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Guimbal Cabri G2

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Guimbal Cabri G2

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Old 22nd May 2018, 11:14
  #1241 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
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Hi Henri,

I can only speak for the UK market, but flying schools over here tend to buy newly overhauled R22, which are currently being sold (even with weak GBP) at £150K+VAT. That's around half the price of a G2. The 12-year life isn't so much of an issue for flying schools as they can easily fly the hours off before they run out of time.

The costs in GA have become completely out of control and have moved far beyond the price bracket of those who would otherwise want to fly. If the GA sector is to recover we need to do more to reduce the cost of aircraft and flying.

Remember back in 1978 then the USA alone was producing over 17,811 light aircraft per year with an typical price of $80K (in 2018 dollars). Those same aircraft are now $350K!!! That's where it's all gone wrong.

We need a new approach.

CRAN


Originally Posted by HeliHenri View Post
Hello KNIEVEL77,

UK FTOs are mainly equipped with R22 so that's normal they are still going with it.
Things are totally different when it comes to fleet renewal.
How many new R22 sold in the last 10 years in UK ? One (2009) if I'm not wrong.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 11:36
  #1242 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by CRAN View Post
Hi Henri,
Remember back in 1978 then the USA alone was producing over 17,811 light aircraft per year with an typical price of $80K (in 2018 dollars). Those same aircraft are now $350K!!! That's where it's all gone wrong.
We need a new approach.
CRAN
Hello J,

You're right but that's very hard to get something cheap, easy to fly, safe (when crashing), reliable, and economic to run

P.S : There is a R22 to sale in Italy with the reg :: I-CRAN
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Old 22nd May 2018, 11:59
  #1243 (permalink)  
 
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I only started using the Cabri as the school I was at couldn’t find a R22 for love nor money.
I was paying £450 per hour but more often than not it was in maintenance getting yet another issue fixed perhaps because it was one if the very first ones manufactured. I would hope that more recently built models will be more reliable.
CRAN makes a good point in that the training costs are putting potential pilots off.
And the Cabri is a good bit more per hour than it’s competitors.
Even at R22 costs it’s not cheap and there seems to be such a difference in prices depending on the FTO.
I still have the dilemma of swapping to the cheaper R22 or staying with the Cabri.
The Robinson gets a right slagging off on here but it’s helped plenty of people get their licence over the years.
Even though the Cabri is that much more expensive, I’ve put safety over cost and plan to continue on the Cabri albeit it’s an 8 hour round road trip to get to one.


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Old 22nd May 2018, 12:09
  #1244 (permalink)  
 
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Future GA Aircraft

Hi Henri,

Im afraid the R22 is not my bag, I like the 44 and 66, but 22 is a bit limiting if you want to go anywhere. Very cool reg though!

In terms of cost, there are some very simple things that can be done that could make recreational helicopter flying massively more affordable and desirable. There are some ‘old truths’ in light aircraft manufacturing that are not so much ‘truths’ but constructs that serve only to maintain the status quo. It’s remarkable what can be achieved if you remove those constraints.

I’m sure something exciting will come along in the next few years...

CRAN
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Old 22nd May 2018, 12:14
  #1245 (permalink)  
 
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Hi Cran,
In your day would you have chosen the Cabri over the R22 even though the hourly costs are a lot higher?
Im always interested to know what is the top of pilots lists when training: cost, distance, aircraft type, instructor experience, safety, FTOs reviews, etc.
K77.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 12:29
  #1246 (permalink)  
 
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Cabri G2

Hi K77,

I was 20 when I learned to fly and had just about managed to get all the money together by working 3 jobs while I did my industrial placement year from university. The R22 was my only option and even then I had to go the the US to be able to afford it.

So no, I could not have entertained the G2 as it would have been too expensive. Though I like it a lot.

If I was learning from fresh today, I would choose the R44 Raven 2, as this is what I fly day-to-day and so I would want the maximum experience possible in the machine I intended to use day to day before I let myself loose, I would also have trained in The UK, again as this is where I fly day to day.

