Seattle area Cessna Cardinal mechanic

I live a bit north of Seattle. I recently bought my first airplane and I'm looking for a good shop. I bought it in California and used a local shop to pre-buy. It's a 1972 Cessna Cardinal 177RG. The plane is in good condition overall. It flies terrific, but I have six things I want to address. 1) I'm not able to fly at night right now because my nav lights aren't working. When I turn on the nav lights, the beacon breaker pops. 2) While my primary Nav/Comm is really solid, my secondary is pretty poor--perhaps antenna, wiring, the radio itself, resonance noise from the panel... 3) The engine has pretty good compression but still seems a bit anemic, both on takeoff and at cruise. 4) I want to add shoulder harnesses for the front. 5) I lack push-to-talk for the co-pilot. 6) My doors may need to have the hinges or the latching mechanisms adjusted because they can be a bear to close. A bit of work overall for an otherwise solid plane. Any recommendations on a shop between Seattle and Bellingham that would be really strong with older Cessnas?


  • Scott ShererScott Sherer COO Forum Moderator
    Hi and thanks for writing. I'm so pleased that you not only bought a great airplane, but that you bought a Cardinal. That's my fav high wing single engine airplane. I love that plane! Your repair/restoration plan sounds solid, too! Here's a shop that I recommend. Let me know if you need another. [h=1]Ace Aviation, Inc.[/h]
    289 E. Perimeter Rd
    Renton, WA 98057

    Toll Free 1-888-734-4223

    Phone – 425-204-084

    Scott Sherer
    Wright Brothers Master Pilot, FAA Commercial Pilot
    Aviation Director, Cessna Owners Organization Forum Moderator and Cessna Owners Author.

    Need help? Let me know!

  • Thanks for the advice. I'll check them out. Yes, I love the Cardinal as well. I flew a Cardinal to get my complex endorsement and got hooked. I had been flying 172s and 152s. The 172S is a really nice plane. But my Cardinal rocks. Faster. Better visibility. Easy to fly. In fact, it literally flies itself off the runway most of the time with just the slightest up-trim.

    I would have preferred one with a 60 gallon tank and a fuel selector valve for right/left instead of on/off. The later models had those but the 71/72 didn't. I've looked around for a mod that would give me the extra 10 gallons but there doesn't appear to be an STC for the Cardinal. I lose an hour of duration, and when I'm flying by hand I have to be a bit more active with the roll because it tends to drain one take before the other. However, I have the S-TEC 50 with GPSS. It rolls the plane flat as anything and does a great job steering a heading. It's altitude hold isn't so great but what fun would it be if I didn't have to interact at least a little bit with the controls?
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