One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#21 Post by Boac » Sat May 27, 2023 7:19 am

Ah well, if it cannot be done we must await the news of the lost Crusoe, although since this exercise will not be flown solo that is unlikely.
OHL wrote: to learn from something of interest to pilots
I have seen nothing of interest to 'pilots' in your described handling challenges - please enlighten me so I can benefit from your wisdom.
C16 wrote:OHL - is it actually possible to use knees to control the R44 cyclic? Not being floor mounted I guess that’s difficult or maybe impossible?
Thanks for the answer (I sought in #6) but was not answered by Vasco. 'No' would indeed have been useful.

I can tell a story of a young student on sortie 3 of his Gnat conversion course where the wise QFI (the amazing Dave Jackson) told me to make a practice diversion to Leeming from overhead Wales, and as I spread the high-level chart around the confines of the small cockpit I had a nasty feeling I was not 'watching the shop' adequately and as I clawed the paperwork down I noticed the a/c about to complete its aileron roll. Lesson 3 on the roll rate of the Gnat completed :))

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#22 Post by CharlieOneSix » Sat May 27, 2023 8:05 am

Boac wrote:
Sat May 27, 2023 7:19 am
......I have seen nothing of interest to 'pilots' in your described handling challenges - please enlighten me so I can benefit from your wisdom......
Boac - whilst you may have seen nothing of interest to 'pilots' I do find OHL's posts of his helicopter experiences interesting. What isn't interesting is your sarky and irrelevant comment above, similar to those of yours which frequently adorn the Politics and Controversial Topics thread where they may perhaps be almost acceptable although I ignore them. It's a pity to see them here on an aviation thread and aimed at one of the few real aviation enthusiasts on this site.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#23 Post by Boac » Sat May 27, 2023 10:54 am

C16 wrote:the Whirlwind in which Boac had a few hours experience pre-Harrier, all had friction controls on the otherwise floppy cyclic
Well, Charlie - either we flew different Whirlwinds or it was a 'jolly jape' by the Shawbury QHIs on we gadabouts, but I recall a complete absence of any damping on the cyclic, which if released from my steel-like grip would 'topple' in whichever direction it fancied, taking the heliocopter with it?

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#24 Post by G-CPTN » Sat May 27, 2023 2:11 pm

The Shawbury QHIs obviously detected a potential natural genius in Boac.

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#25 Post by Boac » Sat May 27, 2023 3:04 pm

You are too kind......

On a serious note, however, the whole throughput of the 5hr pre-harrier famil was thought to be excellent by Shawbury and there were definitely some lessons to be learnt in the way flying courses were run, with significantly advanced learning by skipping groundschool, exams, learning checks and tests at the outset and just 'poling'. For example student change-over was always 'engine running'

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#26 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 5:58 am

G-CPTN wrote:
Sat May 27, 2023 2:11 pm
The Shawbury QHIs obviously detected a potential natural genius in Boac.
I am sure he is a genius. He has a genius for rubbing me up the wrong way.

Robinson Crudoe, Vasco De Gama! All that is now missing is the Bartholomew Diaz =))

On a serious note I have no doubt he is a very good pilot and thus I tend to take him very seriously indeed. I should learn to allow his mordant wit to go over my head.

;)))

For the record there are friction devices on both the cyclic and the collective in the R44. I have been advised to regard the one on the collective as a lock and to make sure it is either open or closed as required by the check list and not to use it as a friction in flight. The advice, at my place, on the cyclic friction is to use it sparingly and to never assume you can take your hand off the cyclic even for a second in the R44 and to avoid taking you hand off the collective. Given that 2 seconds can be all you have to get the collective down on the R22 in the case of a total engine failure, that advice seems good to me, as many R44 pilots fly the R22 as well and any faffing around with the friction may prejudice getting the lever down when flying the R22. The R44 is more forgiving but the view is to fly to R22 tolerances at all times.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#27 Post by Boac » Mon May 29, 2023 7:20 am

I am sure he is a genius. He has a genius for rubbing me up the wrong way.
You also are too kind, but the genius is indeed two-way in all your many re-incarnations. (Pretty flowers, carnations.)

