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waterlanding/sealanding Helicopters with floats

water sea landing r44 floats clipper amphibian waterlanding anchor boat

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#21 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 20:01

I think that was Apple?

So then I guess you'd have a boat to take people from say, Pier 39 out to the barge, then back after their flight was over?

Sure basically the barge would be floating around and a small ferry boat would shuttle people back and forth, not the actual barge.



#22 Jaybee

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 20:54

Wow, That's shocking. Whats the difference between this and some billionaire landing his helicopter on a yacht? Reason I ask is becoming I'm thinking of starting a tour business here in SF and since there're no landing spots nearby I could buy a barge and land on it to pick up people, as long as you're not moored I don't see how the city can regulate it, as long as you're in public waters. The FAA doesn't seem to any rules against vessel landings. If the vessel is cruising in public water, and someone wants to land a helicopter on it, I don't see how that could be against any laws, from what I see the issue is if you moor somewhere.

 

FAA was cool with it. We were technically in "public waters".

 

We pulled spuds and drifted it every week and logged it with a GPS. Otherwise we needed a 10 Ton (?) tug to push us around ($$$). If the barge was motorized then you would need to have a six pack license - the Coast Guard guy that came with the Eglin Range police was jumping up and down about us not having the six pack license. Just another local yokel trying to apply rules that didn't apply/exercise his authority.

 

At some point you have to touch land either with the barge, the aircraft or a taxi/shuttle boat so at some point you will have to have some kind of permission/license/something.

 

The only way they couldn't grief us is if someone pulled up in their own boat and came aboard. Since we parked next to what is called "Crab Island" -major party spot on a sandbar with waist deep water- in Destin we had a lot of customers like that.


Edited by Jaybee, 29 April 2018 - 20:55.

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#23 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 21:13

 

FAA was cool with it. We were technically in "public waters".

 

We pulled spuds and drifted it every week and logged it with a GPS. Otherwise we needed a 10 Ton (?) tug to push us around ($$$). If the barge was motorized then you would need to have a six pack license - the Coast Guard guy that came with the Eglin Range police was jumping up and down about us not having the six pack license. Just another local yokel trying to apply rules that didn't apply/exercise his authority.

 

At some point you have to touch land either with the barge, the aircraft or a taxi/shuttle boat so at some point you will have to have some kind of permission/license/something.

 

The only way they couldn't grief us is if someone pulled up in their own boat and came aboard. Since we parked next to what is called "Crab Island" -major party spot on a sandbar with waist deep water- in Destin we had a lot of customers like that.

So the conclusion is it's doable regulatory wise or not? Because otherwise I need to completely change my business plan. I asked Dan Crowe of Palm beach helicopters for advice he said it was doable. Do you have facebook? I would be really interested in discussing this in more detail.



#24 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 21:26

barge1_2018_Apr_26_04_49_08_AM_000_Custo

I was thinking of something like this

or this

pad2_2018_Apr_25_02_43_22_AM_000_Customi

 

suspension_system1_2018_Apr_12_06_50_11_

This even has a suspension system to alleviate rocking from the water

The advantage to the pontoon design is it's lightweight and can be towed by a small boat, the barge is super heavy but larger and less susceptible to rocking.  

Check this guy out

3690581444001_5681973791001_image_151336

Various floating helipads I've found on the net

Lascar_Helipad_close_to_the_Great_Barrie

 

helicopter_on_reef_platform_cair_29327_1

 

R441.jpg

 

australia_728.jpg

image061.jpg

 

helipad_platform_7.jpg

 



#25 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 21:49

Something like this would be pretty cool too, you could carry a lot of people on board

Kukai_Boating_nz_984x358.jpg

 

heli_harbor.jpg

 

I suppose this is a bit overkill

rGGoAe5.jpg

 

094651413.jpg

 

closeup_helipad.jpg



#26 Jaybee

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 22:06

If I remember right the place in St Louis does their tours off a barge, might want to ask them.

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"In flying I have learned that carelessness and overconfidence are usually far more dangerous than deliberately accepted risks." — Wilbur Wright in a letter to his father, September 1900. 
 