I really like the G2, but for me it’s too small and too slow as a machine to use after qualification. Would you really want to learn on a machine as forgiving as a G2 and then go back to a 44 as a 55hr novice?

If you wander round the flying clubs and SFH places (perhaps with the exception of the London based guys), cost is prohibitive for most PPLH’s and most it seem only manage 5-15 hours per year and often don’t keep flying for long after passing. Often because there is nothing for them to ‘aspire’ to owning that is within reach.

We really need to drive the costs down to a level the market can stand, not what the industry ‘thinks’ it can get.

Hope that helps
CRAN

Last edited by CRAN; 22nd May 2018 at 12:30. Reason: Typo
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Old 22nd May 2018, 12:36
  #1247 (permalink)  
 
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Totally agree @cran
"The costs in GA have become completely out of control and have moved far beyond the price bracket of those who would otherwise want to fly. If the GA sector is to recover we need to do more to reduce the cost of aircraft and flying."
The costof parts has got to the laughable we sold our 500 due to the feeling that we were being rolled over by the manufacturer, neither of us are hard up but there is a limit, we are seeing this with numerous people selling or trying to syndicate the cost ownership, hope it works out for them.
Had a quick look at a 22 preferred not to fly it, have not looked at the Cabri still like the 300 but has any one seen the price of a set of blades from the new owners
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Old 22nd May 2018, 13:42
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Originally Posted by CRAN View Post
If I was learning from fresh today, I would choose the R44 Raven 2, as this is what I fly day-to-day and so I would want the maximum experience possible in the machine I intended to use day to day before I let myself loose, I would also have trained in The UK, again as this is where I fly day to day.
Where I'm training the G2 is £390/hr and the R44 ~£560! That's buying blocks of 10 hours.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 14:20
  #1249 (permalink)  
 
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Hi Cran,
In theory your idea is great ie train on what you intend to fly however in practice I presume that it would have been cost prohibitive to start your initial training on an R44?
So I suppose that is why most students start on the R22.
But yes in theory money being no object you would train on what your end game would be.
K77.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 14:41
  #1250 (permalink)  
 
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Hi K77,

Absolutely. I trained on the R22 because at the time that was all I could afford. That was nearly 20 years ago and my situation has changed, so if I was training from scratch today, in my current financial position I would learn on the R44. I have no doubt that the R22 will remain the staple of the flight training market for the foreseeable future because the G2, while technically a much better aircraft is simply far too expensive.

I say again, I really like the G2!

...but I couldn't have afforded it even if it was available back in 1999 when I trained. If I were ab-initio training today I would choose the R44, because I can afford it now, I much prefer flying with extra power and hydraulics and that's the machine I choose to fly day-to-day as I pay for my own flying.

Ab-initio training will always require the lowest cost platform possible, this is the only area that the G2 seriously missed the mark on. Some people believe the market for a 2-seater is dead, I don't subscribe to this view, but it needs to cost around £100-120K ($150-180K) to buy and around £100/hr to operate with no silly 12-year limits to hurt private owners.

It is possible to produce a machine to hit these numbers but its not a trivial task and would need a fair amount of investment to do it. With that in mind, manufacturers tend to find the bigger machines with higher ticket prices more inviting prospects.

CRAN
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Old 22nd May 2018, 15:11
  #1251 (permalink)  
 
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Without wanting to open up a can of worms...............how safe/unsafe is the R22?
I see it gets absolutely slated on this forum but probably by most who have never actually flown one.
I can have an hour in the R22 for £245 where as the Cabri is £320 and the R44 £425 all plus vat of course depending on the school.
So over an average of 60 hours the 22 is £14,700 ( £17,640) the Cabri £19,200 (£23,040) and the 44 £25,500 (£30,600).
Inc vat in brackets.
So obviously the R22 represents a big saving.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 16:12
  #1252 (permalink)  
 
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In order to prevent thread drift i'll try and provide a concise and balanced view of the R22, hopefully those who have strong views on the R22 can create a new thread and avoid distracting from the Cabri on this one.