Regarding map folding in the Crusoe - from your description you are stuffed. Get yourself a navigator?

I apologise for missing Dias - probably the most appropriate geographically.

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#28 Post by Boac » Mon May 29, 2023 7:20 am

I am sure he is a genius. He has a genius for rubbing me up the wrong way.
You also are too kind, but the genius is indeed two-way in all your many re-incarnations. (Pretty flowers, carnations.)

Regarding map folding in the Crusoe - from your description you are stuffed. Get yourself a navigator?

I apologise for missing Dias - probably the most appropriate geographically.

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#29 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 7:58 am

Boac wrote:
Mon May 29, 2023 7:20 am
I am sure he is a genius. He has a genius for rubbing me up the wrong way.
You also are too kind, but the genius is indeed two-way in all your many re-incarnations. (Pretty flowers, carnations.)

Regarding map folding in the Crusoe - from your description you are stuffed. Get yourself a navigator?

I apologise for missing Dias - probably the most appropriate geographically.
I see my s & d's were laterally inverted in the case of my Crusoe and I was simply asleep, making with the Z's, with my Dias ( I am sure he would be cross).

I can assure you that I am perfectly capable of navigating from A to B and onwards to Z. Having done this successfully on 3 continents over the last 20 years in fixed wing aircraft without the explicit need for a navigator, without ever having to make a Pan call on account of becoming momentarily unsure of my position, thus far at least! ;)))

If you found time to read the link to the accident that occurred in the Mathew Harding case posted above, you will have noted that a high time ex-army helicopter instructor (no doubt a far better and more experienced helicopter poler than me) became somewhat unsure of his position, and this was a contributory cause to the subsequent loss of control and crash in the "Squirrel", a far more stable aircraft than the Crusoe (there, you have me hooked). You will have noted the AAIB notes about charts, lack of availability of stability augmentation system etc. My point really was about having to swap charts in an R44 on a long cross country and how to do so safely in an unforgiving aircraft.

If you do (God forbid) ever ever feel the need to put flowers on my grave (preferably not as a result of some hideous helicopter accident then), for the record, I prefer roses to carnations, and don't believe in reincarnation for that matter, not even here! ;)))
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#30 Post by Boac » Mon May 29, 2023 8:59 am

Flower choice noted (but it is hoped not required).
If you found time to read the link to the accident that occurred in the Mathew Harding case posted above, you will have noted that a high time ex-army helicopter instructor (no doubt a far better and more experienced helicopter poler than me) became somewhat unsure of his position, and this was a contributory cause to the subsequent loss of control and crash in the "Squirrel", a far more stable aircraft than the Crusoe (there, you have me hooked). You will have noted the AAIB notes about charts, lack of availability of stability augmentation system etc.
Oh yes, I had found 'time. That accident had nothing to do with 'charts' but was sheer incompetence. An accident waiting to happen. No night qual, no instrument capability and an obvious (?commercial? - deliberate emphasis) pressure to 'press on'. A dreadful shame he took others with him.

Following your explanation of the '2 second death window' in the control or otherwise of a Crusoe, how do Crusoe drivers cope in that limited time with things that beset others like frequency and squawk changes, and assuming Crusoe drivers are 'human' (and most here have finished breakfast), nose-picking/wiping and bum scratching? Does one need to thoroughly clean the flight controls on taking over a Crusoe? =))

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#31 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 10:06 am

Boac wrote:
Mon May 29, 2023 8:59 am
Flower choice noted (but it is hoped not required).
If you found time to read the link to the accident that occurred in the Mathew Harding case posted above, you will have noted that a high time ex-army helicopter instructor (no doubt a far better and more experienced helicopter poler than me) became somewhat unsure of his position, and this was a contributory cause to the subsequent loss of control and crash in the "Squirrel", a far more stable aircraft than the Crusoe (there, you have me hooked). You will have noted the AAIB notes about charts, lack of availability of stability augmentation system etc.
Oh yes, I had found 'time. That accident had nothing to do with 'charts' but was sheer incompetence. An accident waiting to happen. No night qual, no instrument capability and an obvious (?commercial? - deliberate emphasis) pressure to 'press on'. A dreadful shame he took others with him.

