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Robinson service and sense of responsibility - or lack of it

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Robinson service and sense of responsibility - or lack of it

Old 20th May 2020, 11:16
  #41 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
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Is there any scenario where the operators and pilots aren't blamed for the aircraft's reputation?
Or is that just the case until it happens to you, or people you respect?

Robbie has had particularly strong sales in some key regions, it shouldn't be a surprise that those regions have more accidents. Brazil is an odd case, much like Russia, they seem determined to shuffle off their mortal coil in anything with wings, most likely cultural.
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Old 20th May 2020, 12:36
  #42 (permalink)  
 
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Over the past 15 years I've been operating various types of helicopters and I have had various issues with all of the manufacturers and their representatives (Bell, RR, Airbus, Safran and Leonardo).
So far, I've always had the impression that their reps should be on an exchange program with Robinson to learn about "Customer Support" and "How to treat your customer the right way".
RHC has always been very friendly and helpful when we needed them. It's sad to hear that in this case (obviously) something really goes wrong.
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Old 20th May 2020, 12:43
  #43 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
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We've had this discussion already, BR, multiple times. Here is one example:

Another Robinson crash

So the short answer is to your question is "no, there generally is no such scenario", with the inevitable few exceptions, of course. Robinson helicopters don't just fall out of the sky (there was a great topic on that very statement but it eludes my search button at the moment). Unless you think there is a vast conspiracy at the Robinson factory along the lines of "Oh, crap, this one came out like shit, let's ship it to some other country."

And let there be no illusions, or in my case self-deception: I could be the next pilot to f*ck up. As we all know, any pilot at any level of skill or risk aversion can and does make mistakes. Sometimes fatal mistakes. Most of us endeavor with all our might to not be That Guy. I certainly do. If I fly the Robinson in accordance with the POH it's not likely to be the helicopter's fault.

Last edited by aa777888; 20th May 2020 at 13:27.
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Old 21st May 2020, 14:07
  #44 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by aa777888 View Post
With all due respect to your friends, certain countries outside the US, in particular NZ and Brasil, are dramatic statistical outliers compared to the US for Robinson accidents. Since the designs are the same worldwide, this can only speak to how they are trained, flown and maintained in those countries.
A bit of anecdotal evidence here from an Australian R22 accident report I read about today in "Vertical".

A Robinson R22 helicopter collided with terrain when it likely encountered a downdraft with insufficient height to recover... The investigation also found a number of other factors that increased risk, including incomplete pre-flight planning, overloading, a forward centre-of-gravity, and the pilot’s elevated blood alcohol level.

“Examination of the pilot’s iPad and iPhone found it was unlikely that flight planning data, such as meteorological information, had been accessed in the lead-up to the flight,” ... The investigation report also notes that it was very likely that the helicopter was overweight on departure and its centre-of-gravity was beyond the forward limit for the entire flight.

The report also notes that alcohol was also present in the pilot’s blood at a level capable of impairing performance. However, evidence of previous low flying suggested the pilot’s actions may have been normal behaviour and not influenced by alcohol.
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Old 21st May 2020, 22:09
  #45 (permalink)  
 
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Thread drift. As often is the case with Robinson discussion.

If I fly the Robinson in accordance with the POH it's not likely to be the helicopter's fault.
This is why I would fly an R22/R44 again.
But wouldn’t fly an EC225 again.
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Old 11th Jul 2020, 06:17
  #46 (permalink)  
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Update:

After a leeengthy wait due to looong freight times over The Atlantic, had the R44 AOG for approx. 1.5 month for a paint issue, got the blades back, nice and newly painted. And then this is how they look like after some-10 hours of flight time

Now... Is it just us that is extremely unfortunate with the blades since it now happens a 2nd time for the same blades, or is there a more general quality issue with Robinson Helicopters rotorblade painting ? - Would like to hear from others if they have experienced the same as we have on brand new blades that hardly has any hours flown ...




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Old 11th Jul 2020, 11:04
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Damn. That's crazy bad.

I've seen 3 or 4 other instances of this same problem reported across a couple of different helicopter related Facebook groups over the last few months. So you are not unique, but it's also not an full blown epidemic.

I put on a set of new -7's in Jan. They are up to about 50 hours now (pandemic has really chilled operations) and so far so good, but keeping an eagle eye on them. No operations in rain on them yet.
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Old 11th Jul 2020, 18:50
  #48 (permalink)  
 
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That is crazy! Robinson need to have a good look at their paint shop or blade suppliers paint shop. You wouldn’t expect the paint to come off your new Lada after a 1000 miles!
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Old 11th Jul 2020, 19:28
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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Here is a business proposal for anyone wiht enough dough: Get a license for S-300 rotorblades and reconfigure them to R44 format/dimensions/grips and get them STCed. You'll become obscenely rich, as the RHC apparently can not manufacture sustainable blades.

For all the years I lurk at PPRuNe I keep reading of -4 bladses vs. -7 and delamination and what not. Other companies have horrible devliery times (S-300C rotormasts need a US lawyers "afterburner" to make shure you get them after having ordered them a year before you need them) a BO105 wind shield wiper gearbox (sans motor) is 15.000 € from Airbus, a Gazelle clutch triples in price on its way from the serbian(?) manufacturer to Airbus Form1-issuing dept.

But only RHC definitely is not able to manufacture blades for its fleet, that last.
That is a fact validated over many years and product revisions. Where are we now, btw? -12 or even -15?

