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The Rotary Nostalgia Thread

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The Rotary Nostalgia Thread

Old 23rd Oct 2011, 21:48
  #881 (permalink)  
 
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S-51

Even an R-4 with no wheels in that video, very odd. And 17 people "on" an R-5 ! wonder what health and safety would make of that.
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Old 24th Oct 2011, 14:13
  #882 (permalink)  
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Brantlys in Britain

And 17 people "on" an R-5. Wonder what health and safety would make of that!
This was back in the days when the elves and their over-developed sense of safety were nowhere to be seen - t'was the age of freedom of innocence!


Brantly B-2B G-ATFH at Gloucester's Staverton Airport on 11th June 1966 (Photo: John Black)

Imported by BEAS in '65 then sold to Roger Woodward (presumably his first craft) in '72 and the following year to Sydney Cole of Newport Pagnell. In '75 she was sold to CW Udale Plant Ltd under whose patronage she perished on 10th April 1976.

An excerpt from the accident report reads:

AT ABOUT 700FT A LOUD BANG WAS HEARD FOLLOWED BY SEVERE VIBRATION AND LOSS OF CONTROL.THE TAIL ROTOR HAD FAILED IN FLIGHT.THE HELICOPTER FELL NOSE FIRST AND BURST INTO FLAMES UPON IMPACT.

THE SOLE PASSENGER ESCAPED WITH SEVERE BURNS BUT IT WAS NOT POSSIBLE TO RESCUE THE PILOT.

CAA CONCLUSION: FAILURE OF TAIL ROTOR BLADE OCCURRED DUE TO FATIGUE PROBABLY AS A RESULT OF BLADE STRESSES EXCEEDING THE FAILURE STRENGTH OF THE BLADE MATERIAL.

CAA ACTION: BLADE RETIREMENT LIFE REDUCED FROM 3250 HRS TO 1500 HRS AND TIME BETWEEN REPETITIVE INSPECTION TO 50HRS. FAA AD 68-4-4 & 65-28-1 ISSUED AND WHICH SHOULD PREVENT RECURRENCE (AIB BULLETIN 7/76).
More Brantlys in Britain on pages: 16-20 & 44-45
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 12:52
  #883 (permalink)  
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Pan Am New York Shuttle

Chopper 2004 wrote: Dear all, In advent of showing Pan Am TV series, I watched the trailer belowand shows an S-58 and trying to rack my brains to what choppers they flew through the decades. I recall they flying Bell 222, Westland WG.30 in the 80s but can anyone else shed light what else they flew?
Chopper

I cannot think of any additional types employed in the Pan Am shuttle service of the 1980's.

As you know, Pan Am outsourced this activity to Omniflight Helicopters (the outfit founded in 1962 by Dan Parker, grandson of George Parker the founder of the Parker Pen Company).

Pan Am offered a shuttle service between East 60th Street's 'Manhattan Heliport' and New York's three main airports, namely: JFK, Newark and La Guardia. The shuttle was complimentary for First Class ticket holders.

The Pan Am shuttle service was probably the last New York airport-helicopter-shuttle service to operate until the arrival of US Helicopter in March 2006.

Onmiflight initially leased/purchased 4 Bell 222's to service their contract with Pan Am. Although I am not certain as to when Omniflight commenced these operations, I am fairly confident that it must be circa 1980.


An Omniflight Bell222A collects First Class passengers from New York's Newark Airport for the short hop to East 60th Street Heliport in Manhattan


Pan Am arranged for Omniflight's aircraft to access spaces at all New York's major airports which were adjacent to the stands of their arriving aircraft. Above, 222 No.3 awaits passengers at JFK


Bell 222 pair at the East 60th Street Heliport aka the Pan Am 'Metroport'. (This image taken from the 1983 movie 'Scarface').

In 1984 Omniflight leased 2 WG30's from Westland to add to the 222 fleet:




An Omniflight WG30-100 over Manhattan c.1984


Omniflight Westland WG30-100 at the East 60th Street Heliport (Pan Am Metroport) lifts into the hover on 1st July 1986, now wearing Pan Am's larger style letters in blue, to depart along the East River for New York's JFK Airport (Photo: Bill Hough)

Then in 1987 something happened which I remember reading about in Flight (article below) and which, at the time, I found astonishing given the severity of the FAA's judgements against Omniflight. Even if Omniflight were guilty of all these transgressions I was of the view that the FAA would have given them a short grace period to get their act together rather than shut them down overnight as it were.

