascal,

I have no idea what kind of experience you have as a pilot, so if this info seems preachy, I apologize.

I bought my 140 (with an O-200 and climb prop) for my own recreational use in Alaska years ago while flying there professionally, and flew it in and out of some really fun places. It's been on gravel bars, beaches, and grass and gravel strips, and has done okay. I have it on 8.50s (which are field-approved) and a Scott 3200 tailwheel. I popped the tailwheel tube once from whacking it on a rock on said "gravel" bar...(rocks look a lot like gravel when viewed from the air) but have otherwise suffered no damage to the airplane. I think, personally, that the bigger tires are a good thing. Not only can the airplane roll over larger rocks, but they offer better flotation on soft fields, give you a little extra prop clearance, increase your angle of attack slightly, and absorb some shock and vibration, especially if you keep them soft. The largest tire I ever saw on a 140 was the 10.50 x 6. I think this is also referred to as a 26". It's been awhile, but I think they were Goodyears. They're expensive and heavy, and not approved. You'll know better than I what it takes to approve them in Canada. Whether you're on wheels or skis, I'd consider it a good thing to install a V-brace.
Okay, having said my 140 has performed satisfactorily in and out of some pretty rugged terrain, I have to also add that I've scared the cr@p out of myself once or twice too. I can't stress enough the need to get to know not only your airplane's performance, but your own. Develop and maintain a healthy awareness of your own capabilities and respect your own limitations (they'll likely change with experience) and absolutely respect the limitations of your airplane. You're right: A 140 won't even perform like a J-3 cub in some respects, and probably shouldn't even be mentioned in the same breath as a super cub. It will, however, get you in and out of some really fun places to fish, camp, or whatever. It may not take anyone else...and you may need to make four trips to haul out your whole moose, but it'll take you. And don't figure on being able to take-off in the same distance on rocks and gravel as you do on another surface. You'll just need to experiment with your own airplane and experiment with different piloting techniques. When it comes to ski flying, get some solid advice from pilots who have done it before. It's great fun, but there are some real pitfalls you need to learn to avoid. I've flown off skis exactly once...and I'm hooked. I have a J-3 which I plan to equip with skis next winter. I've heard a lot of stories of what to do and what not to do. Learn those lessons before you risk losing your plane or getting yourself "kilt". Better yet, go flying with someone who has ski experience before you venture out on your own.
I'm in the middle of restoring that same 140 I bought years ago. I love the little plane. It's been easy to own, and I appreciate that it does so many things reasonably well. It doesn't excel in any one area, but it wasn't really meant to.
I loved my time in Alaska; I spent 5 1/2 years flying up there. I can only imagine the endless variety of great places you must have to fly in and out of up where you are. Be careful out there.

Best regards,

Chris
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140 on 8.50s over New Hampshire
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Postby MatKlatt » Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:25 pm

If you ever find yourself in Wisconsin in the winter I'll take you ski flying. I have both Federals and wheel -penetration skis. I don't have a v-brace, but after seeing the way things "wiggle" when landing and taxiing in the snow I think it's a good idea.

Anyone know how difficult it is to install a v-brace? Is there an STC or would I need a field approval?
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Postby pmgrandnord » Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:38 pm

Thanks Chris and the other guys !!!

That's exactly what i want to hear from you. Sharing knowledge and experiences is priceless.

Chris, i tought landing on skis was the more forgiven surface to land on ? For sure you can meet slush, rock hiden under snow, roots, thin ice on lake, etc... But what it is about the landing skill required ?

I was wondering about V-brace ???? What it is ? Additional piece of metal welded on the landing gear ?

Matt, in how many feet can you airborne on skis (hard snow) ?

Thanks guys !

Pascal
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Postby NC76220 » Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:48 pm

I fitted a V brace from the Cessna 150 seaplane a while back. It does keep things much tighter, no more windscreen creaks on the ground.

Not difficult to install, but from Cessna it cost about a thousand dollars.
I want to be the last guy to fly across the USA with no radio
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Postby Michel Charette » Fri Apr 15, 2011 1:32 pm

Pascal, the V Brace us that V shaped tubing installed in the windshield of aircraft, mostly used with floats to strenghten the frame and prevent twist under stress.

Not something you see often on 140s, although I have seen a couple...

edit: Check this topic, I posted a few pictures of one:
http://www.cessna120-140.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1073&highlight=brace
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Postby pmgrandnord » Fri Apr 15, 2011 3:15 pm

Thanks Michel !

it's pretty clear now :D

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Postby MatKlatt » Fri Apr 15, 2011 3:49 pm

In hard snow with the penetration skis I can be off in about 600' if I pop the flaps. With straight skis it's shorter. Keep in mind that although I can get off in that distance I must stay in ground effect to build speed before climbing out. I've only got 1 full year of ski flying under my belt so I'm sure others here can achieve better numbers.
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Postby pmgrandnord » Fri Apr 15, 2011 4:42 pm

600' takeoff on skis :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: !!!!!

It's much much better than my expectations, especially with penetration skis.

Thanks Matt :D :D :D

Pascal
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Postby martint » Sat Apr 16, 2011 4:48 pm

Hi Pascal,
Aren't you on our Les Ailes Quebecoises forum as well??

I had FJAR since summer 2008, actually Michel Charette ferried back from Maniwaki to Mascouche CSA2 for me.
I have straight federal skis and 6.00x6 wheels and O200 STC
Skis can be hard on the structuren on icy conditions (very hard surfaces), but on soft snow it is so cool.
For take-off performance it's a question of having the proper pitch matched to your engine and also a question of compromise (either a climb or a cruise prop)

Depending on the type of flying you want to do and if the floats are not an absolute necessity in your region, the 140 is a great airplane and Chris gave us a very good description.
It is my first airplane ever and no TW experience, but wanted the versatility of wheels and skis and dont regret a single minute of it.

