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R44 200ftAGL engine out Autorotation video

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R44 200ftAGL engine out Autorotation video

Old 4th Mar 2021, 01:30
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R44 200ftAGL engine out Autorotation video

Would have been better if he had gained altitude faster sooner, is 100ft a minute all you can do on take off?
my instructor used to say, always use 100% power and get away from the ground as fast as possible.
that video makes the point

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Old 4th Mar 2021, 01:45
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Its a hog hunt, so I doubt he was planning on going much higher,..from what I've seen of other hog hunt videos.

Funny thing, some of people on other forums think he had the mags off, if that's even possible?
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 02:05
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For the life of me I don't know why you'd do the take-off roll and initial transition over dirt when only just outside the left door you have a perfectly flat level hard 3000+ foot long taxiway. Considering he had very little RRPM at the start of the "flare" it's surprising they didn't hit the ground harder than they did. They'll be able to fix that one.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 04:22
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Funny thing, some of people on other forums think he had the mags off, if that's even possible?
We had an article in one of our regulators crash comics explaining that an engine failure in a Cherokee was because the battery went flat, thus depriving the mags of a source of electrons. Gotta be careful corralling those electrons.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 04:50
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Funny thing, some of people on other forums think he had the mags off, if that's even possible?
there are two types of panel magneto key indicators for the R44 it seems:
  • the first design: start at 10 o clock (off) and goes to 1 o clock (2 mag)
  • the second design: that start at 1 o clock (off) and goes to 4 oclock (2 mag)
the video shows the key at 1 o clock in flight but the panel has the graphics of the second design, that would lead you to believe the mags are off.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 05:24
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Originally Posted by Agile View Post
there are two types of panel magneto key indicators for the R44 it seems:
  • the first design: start at 10 o clock (off) and goes to 1 o clock (2 mag)
  • the second design: that start at 1 o clock (off) and goes to 4 oclock (2 mag)
the video shows the key at 1 o clock in flight but the panel has the graphics of the second design, that would lead you to believe the mags are off.
interestingly post crash when he goes to shut off the mags, looks like the key doesn't actually turn. So you might be right
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 06:39
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Some observation from the video as posted.
00.07 Pre Take Off, key at 1 O'Clock.
00.34 Take Off Roll, key still at 1 O'Clock.
01.53 Post Arrival, key still at 1 O'Clock.
02.01 Shut Down, key turned to 12 O'Clock.
02.06 Post Shut Down, key now at 12 O'Clock.

Regards climb out, with 3 up plus kit in an R44, he will probably require airspeed to climb ?

IMO, all PoB handled things well.
Respects to all...
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 07:40
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If it is an engine failure - why is the MAP gauge, which showed about 24 on take off, still indicating above 25 during the EOL? It's a long time since I had anything to do with pistons, so I might be missing something obvious.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:03
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I'm 30 year rusty on pistons also, but isn't there something called a magneto check as part of the after start checklist? If you do that check as called for I'd find it difficult to believe the magneto switch was not in the both position at take-off. Also, the VHF radio came to the party pretty late so I'm wondering how abbreviated the pre-take off checklist was. I bet he wished his initial climb was at 500+ fpm, give him a few extra hundred feet and time to do some pilot stuff, such as a restart attempt, warn the passengers, etc.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:04
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Crab, If the engine isnít going round and not sucking out the manifold, the atmosphere wins and refills it
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:37
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From the video, which I only just saw last night on youtube and before i logged in here, it appears his magneto key is in the 2 o'clock position which indicates one mag in use. I know some have said it looks like mags are off but that would mean it hadn't fully sat in the first mag position and then dropped back to a full magneto off position. Possibly after take off it vibrated back? If you listen to the video it also sounds like its only running on one magneto when on the ground before take off. He flicks the key fob out of the way just before he pulls the mixture knob after he's crash landed. (at that moment im also sure he realises his mistake) If you look at the position of that tablet at his left knee, from where he's sitting he won't see the magneto key position in flight. I'm pretty certain this video is going to cause him problems when he goes to claim on his insurance. The insurer will surely state he failed to fly in accordance with the RFM. Pilot error. Oh dear.
As for the MAP gauge going to 25"+ when the engine fails, thats what you'd expect to see.

Last edited by helimutt; 9th Mar 2021 at 08:52.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:41
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Originally Posted by gulliBell View Post
I'm 30 year rusty on pistons also, but isn't there something called a magneto check as part of the after start checklist? If you do that check as called for I'd find it difficult to believe the magneto switch was not in the both position at take-off. Also, the VHF radio came to the party pretty late so I'm wondering how abbreviated the pre-take off checklist was. I bet he wished his initial climb was at 500+ fpm, give him a few extra hundred feet and time to do some pilot stuff, such as a restart attempt, warn the passengers, etc.
No way would you attempt a restart in an R44 at anything below 1000' after the engine quits. More height would have given him a better auto option and he would probably have even been able to auto safely from 500' and realise the error of his ways and restart and go on his way. Instead it appears ( I am only going from what I can see and my R44 flying experience) he has written off a perfectly serviceable machine because the mag switch wasn't on both.