However, there is doubtless a backstory to this event and which might help put things into perspective:




A piece of Pan Am heli-shuttle memorabilia:


Pan Am Shuttle Luggage Tag

Sav
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 15:42
  #884 (permalink)  
 
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RE: The Pan Am helicopter shuttle. I happened to be working at the time for Pan American World Services (PAWS), a subsidiary that had all the branding of Pan American World Airways without the benefits. PAWS ran the E60th Street "Metroport" and employed a much-younger me as a lineboy/driver/heliport operator (in that order).

The shuttle began, using Omniflight's 222's and later the WG-30's. It was going like gangbusters until the unfortunate day in September of 1982 when one of the pax wandered into the tail rotor of a running 222 while both pilots were belted into their seats. The passenger did not survive.

Subsequently, all of us who were working that day were summoned up to the (then) Pan Am Building for a meeting with (among others) Ed Acker, the airline's CEO. There was a lot of grimacing and tsk-tsk'ing about what a shame the accident was. PAWS people (I won't name names) assured Mr. Acker that everything had been done to prevent this accident, but it was "just one of those unfortunate things." Acker seemed to agree.

But me being Mr. Big Mouth (even back then), I meekly raised my hand and mentioned that we actually could have done better, because we hadn't given the passengers any kind of briefing.

There were some puzzled looks by the PAA people in the room. It was asked by someone very high up in their chain-of-command (Acker himself or possibly a lawyer) what type of briefing the passengers had prior to be let out on to the ramp with running helicopters; surely they were warned about the tail rotor? And then commenced a certain shuffling of feet and averted glances.

Admittedly, the FAR's only specify that passenger briefings be done prior to takeoff, not prior to boarding. PAWS personnel were not required to brief pax; if it was required by FAR then it was the pilot's responsibility. Omniflight was operating under the assumption it was a "91" (non-commercial) operation since the service was ostensibly "free."

It came out at that meeting that neither Omniflight nor Pan Am were doing *any* passenger briefings. The meeting did not end on a good note. Shortly afterward, big signs in multiple languages appeared in the passenger waiting areas, and pre-boarding briefings were instituted.

However, just down the East River at the 34th Street heliport (made infamous with the recent crash of that Bell 206 there), New York Helicopter (a distant, no-relation follow-on) of the original New York Airways) was running a similar "scheduled" service between Manhattan and the three New York area airports (primarily for TWA, which explains the red and white livery of NYH aircraft).

I left "Pan Am" and went to work for NYH as an SIC on the slow, clunky S-58ET. The Pan Am guys were always bragging about how fast their sleek, modern, retractable gear 222's were. Heh. We'd both leave Manhattan at the same time bound for JFK. As the 222 was touching down at the Pan Am Worldport, we'd be on short-final for the TWA (now JetBlue) terminal. On short legs, extra cruise speed doesn't count for much.

Good times.

The FAA ultimately said that Omniflight/PAWS had been running a 135 charter operation without, oh...ANY of the items (training, documentation, CERTIFICATE) that is required for such things. The service was then discontinued. Pan Am (the airline) never liked it all that much anyway. It was hugely expensive, and we never got the impression that the airline felt that it pumped up First Class bookings all that much. If anything, it was just an advertising thing.
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 16:03
  #885 (permalink)  
 
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One of New York Helicopters SA-360C Dauphins, N49533 ("New York 1"). It is painted up for a movie shoot which I believe was "The Soldier" so this had to be around 1981. The helicopter is on the ramp of Island Helicopters/New York Helicopters in Garden City, N.Y. You can still see the red cloth interior. The "paint" was a rubberized material that came off under the stream of a high-pressure water hose. Notice the modular emergency floats.
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 16:57
  #886 (permalink)  
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FH1100, how wonderful to have an American on Nostalgia!

I have an abundance of North American nostalgia in the form of images but have never been inclined to post this material as I didn't think we had much of a following Stateside.

A couple of queries in case you know the answers: Do you recall when the shuttle service began - I'm assuming 1980. Also, did the aircraft use any special call signs?

Re: Omniflight .. my understanding is that they were a fairly respectable operator with a good track record in the Gulf. Was this the case as far as you are aware?

New York Helicopter .. yes, now it comes back to me. In fact they (and not Omniflight) would have been the final shuttle operator prior to the advent of US Helicopter. Do you known in which years they spooled-up and terminated operations? Also, do you have an image of one of more of the tail-dragger Dauphins in NHY's red and white livery? I would love to see that for old times sake! 'New York 1' .. lol .. what an excellent call sign!

