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Elvis the Water Bomber

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Elvis the Water Bomber

Old 12th Feb 2004, 11:16
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Elvis the Water Bomber

One of the big Choppers standing by down under for water bombing of bush fires is called Elvis.

Elvis has a huge proboscis which it can lower into a water source on the hover and rapidly take aboard lots of water.
The proboscis is longer than 30 feet so that no onboard pump would be able to do the pumping.
At sea level a vacuum can barely support a 30 feet column of water.
The proboscis has a bulbous end which has to be the housing for an enormous high volume pump of some sort - possibly hydraulically powered.

Does any one out there know anything about the pump?
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Old 12th Feb 2004, 17:50
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Big chopper ??? could be a lot of different choppers - this page mentions a large volume pump - maybe less than 30 feet of tube ?
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Old 17th Feb 2004, 09:10
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Hydraulic motor driving an outboard motor prop! The basic system has been around a long time. Jetski pumps are also popular!

Pump is mounted at the end of the snorkel. This picture also shows the water cannon installed.

Also have a skimming hydrofoil scoop.

Down to the local Evinrude dealer for parts!

Last edited by Cyclic Hotline; 17th Feb 2004 at 09:27.
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Old 17th Feb 2004, 17:04
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That looks a lot more scuba-diver friendly than the old scoop!

Nice pics!
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Old 18th Feb 2004, 18:35
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Elvis is an Erickson Air-Crane S64F, N179AC. Down under we have also seen Incredible Hulk (N164AC) and Georgia Peach (N154AC).

Yes, the bulb at the bottom of the hose contains the hydraulically driven pump, which can fill the 9,000 litre tank in about 40 seconds while hovering. Hydraulic lines run inside the hose I think.

The pump is only used for fresh water. The Scoop is used for seawater, as about 30 kts forward speed is needed to keep the engines and airframe ahead of the salt spray. I'm told the scoop method fills the tank in about 20 seconds.
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Old 18th Feb 2004, 21:23
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I vote one of those photos for the March PPRuNe Rotorheads calendar. Brilliant.

Agree they're excellent pics, but they're Ericsson promo shots and we always use photos of or by forum members for the calendar.
Would anyone who flies these machines, please let us know.

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Old 20th Feb 2004, 21:42
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I thought that we had Isabelle (sp) down here this year. I am not sure on the air-frame/rego number but I could have sworn it was her.

I saw it the other day actually, flew directly over the top of the cricket oval on Sunday. Thank god that the seasons around the world are different otherwise we would not have that lifesaver!
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Old 4th Apr 2004, 03:20
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Elvis and Isabella

Elvis and companion Isabella were loaded on to a ship in E Australia today 4/4/04 to be taken to Greece to carry on with their bush fire fighting duties.

May they continue to be effective.
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Old 4th Apr 2004, 03:50
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There are some beaut action shots of the sky cranes (and others) doing some fire fighting in the Sydney region earlier this year on this thread.
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Old 4th Apr 2004, 04:23
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Thumbs up

A-W-E-S-O-M-E Photos!!
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Old 4th Apr 2004, 06:25
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We've moved them a few times with the AN124 on emergency deployments bit of a tight fit though...

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Old 17th Oct 2004, 23:57
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Elvis is Back

Elvis accompanied by his partner Isabelle are back in Sydney just in time for bush fire suppression. Both very welcome.

Elvis will be Sydney based and his mate goes to Melbourne.

These machines must have huge capacity hydraulic pumps for driving the enormous flow of water up their umbilicals whilst at the hover.
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Old 18th Oct 2004, 04:19
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Elvis will be going to victoria some time in December and Isabelle is the Sydneyy based crane for the season.
Was out there on Saturday getting all the goss
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Old 19th Oct 2004, 11:18
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The " Pond Snorkel" derives its hydraulic power from the Auxiliary hydraulic system, A 10 inch diameter flexible "tube" is attached to a 90 deg fitting at the front left of the tank. A 19ft long 3/8 inch cable runs inside the snorkel to carry the weight of the snorkel head. Also running inside the tube are 3 hydraulic lines providing fluid flow to the Hydraulic motor driving a brass prop in the snorkel head. This hydraulically driven prop is what actually pushes the water through the snorkel into the tank during filling.

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Old 19th Oct 2004, 13:15
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Just to show I'm a tota idiot and wanna show off.

Someone said soemthing about sucking water 30 feet.

well, that is the reason that the 'neutral' barometric pressure is 1013.25" Hg.

10.1325 meters is the highest you could suck a column of water! (that equals roughly 30 feet?)
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Old 19th Oct 2004, 13:34
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I take it you are having a laugh??

1013 is not inches, it is Hecta Pascals (or milli bars as was).

It is equivelant to 29.92 inches (760 mm)of mercury, which is rather less than 30 feet!
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Old 19th Oct 2004, 18:32
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Thats why you will see the Cranes very low to the water during pond snorkle operations - less head
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Old 20th Oct 2004, 00:42
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Not so PT6ER. The water is not sucked up at all. There is a powerful pressure pump in the end of the proboscis. See earlier post.

But low will help as there is then less of a head to pump against.

Any suction pump at sea level will have to be very good to lift more that 20 feet or so as it will be getting too close to a vacuum.

For the same reason you can't maintain a syphon much over 20 ft.
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Old 20th Oct 2004, 12:24
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During normal operations and dependant on depth of water available the "pond snorkel" will normally be dropped from the hover from a 3500lbs electrically operated cargo hook mounted on the port side aft of the main gear from a hieght of around six feet to ten feet from the main gear.

I have photos and film of both Pond & Sea Snorkel's in operation from inside the Crane but no means of attaching them to site !!
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Old 20th Oct 2004, 14:10
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I know it is not "sucked" but is "pushed" up. Still, the lower to the water the less effort on behalf of the hydraulic motor it takes, is that not so??
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