The R22, like its big brothers is a very mechanically reliable aircraft. If it is flown within its limits and maintained properly, you are extremely unlikely to have any kind of mechanical issues that would be anything other than an inconvenience. Although, never designed as a training helicopter the R22 has been conducting large volumes of flight training all around the world since the 1980's and is still the primary training helicopter today, primarily on account of its low cost and reliability. The R22 was designed to the airworthiness standards that were in force in the 70's and these standards have been significantly upgraded since that time.

The R22 is a two-bladed helicopter and as in common with all two bladed helicopters from other manufacturers can suffer from mast-bumping accidents if flown into low-g conditions for whatever reason they occur. If you choose to fly in a 2-bladed helicopter you must understand these risks (or your EXPERIENCED instructor should) and manage them cautiously, this is not a difficult thing to do.

The R22 has a low inertia rotor system, which means that rotor RPM is quick to bleed off following a power failure if the pilot does not lower the collective immediately and execute a gentle cyclic flare. In high speed forward flight if the rotor speed suddenly decays the rotor will tend to tilt aft and if not corrected can contact the tail boom and cause a mid-air break up and/or mast bumping. (All rotors will behave like this but two blade helicopters can mast bump as a result and in low-inertia systems it all happens much quicker).

The low inertia of the R22 rotor also means that there is limited energy stored in the rotor to execute the final cushioning of an autorotative touchdown, this is by no means a difficult manoeuvre but will certainly focus your mind and it is important that you fly the right profile and manage your energy correctly. Again a good, experienced instructor is essential.

The general flight dynamics of the R22 are such that it is twitchy to fly. It has sensitive controls which take a little while to master, but once you have they will set you up very well to fly most other aircraft.

The R22 is relatively underpowered, for two reasons. Firstly, it derives its power de-rated, heavy Lycoming aircraft engine which has very limited hot and high performance (Beta model, the Beta 2 is better) and as designed has a very low power-to-weight ratio to allow the smallest most efficient engine to be used. This is compounded by the fact that you are almost always flying around close to maximum gross weight and the AUM of the R22 is only 1370lb/622kg. Flying one solo for the first time is a real eye opener! Being underpowered in a training helicopter is a mixed blessing, it removes one of the major margins your instructor has to get you out of trouble if you botch something, but it does teach you to make the best use of available power and keeps you very clearly focused on factors that can reduce your performance.

The R22 has manual carb heat, which means you have to manually monitor a gauge and ensure that the engine air inlet doesn't ice up and stop it running. All R22 Bets 2's have carb heat assist which correlates the carb heat control with collective movement which provide some protection, but it still needs constant monitoring. It is fair to say that carb icing has caused a number of problems over the years and is something you need to be very careful with if you fly R22 or R44R1. The onset of carb icing can be hidden by the rotor speed governor which compensates for the drooping RPM by opening the throttle until the engine is at full throttle and RPM is pulled down.

As I mentioned earlier the R22 was designed to a much older airworthiness code and doesn't provide very much crash protection at all by modern standards. There is some protection from crushable seat structures and landing gear deformation if the impact is vertically downwards...but not much else.

I think those are the main points.

In shortly, a well maintained and properly operated R22 coupled with an experienced R22 instructor is not a reckless choice by any means. You can never take your eye of the ball in any helicopter particularly the R22, but you can safely complete your PPL(H)/CPL(H) in it and many people have done and will continue to. If you only intend to fly recreationally, then make sure you fly regularly. The biggest problem with PPL's is how easy it is to forget important things through lack of regular flying.

