3 Important Things Every Pilot Should Know About
Buying A Cessna 140
The Cessna 140 was produced in the post World War II aviation boom as a single engine, fixed landing gear built for durability and ease of flight control. During a time when aviation was still in its infancy, Cessna figured out how to mass-produce sturdy and inexpensive aircraft for the average pilot or aviation hobbyist. The Cessna 140 is a prime example of this era in Cessna history, one that many aviation enthusiasts today would love to own.
SIDENOTE: The two-seater Cessna 140 was produced from 1946 to 1950, with over 7,600 models sold into the market. Original Cessna 140s came with a 85 horsepower Continental C-85-12 or C-85-12F, although today you won’t find many of these engines, if any, on the market. Instead, you’ll find the Cessna 140s equipped with a 108 horsepower Lycoming O-235-C1 engine.
#1 - It's Designed To Take "A Beating" (This Is Very Important)
The Cessna 140 is truly a piece of aviation design history. The Cessna 140 was manufactured with some of the first stressed aluminum wings and single strut design. The Cessna 140 was also designed with better spring steel gear that solved the counter over nose tendency found in earlier Cessna models.
If your a new pilot or a low time pilot your going to want to get an airplane that can handle some rough landings. And this is a good plane to start with if you still need to get some experience on tough situations.
Many first-time Cessna 140 buyers ask, “How can I purchase a plane that’s over 60 years old?” Cessna design is proven and often comes with many after market additions and improvements that keep the plane going for decades. Cessna 140s are also priced very competitively and despite a long life history, many are still available on the market. This availability includes parts as well.
The Cessna 140 is designed to take an environmental beating. As one of the first metal wing design models, the Cessna 140 was built tough for outdoor storage and low maintenance costs. Parts are widely available, saving the new pilot time and money in travel, installation and shipping costs. And for an older airplane, the Cessna 140 comes with many aftermarket additions that make this one quite contemporary plane.
#2 - The Aftermarket Additions (Here's 3 Great Ones)
When buying a Cessna 140, there are a few aftermarket additions that will make your new plane easier to operate and more fun to fly:
• Key start kit: The original Cessna 140s came with a pull handle start. While this is endearing historically, true flyers will generally come equipped with a key start that makes starting faster and less tenuous.
• Sheet aluminum: Original Cessna 140s also came with fabric under the aluminum, which often needed replacement. Today’s Cessna 140 often has a complete sheet metal compliment that eliminates the need for fabric maintenance and replacement
• McCauley or Cleveland brake replacement: The original brake discs came with a tendency to brake-lock. Replacing the original discs with McCauley or Cleveland brakes can prevent this problem for a minimal, but well deserved, cost.
#3 - Perfect for the New Pilot (**But Here's Why Owners Keep Them For Decades**)
The Cessna 140 is a perfect match for the pilot who wants to learn how to maintain and clean his or her own aircraft. The Cessna 140 is much like the Jeep brand of World War II. The Cessna 140 is easy to take apart, clean and upgrade with many modern features such as electronics package support and even avionics retrofit kits.
The Cessna 140 is a great plane for versatility too that many new aviators love. The Cessna 140 can carry around 500 pounds and boasts a heavy frame feeling that delivers the classic Cessna stable-flight.
The Cessna 140 is loved by many pilots for its very even, surprisingly comfortable flight. Many pilots are also surprised to learn the Cessna 140 actually has a pretty light frame and this cuts down on fuel use and delivers longer distance.
IMPORTANT: Many new pilots are used to the feeling of the Cessna 152, either from flight training or as their first plane. The Cessna 140 is hailed as a less expensive Cessna 152, which makes it perfect for the new pilot that’s looking for a classic plane with a low price and to own a piece of aviation history.
Also, you will probably see from the classified listings, many 140 owners have had their airplane for literally decades. Why? Because they are cheap to keep around! Also, if your only flying around on Sunday afternoons for some fun - they are a great airplane that you can keep forever.
That said - many owners understand the fact that this is a piece of aviation history and they don't want to give it up. So they keep it, polish it and fly it once and a while even though they might have a bigger airplane as well.
If you’re in the market for a fine piece of aviation history, a well maintained and overhauled Cessna 140 will often run less than $100,000 and some even run for around $50,000. This makes the Cessna 140 a very affordable option for new pilots and budget-conscientious flyer.
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