Cessna Skywagon back in production with Bushliner

An American company has started ‘remanufacturing’ Cessna’s 180/185 Skywagon single-engine bush aircraft.

Washington State based Bushliner is offering a certified Cessna 180/185 and also an Experimental 1800/1850 version.

Cessna’s 180/185 Skywagon has a dedicated following and even now, 36 years after production of the big tailwheel single stopped, it’s still in use as a bush aircraft.

Some 10,500 Skywagons were produced between 1953 and 1985 when Cessna stopped production of its single engine range because of high liability costs. When production restarted in the 1990s, the Skywagon was not one of the chosen models.

However, pilots and operators keep them going, with a bunch of STCs available to make them even more useful, usually transporting cargo and/or passengers to remote strips, lakes and snowfields in Canada and Alaska.

Bushliner offers ski and float versions of its remanufactured 180/185 Skywagon

Bushliner Aircraft specialises in complete airframe overhaul which starts with disassembly of the aircraft. Every component of the aircraft is inspectes, with fasteners replaced, structural components replaced as required, primed and painted, assembled with new systems, engines and avionics installed.

“No current aircraft on the market offers the same performance or has the same reputation as the Cessna Skywagon family,” said Bushliner. “Unfortunately the existing Cessna 180 and 185 fleet is deteriorating beyond economical repair.

“Cessna anticipated the aircraft would be needed for, and designed them to last for 15-20 years of┬ánormal use. Many of these aircraft are well beyond 40 years old and have been abused hard for that time.”

Bushliner says its aircraft are designated ‘equivalent to new’. However, it’s not a cheap process! Complete aircraft overhauls start at $489,000 although they are covered by a 5-year tip to tail warranty.

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