The Cessna 172 is probably the World’s most recognized aircraft. This amazing airplane is an American single-engine, four-seat, high wing, fixed-wing aircraft made by the legendary Cessna Aircraft Company. The Cessna 172 is the most successful aircraft in aviation history due to its popularity and longevity.
This airplane is so reliable and stable. Most pilots learn how to fly in a Cessna 172 Skyhawk. Student pilots and their instructors love the Cessna 172 because of its stability and how relatively easy it is to fly. The Cessna 172’s first flight was on June 12, 1955 and has lead the civil aviation industry ever since. She first went into production in 1956 and is still in production today. A Cessna 172 cost $8,700 USD in 1956 compared to compared to a Cessna 172S which cost $307,500 USD as of 2012.
Full Length Flight | Touch & Goes | Cessna 172 Skyhawk
The Cessna Aircraft Company delivered their very first production model in 1956 and as of 2015, the Cessna Aircraft Company and its partners had built well over 44,000 aircraft. Cessna’s 172 is not the only civil aviation production aircraft. The Cessna 172 Skyhawk’s main competition are the Grumman AA-5 series, Beechcraft Musketeer (neither currently in production), the Piper Cherokee and more recently the Cirrus SR20 and Diamond DA40.
Even though those aircraft are great, the Cessna 172 Skyhawk is even better and has stood the test of time. Chances are, when you hear an airplane overhead. It’s the legendary Cessna 172 or one of it’s many variants. The Cessna 172 is one of the most popular aircraft in the skies today and a favorite among most private pilots. It is one of the most affordable aircraft on the market. This is why most flight schools and their student pilots fly them.
Cessna 172 Skyhawk
The Cessna 172 Skyhawk was for with a tricycle landing gear variant of the taildragger Cessna 170 with the basic level of standard equipment. Cessna flew a new and improved variant of the Cessna 170 in January 1955. It was a Continental O-300-A powered Cessna 170C with a more angular tail-fin and slightly larger elevators.
Even though this variant was tested and certified. Cessna was not satisfied with this variant and decided to modify it with a new tricycle landing gear. The new modified version of the Cessna 170C flew again June 12, 1955. This would be the OFFICIAL first flight of the 172. In order to reduce the cost and time of certification. This variant was added to the Cessna 170 type certificate as the Model 172 was born. The 172 was given its own type certificate 3A12 at a later date.
As soon as the first 172 left the assembly line, it became an overnight success. Customers from around the world placed their orders and overwhelmed the Cessna Aircraft Company. They couldn’t build the Cessna 172’s fast enough. It completely took the aviation industry by storm and the rest as they say is aviation history! The Cessna Aircraft Company delivered well over 1,400 aircraft in 1956 which was its first full year of production.
The first production 172s looked similar in appearance to the 170s. They both featured the same tall landing gear legs and straight aft fuselage. The new Cessna 172 did have a straight tail-fin compared to the 170’s rounded rudder and fin. The Cessna 172A incorporated a revised swept-back tail-fin and landing gear that is still in use today. Production did halt in the mid-1980s but resumed again in 1996 with the 160 hp (120 kW) Cessna 172R Skyhawk.
Cessna 172 Instrument Panel
The Cessna 172 Instrument Panel is the most important part of the aircraft for a pilot. For you student pilots that are not familiar with an instrument panel. I’ll give you a brief explanation and walkthrough. Your flight instruments are located in the instrument panel. These instruments in the cockpit of an aircraft provide YOU the pilot with critical information about your flight situation such as airspeed, direction and altitude.
Take a look at the yellow box in the image above. You’ll notice a number next to each instrument which total to a number of six. Going from left to right is the first flight instrument which is the airspeed indicator. Number two is the attitude indicator. Number three is the altimeter. Number four is the turn and slip indicator. Number five is the heading indicator and number six is the vertical speed indicator.
As you can see, these flight instruments are right in front of the list just above the control yoke. They are positioned right in front of the pilot so all of the critical information is in one place and easy for the pilot to see. A good competent pilot is always scanning the horizon while monitoring his flight instruments at the same time. Things can happen in a hurry so you always want to know what your flight instruments are telling you.
For example, anybody that flies in the state of Florida can tell you that thunderstorms can pop up out of thin air. It could be a calm sunny day from your departure point and clear on radar before you take-off. A novice pilot would expect a trouble free flight. Flying in the summer can get you in trouble and land you smack in the middle of a thunderstorm. If you don’t know how to read your instruments. You could easily get disoriented and fly right into the ground.
Cessna 172 Cockpit Layout
The Cessna 172 Cockpit Layout is simple and practical for a small single-engine aircraft. The Cessna 172 seat four people comfortably with the pilot and passenger/co-pilot in front and two passengers seats in the back. The Cessna 172 Instrument Panel is right in the center of the cockpit in front of the pilot. All flight instruments and controls are perfectly placed for the pilots ease of use.
The Cessna Cockpit Layout is surprisingly roomy considering the 172 is a small aircraft. There is plenty of leg and head-on inside the Cessna Cockpit for the pilot and passengers seated in the back of the aircraft. Remember, this is a small aircraft so there is a limit to the size and weight of the occupants. You can easily seat four average sized passenger inside the Cessna 172. For example, I don’t think 4 Sumo Wrestlers would fit comfortably inside.
