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Old 9th Feb 2017, 12:23   #1 (permalink)
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Training helicopters

'outside of R22s and S300's what are good training helicopters?

btw, I'm new to the group here.

Thanks,
Robert
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 15:17   #2 (permalink)
 
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Welcome.

Guimbal Cabri G2

The S300 was designed as a training helicopter and is very good at it. The R22 might be a popular training helicopter but that doesn't make it good.
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 15:19   #3 (permalink)
 
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The Bristol Sycamore

Wooden blades, each a tower flown set. No hydraulics, spring feel via a lateral and fore/aft trims wheels. A collective /throttle interlink which initiated a vague, sometimes opposite response to collective inputs. A nine cylinder supercharged radial engine that would operate at MAP and RPM figures in the hover that were regarded as emergency figures on it's fixed wing predecessor. Appalling control authority and prohibited from night flying out of the airfield area.

I did 50 hours basic training on those. The subsequent 16,000 hrs. were a breeze.
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 15:41   #4 (permalink)
 
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Was that the one with the AVPIN starter that regularly caught fire?
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 16:05   #5 (permalink)

 
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The Bell 47!

Phil
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 16:36   #6 (permalink)
 
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Robert,

Because you are US based, unless you are very wealthy, 99% of the available helicopter training aircraft available to you are going to be Robinsons. As you've no doubt determined, there is the odd S300 or old B47 around, but those are comparatively few and far between. AFAIK, there are no G2s anywhere near you, and only a handful in the US at all.

So...you are going to almost certainly wind up in an R22, or maybe an S300 if you are lucky to have one about. You could pay around twice the price of an R22 per hour if you'd like to learn in an R44, assuming there is a school that is willing to teach that way (some are). Because R44s are less plentiful that could lead to aircraft availability issues.

If you are, again, very wealthy, you could possibly find someone willing to teach you in 206 or something like that.

The other thing to consider is what track you are on. If it's a personal/private owner type track, then it probably doesn't matter what you learn in. If you are on a professional helicopter pilot track, then that normally means time in the trenches as a CFI. Again, since 99% of all US civil helicopter training is in Robinson products, then Robinson time would seem to be more valuable.

aa
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 16:38   #7 (permalink)
 
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As paco said the Bell 47 must be tops.

Enstrom comes close behind the Bell imho - a much underestimated machine that like the Bell demonstrates all the classic reponses with no vices.
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 16:40   #8 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Was that the one with the AVPIN starter that regularly caught fire?
No; that was the Bristol Belvedere. That was where you had the ladder access to the cockpit left in place until after the front engine had been started.
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 19:59   #9 (permalink)
 
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Ah, I remembered it was a Bristol, just the wrong one. I heard the stories about having the ladder there and the pilot starting the aircraft with one foot on the ladder for a sharp exit if it all went Pete Tong.
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 21:33   #10 (permalink)
 
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Crab, that would be the Belvedere.

Whimlew, sorry about the thread drift.

PM
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Old 9th Feb 2017, 22:03   #11 (permalink)
 
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Even Frank said that the R22 was never designed to be a 'trainer'

The 269/300 was - originally for the US Army - who trained over 30,000 pilots and did some 3 million hours in them - sophisticated fully articulated rotorhead and proper crash protective undercarriage. The 300'C' in particular also has lots of power and superb handling. Just ask Dennis K.

If you want to go turbine, the Enstrom 480 was also designed as a trainer and much of the above also applies. Very safe and easy to fly.
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Old 10th Feb 2017, 06:38   #12 (permalink)
 
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What about the Huey? All the Oz air force chopper pilots learned in it ab initio. If you are only ever going to fly a turbine, why waste your time with a piddly piston.
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Old 10th Feb 2017, 06:44   #13 (permalink)
 
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I know, what about the EC135, if you're only ever going o fly a turbine why waste your money on just one engine...when you can do it with two?

Apologies AC if I missed the initial sarcasm.

Cheers FP
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Old 10th Feb 2017, 11:05   #14 (permalink)
 
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Well, Fryer, our military is about to do just that - twins and glass cockpits from the start. But a few expensive training spills might change their mind. At one stage (early 70s) we had fixed wing training all-through jets. But that didn't last long before they went back to the initial weeding out on pistons to save a lot of money. Only us genius pilots made it onto the dog-whistles.
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Old 10th Feb 2017, 11:14   #15 (permalink)
 
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That did surprise me.

Surely the first 30 or so hours in the little Cabri G2 would be a much easier and cost effective introduction to rotary flying before stepping up to an Airbus 135.
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Old 10th Feb 2017, 16:37   #16 (permalink)
 
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Bristow Redhill training school used the Hiller 12E for many years. must have trained a lot of Pilots.
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Old 11th Feb 2017, 02:14   #17 (permalink)
 
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Unbelievable AC. When I started my initial with the RN it was Chipmunks then Bulldogs before getting near a chopper. As for the second donk that wasn't needed until OCU. Ironically the best pilots went Sea Harrier via the Hawk....so those guys didn't go multi engine until they joined Virgin

How starting on a 135 can be cost effective I don't know. Unless recruitment is so poor they don't intend to chop anyone and so by the time they get to Merlin or Wildcat the glass cockpit will be second nature.

Back to the OP...go Robinson. Just by their abundance, they're a safer bet for work after training.
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Old 11th Feb 2017, 21:49   #18 (permalink)
 
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The two seater R44 Cadet (although there's not many of them around as yet), is a pretty good option for at least some training - cheaper to operate and therefore hire than the 'standard' 44, full tanks with two reasonably hefty POB, air con, quite nice to fly.
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