• Review: Alabeo - C172RG Cutlass II

    Cessna 172 RG Cutlass II

    Publisher: Alabeo

    Review Author:
    Bill Stack

    Suggested Price:
    $22.95

    Buy Here
    Cessna 172 RG Cutlass II by Alabeo

    Image From Alabeo

    Cessna's 172 is a single-engine, high-wing, general-aviation aircraft. With more than 43,000 built in various forms since introduction in 1955, it outnumbers all other aircraft ever, of any type, by any manufacturer. The RG Cutlass model was introduced with retractable gear in 1980. It has a 180 horsepower (130 kilowatt) Lycoming engine and a variable-pitch, constant-speed propeller. It was popular with flight-training schools because their retractable gear, controllable-pitch propeller, and adjustable flaps met complex-aircraft requirements for commercial-pilot certificates.

    Landing-gear failure caused several Cessna 172 RGs to crash in 2011 and 2012 according to the Aviation Safety Database.

    Original 172s sold for $8,995. Used 172 RGs are available for $49,000 to $99,000 depending on condition.

    While the C172 RG Cutlass is the same dimensions as the FSX C172 Skyhawk, the RG carries more variable weight, is faster, and has a longer range than the Skyhawk. Yet it curiously has a lower service ceiling.

    C172 RG SPECIFICATIONS
    Specification C172 C172 RG
    Occupants 4 4
    Empty Weight 1,665 LBS
    755 KG
    1,624 LBS
    737 KG
    Gross Weight 2,550 LBS
    1,157 KG
    2,658 LBS
    1,206 KG
    Useful Load 893 LBS
    405 KG
    1,034 LBS
    469 KG
    Fuel Capacity 56 GAL
    212 L
    66 GAL
    250 L
    Cruising Speed 124 KTS
    200 KPH
    145 KTS
    269 KPH
    Maximum Speed 126 KTS
    203 KPH
    164 KTS
    304 KPH
    Ceiling 14,000 FT
    4,267 M
    12,000 FT
    3,658 M
    Range 638 NM
    1,181 KM
    845 NM
    1,565 KM
    Length 27 FT
    8 M
    27 FT
    8 M
    Wing Span 36 FT
    11 M
    36 FT
    11 M
    Power 180 HP
    134 KW
    180 HP
    134 KW
    Source: Alabeo & FSX

    That both the Alabeo and FSX C172s have the same power drew my attention. The original C172 Skyhawk had a 160-HP engine. The FSX C172 is an SP model, which has a Textron Lycoming IO-360-L2A 180-HP engine. Alabeo's C172 RG Cutlass II has an Avco Lycoming O-360-F1A6 180-HP engine.

    Cessna 172 RG Cutlass II by Alabeo Cessna 172 RG Cutlass II by Alabeo

    Screen shots by Alabeo

    Alabeo's C172 RG Cutlass II

    These features of Alabeo's Cessna 172 RG Cutlass II are highlighted in its product description: high-definition textures, superb material shines and reflections, gauges reflections, window scratches, blade shines, realistic behavior, five liveries, blank texture for custom designs, and four manuals. This aircraft is for Microsoft Flight Simulator X® and Lockheed Martin's Prepar3D®.

    I reviewed the FSX version. All screen shots are by me unless otherwise attributed.


    22 Comments
    1. jamminjames's Avatar
      jamminjames -
      Another Winner from Alabeo! A must have.
    1. hyenafur's Avatar
      hyenafur -
      I hate to point this out, but a few of the figures are off on the 172RG II and 172S.

