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Robinson R44

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Robinson R44

Old 17th Jul 2012, 16:41
  #1361 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: UK
Age: 66
Posts: 1,368
Get it done by or through the engineer who maintains your aircraft. That way you will actually be able to fly it legally, as well as admire the finish
Helinut is offline  
Old 18th Jul 2012, 13:10
  #1362 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Blackpool
Age: 74
Posts: 14
I will re phrase the question

Has anybody had R44 Raven 11 M/Rotor blades painted successfully, obviously by a licensed maintenance facility and if so which facility ?

The new finish is for practical and safety purposes not cosmetic
airvole is offline  
Old 18th Jul 2012, 13:56
  #1363 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 188
I have had my blades painted a couple of times in Australia. No problem at all, they needed painting due to the salt spray in Aus.

Just get them done with a LAME, and all will be OK.

Arrrj is offline  
Old 18th Jul 2012, 14:16
  #1364 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Blackpool
Age: 74
Posts: 14
Same problem with my machines (coastal area)

But the maintenance facilities I have spoken too are not very confident about the longevity of the new paint finish

How many hours have you been getting after re-finish ?

Thanks in anticipation
airvole is offline  
Old 19th Jul 2012, 00:31
  #1365 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 188

We get around 400 hours between repainting on the main rotor, and about half that on the tail rotor.

Arrrj is offline  
Old 19th Jul 2012, 13:03
  #1366 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Blackpool
Age: 74
Posts: 14

Thanks for that

airvole is offline  
Old 25th Jul 2012, 19:55
  #1367 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Italy
Posts: 19
tracking vibrex 2000?

Can you tell mi please the price of a VIBREX 2k or 2k+ (new or used)?
Do you know a good and less expensive balancer for a R44
zami is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2012, 20:07
  #1368 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: England & Scotland
Age: 59
Posts: 1,352
Starting motor problems?


Long term problem - starting motors and ring gear getting into conflict on a regular basis. Every couple of months teeth go missing. New starting motors and new ring gear (one / other / both) makes no difference.

Finally, it was suggested that we check the L magneto as it might not actually retain correct advance / retard for the full time to overhaul.

Turned out to be correct. The timing did not retard correctly for the start sequence. Advanced timing was leading to the engine pushing backwards against the starter and the weakest link gives way.

In future I will be checking timing and points at the 100 hr checks. £120 for that beats the cost of a new starter and ring gear

John R81 is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2012, 23:05
  #1369 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: downunder
Posts: 120
Alternator light

Flying yesterday in R4411, 800 hr tt 2005; alternator light comes on, and I can tell you the battery drain is pretty high, check circuit breaker and it is in. So land and cycle ALT switch and all is good. Hasn't happened again. Is this symptom of impending failure, or just a under/over power spike, maybe diode fauilure??? Belt is good, battery fine, and all nuts tight, no wires broken, etc. After cycle of ALT switch took about 15 min for amps to read normal. Only ask because in 2000+ hours never had this one before.
as350nut is offline  
Old 24th Oct 2012, 04:40
  #1370 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Canada
Posts: 1
400hrs only between repaint!!!??? We operated an eng machine around 120 hrs a month, coastal and in plenty of rain and we would get over 1000hrs before even a slight touch up was required! You don't need to be over anal on this, just don't let them erode to the bond line. Use the Robinson tool to put a felt mark on the blade with the location of the bond line and monitor the erosion. If its starting to come off in chunks then take some sandpaper and feather the edge of the paint down to the stainless so that the wind/water/dirt etc can't get under the paint and pull chunks off.
Flingwinger is offline  
Old 24th Oct 2012, 06:26
  #1371 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Stairways to heaven
Posts: 346
Competition for old R44

UTair will acquire 50 Mi-34S1 helicopters - News - Russian Aviation - RUAVIATION.COM

jackx123 is offline  
Old 24th Oct 2012, 06:43
  #1372 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 1,653

Sure the wires are good, look carefully at the feild wires at the ring tags, quite often look good but may only have a couple of strands making a contact, seen it a couple of times giving yoour symptoms
Hughes500 is offline  
Old 24th Oct 2012, 14:21
  #1373 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Holland
Posts: 29

Had the same problem. Earth connection was the problem. 5 min. work.
Was a good emergencies rehersal.
Rotordent is offline  
Old 5th Mar 2013, 09:58
  #1374 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: midlands
Posts: 15
Robinson Blade AD?

FAA have published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on the replacement of main rotor blades on both R22 & R44 not using current specification main rotor blades.


Proposed time of compliance is 5 years but we all recall the process on the R44 Bladder Tanks which started with compliance by 31 December 2014 which then came back to 31 December 2013 and back again to 30 April 2013. We have yet to discover what will happen to R44s after end of April.

