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Thread: FBI Cessna 182RGs

  1. #1
    Jim Rosenow's Avatar
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    FBI Cessna 182RGs

    I'm doing research on R182's (the official designator). It seems that while they were in production (78-86) the FBI bought several of them, and used the heck out of them. This to the point that every 3500-4000 hours they were ground-up rebuilt (oddly enough by Executive Beechcraft)....I mean bulkheads, stringers, sheet metal pieces, brand new control surfaces, etc. to the tune of (reportedly) $100K per copy. I have one of the rebuild sheets and it's 13 single-space pages of new and overhauled parts. Some of the airframes (now being re-sold by the auction winners or subsequent owners) got up to 11K TT.

    When the fleet was replaced with something else (unknown to me) some time (also unknown to me) ago, the R182s were sold at auction and came onto the private market loaded (for that time period)...full King Silver Crown, KFC 200 w/ flight director, StormScope, etc.

    I'm not interested in any deep, dark government secrets, but does anybody know what they did with them? Were they abused that badly, or just another case of plenty of 'our' money to spend?

    I saw one the other day and it did have a bullet hole (the peel off, press in place, clear plastic kind...no doubt an FBI inside joke from the day :-)

    It's not keeping me up nights, but it does make me go, "Huh?"..... Anybody know the scoop? Inquiring minds...but not enough to send the black helicopters, please.

    Jim

  2. #2

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    I know one of them ended up at an A&P school in Louisiana.

    11k hrs TIS is what I would call "low" high time. The Mobil Oil 182's easily doubled that number.

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    Our local DEA seems to be flying one....

    Best of luck,

    Wes
    N78PS

  4. #4
    If by "what they did with them" you mean "what missions were they flying" the FBI still uses light fixed-wing aircraft for aerial surveillance, especially tracking ground vehicles. The Cessnas were and are much cheaper and much less conspicuous than a helicopter.
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    Jim Rosenow's Avatar
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    I was asking if someone was aware of something 'unusual' they were doing with them that would require a rebuild every 4K when, as Marty said above, Mobil Oil's went 22K patrolling and were still functioning. I've flown some 'normal' LE surveillance missions, which are only hard on the engines (low power for extended periods of time). Guess they just had more of our $$ than they knew what to do with.

    I submit that "conspicuous" varies by locality. I flew some local night missions with a DEA crew one time who were used to big cities (we were hicksville). Their clever strategy was to vary the lighting configuration of the a/c from time to time, so folks on the ground would assume it was different airplanes. Might work great in Chicago, but in our rural area there never were airplanes after dark. :-)

    Jim
    Last edited by Jim Rosenow; 08-18-2013 at 07:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Rosenow View Post
    I was asking if someone was aware of something 'unusual' they were doing with them that would require a rebuild every 4K when, as Marty said above, Mobil Oil's went 22K patrolling and were still functioning. I've flown some 'normal' LE surveillance missions, which are only hard on the engines (low power for extended periods of time). Guess they just had more of our $$ than they knew what to do with.

    I submit that "conspicuous" varies by locality. I flew some local night missions with a DEA crew one time who were used to big cities (we were hicksville). Their clever strategy was to vary the lighting configuration of the a/c from time to time, so folks on the ground would assume it was different airplanes. Might work great in Chicago, but in our rural area there never were airplanes after dark. :-)

    Jim
    Extremely corrosive environment? Like, grass strips and low altitude flights along the gulf coast?

  7. #7
    Jim Rosenow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdrmuetzel@juno.com View Post
    Extremely corrosive environment? Like, grass strips and low altitude flights along the gulf coast?
    Probably as good a guess as any!!

  8. #8
    Chris In Marshfield's Avatar
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    That's a good question. I think I saw one of those for sale on Controller in Ohio several months back. And it was reasonably priced (for a certificated airplane). I wondered similarly...
    Christopher Owens
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    I would bet some congressman's brother in law had a contract for maintenance work or something. I can tell you some of the repair work on at least one of those planes (the only one I have worked on) was pretty bad. Someone misrouted an aileron cable through a lightening hole. I guess it went unnoticed for a long time as it eventually "sawed" through the rib web to get back in the proper hole. You'd think someone would notice an unusual noise during the "controls -free and correct" part of the checklist.

    Something else that cracked me up - then engine started sagging in the mounts and rubbed a hole in the airbox. So someone just installed a scab patch over the hole and the sagging engine rubbed a hole in the patch. Kept fixing the damage without looking for the problem. Or just didn't care.

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    A friend's son is one of those pilots and he told me I couldn't tell you.

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