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Everything posted by MileHi480B

  1. Shocked to see not a word on the fatal crash of Kobe Bryant's S76. Check out this story on USATODAY.com: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/01/26/helicopter-crash-california-kills-5/4581709002/ Of course, the accident sparked the usual gossip on how "unsafe" it is to fly helicopters. It is interesting to note that this twin-engine ship appears to have been flown straight into the ground at a high rate of speed, probably developing full power. Also interesting to note that the weather conditions were extremely foggy.
  2. Has anyone ever considered a Hummingbird kit? Or do you have one? Or any experience with them at all? They look like a great value. You can probably deck on out with professional assistance for around $250,000.
  3. Regarding TT straps, here is something I do not believe I have heard discussed. I am hoping there are those more knowledgeable on FAA procedures than me, who can chime in. I am wondering why someone has not come up with an "Alternate Means of Compliance" (AMCO) for the TT straps. It is an unfortunate reality that all too many perfectly good TT straps are being tossed away due to calendar time - with little flight time - and no real aging. So, why hasn't someone come up with an inspection process to serve as an AMCO. I realize that no one wants to take a chance with unsafe straps, and that is not what I am suggesting. I am simply wondering why - with new digital technologies - we can not come up with an adequate inspection process. Even if we had to send the TT straps off somewhere to go thru heavy spectrometer, Xray or dye-penetrant testing, and even if there was a hefty inspection charge, it would almost certainly be cheaper than replacing them - if not needed! I recall a wing-root/center-section inspection that was required on one of my antique planes. The "AD" almost made owning the plane cost-prohibitive. A doctor friend of mine (who happens to be an AP and a retired Air Force General) use his colonoscope to inspect his plane. It was so effective, he applied to the FAA for an AMOC and got it approved. It literally saved the aircraft from extinction! Certainly the technology exists! Any thoughts? I think it would be an extremely profitable business model, if an inspection center could be set up.
  4. I had just taken off with wife and kids. About 1 minute into the flight ... KLUNK!. Then everything was smooth - like always. I landed immediately and checked everything. I have an Enstrom 480B ... turns out that my right skid did not fully "release" or extend right after takeoff - as they are meant to do. They are hydraulic and are designed to fully extend after takeoff, then compress as you land. On this occasion, the skid shocks let go one minute into the flight causing the "KLUNK". Air in the system can cause intermittent problems.
  5. I need a recommendation for a good helicopter tour company with experienced pilot/s? Or ... are there any schools there that would allow a CFI to take a few people (thereby allowing one of them to "play")? Just asking.
  6. Not to pick a fight ... but some of you have a lot of specific information and opinions about certain makes and models ... and it begs the question: Do you have any firsthand experience? Or even direct second-hand experience (from a good friend or associate)? I do ... both building, flying and associating with "experimental" folks ... and many of the assumptions and assertions are just plain inaccurate and at the very least ... exaggerated. Most (not some) but most of the guys I know involved in experimental aviation are very knowledgeable, skilled, safe and diligent. As I said ... not looking for a fight but wanting to add perspective.
  7. What? I didn't get that "I'm always right" tone from him.
  8. Hey Bro ... you're in my back yard. This is what I do. Send me a PM with your contact info and I'll get you out of this. Never a charge! Trust me ... I CAN do it.
  9. You know what they say ... "Once you go glass rack ... you don't go back."
  10. Jon, OMG ... could not believe the fantastic photos on PPRuNe! What a daily grind ... you poor fellow. I grew up in the northeast and your tour brought back so many memories. Thanks. I also enjoyed flying with you "back in the day". Tom
  11. The Mosquito, Helicycle, Safari, Rotorway and Hummingbird are all great machines if built and maintained properly. Most, in my opinion, are NOT. Either do it yourself or find someone you trust enough to put your life in their hands.
  12. I fly mine all the time. Never had a problem doing anything and everything my heart desires. Mountains - no problem Heat - no problem Performance and hovering - no problem I have flown on days where density altitude was 10,000 feet - no problem. I have always carried plenty of fuel and usually have two or three passengers. Tom
  13. Other than military flying ... are there documented cases (incidents/crashes) where the use of a helmet actually saved someone's life or lessened their injuries? It's logical that a minor accident can be a fatality if our heads are hit hard ... but does that happen? I know they look cool and all ... but do helmets save lives? Really? No opinions - just the facts.