"The foot rests have a profound impact on the outcome of today's flight ending safely" - My flight instructor.

#27 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 22:19

If I remember right the place in St Louis does their tours off a barge, might want to ask them.

Yes I'm FB pm me.

it's a rather large barge that's permanently moored in the river?.



#28 r22butters

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 22:46

Might I suggest a chopper with fixed floats?
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#29 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 23:02

Might I suggest a chopper with fixed floats?

I thought of that, Now that you remind me maybe it would make more sense than all the barge nonsense. The only thing I'd worry about is it tipping over if a big wave comes. 



#30 r22butters

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 23:17

Actually I was just thinking that they say a lot of times when something goes wrong its right after takeoff and so there might not be enough time to inflate pop-outs if you're taking off from a barge?

By the way there is a guy in Sausalito with a 407 you'd be competing with who's been there for years!

,...and according to Youtube he likes to fly under the bridge a lot, something I always thought was a no no?

Anyway, good luck with it!

,...and mind the fog its a real bitch, not to mention those frickn' ballgame TFR's! :)

Edited by r22butters, 29 April 2018 - 23:18.

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#31 chris pochari

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 23:24

Actually I was just thinking that they say a lot of times when something goes wrong its right after takeoff and so there might not be enough time to inflate pop-outs if you're taking off from a barge?

By the way there is a guy in Sausalito with a 407 you'd be competing with who's been there for years!

,...and according to Youtube he likes to fly under the bridge a lot, something I always thought was a no no?

Anyway, good luck with it!

,...and mind the fog its a real bitch, not to mention those frickn' ballgame TFR's! :)

 

good point, Tuna helicopters have their floats out all the time, it's safer. Yes there are actually three tour operators in the Bay Area. Having competitors is usually a good thing since it means there're customers! The Sausalito guy has two 407s, a total of four in the last 12 years, plus a 427. I've taken the tour, it's great but it takes 40 minutes to travel from downtown SF to the airport or the Sausalito helipad. 



#32 Eric Hunt

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 02:09

We looked at this for Sydney back in the 90s, to get around planning permissions on land, the lack of acceptable landing spots, and the current ruling political party which was violently anti-helicopters. 

 

The logistics are horrendous, needing somewhere on the barge for the waiting passengers to be held, away from the operation of the chopper - waiting rooms, toilets etc; transport to and from the barge - a covered boat and driver, plus somewhere to put the pax ashore that doesn't charge ridiculous fees to use their pier; somewhere to wait ashore for the next boat; moving the barge around to avoid the limits on the numbers of landings for any particular spot; either keeping fuel on the barge (another planning nightmare) or flying away to the nearest airfield to top up;  in the end we admitted defeat.


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#33 chris pochari

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 19:05

We looked at this for Sydney back in the 90s, to get around planning permissions on land, the lack of acceptable landing spots, and the current ruling political party which was violently anti-helicopters. 

 

The logistics are horrendous, needing somewhere on the barge for the waiting passengers to be held, away from the operation of the chopper - waiting rooms, toilets etc; transport to and from the barge - a covered boat and driver, plus somewhere to put the pax ashore that doesn't charge ridiculous fees to use their pier; somewhere to wait ashore for the next boat; moving the barge around to avoid the limits on the numbers of landings for any particular spot; either keeping fuel on the barge (another planning nightmare) or flying away to the nearest airfield to top up;  in the end we admitted defeat.

All excellent points. You mention needing somewhere on the barge to store passengers, the best way to overcome that issue is to only shuttle the number of people that are going to fly on the aircraft. When I took the SF tour they only take 6 people at once in their van, so no one has to wait. I believe that Dan Crowe is right, some type of ship that can accommodate tourists and helicopter landings could revolutionize the tour helicopter industry for the better. http://www.helicopte...m-industry-649/



#34 Eric Hunt

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 23:56

 

 

the best way to overcome that issue is to only shuttle the number of people that are going to fly on the aircraft.

If you are going to make money, you want the machine running as much as possible. Having it sit, shut down, on a barge waiting for the pax to arrive is not the way to turn a profit, especially for a turbine. You don't want to be starting up and shutting down for every load, and waiting for the shuttle boat to take the last lot to shore and come back for more.