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Old 11th Jul 2020, 23:06
  #50 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by nomorehelosforme View Post
That is crazy! Robinson need to have a good look at their paint shop or blade suppliers paint shop. You wouldn’t expect the paint to come off your new Lada after a 1000 miles!
Nor would you expect the paint to come off the tops of the cockpits on brand new Boeing 737's on delivery flights to the U.K followed by all the paint coming off of the rivets heads during service shortly afterwards.
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Old 12th Jul 2020, 02:05
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."
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Old 12th Jul 2020, 20:25
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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Seems manufacturing reliable blades is no black magic:
https://www.jetwhine.com/2018/06/ens...r-blade-maker/
When well done "on-condition" means 22000 hours service life!
That would be one set of Enstrom blades outlive 10 robinson overhauls.

Last edited by Reely340; 13th Jul 2020 at 18:34.
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Old 19th Jul 2020, 20:09
  #53 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Reely340 View Post
Seems manufacturing reliable blades is no black magic:
https://www.jetwhine.com/2018/06/ens...r-blade-maker/
When well done "on-condition" means 22000 hours service life!
That would be one set of Enstrom blades outlive 10 robinson overhauls.
I've got about 500 hours in Enstrom F28As, and love a lot about them. They're roomy, and easy to autorotate, and they've put many an A&P's kids through college! And yeah, the head and blades are pretty much bulletproof. They have, like lots of Americans, a bit of a weight problem. In my mind, they're sort of the Checker Cab of the American helicopter industry ( https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Checker_Taxi ). Bulletproof construction, if not exactly sexy from a specs standpoint.

They are, seriously, built like tanks. And the A model hovers like a tank, too ( I.e not all that great ).

I got checked out by an acquaintance who had a fair bit of time in them, and was quite fond of them ( as I am ). However, he had moved onto other types so he may have been a bit rusty in type at the time he checked me out. He was an extremely experienced pilot, having flown OH6 in Vietnam, and many types subsequently.

In any case we worked on normal stuff like hovering, and manipulating the ( uncorrelated ) throttle, which was pretty easy in the A model because you pretty much roll it full on and leave it there for the entire flight ( I kid, I kid ).

In any case it came time for him to show me my first Enstrom autorotation. Keep in mind that he had been flying 222s and such, so not only was he rusty in the Enstrom, he probably hadn't flown anything that small in a while.

So, when the flare stopped us 15-20 feet in the air, and we fell the rest of the way to the ground, you can imagine I was a little concerned for the machine. He assured me that it would take a lot more than THAT to hurt an Enstrom, and proceeded with the checkout.

Sure enough the machine was fine and we continued with my checkout including night touchdowns, etc.

A robustly built helicopter, and if it wouldn't hover all summer long, well that's what running takeoffs and landings are for, right?

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Old 19th Jul 2020, 22:02
  #54 (permalink)  
 
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Yeah, that's pretty much my experience in the Enstrom, built like a tank, autos like a dream! I just didn't think it was much fun to fly. If I were gonna be stuck flying one model for 22,000 hours,...I'd pick a Hot Wheels Robby over a Tonka tuff Enstrom any day.
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Old 26th Jul 2020, 19:37
  #55 (permalink)  
 
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Well said sir
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Old 25th Sep 2020, 19:25
  #56 (permalink)  
 
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Angry

Hi Madman, How did Robinson resolve the problem with your 2nd set of blades? Did they cover 100% of the cost of the first set of blades? (freight, brokerage, install, balancing, etc) Doesn't really matter if they sent you a faulty 2nd set! How much did you have to "arm wrestle" with them to get any action? I have the exact same problem with a set of blade I just installed with now only 50 hours. I wonder how many more R44's have the same problem?? I would post a picture or 2 of my blades but I can't attach a URL until I have 10 posts on the forum.
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Old 5th Oct 2020, 09:36
  #57 (permalink)  
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Hi HeliMurr;

At the moment our maintenance is regularly painting the leading edges with a wear layer. No trust that Robinson should be able a 2nd time to repaint them properly. This is easier and faster than ship them back to Robinson again from EU.

The reason I initially made this post was a last hope that someone at Robinson management would see what they did was wrong, I/we had nothing to loose anymore than try this last hope going online with it. And nothing, nada, zero response. So, I guess this is Robinson new level of customer satisfaction ...

Robinson only paid for the repaint and I believe the return freight. Which took ages due to priority of COVID19 shipments over regularly shipments. Or maybe they just paid the lowest fee that god bumped back for the same reason.
My faith in Robinson has severely deteriorated. We are again looking at acquiring a new helicopter, and if I have a saying its not going to be a Robinson. Ever again - despite having flown them for 14 years now, but this is BAD !!.

You are welcome to send me your pictures, I can post them if you like.
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Old 5th Oct 2020, 23:03
  #58 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
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if you go with Airbus, you'll realise how good you had it with Robinson.
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Old 6th Oct 2020, 20:42
  #59 (permalink)  
 
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Definitely look at the Bell 505 then!
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Old 6th Oct 2020, 22:37
  #60 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Not to defend Robinson’s customer service (Which no doubt shames Airbus). The paint issues (not only blades) I believe is forced on them by Draconian regulations in California.

All paint used must be not only edible, but healthy and gluten free, or something.

The obvious solution is that they relocate their manufacturing plant to somewhere with more realistic regulations. (If such place still exists)
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