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Robinson R44

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Robinson R44

Old 30th Mar 2012, 04:17
  #1341 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Ventura Ca U.S.A.
Posts: 222
The tank ruptures the fuel flows onto the fire wall down the control closet to the belly keels and all the electrical sparks from the fire wall electrical through holes Boom !
hillberg is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2012, 15:02
  #1342 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 3
Just to clarify, I am a commercial pilot working in a very remote area without any sort of mechanic or support to be found. I am not the aircraft owner, just the pilot. There is also a huge language barrier that prevents me from getting many answers I have regarding information in this particular POH and about the aircraft. There are some things that don't seem to match up and I've never been able to get a straight answer from anyone here.

I've got through the POH with a pick and comb. That is why I am asking some of these questions. The VNE placard, the weight and balance document(s), the unusable fuel(yes, it does state unusable fuel 7 gallons in the POH on one of the W&B sheets along with a statement regarding GW being 2500lbs), there's quite of few issues that I'm dealing with as a low hour commercial pilot and just haven't been able to get straight answers down here.

I appreciate all the feedback and information you guys have provided. Certainly some things I need to get a hold of the operator about, but that's a completely different story in itself.

This aircraft has another 20 hours until the 100 hour, so I'm hoping to get some answers with the current weight and balance, the low power issues, the rust that is developing in many different spots, the VNE placard, and some other minor things.

So thanks again to everyone that commented, it gives a small piece of mind getting feedback from people that don't just say, "you worry about everything too much, just be a gorilla pilot".

Edit: I'm going to get the part numbers off the floats when I get back out to the helicopter to double check the manufacturer.
Fracturelines is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2012, 17:47
  #1343 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: England
Posts: 47
Regarding the oil consumption. Just be careful that these numbers you quote are realistic, it is not uncommon for Robinson to vent oil and find a suitable "usable" level.

For instance you fill your 44 upto 9 Quarts, within the first hour the engine vents 1 quart out of the oil breather (not burning it). This engine can then take 5-6 hours before getting anyway near the 7 Quarts lower limit. But if you keep filling back up to 9 Quarts each time then it appears to be using a lot of oil. This just springs to mind as you mention oil mist on cowls etc.

Regarding the low power, have a look at the figures for the compression check at the 100hr.

If you're not happy with the machine - don't fly it!
powerlimited is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2012, 17:51
  #1344 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Midlands
Age: 67
Posts: 604

Hi Fracturelines,

Further to the 'rust' you speak of, I guess you mean corrosion beneath the painted aluminium of the airframe.

My first machine, a brand new 2005 Raven 2, Did not have the 'additional corrosion proofing' that was offered, as my Agent told me there had never been any corrosion issues.

After 11 months, bubbles began to appear along the tailboom, around the tail surfaces and the fuel tanks.

I was told afterwards that RHC had changed their paint processes for environmental reasons and mine was one of those quickly affected by corrosion beneath the overlapped joints in the various sections.

RHC refused to accept any liability 'due to the vagiaries of the English weather', despite my telling them that it had only done a few hours and lived in an airconditioned hangar.

All they did was say 'send the corroded bits back and we'll repaint them for you or send the paint, as you prefer'.

If it had been a corrosion carbunkle on the bonnet of a brand new Skoda I would have had it all sorted under warranty and been given a loaner.
However, spend $0.5M on a helicopter....

It cost me £thousands to sort, simply because it was less costly in both £'s and downtime to get it done here, i.e. I would have had to pay the crating & freight charges etc.

My 2008 machine seems OK, they must have got the paint sorted prior to its m/f.

Hairyplane is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2012, 19:13
  #1345 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 3
Regarding the VNE, this is the placard on the panel and from the supplement
Panel: http://i.imgur.com/PGxo4.jpg
Supplement: http://i.imgur.com/K7a8Z.jpg
Float P/N: http://i.imgur.com/0QkiZ.jpg
Right side float with oil spots from leaks: http://i.imgur.com/8jmRL.jpg

Regarding Rust, these are a few different areas. But many bolts, rod end areas, and places where paint is wore or chipped off.
Shaft: http://i.imgur.com/Kxwoe.jpg - http://i.imgur.com/KbYlI.jpg
T/R: http://i.imgur.com/6hP0J.jpg

I just snapped a couple quick pics this morning with my phone, sorry if the quality is poor. I firmly believe there are leaks on the engine too. I see them everyday and clean the engine bay every morning and it's covered at the end of a day.

Last edited by Fracturelines; 30th Mar 2012 at 21:58.
Fracturelines is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2012, 08:08
  #1346 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 188

If you don't like the condition of the machine, don't fly it.

The engine bay should be clean after flying, I currently have a 500 hour R44 machine and it is always clean in the engine bay, and it gets in the air a lot.

All helicopters can suffer from poor maintenance, and from poor handling, it sounds like the machine you are flying has had a bit of both.

Again, if you are not happy, donít fly it. Simple as that.