The Cessna 172 Cockpit has come a long way since its first days of production in 1956. Now a days, you get order a Cessna 172 Skyhawk with all the bells and whistles with leather seats, air conditioning and heat and a whole lot more. There are companies out there that specialize in custom aircraft interiors. Most Cessna’s come with a standard interior which is lightyears ahead of the old interiors in the first production 172’s.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s was nothing really wrong with the original interiors. In fact, you can still see some of these interiors in original 172’s still flying today. What makes the Cessna 172 Cockpit Interior superior are the materials used and the upgraded flight instruments and instrument panels. Cessna uses exotic metals and materials to construct their aircraft. When you buy a Cessna 172 Skyhawk, you are getting one of the BEST aircraft in the air today!
Cessna 172 Flight Manual
You can download a copy of the Cessna 172 Flight Manual by clicking on the link in the description for free. This is the Cessna 172S Flight Manual but you can can search for any model Cessna and find the flight manual you’re looking for for free. These Cessna 172 Flight Manuals come in a PDF format so you can save the url or download them to your device.
You can also find these Cessna Flight Manuals on Amazon or Ebay if you want a physical copy as well. Some people save the PDF version of the Cessna Flight Manual and download copies too. It’s so easy to get these Cessna Flight Manuals these days. You’re literally a click of of a button away. I’ve seen Cessna 172 Flight Manuals as low as $11.99 USD on Amazon with FREE shipping so you can download them for free or pay for it.
For those of you that don’t know what a flight manual is. Let me give you a brief explanation so you can understand. I’m sure most of you know what a flight manual is but I want to cover it for student pilots and aviation enthusiast that have found their way on to the page. A flight manual is exactly like a car owners manual. Unlike a car owners manual which most people never even bother to read. You must read your flight manual from cover to cover.
A Cessna 172 aircraft flight or aircraft flight manual (AFM) is a book containing all of the information required to safely fly an airplane. All of the information inside the (AFM) is also known as Technical Airworthiness Data (TAWD). Typical information inside a flight manual will consist of operating limitations for the aircraft such as Emergency/Normal/Abnormal operating procedures, loading information and performance data.
Cessna 172 Specs
The Cessna 172 Specs I’m going to share with you are the are the specifications of the Cessna 172R. These general characteristics are similar and almost identical in some cases to all Cessna 172 models. For the General Characteristics of each Cessna 172, you can easily find them online by typing the model you’re looking for. There are many variants of the Cessna 172 so I chose the Cessna 172R as an example.
The general characteristics of the Cessna 172 are she has a crew of one with a four person capacity. The length of the Cessna 172R is 27 ft 2 in (8.28 m). Her wingspan is 36 ft 1 in (11.00 m) and her height is 8 ft 11 in (2.72 m). The wing area of the Cessna 172R is 174 sq ft (16.2 m2) and her aspect ratio is 7.32. The Cessna 172R’s Airfoil: modified NACA 2412 and her empty weight is 1,691 lb (767 kg) and her gross weight is 2,450 lb (1,111 kg).
The Cessna 172R has a fuel capacity of 56 US gallons or 212 litres. Her powerplant is a Lycoming IO-360-L2A four cylinder horizontally opposed aircraft engine with 160 hp (120 kW). She also features a 2-bladed metal propeller with a fixed pitch. The Cessna 172R has a cruise speed of 122 kn or (140 mph; 226 km/h) and a stall speed of 47 kn or (54 mph; 87 km/h) with power off,and flaps down.
The never exceed speed for a Cessna 172R is 163 kn or (188 mph; 302 km/h) (IAS). Her range is 696 nmi or (801 mi; 1,289 km) with 45 minute reserve fuel at 55% power at 12,000 ft. The Cessna 172 R has a service ceiling of 13,500 ft (4,100 m) and a rate of climb of 721 ft/min (3.66 m/s) and wing loading at 14.1 lb/sq ft (68.6 kg/m2). She comes with a standard avionics package with a Garmin G1000 primary flight display which is optional.
Florida to New York City – A Cessna 172 Adventure – HD
As I mentioned earlier, there are many variants of the Cessna 172. There are 21 variants of the Cessna 172 including the original model. The number of Cessna 172’s built is well over 44,000 and counting. In fact, Cessna has manufactured more 172’s than any other aircraft in aviation history. That includes civilian and wartime aircraft production as well. The Cessna 172 is a flying legend and odds are they’re several flying as I type.
The Cessna 172 is such a rugged and reliable aircraft that it currently serves with 15 Air Forces from around the World. They are the Austrian Air Force, Bolivian Air Force, Chilean Army, Ecuadorian Air Force & Ecuadorian Army, Guatemalan Air Force, Honduran Air Force, Iraqi Air Force, Irish Air Corps, Liberia Air Reconnaissance, Malagasy Air Force, Pakistan Air Force, Philippine Navy, Royal Saudi Air Force, Republic of Singapore Air Force and United States Air Force.
I bet you didn’t know that! As you can see the Cessna 172 is a flying legend. It doesn’t matter what variant of the 172 you’re flying in. You are flying one of the BEST aircraft ever made and the most successful aircraft to ever enter production. Each variant of the Cessna 172 is better than the next! Cessna is always looking for ways to improve the 172 with avionics and cutting edge technology. Sounds like I’m describing something out of Buck Rogers, right?
Well, you don’t have to travel to the 25th Century to fly a Cessna 172. You can drive over to your local airport and find a Cessna 172 for rent or you can fly right from your desktop. Even though there’s nothing like experiencing the real thing. Flying can get expensive, especially if you have to hire a flight instructor as well. For less than the cost of a one hour flight in a REAL Cessna 172 …
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