Brgds

Sav
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 19:03
  #887 (permalink)  
 
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Many thanks Savoia and FH1100 for that and I've watched the opening of The SOldier (having seen the ski chase shown during the motion picture BLue Jean Cop where Sam Elliotts character is watching The Soldier in the cinema where he lives!) and wasn't sure if the scene with the Dauphin was shot in Europe or States

I remember seeing pictures on Airliners.net and Helispot of New York Helicopter S-58T and SA360/365c

Last edited by chopper2004; 25th Oct 2011 at 19:52.
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Old 25th Oct 2011, 23:16
  #888 (permalink)  
 
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New Member

Sorry for posting in this thread, but could not find the link for new post.
I was looking on the web for any info on Allouette G-AWFY, when I came
across this forum. May I say how enjoyable it has been reading the posts.
In the late seventies and into the early ninties I was very interested in
crop spraying, and had a friend who was the manager at N Hutchings of
Edwinstowe in Nottinghamshie. I took photos of all thier machines including "AW". If any member of the group would like me to post or send
them PM with the photo's of any of the following helecopters, it would be my pleasure.
G-AWFY Allouette
G-AYTF J Ranger
G-AZRU J Ranger
G-BGHO B47
G-BAYX B47
G-BIEB B47
G-BBAZ 12E
G-BBLO 12E
G-BBLE 12E

All are in Crop Spraying fit, and G-AYTF was in the JPS black colour scheme.

John Layden.
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Old 26th Oct 2011, 05:37
  #889 (permalink)  
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John

A warm welcome to the Nostalgia Thread - great to have you with us!

I think I can safely say that we would love to see your images, especially given that several of the craft have previously featured on this thread.

Any commentary you can offer on the Hutchings operation would also be appreciated. Not quite the same as crop-spraying but my first commercial assignment was a three-year UN contract in East Africa spraying locust and quelea bird (the latter had to be sprayed at night!).

G-AYTF (known as "The Gay Dancer" or just "The Dancer") has special significance for me being that this was the aircraft I performed my first solo in (under the watchful eye of the late Antonio 'Nobby' Clarke). It was also the first (and only) craft in which I suffered an engine failure.

Brgds

Sav
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Old 26th Oct 2011, 10:06
  #890 (permalink)  
 
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Dear Sav, thank you for your kind welcome.
My main aviation interest has always been helicopters, and in particular Crop Sprayers, as a young twenty year old in the mid seventies I would jump on my motorcycle camera slung on my back and head out to where they were working. There were several regular companies that worked this area (North Notts) at that time. Agricopters from Thruxton, N Huchhings from Edwinstowe, only ten miles from me, Farmwork Services from Metheringham in Lincolnshire, Miller's from Wickenby airport, primerrily stuck with Ag-Cats though, Linc's Aerial Spraying, Pawnee users, John Holburn Farm Helicopters from Grantham, and a couple of others from North Yorkshire.
Over the years I got to know one or two of the outfits very well, they would often allow me a ride up when the pilot had only half a tank to finnish off. N Hutchings was the main sprayers in this area with it being local, I got to know them very well and became friends with the manager of the company and the pilot. The manager was a chap called Chris ?? his surname just escapes me, and the pilot was a Kiwi by the name of Ross Harvey, Ross was Tragically killed in a sight seeing flight about fifteen years ago, his good friend Jamie Mckenzie (also a crop sprayer) was also killed in the same accident I believe, he flew with a company from Thirsk in North Yorkshire in the eighties.
Hutching first started using Helicopters in or around 1977, they started with a Hiller 12E. they bought Alouette G-AWFY in 1980 I think, they used this aircraft for around three years, it was sold on to Italy for a Alpine Medevac company, unfortunatly it was written off in an accident near Bergamo in Northern Italy not long afterwards. They then loaned G-AYTF for a season, this was resplendant in its JPS black colour scheme, it always looked out of its depth with the spraying gear attached, compared to its more glamourous usual commitments.
After G-AYTF went back they then took delivery of another Jet Ranger G-AZRU, this looked like a new machine very clean. they had this jet for only one season I think. Right up until the early nineties when the EU basically outlawed Aerial Crop Spraying Hutchings finnished of using a mixture of Bell 47's, hired in machines. At the time, all thier maintenance work was carried out by a company at East Midlands airport.
Looking at my old photo's brings the memories flooding back, they were good times, Chris being a motorcycle fan himself used to swap me a flight in the Heli for a ride on my bike, (not a bad swap I think), Ross would deviate off his return route to allow me to overfly my home, or any other landmark I wished to take photo's, a true gentleman.
Below I have included a couple of shots of "TF", I shall in due course upload the others, especially the Alouette G-AWFY, which has a special place in my heart.
Regards... John.

ps having difficulty inserting image, have not done this before
help would be most welcome.
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Old 26th Oct 2011, 12:34
  #891 (permalink)  
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More PLM ..

John - Interesting stuff! Meanwhile ..



Presumably PLM's first 206, G-BAYA. Being a Bell model she was imported by CSE in '73 and sold to Provincial Helicopter Charter (who became Metropolitan Helicopter Hire) almost immediately. Then on to Goldington Investments and eventually PLM in February 1976.