Following your explanation of the '2 second death window' in the control or otherwise of a Crusoe, how do Crusoe drivers cope in that limited time with things that beset others like frequency and squawk changes, and assuming Crusoe drivers are 'human' (and most here have finished breakfast), nose-picking/wiping and bum scratching? Does one need to thoroughly clean the flight controls on taking over a Crusoe? =))
With care, in stages, quickly but smoothly and efficiently, with attention and a fervent wish that the rubber band doesn't let go as one lazily takes time out to scratch one's arse, or let one's mind focus for too long on the cartographical beauty while manually faffing around with a chart!

I see that you have gone for the "death window" metaphor, as opposed to the 30 degrees rocking side to side death tube. Sadly too many people have been killed by mast bumping or loss of RRPM in Frank Robinson's aircraft over the years for me to laugh about this rather morbid, albeit overly dramatic notion.
Safety
Due to its light weight and low inertia rotor system, the R22 is not forgiving of pilot error or sluggishness. After an engine failure, real or simulated, you and the instructor will have 1.6 seconds to lower the collective and enter an autorotation. Any delay beyond 1.6 seconds will be fatal as the rotor speed, once decayed below 80 percent, cannot be recovered. Frank Robinson did not design the R22 to be a trainer; he designed the R22 for a fast cruise speed and fuel efficiency. The R22 thus has a fast cruise speed, high fuel efficiency, and is a terrible trainer. Why do so many flight schools use the R22 for training? It is cheap to operate.
http://philip.greenspun.com/flying/robinson-r22


For the R44 read 4 seconds at worst.

I must admit I haven't flown in a helicopter at night, but have used the current format of 1:500:000 charts for VFR fixed wing navigation at night many times, and the colour scheme (as highlighted in the link posted above) particularly in low lighting doesn't lend itself to easy assimilation, let alone for map reading if the charts have not been precisely pre-folded to allow easy reference. Having to change charts en route, in flight, is something that has to be very carefully done in a helicopter. In a fixed wing aircraft one has more seconds to re-appraise and consider what one is looking at, than in an R22 for example.

As for the case under discussion, I guess the pilot's failure to navigate properly, without the appropriate use of available nav aids, like GPS, VOR etc. and not having the relevant charts to hand was one of the reasons he became worried about high ground, that may or may not have been, in front of him, as he was unsure of his position, this leading to further errors that led to spatial disorientation that led ultimately to loss of control etc. As usual, a Swiss cheese. I am not going to call the guy incompetent, so much as overconfident of his abilities!

Although the pilot did not have a commercial instrument rating you will note that he was not flying illegally and in fact was probably never in IMC conditions at all. I agree that commercial pressure was a big factor in this accident
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#32 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 11:55 am

OneHungLow wrote:
Mon May 29, 2023 10:06 am
Sadly too many people have been killed by mast bumping or loss of RRPM in Frank Robinson's aircraft over the years for me to laugh about this rather morbid, albeit overly dramatic notion.
That said, as of January last year, nobody had been killed in a Robinson helicopter in the UK in the previous 10 years. I believe this record has been maintained to the present date...


https://helihub.com/2022/01/06/great-br ... %2011%3A26.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#33 Post by Boac » Mon May 29, 2023 3:09 pm

spatial disorientation
I assume you mean the inability to fly without good visual reference as in over-pitching?
you will note.................in fact was probably never in IMC conditions at all.
He declared his intentions to transition to IMC (at night).

Altogether a sad loss of life. Kudos to the the ATC controller who did an excellent job.

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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#34 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 3:56 pm

Boac wrote:
Mon May 29, 2023 3:09 pm
spatial disorientation
I assume you mean the inability to fly without good visual reference as in over-pitching?
you will note.................in fact was probably never in IMC conditions at all.
He declared his intentions to transition to IMC (at night).

