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Entering autos: discussion split from Glasgow crash thread

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Entering autos: discussion split from Glasgow crash thread

Old 14th Dec 2013, 19:17
  #121 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by 170' View Post
What is it Nick! You canít accept that youíre a test pilot/engineer and Sikorsky salesman and have minimal experience in bush work with light and medium helicopters. Which constitutes the biggest part of the industry numerically I guess.

You have a tremendous knowledge about the flight test, development and theory end of this business and I wonít get into a head-butting contest with you in your specialized arena. Iíd be taking a knife to a gunfight!

But you are not the all-knowing guru in all aspects of this business, regardless of the lavish praise placed on you by many. I donít think you have any idea what itís like for most guys working in the less rarefied atmosphere.
Iíd like to know when was the last time you worked a machine in the typical end user mode. Excluding military and offshore clients?
Before you embarrass yourself any further, I strongly suggest that you research Nick's background before he became a test pilot.

He does know what he is talking about as an all round helicopter pilot and good egg.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 19:36
  #122 (permalink)  
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Senior Pilot

I know much about Nick Lappos and have shown him the respect he has earned in his field of expertise as a high flying test engineer. That does not give him the right to insult me. I have only a little less overall experience than Nick in terms of years albeit in the simple working arena, and have earned my right to an opinion! Or is that unreasonable of me.

I hold to my position that Nick has little experience in the 'workaday' world of helicopter operations at the typical level as his comments over the years reveal this. I did not try to disrespect his professional standing in general.
But His life has been spent in a different arena!
Perhaps grander in many respects, but the proof that infallibility has no favorites, look at the last video...
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 19:41
  #123 (permalink)  
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Impressive but I'm guessing the number of people who can do this reliably is about as tiny as the margin for error is
I used to do that in my Enstrom. No problem.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 21:26
  #124 (permalink)  
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I see nothing insulting in what Nick posted. I suggest you've either misread his post or seen something that I haven't.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 21:52
  #125 (permalink)  
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If you visit Penticton BC. You will find hovering autos from 100 to 150' performed all day long in Bell 206's.Zero forward airspeed, just a vertical hovering auto.
Ask for a full fuel load, engine shutdown demonstration.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 21:58
  #126 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Senior Pilot View Post

Well, that shows you in your true colours. I trust your friends will show better judgement when they step up to the mark for you.
My point really is that I would like to think that moderators, in a position of power and influence, use that power and influence impartially. I suppose the difficulty is that it's not clear whether you are posting as an individual with your own personal opinion, or as a moderator. Short of having 2 identities on the forum, I'm not sure what the answer is but perhaps, when supporting your friends, you could say that is what you are doing, rather than somehow reflecting the opinion of "the forum" in an official way.

But anyway, I stand by my post. NL has a lot of good points but, just like everyone else, he isn't perfect. It is always dangerous to put total and unquestioning faith in another's opinion.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 22:22
  #127 (permalink)  
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Senior Pilot...

Nick's a big boy and more than capable of defending himself.
Is it the role of a moderator to defend his friends? I thought you were supposed to be an impartial bystander simply maintaining a pre-determined level of decorum within the forum. Nick has plenty of support from many fans on this site.Surely you could at least use a different user name to support your buddy and display your feelings as a regular poster, rather than add unfair weight to your thoughts as an Official of the website!

As for your comment of yours regarding Nicks previous experience in 'workaday' operations. He's been in 'flight test' since 1973 according to the latest Bio, so I'm guessing that 'workaday' experience is passed it's shelf life by now? Although I still have trouble putting driving a snake in the 'workaday' world?

A final point. I challenged Nick on one issue, it has morphed into an apparent hatred I must have for Nick, and that's not the case.

I have given him huge credit where huge credit is due in 'flight test' and high level formulae, but argue about his being out of touch with end users at my level. My level being heavily populated with older airframes often driven by older pilots who spend a lot of time in the HV diagram and we do know what we're doing (much of the time)

I'm superstitious by nature so I'm going to hang it up now as I just realized that I have sim Monday and then a 12 hour flight to go hang out in the HV for 30 days again. Luck might have it that I get a double flameout at 200' and **** up the recovery attempt, which would give you and Nick the biggest 'Gotcha' of all time... so that's all from me!