      Empty weight of an RGII is 1598 LBS.
      Useful load is 1060 LBS.
      Cruis speed is 140 KTS.
      Maximum Speed at Sea Level is 145 KTS.
      Service ceiling is 16,800 FT.
      Max range is 840NM

      C172S
      Empty Weight: 1663 LBS
      Useful Load: 895 LBS


      Source:
      http://williams.best.vwh.net/172RG_POH/cover.html
      http://www.ddac.com.au/documents/aircraft/C172S.pdf
    1. Sir_Crashalot's Avatar
      Sir_Crashalot -
      And as usual with Alabeo planes it comes without even the simplest form of GPS. It's all VOR and/or NDB navigating here. Or put one in yourself. 5 minutes work...
    1. iflygary's Avatar
      iflygary -
      I'd have to agree with JamminJames. It's definitely a must especially for the price. This plane handles very well and I'd say it is the best product Alabeo has put out to date!! You won't be disappointed in it!!
    1. BobK's Avatar
      BobK -
      Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Crashalot View Post
      And as usual with Alabeo planes it comes without even the simplest form of GPS. It's all VOR and/or NDB navigating here. Or put one in yourself. 5 minutes work...
      Indeed. I took one hop in my new 172RG, then plugged in a SimFlyer GMX200 MFD and GNX480 GPS. Simple enough, also simple to add the standard fs9gps!gps_500 or fs9gps!gps_295 instead.
    1. Meteor FL.54's Avatar
      Meteor FL.54 -
      It's a bit disappointing that Bills test are almost always sloppy flown and sloppy researched.
      Also his 'test' methods like the stall test are very questionable and differ a lot from official testing procedures.
      Complaining about the 12000ft ceiling being incorrect while the actual ceiling is above 16000ft is as wrong as complaining about the too short take off roll....of course it's shorter if you are flying at less than the MTOW.....
    1. hyenafur's Avatar
      hyenafur -
      Having flown in one IRL, the Alabeo feels very much like that one. I'm kinda glad I sent them a message about it last year. A 172RG is nothing more than a 172XP with retractable landing gear, and the XP is nothing more than a 172N with a Lycoming 180hp engine. Solid P3D/FSX plane, and a much better addition to P3D if you want a Cessna 172, it's fairly forgiving, but it's also fresh and different from the FSX standard 172S. If you want to practice CPL stuff with a retract, this is certainly the airframe to do it in.
    1. jamminjames's Avatar
      jamminjames -
      How do you put in a GPS? And where do you get one...
    1. hyenafur's Avatar
      hyenafur -
      Quote Originally Posted by jamminjames View Post
      How do you put in a GPS? And where do you get one...
      Go to the Program Files/Lockheed Martin/Prepar3D/SimObjects/Airplanes/Alabeo C172RG_CutlassII/Panel
      Double click on Panel.CFG
      Open Panel.CFG as a rich text file or a notepad file.

      Copy this into it

      Window03=GPS


      //--------------------------------------------------------
      [Window03]
      Background_color=49,49,49
      size_mm=500,520
      window_size_ratio=1.000
      position=0
      visible=0
      ident=794
      window_size= 0.320, 0.444
      window_pos= 0.020, 0.505
      zorder=0

      gauge00=CarenadoG430_3D_A36!GNS430_nc1, 2,0,500,266
    1. jamminjames's Avatar
      jamminjames -
      Thanks a bunch hyenafur!!!
    1. rudyjo's Avatar
      rudyjo -
      Thanks for the information on how to install a GPS. What would be the procedure to install the stock GPS that came with all of Microsofts planes?
    1. hyenafur's Avatar
      hyenafur -
      Quote Originally Posted by rudyjo View Post
      Thanks for the information on how to install a GPS. What would be the procedure to install the stock GPS that came with all of Microsofts planes?
      Back on my normal comuputer. Okay, so here we go

      Go to the Program Files/Lockheed Martin/Prepar3D/SimObjects/Airplanes/Alabeo C172RG_CutlassII/Panel
      Double click on Panel.CFG
      Open Panel.CFG as a rich text file or a notepad file.