Altogether a sad loss of life. Kudos to the the ATC controller who did an excellent job.
That is true.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#35 Post by CharlieOneSix » Mon May 29, 2023 6:23 pm

Apologies, been away with friends for a couple of days so catching up...
Boac wrote:
Sat May 27, 2023 10:54 am
C16 wrote:the Whirlwind in which Boac had a few hours experience pre-Harrier, all had friction controls on the otherwise floppy cyclic
Well, Charlie - either we flew different Whirlwinds or it was a 'jolly jape' by the Shawbury QHIs on we gadabouts, but I recall a complete absence of any damping on the cyclic, which if released from my steel-like grip would 'topple' in whichever direction it fancied, taking the heliocopter with it?
You are absolutely correect, Boac, the cyclic on any version of Whirlwind I flew, piston engined HAR3 and HAS7 and the Gnome powered HAR9 (HAR10 in RAF parlance) had no damping and would fall anywhere it wanted to if you took your hand off whilst airborne. The cyclic riction ring was only really useful whilst ground running.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#36 Post by CharlieOneSix » Mon May 29, 2023 7:57 pm

A cyclic friction story...as I've mentioned elsewhere here before, in the Electricity Board we used two Bell 47J2 helicopters for power line patrol. The J2 had a hydraulically powered 'floppy' cyclic (with a friction ring) and a manual collective with throttle twist grip - really nice to fly. One of our J2s was in for a major service so I was dispatched to Redhill to pick up an Airlift Ltd Bell 47D1 G-ASJW and fly it back to our Bristol Lulsgate base. The D1 cyclic and collective were both manual - no hydraulic power at all. It was an early version on the Bell 47 series with a serial number of D12 and built in 1957.

In those days (1969) as long as you had Bell 47 on your licence you could fly any variety of the type, of which there were quite a few. It was obvious when lifting into the hover that this was a beast of a helicopter! If you let it, the cyclic juddered around the cockpit in a circle. This is where the cyclic friction was a godsend and I applied it with a good handful! In the control run there was a set of 'irreversibles' which were set up to reduce the aerodynamic forces from reaching the cyclic. I forget after 54 years exactly what they were and how they were set up.

So I had 2 hours and 5 minutes(!) - cars were going faster than me - via a Thruxton refuel to get to know the D1 before I arrived at base. My boss, the late Bristol Helicopters test pilot 'Sox' Hosegood came out to greet me. I said that I thought the other two pilots should have a quick trip with me to see the beast's indiosyncrasies. Sox thought this to be nonsense and declared he would take it for a test flight himself. That rather hacked me off so I took all the cyclic friction off and soon watched him wobble into the air. A quick circuit saw him land back and he admitted the other pilots should fly with me.

A few weeks later I was doing line patrol in Cornwall in JW and carried out a fairly steep left hand turn to reposition on a power line. The irreversibles caught me out and we nearly stoofed in.

Sadly in 1971 a pilot who had been on the same RN Squadron as me was cropspraying in JW. He had complained about the feedback forces but the irreversibles were apparently not set up correctly and on a test flight after adjustment he lost control and was killed. The ASN report is here: https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/146802. The 'eyewitness report from another pilot' was me but it is incorrectly reported that I was an eyewitness to the accident. The sharp left turn followed by a probably unintentional zoom climb was almost certainly not recoverable due to excessive cyclic forces - due to incorrectly set up irreversibles - which the pilot could not overcome.

A really horrible helicopter.
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#37 Post by OneHungLow » Mon May 29, 2023 8:18 pm

Enjoyed reading your deep insight into this subject of the use frictions here C16.

I had to look up the Bell 47J2.
47J-2 Ranger
Production variant with a 240hp Lycoming VO-540-B1B engine, powered controls and metal blades 104 built.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell_47J_Ranger

As for the other beast... was this the machine?

BellC16.JPG
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Re: One armed paper hanger-keeping it all together in a helicopter

#38 Post by CharlieOneSix » Mon May 29, 2023 9:27 pm

OneHungLow wrote:
Mon May 29, 2023 8:18 pm
......As for the other beast... was this the machine?
That is indeed the horrible thing - photo taken on 2/12/69 when I was based for a while at Plymouth Roborough. Reading the AAIB report I see JW only had 19USG of fuel capacity - I'd forgotten that. No wonder I couldn't get from Redhill to Lulsgate without a Thruxton refuel!
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