Arrrj is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2012, 08:46
  #1347 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Near the bottom
Age: 60
Posts: 1,333
HP - the corrosion problem on the 44 still existed in machines built during 2008, usually manifesting itself just after the 2 year warranty expired. It is extraordinary that Robinson, despite changing to water based paint, denied it was using materials that were not fit for purpose... I know of several 44 operators that were landed with expensive remedial work.
toptobottom is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2012, 13:54
  #1348 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Mallorca
Posts: 27
Clipper I Floats

Float P/N same as my aircraft, stamped in same area so, assuming genuine, they are RHC Floats. Have photos of mine but still learning to post pictures on PPRuNe.

It looks like the ASI "80 kts VNE" Placard is incorrect, and the POH placard is correct.

You mention GW as 2500lbs on your paperwork, note a GW of the R44 Clipper I is 2400lbs, if you fly 2500lbs you are overweight - unless you are flying a R44 Clipper II?

Oil spots on floats - I get similar, but not as many as in your photo, it tends to be oil venting out of the breather, clean the oil off then see how quickly the spots reappear.
sloanemallorca is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2012, 12:25
  #1349 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Bush
Posts: 5
R-44 Raven 2

Am after some tech assistance.

A friend has been having some issues with his 44 electrical system. Helicopter has been sluggish and slow to start, when the 44 has flown for a bit with the amp gauge showing that the batt is charging, when trying to start the 44 again after a flight the batt is almost dead. The batt has been changed and it appears to be doing the same thing. When the pilot has looked under the 44 and felt the starter it has been red hot.

Any help and ideas would be appreciated.

Skippy80 is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2012, 17:53
  #1350 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: UK
Age: 56
Posts: 4
Sounds like you have answered your own question there. Sounds like starter motor jamming on, overheating and then rendering it u/s when its required to start up.
Uncapeez is offline  
Old 2nd Apr 2012, 06:18
  #1351 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Wrong Town
Posts: 213
When you say the starter motor is hot. Have you checked it when it was working normally. Remember it is bolted to the engine and will get hot through conduction when the engine is hot anyway.
Does jump starting the helicopter make any difference?
If you're still getting no joy take it to your maintenance facility.
FSXPilot is offline  
Old 4th Apr 2012, 11:47
  #1352 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Bush
Posts: 5
No i don't beleve it made any difference when jump started. The fact that the starter is getting hot, i agree is due to it's location. If it was remaining on you would think you would be getting the starter light remaining on. Have you had any problems with the starting relay.
Skippy80 is offline  
Old 4th Apr 2012, 13:38
  #1353 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 444
Pinion stuck in ring gear? This happens when people get a no-start and press the button again too soon. Can also chip ring teeth off.
JimBall is offline  
Old 6th Apr 2012, 07:39
  #1354 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: N/A
Posts: 838
starter motors 101.001

101.001 Starter Motors

101.001 a) .....
101.001 b) .....
101.001 c) .... using the motor for too long or attempting too many start cycles without time to cool the starter motor will cause it to over heat. Once the motor has overheated the magnetic strength of the permanent magnets will be diminished resulting in a permanently screwed starter motor. Subsequent starts will draw more current and produce less starting torque, resulting in the motor getting hotter quicker and making it more likely to further damage the magnets eventually turning the motor into an electric heater rather than as a startermotor...
AnFI is offline  
Old 22nd Jun 2012, 15:38
  #1355 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Here
Posts: 1,816
First hand experience/comparison Astro/Raven II

I'm interested in anyone with first hand experience of the difference in useable power hot and high between the two types of R44?

Thanks, Sam.
Sam Rutherford is offline  
Old 14th Jul 2012, 06:16
  #1356 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: New zealand
Posts: 22
Was that the 44 in Fiji where the blades delaminated?

Do you know if the crash report has ever been released. I was in Fiji the day it happened ...to this day the company will no longer fly 44's ... All Squirrels and H500's in their fleet these days
Goody35 is offline  
Old 14th Jul 2012, 06:24
  #1357 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 360
R44 crash report


If you are referring to the crash 06 Dec 2006 (DQ IHE) CAAFI has not released the report. I know for a fact that it was submitted to them in April 2010. Why haven't they released it?? Ask them. The report clearly identifies that the most probable cause of the crach was blade failure due to disbonding. I am happy to discuss this further if you PM me.


blakmax is offline  
Old 17th Jul 2012, 13:50
  #1358 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Blackpool
Age: 74
Posts: 14
Blade Painting

I need to repaint some R44 Raven 11 main rotor blades
any hints or tips appreciated
airvole is offline  
Old 17th Jul 2012, 14:10
  #1359 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Here
Posts: 1,816
Dulux weathershield?

Surely Robinson have some guidance on this?
Sam Rutherford is offline  
Old 17th Jul 2012, 14:25
  #1360 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Blackpool
Age: 74
Posts: 14
Theirs always one
airvole is offline  

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