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Agusta A109SP (Grand New) Operators . . ?

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Agusta A109SP (Grand New) Operators . . ?

Old 7th Feb 2013, 21:54
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Agusta A109SP (Grand New) Operators . . ?

We have a A109SP and we have had a terrible experience with the electronics in the aircraft . . .

- Both engines switching to manual during spooldown, what causes it is still a mistery to Agusta and PW since about a year ago.

- Had to replace the DAU's three times

- Uneven engine parameters, between 5-10% split in Torque or up to 20°C TOT, permament although the engines are new, have no exceedances and we have gone the whole 9 yards into troubleshooting.

- PFD MFD replacements

- Hydraulic Accumulator Replacement

- Lot's of problems with the AutoFlight System.

- Dangerously limited TR authority at higher Density Altitudes, probably making performance charts useless, even using the right techniques you have to use almost full pedal for most takeoffs, and any wind from the wrong side with weathervane you.

- Faulty AFCS actuators.

I would like to see what experiences some other operators might have had with this specific model the SP.
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Old 7th Feb 2013, 22:01
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Sounds like a electrical spike in the system, or intermittent bonding/grounding of some of the electrical components and sensors.
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Old 8th Feb 2013, 12:51
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We had an A109S that had electrical issues that were traced to an earthing point on the main electrical box in the baggage compartment.

The earth lug and surrounding area had been painted during assembly and not cleaned before the bonding strap was issued.
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Old 8th Feb 2013, 17:53
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Perhaps someone from CH REGA can write something on the issue....
"Da Vinci" is tailor made SP for them, all other SP are produced later....

Italy or USA production?
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Old 9th Feb 2013, 00:45
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All 109 series are built in Italy, only 119 & 139 in the States.

REGA's SP's are soo dramatically different, I don't know how helpful their experiences would be.
In fact, their model warrants its own set of maint. publications, their s/n's apart from all other -SP's.

No other "fleet" operator out there yet. Think the next nearest in size would only have two in service.

Last edited by HeloDrvr; 9th Feb 2013 at 03:18. Reason: Spelling
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Old 3rd Mar 2013, 14:59
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Agusta A109SP (Grand New) Operators . . ?

I already had DAU change 3 times and stil not working 100%.
Hyd accumulator change once, MFD change, and engine parameters floating.
About your eng switching to manual, a friend had the same with A109E and the problem was in the PLA.

Last edited by cadmendes; 2nd Apr 2013 at 02:09. Reason: Wrong verb
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Old 3rd Mar 2013, 20:16
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Uneven engine parameters, between 5-10% split in Torque or up to 20°C TOT, permament although the engines are new, have no exceedances and we have gone the whole 9 yards into troubleshooting.
Normal?

Do you still have the option of "Q" matching or Temp matching? Switch on the overhead. Normally in Q match. Temp match if you are power limited by temp on one engine before the other.

The engines breath differently - one harder than the other - cant remember which. Are there 2 different power charts for left and right?
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Old 3rd Mar 2013, 20:31
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electrical issues that were traced to an earthing point on the main electrical box in the baggage compartment
Yup.

Also a big issue with water/moisture in the area of the bulkhead where all the goodies like DAU and ECU's live. Bad EARTH and/or corrosion = nightmare.

Ask the 139 guys about it - it nearly cleaned up one in Australia.

VH-ESH Agusta Westland AW139

Very sobering read!

An Agusta is just like a Ferrari - the fastest way to get to where you are going to break down!

An analogy -

Somebody asked if the McLaren F1 was going to be like the Ferrari F40, Gordon Murray, the F1's chief designer, replied, "I don't think so, there's no one at McLaren who can weld that badly."
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Old 4th Mar 2013, 00:35
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Quote:
Uneven engine parameters, between 5-10% split in Torque or up to 20°C TOT, permament although the engines are new, have no exceedances and we have gone the whole 9 yards into troubleshooting.
Normal?

Do you still have the option of "Q" matching or Temp matching? Switch on the overhead. Normally in Q match. Temp match if you are power limited by temp on one engine before the other.

The engines breath differently - one harder than the other - cant remember which. Are there 2 different power charts for left and right?
Yes engines can be TQ or TOT matched, but still on an aircraft with less than 200 hours we have a 6-8% TQ or 20°C permanent difference which we have tried everything to get rid of. ON A NEW AIRCRAFT. (Engines do pass the Power Check Tests)

After 200 hours we still get both or one of the engines to go to Manual! Agusta is PUzzuled, but that is about it.
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Old 4th Mar 2013, 11:45
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really interesting blender Pilot.

We had exactly the same problems like you with our A109SP.....
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Old 22nd Mar 2013, 21:50
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We had exactly the same problems like you with our A109SP....
VIP or EMS operator in CH

How about this EMS fleet of 3 in USA ?
Intermountain Life Flight goes live with GrandNew | Helihub - the Helicopter Industry Data Source
more than half year experience.....
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Old 22nd Mar 2013, 22:17
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Most of our problems persist, including the engines going to manual during spooldown, but WHAT WE ARE REALLY CONCERNED WITH, is the VERY LIMITED Tail Rotor Authority at our operating altitudes.

I doubt the Performance Charts Can Be Met.

Basically a lot more power and weight, but with the same basic tail Rotor the A109E has = Dangeorusly Low Tail Rotor Authority.

You will NOT run out of power, but you will run out of pedal, sometimes with zero wind, you will have the pedal to the stop in an IGE hover, lightly loaded, we have checked the rigging, but the rotor blades are just not enough.

If you are not used to flying at higher DA's be careful if you ever fly up there, you are in for a surprise.

Worse than with the Bell 206L4, but at least Bell came out with a High Altitude Tail Rotor Kit.
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Old 2nd Apr 2013, 01:54
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AW109SP - MAINT LOG A & or B

AW109SP
Does anybody have a MAINT LOG A/B warning light on?
An Agusta representative asked me to turn off the battery only 60 seconds after main rotor stopped. Does this make sense?

Last edited by cadmendes; 2nd Apr 2013 at 02:07. Reason: Wrong word
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Old 2nd Apr 2013, 12:19
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Reply on its way via your private messages.
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Old 7th Apr 2013, 21:18
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Yes you can still use TOT or TQ matching, but a 5% TQ difference with TOT's matched on a new aircraft I think is unacceptable, none of the other A109 exceed 2% when new.
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Old 7th Apr 2013, 21:20
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AW109SP
Does anybody have a MAINT LOG A/B warning light on?
An Agusta representative asked me to turn off the battery only 60 seconds after main rotor stopped. Does this make sense?
It's more like he want's 0% N1, which makes more sense, if you leave the battery on for 60% after main rotor stops, the next start takes longer than usual because the battery drain, slower starter and amp takes longer to recover.
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