Tail Dragger Conversion

Tail Dragger Conversion

Is there a company out there that has a conversion kit for the 172, which converts it to a tail dragger, and who has all of the neccessary parts to do this?  Also does anyone know of a float kit for the early 172's?

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

There used to be an outfit..."Texas Taildraggers"
I gave consideration to doing the conversion to the
150 I had.  I think the did 172's also, but dont know if
they are still around.
I think there was a post last year on this topic, you might try a search.
Might be less $$ to get a  170?
Check Trade-A-Plane for the float kits.  I think there's kits for
most Cessnas except for the 182...I'm pretty sure about that, but not going to make a large bet on it....
Michael

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

In a nutshell, you are looking at $20 to do the conversion.  You'd probably be better off purchasing a 170.

   Dave

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Try Bush Conversions in Udal ks. They have an stc and kit for around $5k.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Yeah, the STC is $5K but there are parts not in the kit and labor for A&P to do the work.

    Davw

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Well,
   I'll be doing one in January so I'll pass along what I find. It will be either a Bush or Avcon conversion...haven't decided yet. Should be @ $14K installed complete.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

I have the Bolen Conversion witch I believe is owned by Williams now.Ground handling is very good ,as well as landing ( I've pulled off a few good slammers!) wheel extensions are also available for the conversion .

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

I would like to get more information on converting a 150 to a taildragger and what is involed .

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Anyone have info on converting a 205-206. I'd sure like some info on
who to talk to and if it's been done.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

  can i buy the parts out a wrecket 150m  and install  . add the paper work with mine ?   just a thought?    have two 320  building a pa12 now.  let me know Gary in Tulsa.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Anyone got any idea of approx labour cost of doing tailwheel conversion on C152 aerobat and where it can be done on the West Coast prior to disassembling aircraft for shipment to New Zealand?

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Showing my ignorance - but why do this?  What is the benefit?  I'm not attacking, I sincerely don't know what is gained by converting to a taildragger.  Can someone enlighten me, please?

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

The main reason is just One word.   FUN

As a flight instructor, I have noticed the skill a good many pilots are deficient in is rudder skill.
When you learn how to fly a tail dragger, you will learn the importantance of  the rudder.
All pilots should take a couple of lessons in tail dragger.  You will help your piloting skills.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Ok, I can see the "fun" part, but why convert an existing tricycle gear configuration to a conventional gear?  Wouldn't it be better to sell and buy one that came that way?  Perhaps someone with a new rebuilt engine or new interior or just a heck of an avionics package doesn't want to give it up...  I'm as attached to my plane as the next pilot, but if I wanted a taildragger, I think I'd buy one that was built to be one.  I'd gladly take some lessons in one, though.  I think it would be cool to wiggle my way down the taxiway!  smile

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Good reasons to convert to tailwheel:

     1)  Reduced weight,
     2)  Reduced drag,
     3)  Better short/soft field capabilities,
     4)  5 - 6 knot increase in cruise with same fuel economy (C-150), and
     5)  Clay is right! 

Everyone should learn in a tailwheel - be proficient in tailwheel, before transitioning to anything without a tailwheel.  Same applies to most automobile drivers today . . .  A huge percentage have never mastered a cluch and manual transmission.

One final thought . . .  Just think about all those nice old airplanes that are really fun to fly!  Unfortunately, for most young pilots - most have tailwheels!

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

And for no other reason they look better.

C-172G-TD

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Additional reasons to convert:

Everyone knows which end the little wheel goes on in a real airplane

Much better on soft fields

Firewall is protected from nose strut related damage (nose strut sinking in a hole, getting slammed in a nose low landing, etc.)

It will make you a better pilot

Bruce Cook
USMC (ret)
Support Search and Rescue.....Get Lost!!!



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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Ok, I'll try asking this one more time...

I understand converting to a taildragger for all the fun, safe, ergonomic reasons.  I'm not talking about converting my flying, though, I'm talking about converting an existing airplane.

Why go to the expense to convert an existing tricycle gear plane to a taildragger?  Is it better than just trading in for one that was originally built that way?  Is the resale value increased?  Is the overall cost less to buy/convert than to just buy that way in the first place?

I can't help but draw an analogy to a house.  If a two story is preferred over a one story, wouldn't it be better to just buy the two story you want than to convert an existing one story house?  I would think something that is built according to a previous plan would perform better than something that is converted from it's original design/intent.  In the case of the house, I can think of problems with the foundation, plumbing, and ventilation that might need some serious rework when adding a second story.  Is there anything similar that needs to be addressed when converting a tricycle gear to a tailwheel?

