Devore Aviation Cessna R172K Hawk XP
K. Van der Walker
First Albuquerque Visit: 1979
The Cessna 172 Skyhawk is an American four-seat, single-engine, high fixed-wing aircraft made by the Cessna Aircraft Company. First flown in 1955, more 172s have been built than any other aircraft. The Skyhawk name was originally used for a trim package, but was later applied to all standard-production 172 aircraft.
The Hawk XP is a single-engine airplane introduced by Cessna in 1977. Cessna produced the R172K Hawk XP model from 1977 to 1981. The aircraft was well accepted for use on floats because the XP’s extra power improved the water takeoff performance dramatically.
K Floats was started in 1954 by Peter Kelner of International Falls, Minnesota. He designed a small seaplane float to accommodate the Aeronca “7” and “11” series aircraft, as well as the early versions of the Piper PA-18. K Floats developed the hull and used existing EDO float attachment struts and fittings to install his floats on aircraft.
In 1964, Kelner sold the company to an engineer from Massachusetts named Kort Converse who was interested in developing floats for larger aircraft. In collaboration with Devore Aviation, a deep-V hull with flat top decks was produced and certified as the PK3500 series. After an aviation accident in 1968 claimed the life of Converse, Gil Devore purchased the PK Floats from his estate.
In 1970, all manufacturing was moved to Sanford, Maine and Aerofab, began production of the PK line under contract from Devore Aviation. These floats were approved for use on Cessna, Maule, Piper, Bellanca and Helio aircraft. In 1979, DeVore moved to its new home in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In 1979, DeVore had designed and developed systems for most airframes in service be it helicopter or fixed wing aircraft until a slowdown in general aviation in the late 1980’s prompted Devore to limit production of any new floats at its manufacturing facility in Albuquerque. DeVore continued to produce floats and replacement parts on a made to order basis.
This Cessna R172K Hawk XP was used by Devore Aviation in Albuquerque beginning in January of 1979 to support the manufacture of aircraft floats for amphibious light aircraft. The company also manufactured spot lights to mount in the horizontal stabilizer of commercial airliners so that the logo on the tail of each plane could be showcased. In addition, this company developed and manufactured the single-light ADIS landing system.
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