Less than a year later on 11th January 1977 BAYA came to her demise during a filming sortie at Loch Avon in Invernessshire.

An excerpt from the accident report reads:

The helicopter was on a daytime photographic flight in visual meteorological conditions (VMC) over the frozen surface of Loch Avon carrying a pilot and cameraman. It was in a slow acceleration at about 25 feet above the loch surface and at about 40 knots indicated airspeed (IAS) when suddenly a high rate of right yaw developed. After rotating through one and a half turns the helicopter crashed on to the loch. Both occupants survived and were rescued at 01:15 hrs on 12th January by a Royal Air Force (RAF) helicopter after and air and ground search.

The report concludes that although the main rotor had severed the helicopterís tail rotor drive shaft at some time in the accident sequence it could not be shown that this was the cause of the loss of yaw control. The cause of the accident could not be determined.
More PLM nostalgia on pages 39 & 46 as well as page 7 of the Alan Mann thread.
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Old 26th Oct 2011, 16:59
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Here we Are Sav, I think I may have solved it.. John.







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Old 26th Oct 2011, 17:02
  #893 (permalink)  
 
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And the other Jet Ranger, G-AZRU..






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Old 26th Oct 2011, 17:55
  #894 (permalink)  
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Great stuff John, well done!

I have to say that seeing both of these craft fitted with spray gear is incongruous with my recollections of them! The Dancer was of course Colin Chapman's personal mount while AZRU used to carry about the late James Hanson (he who was once engaged to Audrey Hepburn)!

It seems as if Dennisimo sold the Dancer directly to Hutchings while AZRU was probably leased from Dollar?

Regarding Ross Harvey .. this name rings a bell. I have a feeling some of the Kiwis I worked with in PNG may have mentioned him and, if so, then it was most probably in connection with flying, either in the Antarctic or deer hunting back in NZ!

Keep the photos and stories coming.

Brgds

Sav
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Old 26th Oct 2011, 20:23
  #895 (permalink)  
 
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The Dancer lady

Hi Savoia ... sorry ... G-AYTF wasn't sold to the Hitchings name. About July 1984 my firm Skyline at Wycombe Air Park sold it to Chris Tennant's new business. I remember December 1982 flying the dancer back direct from Colin Chapman's airfield at Hethel and seem to recall she was the first 206 I'd seen with the Collins 841H autopilot fitted. She spent the whole of the Christmas break parked in my garden on Mill Hill opposite Shoreham Airport. Skyline opened for business at Wycombe in January 1983. Regards to all.
Dennis Kenyon.
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Old 27th Oct 2011, 05:40
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The Dancer Lady

Morning Dennisk.


Thank you for that info, its nice to put these little pieces of imformation together, for me anyway.. Regards, John
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Old 27th Oct 2011, 06:34
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Island Helicopter Corp.

Ciao Dennisimo!

Re: The Dancer, the records state:

1) Feb '71 - Douglas Bunn (Hickstead Jumping Grounds)
2) Jan '79 - Alan Mann
3) Sept '80 - Team Lotus (Colin Chapman)
4) Apr '83 - Skyline Helicopters
5) Sep '83 - Dennis Smith, Hawridge Court, Bucks
6) Jan '85 - Neville Hutchings, Mansfield, Notts

I assumed that Dennis Smith was perhaps one of the Slykine partners - either way from Dennis she seems (on the record at least) to have been sold straight to Hutchings!

.. and seem to recall she was the first 206 I'd seen with the Collins 841H autopilot fitted.
Followed just a couple of months later by another 206 you bought which also had a Collins 3 axis fitted .. G-TALY!

She spent the whole of the Christmas break parked in my garden on Mill Hill ..
And the next year the Colonel and I followed suit collecting G-TALY (now G-CSKY) before Chirstmas and returning her after the new year. In fact, that was the Colonel's last Christmas in the UK.

Island Helicopter Corp.

FH100, were Island the predecessor to NYH and do you recall these craft?


An Island Helicopters Bell 206L over New York (date unknown but presumably c. 1979)


An Island Helicopters SA360C N360CP refuells at East 34th Street Heliport in August 1979
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Old 27th Oct 2011, 15:50
  #898 (permalink)  
 
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Allouette G-AWFY (N Hutchings)

Just expanding the thread a little more, here are a few shots of "FY".







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Old 27th Oct 2011, 17:14
  #899 (permalink)  
 
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This was my life before joining North Scottish in 1984.... Stinkin, Dirty, non romantic way of getting hours..... And SCARY AS ****...
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Old 27th Oct 2011, 18:21
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Hi Griff,

Dont't put yourself down ,proper flying... mens work. John.
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