The Cessna 150: Every Pilot's Plane
The picture shows the excellent stability of the aircraft on flight
Every airline transport pilots must have some humble beginnings flying a single engine 2 seater training aircraft. Excluding those coming from military backgrounds, possibilities are 7 out of 10 pilots had flown a Cessna 150 as a student pilot before eventually earning a type rating to fly a higher aircraft category and thereby a commercial aircraft in the long run. Having only earned a Private Pilot’s License rated on a Cessna 150G before the decline of the world economy left me without an option but to seek employment elsewhere forgetting my trade as an aircraft mechanic, I still have lingering memories to share about this wonderful aircraft and how it launch the dreams and usher the career of most pilots.
Mainly built for flight training and personal purposes, the Cessna 150’s two-seat, tricycle gear configuration suits its purpose as a general aviation airplane. Starting development in the mid 1950s as a successor to the Cessna 140 which ended production in 1951, the design shift from the usual tail dragger configuration landing gears (Cessna 140) to the tricycle landing gears which were more convenient and maneuverable made a timely debut for the Cessna 150. 150s had been presented in a number of variants like the Trainer, Patroller, Commuter I and II and the Aerobat.
The first Cessna 150 prototype made its maiden flight on 12 September 1957 followed by its production the same month a year later at Cessna’s Wichita, Kansas factory. The same model had also been licensed for production in France under Reims Aviation where 216 units were built. French made 150s were designated as Reims F-150, with the “F” indicating the variant was made in France.
The Cessna 150G like this one was a 1967 model with redesigned dashboard and instrument panel for easy access of student pilots. Note that the pilot in command (PIC, usually the student pilot) sits at the left as a general rule (including in higher category aircraft) and the co-pilot (CP, usually flight instructor or passenger sits at the right).
Aircraft Specifications based on the Cessna 150M Commuter II:
Wingspan: 33 ft 4 in (10.2 m), Length: 24 ft 9 in (7.3 m)
Height: 8 ft 6 in (2.6 m), Empty Weight: 1,111 lb (504 kg)
Useful Load: 490 lb (220 kg), Max. Take Off Weight (MTOW): 1,600 lb (730 kg)
Powerplant: 1 Continental O-200-A flat -4 engine rated at 100 hp (75kW) at 2,750 rpm
Propeller Diameter: 5 ft 9 in (1.8 m)
Cruising Speed: 107 knots (123 mph, 198 km/h), Stall Speed: 42 knots (48 mph, 78 km/h)
Range: 366 nm (421 mi, 678 km), Service Ceiling: 14,000 ft (4,300 m)
Rate of Climb: 670 ft/min (3.4 m/s), Fuel Consumption: 6 US gal/hr (23 liters/hr) of avgas (100LL)
The picture shows the ground from the right seat
Both left and right window offers excellent visibility for ground observation considering the 150 is a high wing aircraft. Something you certainly couldn’t appreciate in aircraft with low wing configurations like the Piper in its Tomahawks and Arrows or Beechcraft in its Bonanzas and Baron models. Just be sure of course somebody is on the other side of the seat to do the actual flying if you intend to spend more time sightseeing.
Front view on the Cessna 150 is also excellent with the windshield angle designed to minimize sun glare. However if you see a storm brewing ahead you must have the nearest airport in sight considering a 100 horsepower engine is certainly no match against bad weather.
The Cessna factory ceased production of the Cessna 150 to give way for an upgraded version, the Cessna 152 in the summer of 1977. Despite of this, the 150s reached a total of 23,839 units built making it the 4th most produced general aviation aircraft type. Many Cessna 150s are still airworthy and flying to date.