      Copy this into it

      Window03=GPS


      //--------------------------------------------------------
      [Window03]
      size_mm=456,378
      window_size=0.5
      position=8
      BACKGROUND_COLOR=0,0,0
      VISIBLE=0
      ident=GPS_PANEL

      gauge00=fs9gps!gps_500, 0,0
    1. TheFamilyMan's Avatar
      TheFamilyMan -
      Though autopilot controls are not included in its radio stack, I've found (and greatly appreciate) that autopilot controls do respond as expected to the appropriately mapped FSX autopilot control keys. Using these AP controls do not require any modifications, other than having the autopilot key mappings configured in FSX.
    1. rudyjo's Avatar
      rudyjo -
      Quote Originally Posted by hyenafur View Post
      Back on my normal comuputer. Okay, so here we go

      Go to the Program Files/Lockheed Martin/Prepar3D/SimObjects/Airplanes/Alabeo C172RG_CutlassII/Panel
      Double click on Panel.CFG
      Open Panel.CFG as a rich text file or a notepad file.

      Copy this into it

      Window03=GPS


      //--------------------------------------------------------
      [Window03]
      size_mm=456,378
      window_size=0.5
      position=8
      BACKGROUND_COLOR=0,0,0
      VISIBLE=0
      ident=GPS_PANEL

      gauge00=fs9gps!gps_500, 0,0
      Thank you very much, have never done this, but I'll stay with it until it works.
      I agree, this is the nicest plane Alabeo has done.
      Edit; I put the GPS into the C172RG, C-195 and the PA38. Was easy to do, One thing I did change is the window size from 0.5 to 0.3, it fits the screen better. Thanks again
    1. BobK's Avatar
      BobK -
      Something perhaps not spelled out clearly enough in hyenafur's directions is this:
      At the top of the panel.cfg file is a section entitled [Window Titles] with three lines below it. Below the third line, the one that says "Window02=INFO", add this line:
      Window03=GPS

      hyenafur shows this line but not where it goes.

      If you want to get fancy you can also graft in the standard autopilot from the standard 172 et al.
    1. jhcurtis's Avatar
      jhcurtis -
      Can't see any mention of the disappointing Paint Kit that comes with this.

      I'm willing to have a play at doing repaints (and have done a few over the years) but the Alabeo ones really aren't very user friendly and I'm not sure why? In many other respects I find Alabeo products to be very good but as far as the Paint Kits go, they could take a leaf out of other developer's books and surely the extra publicity of more repaints available makes this worth consideration???
    1. davidc2's Avatar
      davidc2 -
      I have followed the directions above for adding the GPS, but it is not showing up in the panel stack, Any thoughts? I have copy/pasted the correct items (shown below) and have added Window03-GPS as well

      [Window03]
      size_mm=456,378
      window_size=0.5
      position=8
      BACKGROUND_COLOR=0,0,0
      VISIBLE=0
      ident=GPS_PANEL

      gauge00=fs9gps!gps_500, 0,0
    1. rudyjo's Avatar
      rudyjo -
      Quote Originally Posted by davidc2 View Post
      I have followed the directions above for adding the GPS, but it is not showing up in the panel stack, Any thoughts? I have copy/pasted the correct items (shown below) and have added Window03-GPS as well

      [Window03]
      size_mm=456,378
      window_size=0.5
      position=8
      BACKGROUND_COLOR=0,0,0
      VISIBLE=0
      ident=GPS_PANEL

      gauge00=fs9gps!gps_500, 0,0
      David; Sounds like you did everything correctly. Are you clicking SHIFT+4 ?
      When I installed the GPS, I assumed it would show up with SHIFT+3 as it was installed in Window 3. But the numbers
      start at 0, not 1.
    1. davidc2's Avatar
      davidc2 -
      The small GPS does show up. I was hoping to add one to the Radio Stack itself. I like to plan my routes with waypoints etc., take off, get to cruising altitude, set the AP up, and let it go. I just can't figure out how to add the panel itself. (hoping this makes sense)
    1. davidc2's Avatar
      davidc2 -
      Well, I got it to where it will act like i was wanting it to, without adding the panel (which I would still like to do............)

      After reading some older posts, I added the toggle for the GPS/NAV, (had my flight plan with waypoints already set up), got up in the air, did the toggle, did the AP including Ctrl N and it worked I was flying around Jacksonville in a pre-arranged flight plan.
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