I have lots of details I can share with you, drop me a PM if you wish.
Martin C-FJAR ('46-140 s/n 9168)
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Postby pmgrandnord » Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:08 am

Wow ! Just found that this morning !
http://www.cessna120-140.org/forum/view ... highlight=

Wish to see that before.

By the way, just bought my 140 last week :D

I'm sooooo :D

Pascal
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Postby Chris L » Sat Apr 30, 2011 11:20 pm

Pascal,
Congratulation on your new purchase!
Do you have any photos of your airplane and/or your town? Sounds very interesting. I have long been wondering about a trans-Canada arctic trip from Alaska....
As for "bush" usage of a 140, no problem, just be careful. I find that with the very light tail (no extenders, no late model swept forward gear legs) it is a very good ski plane. If it is in your budget, get the Alaska Bushwheels as soon as you can. They will save your airplane from damage on off airport landings. If I had to do it over again, I would go for the 29 inch Airstreaks instead of the 26 inch Airstreaks that I have. Run them at the lowest possible pressure, and try not to taxi too long on pavement ever.

Above all, be careful and remember if it looks smooth it is rough and if it looks rough it is really rough. Keep the nose down. Mind thy airspeed. And have fun!
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Postby martint » Sat Apr 30, 2011 11:43 pm

Chris, I don't want to steal Pascal's thunder, but he bought Troy's 1947 C140. Veeerryy nice airplane.
Look here:
http://www.cessna120-140.org/forum/view ... light=troy

This beauty is coming is being ferried back to the East as we speak and to the north with Pascal later on.

You guys can in fact follow the ferry pilot (Bob CADI) SPOT's page at:
http://share.findmespot.com/shared/face ... VUODYVd2cb
Bob is dancing with strong winds and making his way between weather systems.
And if you go to this post:
http://www.ailesquebecoises.com/viewtop ... &start=160
and look at pages 9 to 12, you will see pictures (very impressive) and videos of Bob's ferry flight so far. Sorry this is all in french. The forum (Les Ailes Quebecoises) is the biggest and most active french speaking forum in north america. But you will see the stops he did so far. Some of Buffalo's airplanes and hangar he visited.

Enjoy!
Martin C-FJAR ('46-140 s/n 9168)
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Postby pmgrandnord » Sun May 01, 2011 3:34 pm

Chris L wrote:Pascal,
Do you have any photos of your airplane and/or your town? Sounds very interesting. I have long been wondering about a trans-Canada arctic trip from Alaska....
Above all, be careful and remember if it looks smooth it is rough and if it looks rough it is really rough. Keep the nose down. Mind thy airspeed. And have fun!


Hey Chris,
Thanks !
I have a BLOG if you want go see some photos of where i'm living:
http://pascalpoulin.blogspot.com/

I like when you say: remember if it looks smooth it is rough and if it looks rough it is really rough. Keep the nose down.

About nose down... do you mean for helping the little wheel in the back ?

By the way, i REALLY like the photos of your plane in Alaska !!

Thanks for sharing them.

Nikon brother :wink:


Pascal
Kangiqsualujjuaq, Qc
Canada
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My town up north, Kangiqsualujjuaq
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Postby Chris L » Mon May 02, 2011 2:03 am

Thanks Pascal, great photos. Your portraits are especially good.

All those sayings, I borrowed from others wiser and more experienced than myself. Keep the nose down is a reference to avoiding departure stalls, you could also say "fly the wing", meaning get the airspeed up before setting too high of an angle of attack. Of course, in a 140 flying the wing is the only option anyhow, so maybe "keep the nose down" is obvious.

The "lift reserve" gauge looks very interesting in your plane.
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140 as a bush plane

Postby Alaska140 » Wed Oct 19, 2011 5:44 pm

My Experience with 140 performance (125hp 0-290d) 24" Tundra tires using flaps to life off at the white arc... 2625rpm at liftoff speed with a 48pitch prop. 2500 static

145lb pilot with quarter tank or less in each wing at sealevel.. (300 feet takeoff on gravel)

145lb pilot and 145lb passenger, 12 gallons fuel, sea level (600 feet takeoff)

Fully loaded with 200lb passenger, 145lb pilot, 100lb gear, full of fuel, 750 to 800 feet takeoff.. and about the same for getting down without using much brakes for soft sand.


the 24" tires lost me about 5knots compared to the 8:00's. The tundra tires I believe are a lot easier on the gear as their more forgiving over bumps and rocks. The tailwheel is the limiting factor as with the wheel extensions it is very heaving in the tail. It takes me about 100 feet to get the tail in the air. In the near future I'm going to try flying without the gear extenders and see if it improves takeoff performance. With the larger tires and increased angle of attack it seems as though it doesn't want to nose over as bad.
I picked up a set of 30" airstreaks that I'm tempted to try. I have a feeling the drag is not worth the extra flotation of the 30" tire but we will see. It also seems pointless to have huge tires and a tiny tailwheel that's going to get beat to heck and probably ripped off by 6" rocks.
As far as the structural stability of the 140 gear.. I'm keeping a close eye on the brackets under the seats for cracks and such but it's holding up great so far and It's seen some pretty rough gravel bars.

anyone else experimented with gluing/taping on some VG's? Im waiting till next summer to try them since winter is here and they will likely be ice magnets and tear my wing covers.
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Postby Skipd » Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:50 pm

Keep a closer eye on the gear box- front and rear bulkheads...........
I have produced a video on the very basics of tailwheel aircraft operations- "Tailwheel Basics"- 15 minutes of basic TW info. skip@tailwheelbasics.com. Used my 1946 C-140 as a platform- synchronized inside/outside video.
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