The R22 is of its time, its 1970's technology. The G2 is 00's technology (except the engine) and as such benefits from all that we have learned in the intervening three decades - including the lessons learn from Robinson. It is much more benign in every sense, MUCH more crash worthy and much more failure tolerant. It uses the same old engine, so doesn't have any significant performance improvements over the R22, but that doesn't really matter for flying round in circles during training. However, these things come at a price and ultimately the decision will come down to whether you can afford it. The most important thing with R22's is make sure you get a good instructor, not a newbie with a few hundred hours.

I don't fly the R22 any more, but this is mainly on account of its size and speed - when I'm flying, I'm allways going somewhere. If I could get some bags into it, two people and cruise at 105kts then I probably would every time I didn't need the 44's extra seats. That said, I much prefer the autorotative characteristics of the R44, the hydraulic controls and it has bags of power when you're 2-up with bags and full fuel.

Hope this helps.
CRAN
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Old 22nd May 2018, 16:21
  #1253 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks Cran, brilliant summary.
As it happens there isn’t a 22 near me (the nearest one is a 5 hour round trip away) and I don’t use my local school that has the Cabri, I prefer to make a 7 hour round trip to another Cabri Training School but it’s certainly food for thought.
Thanks again.
Also to r22butterrs, good point well made.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 19:46
  #1254 (permalink)  
 
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K77 - I can see why you would make the effort to travel 7 hours if you were paying £450/ hour for the Cabri. I am amazed by the cost. When I was learning I was paying around £375/ hour inc all fees for a Cabri.

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Old 22nd May 2018, 20:18
  #1255 (permalink)  
 
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I paid £432/hr for dual including VAT at Fairoaks last year. Not sure what it is now.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 20:26
  #1256 (permalink)  
 
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As it happens the professionalism of the FTO is more important to me than the cost.
When you’re paying Cabri sort of money per hour you deserve a decent level of customer service.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 00:18
  #1257 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by CRAN View Post
In order to prevent thread drift i'll try and provide a concise and balanced view of the R22, hopefully those who have strong views on the R22 can create a new thread and avoid distracting from the Cabri on this one.
Beautiful post, thx.
That post proves that choosing the 300C as PPL training helicopter was a very good choice for me:
Three blades, 2.5 seats, fuel injected, can lift my sorry 120kg + my instructor's 90kg at 30°C OAT @1000ft MSL, even with full tanks (plural!).
Total cost shy of 500€ / h (all-in, fuel, VAT, fuel-tax, A20, insurance, you name it) is steep but the machinery is superior to R22.
Had the Cabri the 300C's FI engine (with its 190hp) it would be a killer machine, safer than any other piston powered thing out there.
I still haven't read any excuse for putting and old carbureted engine into a otherwise super slick, safe and moder machine.
Lets hope them float bowl induced Cabri accident numbers we saw in recent years won't increase.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 04:30
  #1258 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by r22butters View Post
When I flew the Schweizer the instructors couldn't upsell the 300 without speaking ill of the R22. When I flew the Enstrom the instructor could not upsell his aircraft without speaking ill of the R22. When I first flew the R22 there was no mention of any other aircraft, in fact my instructor didn't even know what a 300 was!
Well, once you have flown other types you can appreciate the differences, many of those that operate on a Robbie have little experience on anything else as reference.
The 22 is a tool for a job, but as mentioned further above, it is old tech (not that a 300 isn't), cramped, and as basic as an aircraft can get short of a rotorway.
It doesn't always come down to money.
Give the 22 it's due, but as long as some of the fanatics continue to believe it is the best thing since sliced bread they will never be prepared to accept any criticism.
Given the choice today, I would far rather have trained on a Cabri, even for a few bucks more as it is a cheaper option than training on a 44 and a safer (relatively speaking) platform than the 22 (not to mention one that is more comfortable for the taller folks out there).
The Cabri was targeted at those that intend flying larger aircraft with a conventional control layout, particularly airbus, providing fenestron experience.
People will continue to bash the 22, like they will bash cheap and nasty cars from the east - they may do the job, but the only reason people use them is that's all they can afford, and given the choice would rather be in something more substantial..
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Old 23rd May 2018, 06:04
  #1259 (permalink)  
 
