The Piper Cherokee as a replacement to the Tri-Pacer

January, 5, 2021
piper-pa-28
Piper Pa28

Thirty years ago, Piper Cherokee, also synonymous with Piper PA-28-140, started its journey from the assembly line at Vero Beach. 

The Cherokee 140 bid goodbye to the popular tube-and-fabric designs adopted by previous airplanes that had been introduced by Piper in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. However, this airplane never aimed to secure a spot in aviation chronicles. Instead, its aim was to introduce a low-cost, basic, four-seat airplane for the masses. 

Features Piper Cherokee

The Piper Cherokee was set to act as a replacement to the Tri-Pacer. This 28th Piper model was an all-metal airplane that came with a low wing to increase ground handling capabilities. It was possible for the gear located on the low-wing airplane to be far apart as compared to the gear on a high-wing airplane. The Piper Cherokee 140 could do exceptionally well in a crosswind, especially since it is a low-wing airplane. This is because of its wide-spread gear and how low the center of gravity lies in the airplane. 

The Piper PA-28 is powered by a four-cylinder, has a horsepower of 150 Lycoming, along with a tricycle gear with a tread of 10 feet. This plan would be smaller than its competitors and would have a wingspan of 30 feet. Since Piper Cherokee was not built to compete with expensive planes, its cabin was only 42 inches wide and 2 inches less than that of the Comanche’s. 

The fuel for this airplane is stored in two tanks, which have the capacity of twenty-five gallons each. In case of a mishap, the airplane comes with an auxiliary electric fuel pump. In the engine gauge cluster, the fuel quantity and pressure are specified.

Cherokee Specifications

The Piper Cherokee comes with a Full-Time Power Electrical System. It has a 12-volt alternator that supplies electrical power to the engine at varying speeds. This helps improved battery life and better performance of electrical equipment. The plane also has a 25-ampere-hour battery, along with a master switch relay and voltage regulator. Below are some more specifications for the Piper Cherokee PA-28:

  • A total of four cylinders
  • Displacement of 319.9
  • Horsepower of 140-150
  • Fuel is supplied through a carburetor
  • Fixed pitch
  • Fuel capacity of 36 gallons. The long-range tanks have a capacity of 50 gallons
  • Minimum octane fuel of 80
  • Takeoff and landing weight normal category of 1,950-2,150 lbs
  • Takeoff and landing weight utility category of 1,950 lbs
  • Standard empty weight of 1,180-1,201 lbs
  • Normal category of a maximum useful load of 770-949 lbs
  • Baggage capacity of 100-200 lbs
  • An oil capacity of 8 quarts
  • The airplane cannot exceed the speed of 148 KCAS
  • Maximum structural cruising speed is 121 KCAS
  • Stall speed landing configuration is of 48 KCAS
  • The best climb rate is 660-820 FPM

It must be noted that the Piper Cherokee 140 is allowed day and night VFR/ IFR, as long as it follows the protocols with F.A.R.FAR 91 or F.A.R.FAR 135. It is also only allowed in the normal and utility category. In the normal category, the aircraft is banned from performing spin and other acrobatic moves. In the utility category, depending on the airplane’s POH, some moves are permitted.