As far as I'm concerned, No hard feelings!

ps: HC posted while I was writing, it wasn't a set-up re your impartiality!
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 22:41
  #128 (permalink)  
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170's posts have been reasoned and moderate and valuable, whether you agree with him or not.
Nick Lappos' post was informative but could well be read as belligerent and demeaning, in anyones language, and this has detracted from what is otherwise a very valuable contribution.
I for one want both these contributors to continue, but in a civil discussion that contributes to this important topic.
Senior Pilot is not helping, this time - can he please steer this back on topic?
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 22:45
  #129 (permalink)  
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Helicopter Safety

As a lay person with regard to helicopter flight, what I take from all these discussions is that helicopter flying is inherently dangerous when hovering below 6-700 feet and flying at slow or very high speeds when close to the ground. Pretty much any rescue operation, surveillance or low level lifting work involves flying for extended periods within the performance avoidance curves.

The concept of helicopters seems to have been sold to the general public on their ability to hover, fly slowly and great manouverability together with the ability to drift to the ground like thistledown using autorotation in the event that things go badly wrong at any time.

It seems that the time has come when we should really be considering airships for these tasks since they seem to be capable of similar flight roles and when filled with helium are inherently safer. This is especially applicable over populated areas.

Clearly helicopters are still needed, for example, by the military and search and rescue in the teeth of a North Atlantic gale, but are we using the right tool for the job now that possibly better and eventually cheaper alternatives could be manufactured?
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 22:57
  #130 (permalink)  
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Helicopters only have an "avoid curve" if they are either single engined, or twin engined above a certain weight. Therefore the answer is to fly twins at an appropriate weight which, with some modern types, can be close to max all up weight.

Alternatively, consider just how much risk there is of a gas turbine engine failure. For aerial work over non-congested areas it is probably better to spend the money on top notch maintenance, HUMS etc rather than on the extra cost of a twin. After all, if you eliminate any risk from an engine failure, helicopters and their pilots have a habit of finding alternative ways to crash.

Airships have been around for a long time. If it were advantageous to use them, I sure that would happen. They are not used in these roles for a good reason.
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 23:25
  #131 (permalink)  
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The idea of a quick-reaction airship is an odd one.

The chances of launching airships in Glasgow's windy weather more than 20% of the time is also of concern.

Apologies if that seemed brusque - no offence to raising the idea of airships, just the usefulness of airships.

I contend that the features of loitering airships over the tropical pacific in WWII are especially different from those desired by coppers to whizz about over Glasgow. The US Navy abandoned airships 50 years ago, presumably for good reason.

The criminal community is probably wise enough to run and hide on the airship-shadow side of a building, knowing they'd have minutes not seconds before it moved to bring them back into view, especially if it was to their east, given the prevailing winds.

Instances of arson on parked police helicopters suggest that they are a major impediment to criminals. I suspect that an airship would have less chance of being targeted for malicious damage on the ground.

Last edited by awblain; 15th Dec 2013 at 09:18. Reason: ettiquette?
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Old 14th Dec 2013, 23:45
  #132 (permalink)  
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I thought the idea was too good to be true.
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 01:17
  #133 (permalink)  
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Ah....but with an Airship cruising 60-80 Knots and an endurance of a couple of days....quick response is a moot point. The Craft is in the air already....and has been for a day or so.

Some folks need to remember the etiquette in this parlor......play the ball folks.....not the player.

We all have contributions to make....even if we do not always agree.

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Maximum speed: 78 mph (125 km/h)
Cruise speed: 58 mph (93 km/h)
Range: 2,205 miles (3,537 km)
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 06:39
  #134 (permalink)  
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Were we talking about opinions, 170', it would be interesting, but we are talking about facts. I respect those who must fly into the H-V avoid area (perhaps such as you - we cant know for sure because you do not identify yourself) but that doesn't change the lethality of an engine failure in that region.
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 07:36
  #135 (permalink)  
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The video is of a constant attitude EOL, not a vertical zero airspeed one.

It had been taught for many years in the Brit Mil and is a perfectly normal exercise. It is flown at 30 -35 kts until the last 100 feet or so when the attitude is maintained (hence the name constant attitude) and then a check with the lever at about 30' followed by the cushion at about 5'.

