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Topic Options
#78785 - 05/11/12 09:23 PM Straight tail vs. Slanted tail
Cameron Offline
New Member

Registered: 05/11/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Texas
I hope I dont open a can of worms here but how do the older straight tail cessna compair to the slanted tail? Are the payloads alittle higher on the older models? I know the older models have O-300 vs. the O-320s but the older models are more in my budjet. I need an airplane that I can haul two adults and two to three small children in. I guess another question is, would it be worth buying an older model and slowly fixing it up like new?

#78799 - 05/12/12 12:37 AM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Cameron]
Nightowl Offline
Club Sponsor/Speed Demon
Gold Pilot

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1826
Loc: Northwest lower Michigan
Sorry, never owned a straight-tail 172, though am on my third slant tail model. We did start airplane ownership with a straight-tail 150, which was slow, but fairly reliable.

Of the three 172s we've owned, the 1972 model was probably the best if you're looking for a stock airplane. We did carry two adults and three small kids on long trips at times in this airplane.

But our absolute favorite now is our current airplane, a 1977 model with a 180 hp conversion (and gross weight increase to 2550 lbs). It climbs like a homesick angel and does fly a bit faster than a stock-powered 172 of the same or earlier vintage, and does allow us to carry four real adults.

The first 172 we owned was a 1967 model with an O-300 (and a slant tail). Sadly, we came away from that experience with a bad impression of the O-300, though I know a lot of folks will disagree with me on that. I won't own another.

Good luck with your pursuit.

'77 C172N, AirPlains 180 hp conversion

Our sigmap has been flown entirely using aircraft with capabilities at or below those of the C-172.

#78817 - 05/12/12 06:32 AM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Cameron]
Leo O'Farrell Offline
Safety Pilot

Registered: 01/16/10
Posts: 29
Loc: KOAK Old T's
When I bought my 59 Straight Tail, I was driven by budget, having trained and enjoyed the M and N models in my club.

I've owned this bird for nine years and am overall pleased. A few times, I wished that I'd of stretched for a 182 or 205, 206 as I have four kids. But, all in all, I've done most of my flying alone.

As time goes by, I have found I enjoy the polishing and fixing up of the Cessna. Some good upgrades: Cleveland wheels and brakes; remote spin on oil filter; Garmin radios and GPS; conversion from a generator to 50 amp alternator; real gaskets pushrod tubes; and am now in the middle of a top overhaul.

If you go to a forum like back country pilots, you'll see the older straight tails are seen as having good potential for tail dragger conversion, use in remote stips, etc as the square tail has more authority. Another difference is the landing gear is taller on the older ST's.

Good luck, you really can't go wrong with a 172.
1959 C172 based at Oakland, CA
Airwolf remote oil filter
Cleveland Wheels and brakes
Jasco 50 amp alternator
Garmin SL 40 and 250 XL

#78844 - 05/12/12 11:09 AM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Leo O'Farrell]
Comfail Offline
Safety Pilot

Registered: 03/13/10
Posts: 96
Loc: Leduc, Alberta, Canada
From a useful load standpoint, I don't think there is an appreciable difference between my 1957 model and the 172M that I trained on - both around 800 lbs. My family of 4 and our stuff fit into my plane with 50 lbs to spare, with full fuel. Granted I only have about 5 years before the kids eliminate that buffer, but by then I'm sure the kids would rather play with their smartphones than go on flights with the family. So for my typical usage (day/vfr), I didn't need to spend double on a mid 70's IFR capaple 172. Sure like the looks of them though...

Repairs/modifications could be enjoyable, but I think it would be tough to get the money out at resale time. My plane has a Horton STOL kit, updated radio's, etc, but was no more expensive than other "stock" machines for sale around here. I'm not trying to discourage upgrading, just making sure you know what you're getting into.
1957 Cessna 172

#78874 - 05/12/12 07:10 PM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Comfail]
Bryan Demurat Offline
Second in Command

Registered: 01/19/12
Posts: 155
Loc: Florida, USA
I have both both the straight tail, a 1957 model, and several slant tail models. They all have been very good stable flying aircraft. There is always the people who claim that the straight tail models were a little faster then the early slant tail models but I found that airspeeds to very similar. The E model might be more what you are looking for as the max gross is 2300 lbs compared to 2200 lbs of a stright tail. As far as the worrying about the O-300 engines my present 172 has one and it has been very reliable. The key to getting a good airplane is always get a good pre-pruchase inspection. As far as up grades go every owner does some on an older plane. The key in doing the upgrades is because you like the upgrade as cost is very seldom recovered when you sell the aircraft.

#78891 - 05/12/12 10:02 PM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Bryan Demurat]
Cameron Offline
New Member

Registered: 05/11/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Texas
Thank you all, for your information. The E model that Demurat has dose look very sharp! Everyone has very good points for me to think about. I guess the upgrades are kind of like feeding a horse. It dosent add much value to the selling end but it will sure take away from it if you dont do it. I will also look into the back country pilots forums. I would like to have a tail wheel airplane but the conversion would be a whole other topic.

#78892 - 05/12/12 10:18 PM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Cameron]
Cameron Offline
New Member

Registered: 05/11/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Texas
Sorry Demurat, after some reasearch, I believe that your plane is an A model. I hope thats right. Its a sharp looking plane any how.

#78898 - 05/12/12 11:01 PM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Cameron]
Bryan Demurat Offline
Second in Command

Registered: 01/19/12
Posts: 155
Loc: Florida, USA
Cameron, your close my plane is B model and it still has the 2200 lbs max gross I reminded the E model because it give you the extra 100 lbs to play with and it saound like it fit your mission better then lower 2200 lbs model. I do wish the best with what ever model choose and they all make good reliable planes with an excellent proven record.


#79026 - 05/13/12 09:31 PM Re: Straight tail vs. Slanted tail [Re: Bryan Demurat]
Adger Smith Offline
Second in Command

Registered: 02/27/12
Posts: 188
Loc: East Texas
In feb. I bought a 1961 mid year slant tail 172B. Today I had a buddy, my daughter and 2 (11,& 7 year old)grand daughters on board with 3/4 fuel. That was 725 lbs of passengers. It was nearing 82 degrees and the 0-300 D pulled us around the pattern nicely. We climbed to 2200 agl and flew around for about an hour. It took it a little longer to climb out than when I'm with my buddy/CFI, but it still clicked off a nice cruise speed in level flight. It had new cylinders installed 486 hours before I bought. They were installed because of an A-D. Over the years I've flown a lot of brand airplanes equipped with brand "L" & "C" engines. They both have their +'s and -'s. You will never hear me say one is always better than the other. I looked at a lot of planes before I bought this one. The thing that sold me on it was the care it had been given. Previously owned for 10 years by a Dr., Dentist and Lawyer that used it to get their private ratings. Before their ownership it had 2 other owners that were A&P's. The wheel, brake upgrade and the slick mags were just a plus. Yes, it could use paint and interior clean up but it is in very sound mechanical condition. What ever you buy look at the history and care it was given. Oh! My second choice was a 1958 str. tail 172. It was actually a little cheaper than the one I bought and has better paint and interior. I think it is still available if you would like to look into it. I had been shoping for over 3 years when I bought. Don't get in a hurry & be realistic in what you need. (sounds like you are!)I bought to fly GranMaw and PaPaw 350 miles to & from Kentucky to visit the daughter and grand daughters. Good luck on your shopping.

Edited by SixPackRacer (05/13/12 09:34 PM)
Adger Smith
Adger Smith Performance Engines
2802 W 7th St
Texarkana Tx 75501
903 794 7223 shop
903 824 4924 cell


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