R44 Bladder Tanks are not yet an AD but they could easily become such. Even if this does not happen R44 owners and schools hiring them out will place themselves at increased risk in the event of a serious accident. Lawyers may claim that the owner/school were negligent in ignoring a safety recommendation made by Robinson having been given adequate time to do so.

Fuel tanks, blades, whatever next?
zerosum is offline  
Old 6th Mar 2013, 09:18
  #1375 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 360
R44 blade replacement


In my professional opinion this should have happened earlier and the time to complete the change over is too long. This should have occurred as soon as the report on the Israeli crash was released. That crash had all of the characteristics of the crash of DQ-IHE (see the comments at the top of this page of the thread) and I know the FAA has seen the draft of that report even if CAAFI have not released it. So they had two reports which indicated a problem with the blades. I don't know why they waited so long to issue this AD.

As for managing the integrity by reliance on the tap test, I urge you to read this: http://www.adhesionassociates.com/pa...d%20Joints.doc

There have been documented cases of blade disbonds with service as low as about 750 hrs. I know of two blades reported with disbonds at the root fitting with ZERO flight hours, so I would love to know how they think these blades will be safe for the next five years.

In my opinion they should have withdrawn a number of blades with a range of service lives and then undertaken static tests to demonstrate that they maintain a sufficient level of reserve strength.


blakmax is offline  
Old 6th Mar 2013, 09:54
  #1376 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 1,958
I don't think I am alone with the feeling that we have been jointly and severally duckshovelled by both FAA and Robinson on this issue?

I.E. Who worked out first that something should have been done but wasn't and thus they similarly worked out that they may be severally and jointly responsible for inaction?

I would dearly love to see those Florida blades independently and professionally examined away from both FAA and Robinson.
topendtorque is offline  
Old 6th Mar 2013, 11:06
  #1377 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 360

I too would like to see an independent AND COMPETENT inspection of the blades. Did they ever find the second blade or did I miss that?

It always amazes me that in any crash the suspect item is sent back to the manufacturer. Surely there is a conflict of interest there? Isn't it in the best interest of the company itself not to find a cause for which they are potentially liable?

I have seen one manufacturer overlook the scenario that is obvious to the IIC and fall back on a theory for which there is absolutely no evidence and which does not fit in with the failure features. And the FAA seems bound to accept their findings.

Sometimes I think that the only way to change this system may well be by litigation.

Regards BM
blakmax is offline  
Old 22nd Mar 2013, 17:02
  #1378 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Shelton WA.
Posts: 338
Bladder tanks will not stop these helicopters crashing all of the time!
Gemini Twin is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2013, 10:05
  #1379 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: london
Posts: 650

Every time a Robinson crashes there is a deluge of bashers. I have no great love of Frank Robinson, having been told the blades on a five month old 44 had to be changed at my expense and a litany of other issues over the years. BUT before the 22 and 44, self fly in the UK and many other countries was limited to small groups of rather eccentric chaps.

I am not alone in preferring to fly more substantial helicopters but I and many others would never have learned to fly without the 22 purely because of cost. With the exception of perhaps the US, tax authorities are so strict that very few people can afford to operate turbine helicopters other than as part of a commercial operation. As we enter the seventh year of a global recession I am struck by the reduction in self fly operations and the number of people giving up helicopter ownership. This cannot be good for any part of the industry. The 22 and 44 may be Ladas but when there were no other affordable cars Russians found them invaluable.

By all means put bladder tanks in new aircraft, but bear in mind that mandating retro fitting, combined with the recurring spectre of blades and the fiasco over the 66 will drive people away. This not only effects Robinson sales but also employment within the industry, the number of people moving up to more substantial ships and potentially the ability of the industry to resist increasing political regulation.
homonculus is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2013, 15:17
  #1380 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: UK/OZ
Posts: 1,710
From an aviation lawyers website;Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman | Wrongful Death and Personal Injury Lawyers

n November 2011, Robinson announced that it had produced its 10,000th helicopter. They are currently the world's leading manufacturer of civil helicopters.

According to the NTSB’s online Accident Database, it appears that 1,053 Robinson helicopters have been involved in accidents across the globe since the first R22 crashed on December, 22, 1975 at Torrance, California and that of those 1,053 accidents, 237 were fatal accidents, killing a total of 413 people.
According to US and foreign government accident databases, there have been at least 30 low-impact R44 crashes resulting in post-crash fires since 1993. Fifty-nine people have died and more than a dozen people were injured in these accidents.
Above stats do not include recent crashes.

mickjoebill is offline  

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