 

That's why you need to have the pax on the barge, suited up and ready to fly. They can't be on the deck, because your barge is small, nowhere to shelter from the downwash (which will blow sea spray over the deck) and H&S wouldn't like it unless they were a rotor length away from the edge of the disk anyway. The chopper may need to approach into wind, and then turn to align with the deck, and pax on the deck would inhibit such a thing.


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#35 chris pochari

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 00:39

If you are going to make money, you want the machine running as much as possible. Having it sit, shut down, on a barge waiting for the pax to arrive is not the way to turn a profit, especially for a turbine. You don't want to be starting up and shutting down for every load, and waiting for the shuttle boat to take the last lot to shore and come back for more.

 

That's why you need to have the pax on the barge, suited up and ready to fly. They can't be on the deck, because your barge is small, nowhere to shelter from the downwash (which will blow sea spray over the deck) and H&S wouldn't like it unless they were a rotor length away from the edge of the disk anyway. The chopper may need to approach into wind, and then turn to align with the deck, and pax on the deck would inhibit such a thing.

Well I suppose to solve that issue would be to use two boats, keep the aircraft running and schedule it so the ferry boat arrives just when the aircraft has landed. You're absolutely right about cycle times, most tour operators will try to ferry in and out as many people in one hour as possible. Maybe it would be better to house people on the actual vessel, barge/pontoon. Housing people on the vessel is definitely a good alternative solution, if scheduling the ferrying operation turns out to be too difficult, especially with the issue of cycle times for turbines as you mention. 



#36 Hobie

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 06:25

http://www.helicopte...m-industry-649/

 

Regarding this idea of a boat w/helipad.  Fail.   Can't see a boatload of people waiting or for that matter enjoying their time sitting on boat waiting for their turn to fly.  Tourists want to pack a lot or stuff or nothing into a short period of time.  Asking them for an hour or 2 for just for a 20 min ride isn't going to sit well.  

 

Spend a lot of time with your marketing plan.  Without a line of people waiting for rides,  well you know the story.  


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#37 r22butters

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 10:19

You know in Vegas they take people out to the Canyon and serve them lunch. Not a bad idea, so,...

Get a decent sized boat, put an R44 Clipper on the roof. Then offer to take out groups of people for a lunch cruise around the Bay, including a helicopter ride for an additiinal $30 bucks.
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#38 LJS1993

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 13:19

You know in Vegas they take people out to the Canyon and serve them lunch. Not a bad idea, so,...

Get a decent sized boat, put an R44 Clipper on the roof. Then offer to take out groups of people for a lunch cruise around the Bay, including a helicopter ride for an additiinal $30 bucks.

 

What type of lunch?  I'm thinking salmon or crab.



#39 chris pochari

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 20:36

 

http://www.helicopte...m-industry-649/

 

Regarding this idea of a boat w/helipad.  Fail.   Can't see a boatload of people waiting or for that matter enjoying their time sitting on boat waiting for their turn to fly.  Tourists want to pack a lot or stuff or nothing into a short period of time.  Asking them for an hour or 2 for just for a 20 min ride isn't going to sit well.  

 

Spend a lot of time with your marketing plan.  Without a line of people waiting for rides,  well you know the story.  

 

I have not explained my self properly, I never recommend making people wait on a boat, I mentioned using a small ferry boat to transport people from the nearest dock to the vessel, at most this would take 3-4 minutes if the vessel is 2 miles away, small ferry boat would cruise at 35 mph. Flynyon's customers have to drive to the Keany NJ heliport take to their open door rides, which is at least 30 minutes from downtown NY with traffic. 


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#40 Eric Hunt

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 22:45

 

 

small ferry boat to transport people from the nearest dock to the vessel, at most this would take 3-4 minutes if the vessel is 2 miles away, small ferry boat would cruise at 35 mph

You are talking about a speedboat, not a ferry, which would make maybe 15knots.

 

And how many ferry docks would allow you to use them, or permit a helicopter operation near them, when such an operation would take away from their own cruise tours?


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