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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:52
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a strange one

this is an r44 panel, like the aircraft in the video. you can see in the video that the switch (when he is warming up and hovering/taking off/crashing) is in the "1 o'clock position", which would suggest the mags switch is either OFF or in the "R" position

he appeared to be pulling 24" in the hover, which would suggest both mags were operating at that time?





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Old 4th Mar 2021, 09:27
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Originally Posted by helimutt View Post
...The insurer will surely state he failed to fly in accordance with the RFM. Pilot error. Oh dear..
I'm not sure that pilot error would be reason for an insurer not to pay. Much in the same way an insurer would pay out a car wreck even if speeding. Plenty of plane wrecks the pilot has not followed the RFM in some way but the insurance still pays out. Nothing I see in the video there to be of concern to a loss adjuster. Maybe some retraining required, but as others have suggested the pilot probably worked out his error without needing it pointed out to him. The owner of the wrecked helicopter is sure not gonna be happy about it. But, they all got to walk away unscathed and live to fly another day.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 10:24
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Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
If it is an engine failure - why is the MAP gauge, which showed about 24 on take off, still indicating above 25 during the EOL? It's a long time since I had anything to do with pistons, so I might be missing something obvious.
MAP reads ambient pressure when the engine is not running......
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 11:11
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I think he had both mags on. Having suffered a single mag failure in a R22 at about 400 ft in the climb, the MAP dropped considerably IIRC.
Two interesting points....instrument panel shows Canadian Reg, tail pylon is 'N' reg.
EOL technique.....??? Note that early on the IAS drops off the clock...suggests way out of balance? Having had about 70 KIAS at the point of failure, there's apparently no flare, and the RRPM warning horn is on way before touchdown; you see the RRPM dropping through 50% odd well before touchdown. A lucky escape for POB.
Wonderful obscuration of Field of View, and possibly the instrument panel by the top tablet device.

Last edited by idle stop; 4th Mar 2021 at 11:18. Reason: Content
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:02
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Shy, helimutt and 212man - thank you - I told you I was rusty on pistons
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:06
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Not sure how many R44 Raven II pilots are on this thread, but I own and fly one. This is a very interesting incident. As others have alluded to variously above, and with the standard "interweb accident investigator" disclaimer:

- Robinsons do not fly well on one mag, it's pretty obvious when picking up with only one mag running. The audio and instrument readings imply normal operation of two mag's.
- The engine completely and dramatically stops at 1:25 in the video, engine RPM is zero. If it is a mag related problem then that's both mag's going offline.
- The video evidence shows the key in either the OFF or R position. The OFF position presents a much simpler set of mag related failure modes.
- Failure modes: this suggests an intermittent ground to the ignition switch, or an intermittent ignition switch. Either of those failures could account for two, simultaneous P-lead failures (open P-lead on both mag's). So it was intermittent open during the pre-takeoff mag checks, then it became intermittent closed with the switch in the OFF position in flight, killing both mags and thus the engine.
- When diagnosing an open or intermittent P-lead during pre-takeoff mag checks, the double-check test is to turn the key to OFF and if things keep running there's definitely at least one open P-lead circuit, thus confirming a lack of RPM drop when one or the other mag is selected.
- If the switch was in the R position, that would mean the left mag P-lead was open, if one agrees that all other indications (audio, instrumentation) demonstrate that both mag's are running. However that implies an even more complex and less likely failure mode in the wiring or ignition switch.

Silly, wild internet accident investigator guess: pilot does his mag checks and finds both P-leads are functionally failed open, i.e. observes no RPM drop in either the L or R position, checks it in the OFF position and it all keeps running. At this point becomes so non-plussed by this quite unusual circumstance, i.e. he thinks "Both P-leads? No way!", and/or distracted by passengers/whatever, that he leaves the key in the OFF position and ultimately departs.

Unfortunately, there is nothing in the FAA system I can find on this event.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:32
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That was my take also. The mags run with the engine unless grounded, so "off" grounds-out both mgs and L / R ground only one. With the key in the "Off" position both mags should be grounded and engine stops / cannot start, but the key position does not change throughout the video (no idea whatchecks he did). So this looks like an intermittent fail in the mag grounding which allowed engine run, lift , transition and a little height before the circuit came good and failed both mags at the same time - so engine off. Possbly this fault has been around for a while, because personally if I found that the grounding of L & R in the start checks had no effect, and this was different from last flight, I would not be taking that ship anywhere - just call maintenance.

No chance of a restart at that height, so good work to get back to the ground without too much damage, and no injuries.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:36
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Does the after-start magneto check require the pilot to observe an ERPM drop, and if no such drop is observed the aircraft is unserviceable and requires maintenance prior to the next flight?
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