It is not, however, even slightly representative of a vertical, zero airspeed EOL from a high hover where the RoD would be much, much higher and that technique would certainly bend the aircraft very badly.
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 07:38
  #136 (permalink)  
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From my RFM;

1. Maintain Heading and Attitude control
2. Collective-Adjust
3. Cyclic - Adjust to obtain desired autorotative AIRSPEED (in capitals)
4. Attempt restart
5. Throttle closed
6. Fuel off
7. Flare to lose airspeed
8. Apply collective to cushion landing
9. Shutdown
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 07:39
  #137 (permalink)  
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Lethality seems a strong word. An engine failure in the avoid curve means you are going to hit harder than the test pilot was prepared to accept. That may mean you get a sore back, may mean you damage the helicopter. Yes it may mean you die if you are well into it, but lethality is certainly not assured.
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 10:29
  #138 (permalink)  
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Ok NickÖYou can have the last word on this - immediately after this last post ;-)
Itís deteriorated into a very personal exchange and my participation serves no further purpose. I have said clearly that hovering autos are performed regularly from within the HV diagram and you cry bullshit on that. Nobody has jumped in to support me on this, and at the time I went thru that particular course cellphone cameras werenít around and I have no video. So unless someone else jumps in to support my claim. You win!
For the record, weíre not talking about operational weights, nor unexpected failures. Itís an engine out drill thatís been fully briefed. But your blanket statement didnít refer to operational weights either.
The last comment :
(perhaps such as you - we canít know for sure because you do not identify yourself) seems that now youíre taking me to task for - posting anonymously on an anonymous forum
Iím fairly sure that you donít believe that Crab-SASless-Heli-Comparator-TC et al are given names. So I can only think itís a cheap shot to discredit me. As I said in a previous post. I would welcome a closed forum on PPRuNe where people provide bona fides before posting.
That really is my final comment for this go-aroundÖ
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Old 15th Dec 2013, 10:48
  #139 (permalink)  
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Nick I do not know you and have never met you but I think I would like to.

Big respect for 170' earning his living doing things that leave very little margin for error.

I left SEH flying a long time back and when asked by friends why I do not fly privately (on my wages only a SEH is feasible), I simply say "I will probably kill myself because those necessary skills, and courage to use them, have long gone"

I remember doing my first big twin Type Rating. The beautiful and forgiving S61. Training in the old SIM in ABZ and stressing out my Instructor by generally panicking and doing things far too quickly as he slowly and surely weaned me from my inappropriate SEH habits.

However, some things never change, like physics and the theory of rotorcraft flight. Therefore I am somewhat dumbfounded by the bizarre reaction some Rotorheads have to the most simple of concepts.

NR when lost, only comes back by trading energy. The best source of energy is airspeed. In the OGE low speed hover, the immediate need is airspeed to avoid landing heavy. Nicks HoV curves are exactly what this is about so why do some posters get so upset with this. We all know it!!

For MEH pilots like me, the Glasgow crash may prove to be a critical point on how we view flight in the sticky parts of the envelope and in particular, our continued training schedule to develop fully those skills and instincts we may all need for when the 10 to the minus 9 event occurs.

A while back I did a lot of police flying in BO105s and AS355s, spending a lot of time in the OGE hover. I never really considered a double flameout as a real possibility. I don't think we were taught to consider it, rather relying heavily on the OEI concept and escape routes should one donkey stop.

I had two power losses in a BO105 over Leeds at night. The first was caused by my inadvertent beeping down of RRPM, while all time wondering why the NITESUN was not moving. (Both identical coolie hats side by side on the collective).

The second was caused by my large Bobby moving his helmeted head back, fitted a few days prior with a hard visor cover, neatly slotting number 1 power lever into the idle gate while I was keeping station on the PURPs through my RH window.

In both cases I vividly remember the poor little 105, plummeting (P&J readers know this word) towards the houses with me blubbering something like WTF!! and simply not comprehending what was happening. Probably a full 5-10 seconds in both cases before I eventually did the right thing.

(For the second case.....thank you Eric, wherever you are for eventually pointing to the little red lever and issuing those immortal words "Is owt tae dooo wie thar lever" as I scraped across the rooftops at VTOSS.)

Good times spent in blissful ignorance of the probable true horrors that faced poor Dave and his crew that night.

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Old 15th Dec 2013, 11:05
  #140 (permalink)  
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Can't remember if I've mentioned this before, but following the s76 accident in the states where a bird strike retarded both engine control levers to idle, and they failed to enter auto successfully, we embarked on a training programme to cover simultaneous double engine failure. Prior to that, autos were generally done from an already OEI condition whereby the crew were at an enhanced level of arousal.

For me, what came out of seeing many crews perform in the Sim (and knowing it was coming at some point) was a fair degree of certainly that a simultaneous unexpected double engine failure during cruise etc will almost certainly result in a failure to enter auto successfully. It's just human nature and the way we respond whilst at a low state of arousal.

Last edited by HeliComparator; 15th Dec 2013 at 12:56.
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