1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

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1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby Dferr34 » Sun Jul 04, 2021 3:36 pm

Hello all and Happy Fourth of July! Last week, while I was taking a lesson in a 170A, on our first landing, halfway up the field, we lost our left rudder - the cable felt like it broke. We lost control of the plane and did a mild groundloop. My instructor thought that I was pressing on the pedal, and I told him that I was not and thought something broke. The plane was then put in the shop, and I spoke with the mechanic, who advised that the rudder cable was corroded and literally snapped at the point where it rides over a pulley. My question is: I am interested in a 170, preferably the B model, but my concern is what would it cost to have these cables fully inspected, or if need be, replaced? Will this be a major expense? I was also advised that the cables cannot be fully inspected as they are in a tight location, which makes me think it would be better to just have them replaced for peace of mind.

Thanks!
Don
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Re: 1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby GAHorn » Sun Jul 04, 2021 3:39 pm

One of the few things about the 170 series is the rudder cables that pass thru the aft bulkhead are difficult to inspect and are thereby oft-negelected. Replacing them on aircraft that have no record of earlier replacement is likely a good idea.
'53 B-model N146YS SN:25713
50th Anniversary of Flight Model. Winner-Best Original 170B, 100th Anniversary of Flight.
An originality nut (mostly) for the right reasons. ;)
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Re: 1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby Dferr34 » Sun Jul 04, 2021 4:51 pm

Thanks, any idea of what the cost of replacement would be? Ballpark?
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Re: 1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby ghostflyer » Mon Jul 05, 2021 1:00 am

Mc Farlane web site is the best place for seeing the costs , for all cables and availability . Their quality is second to none [very good] . The big choice is whether to use stainless steel or carbon steel cables . My advice [entertainment use only] is use stainless steel in this area as the rudder cables are not under a high tension load but a possible corrosive area as per your experience. Due to the my aviation authority and the FAA not getting their act together regarding the replacement of cables and inspection , I was replacing my cables as a 100hrly came up. Eg on one 100hrly one year the elevator cables were replaced [what a horrible job]. The next 100hrly the next year I replaced the aileron cables etc. the only cable system that I hadn’t changed was the hand brake cable and then we recieved a directive that all cables had to be changed regardless. I wasn’t happy and wrote to them explaining their lack of coordination in their directives .They must have recieved a flood of complaints then another directive came out saying you only have to inspect the cables and closely inspect the end fittings for corrosion every 100hrs. I know my original stainless cables were less than 15 years old and inspected and tensioned checked every 100hrly but the records in the maintenance log book was not complete regarding cables fitment/time .
Recycling old stainless cables .
I have stretched and fitted them up in my garage so my wife can hang her washing up to dry when we have the “wet season” . Just join two cables together if you need a long run. I know some one joined a number together to make a “dog run” for his dogs.
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Re: 1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby wabuchanan » Mon Jul 12, 2021 5:00 am

Dferr34 wrote:Thanks, any idea of what the cost of replacement would be? Ballpark?


Back in 2016 I had my rudder cables replaced. Total cost was just a hair under $1000. But, my tail feathers were already off the airplane which I'm sure made it just a bit easier, and Labor was $85/hr back then.

Regards,
Bill
1950 170A N5776C SN:19730
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Re: 1948 Cessna 170 rudder cables

Postby GAHorn » Mon Jul 12, 2021 3:32 pm

As it regards cost of replacement of the cables…. You might also consider the inspection and possible replacement/repair of pulleys, brackets, bulkheads, fairleads…. Plus the labor if you hire this out.

Beware: There’s also the “while we’re here we might as well…” - Syndrome.
Got any wiring back there? Antennas? Neglected structure? Need some B.A.S. Tail-Pull handles?

For any visitors here looking to learn about the 170 prior to a purchase…. The laughter at what I paid for my restored-for-Oshkosh airplane back in 2000 quickly faded-away when things like this came up for other owners. (Windshields and glass? Static system plumbing? Exhaust system? Instrument-Panel wiring? Fuel system plumbing? Flight-control system, bearings and actual control surfaces? Landing gear, wheels and brakes, hydraulics?

There’s far more to shopping than looking at Engine, Paint and interior and if it has a new flat-screen display. The current prices hovering around $70K for a well-used but loved 170… or $85K+ for a recently rebuilt…. or $100K for a truly/fully-restored airplane…. compared to what it takes to obtain any other airframe of similar capabilities …or anything 50 years younger….. makes the Cessna 170 models very attractive indeed.
'53 B-model N146YS SN:25713
50th Anniversary of Flight Model. Winner-Best Original 170B, 100th Anniversary of Flight.
An originality nut (mostly) for the right reasons. ;)
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