Lowe Aviation Cessna 150 Tailwheel Conversion
Lowe Aviation Tailwheel Conversion
FLASH! The conversion has now been approved for 1964 and 1965 Cessna 150s. These are the straight tail 150s that had a rear window!
The Cessna 150 LOWE Tailwheel Conversion applies to 1959 – 1963 Cessna 150s. These are the straight back/straight tail 150s that were manufactured using tooling and parts from C140A fusleages.
This conversion uses Cessna 120/140/140A main gear and tailwheel gear, and results in an airplane that is often reffered to as a ‘Baby 180’.
The plane flies great, just like a Cessna 140A, but has really big flaps!
Lowe STC vs the 'Other Ones'
LOWE STC vs the ‘Other Ones’
Usually when someone sees a Lowe Conversion, the first words out of their mouth are, ‘It’s so Cute’, then they say, ‘Oh, a Texas Taildragger!’. If they say that, they don’t know what they are talking about. This is NOT a TEXAS TAILDRAGGER! Nor is it the Bush Tailwheel Conversion. Both of those are taildragger conversions, but they both use the original Cessna 150 gear and just move it forward. Then they install a tailwheel spring on the underside of the tailcone. The result is a prop that has about 7″ more ground clearance and a tail that sits a little lower. The Texas Taildragger and Bush Conversions can be used on all Cessna 150s and 152s.
The Lowe Conversion uses Cessna 120/140 or 140A gear and bulkeads AND the Cessna 120/140/140A tailwheel bracket and can only be used on the 1959 – 1963 150s. Since the 140A fuselage is essentially the same as the early 150 fuselage, it is an easy fit.
The ‘Other Conversions’ use the existing main gear, so you don’t have the expense of finding another set of gear, whereas the Lowe Conversion uses all 140 parts, but they are readily available.
Lowe Conversion Costs
The Lowe Conversion STC paperwork, along with detailed instructions and parts lists costs $500 USD.
If you want to do the conversion yourself, (or have it done for you,) all the parts needed can be supplied by a ‘donor’ Cessna 120/140 or 140A. If you don’t want to use a donor plane, you can look around and find all the parts needed from different sources. A list of parts needed is in the STC paperwork.
If you already have a Cessna 150 Fuselage, you can bring it to David and he will do the conversion and supply all the conversion parts for $8,000. USD.
Lowe STC - What's Involved?
This conversion can use any of the three available C120/140/140A gear legs: The early gear with the 1/4″ axel bolts, the early gear with the 5/16″ axel bolts, or the forward swept gear that was found on late 1947 and on airplanes. HOWEVER, if using the forward swept gear, you MUST install the four extruded bulkhead support angles (that are extremely hard to find).
The Lowe Tailwheel Conversion requires that you remove the floor pans of the airplane and install cessna 120/140 gear boxes in the forward bulkhead area. Then install the forward gear.
After the forward gear is on, you can remove the rear gear box as well as one of the bulkeads that held the previous main gear in place.
You replace the belly skins where the previous gear was and the new belly strap where the new gear will go, and patch the nosewheel steering control holes. You will be adding support stringers along the belly skins just like the 120s and 140s had.
Remove the engine and engine mount and either replace the engine mount with a Cessna 140A engine mount or have the 150 mount altered to remove the nose gear supports and turn it into a 140A engine mount duplicate.
Remove the tailcone at the second to last bulkhead, and modify the bulkhead to allow the tailwheel support angle brackets to pass by the bulkhead. Install the tailwheel bracket and the long tailwheel angles that attach to the tailwheel bracket. Modify the Rudder control horn for rudder steering, or install eyebolts for steering.
Obviously this is a simplified version, and if you are doing the conversion use the istructions provided. This is just a short, brief summary to let you know what you are getting yourself into if you decide to do this on your own. It is NOT to be used for the conversion, but to give you an idea of whats involved.
How long will it take? That depends on how much you work on it!
Ask David for more information about that.