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Butters
Most people diss the R22 from experience. In the late 1980's I left the military and flew an R22A. I was a light 13 stone then as was my instructor. We could put around 12 gallons of fuel in it before we were close to MAUW. Had to use red line power and a cushion creep to get off the ground if there was no wind. Had a strange cylic arrangement as well. I thought at the time what a useless machine as it had a range of about an hour with a an average size passenger, thats if you could get out of anything else other than a large field. Then got in a 300C with same instructor with 4 hours of fuel and was able to do a vertical take off, I was sold on a 300C as a training machine
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Old 23rd May 2018, 06:57
  #1260 (permalink)  
 
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many of those that operate on a Robbie have little experience on anything else as reference.
Neither do those low time instructors who teach on a Cabri or the 300.
Give the 22 it's due, but as long as some of the fanatics continue to believe it is the best thing since sliced bread they will never be prepared to accept any criticism.
I don't think that there are many R22 fanatics out there. Most of us are aware of the shortcomings of Franks ships. The reaction in this forum is due to the constant bashing with rather low level humour when another Robinson crashed. It isn't funny anymore, if it ever was. The 300 fraction is probably even more fanatic, having totally forgotten the loss of live during early army basic training, when several crashed seemingly without any reason. And in this case it was a problem with the aircraft, that had to be fixed. And if the Cabri fans aren't fanatics, I don't know who is. That the Cabri is better than a R22 isn't a miracle. If it wasn't possible to design a way better product 30 years later, the human race would deserve to go back to the caves. I would have trained in the Cabri, if I had had the choice, but how would the R22 look, if it was designed today? Probably quite different and way better.
Sitting in a R22 or a 44 for a whole working day isn't fun. It hurts. So do the seats in a JetRanger after an hour.
The Cabri was targeted at those that intend flying larger aircraft with a conventional control layout, particularly airbus, providing fenestron experience.
Frankly, I find the "the conventional controls" argument rather lame. I never had any problems going even from the awkward controls position as an instructor on the R22 to anything else, including control wheels in "airplanes" (Quote from NZ: "Real airplanes have control sticks") and I do not know anybody who had. I believe, if you fly helicopters, you get a certain very fine control-feedback-feeling (happy for a better word), that is independent of the controls you handle. In my experience, airplane pilots, especially those flying planes with control wheels, are rather ham fisted in the beginning, but do adapt to a control stick without any problem.
The same discussion came up with the side controllers in the Corvalis and the Cirrus. It wasn't a problem.
In my experience, the brain does not care where the hand is, as long as the movement is more or less the same.

On the other hand, if Frank did not see the training market when he designed the R22, he wasn't seeing very far. Yes, during that time there where tons of ex army pilots. Not all of them wanted to continue flying. Not all of them would be able to buy a R22. And on what would his potential customers get their training? H300? Bell 47? No, if possible on the R22. I have a constantly nagging feeling, that Frank isn't telling us the whole story about his market idea. On the other hand, when he proposed his idea to his employer, they did not see a market either. But hindsight is 20/20.

The Cabri is one good training and personal helicopter, but Bruno Guimbal, being much younger than Frank, is standing on the shoulders of the other geniuses. The Cabri would not be as good as it is, weren't it for Frank Robinsons products (and the others, too, but Bruno's target is the R22 market, because the rest is just not worth it).

But there is one chance that things might change in the not too far future. The FAA certification process is being rewritten. It might be possible, that the certification of helicopters of the size of the R22 and the Cabri becomes much easier. Who knows, Robinson might be working on something even better.

Now back to the Cabri, which, we all can agree, is the better helicopter in probably every aspect, as is the Golf 7 compared to the Golf 1 (or the R22 A to the R22 Beta II).
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