I would think there is something that needs to be done about the center of gravity since a tailwheel rests differently than a tricycle gear.

Instead of trying to convince people of the merits of tailwheel airplanes in general, can you please address the merits of a conversion over just buying an existing configuration the way you want it?  Assume I'm sold on tailwheel flying.  Why wouldn't I just trade my plane for a tailwheel?

As fun as tailwheels may be, I don't think that's a valid reason to convert an existing plane to that configuration.  It certainly warrants changing the plane you fly, though.  Maybe I'm splitting hairs, and I don't mean to be.  It just seems to me that if I want to have "fun" flying a tailwheel, I should go get one instead of hacking the plane I have.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Resently I felt the same way. If you want a tailwheel, buy one that has it. However, I just bought a "67" c-172 for a Ridiculously low price. I'm now considering a tailwheel conversion. I could have an IFR Plane with a center radio stack, engine driven vacuum system, adequate electrical system, modern flight instrumentation, and a TAIL WHEEL for less $ than a C-170(A)or(B) that's not as suitable (In my opinion) for IFR Flight. I have a lot of tail time, will do things a trike can't. Most important (for me) I can make the plane stop flying by using a "wheel landing" by simply putting the wings a little less angle of attack than needed for flight, not easy to do if you have a nose wheel in the way... As well, If found it easier to land with a hard xwind in a tail wheel a/c than a trike, tail wheel is easier to land on one main than a trike-the cg to landing gear location allows them to handle better. Plus, my home field is 2200' with trees that were 50' high 50 years ago, 85 degree xwinds arise on occasion. Any how, I can do the work so why not? Does anybody have contact info for bush Conversions, Aircraft Conversion Technologies, or Bolen (Williams) Conversions?
ty

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Skis are the main reason people convert them in tne north woods.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

I am looking for more information on a taildragger conversion as well. I have a 210HP C175 Skylark and love it- And I would like to have better rough field handling. No way I would trade it for a dinky 170B (small horsepower) and I cannot afford a $60K + 180 series airplane. That answers the fellows "Why convert" question, at least for me.

It is funny, lots of questions here but few answers that matter on the topic! :-)

The Bolen Conversion is now owned by Mr. Williams in Kansas. I am not sure, but I think it is what he know sells as the Bush Conversion. As far as I know, He also is the owner of Avcon so I wouldn't be suprised if that conversion is also the same one.

His Phone number that I have is available to anyone who emails a request to me, Cessna Owners Organization's rules appear to frown on personal information being disseminated here.

I have heard that there is a conversion for the 175 that is not yet STC'd to put 170 or 180 legs on with the pponk gearbox. I am looking for more info on that.

Cheers!

Kristopher Hoopes, C175 N6612E
www.cessna175.org

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Check any issue of Trade-a-plane. Except possibly for converting a 172 to 180 horsepower (which was done to no less than five planes belonging to companies I was associated with) it is virtually always far less expensive to buy a conversion that somebody else has already done rather than have a plane converted. This holds true for tail wheels, bigger engines, deicing, almost everything.

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Kevin, if your still out there, wondering about the merits of converting your aircraft to a taildragger, it's simple; tailwheel conversions pay for themselves in added resale value.Check out the prices in Trade-a-Plane for a 150F; they run about 18K to 22K for the tricycle gear and about 26K to 28K for the conventional gear; that being said, you need to try one out for all those other reasons stated in the previous replys. Believe it, once you tried it you wont want to go back; it is more fun; it will teach you rudder control, and make you a better pilot.

JAMES ALDRIDGE
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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

I've been flying a Bolen converted 1956 C-172 for 9 years now, and you could not ask for a better setup. Well mannered on the ground, and rugged.
(previous experience on C180/185, Decathalon, Citabria)

Colin

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Re: Tail Dragger Conversion

Colin, your 1956 Bolen conversion (someone mentioned it's now Bush Conversions), did you do it or did you purchase the 172 already done?  If you did it, how long did it take (hours) approximately?  I gather you'd do it again, right?  I have a 1956 C172 also (mine has a 180 hp/cs McCauley prop) as well as a Buch Conversions STOL kit and Super Tips.  The tailwheel conversion is on my list of desires along with upgraded avionics.

John
407-302-3360

PS give me a call or email me as I'd like to chat for a few minutes with you.

john at modelsport dot com

John Beech
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