  14. I'm a private pilot, 4000 hours (500 helicopter) ... own my Helicopter ... and I do a lot of work for charities. Wondering ... do I need a commercial license to drop gold balls at charity tournaments if I do it free, with no compensation at all? I attend a lot of these and hate watching hundreds of charity dollars going to pay for a chopper. And on another note ... you would think they'd come up with a gold ball drop system for UAV's (those little quadrocopters)?
  15. Have both headsets. Either one works fine ... just adjust the intercom squelch accordingly ... that's what it's for.
  16. I don't mow grass. But I agree with you on the dichotomy of the industry regarding new CFIs but it is not the only industry where those who teach can't get a job doing what they teach! There is an expression in medicine ... those who can doctor, doctor - those who can't, teach. BTW ... I agree that pilots should help one another. But some of these offers just seem to be a way for the pilot to make some extra money or for the company to get free labor.
  17. And that, sir, makes my point. The industry has eaten its young and destroyed any perception of value.
  18. Or pilots could refuse to put up with it. BTW ... your analysis about college is not comparable, in my opinion. Many of these pilots have ALL of their ratings. They are qualified. They have already paid their "tuition". And as far as music goes ... there is no one I know who pays to "gig" ... unless they are still learning ... or they are all paying in order to rent a venue. I do not doubt your experience. And I know exploitation goes on in other industries as well. That doesn't make it right. The impression in the marketplace is that helicopter pilots are a dime a dozen ... they don't think they're worth anything ... you can always find someone to fly cheap ... and in some cases you can charge them to work for you!
  19. Your logic is absurd. To assume that I endorse pencil whipping based on what I said is an illogical and ridiculous response to deflect the real issue. Kinda reminds me of people who criticize animal rights activists with the response: "Why aren't you fighting against child abuse? So you think child abuse is acceptable?" Endorsing one stance (such as being paid to fly) does not support your assertion.
  20. This thread (the main points quoted below) sum up what I believe it wrong with the helicopter industry. By the way, I am an "outsider" looking in. I do not fly for a living, nor do I want to. I fly for personal business and fun. But I have some acute observations: This is the ONLY industry I know where people pay to work! This guy needs pilots to do pipeline inspections. He is no doubt being paid from the gas or oil company ... and in his contract he most-likely included the cost for running his machines, pilot time, etc. Now, instead of hiring pilots to do the job, he wants them to PAY HIM! Oh, I get it. Flight time is difficult to build ... and some of you may bite at this because it is cheaper than most other ways to build time. But as long as helicopter pilots do not respect their own industry, no one else will and it will perpetuate the problem of low to no pay jobs (like this) and dog-eat-dog mentality. Can you imagine the medical industry uproar if we expected doctors to perform surgeries just to get the experience (please don't confuse internships - at least they get paid as do most internships in other industry). How about lawyers expected to work for free just to get litigation time? Think of any other industry where you struggle like this to "make it" ... and then after you make it, you exploit other pilots the same way. Even a low-paid apprentice program would be better than the insult of paying to work. This mindset has made outsiders like me expect things for nothing: Flight instruction is free if a guy wants to build turbine time and I have a turbine .... I can actually charge a pilot to pick up my helicopter from the factory or to ship it from one place to another ... I can get paid from a pilot to have him take aerial photos, while I get paid for the contract from a vendor ... and there are a host of other scenarios where you guys not only work free but PAY for the privilege. You have diminished the "value proposition" for your entire industry. You have made your training worth nothing. You have driven your industry down in the marketplace. You may think I'm nuts ... but I am not. It is sound business principal to create value. But because you guys are all so anxious to build time, you are the one paying them! There is only one other business I can think of where you pay to get experience - and that occupation is outlawed in most states (except Nevada). Until pilots stand up for each other and demand to be respected for their training and stop paying to work ... the industry will be downtrodden and you will be "johns" - paying for pleasure rather than "attracting" a mate.
  21. Chris, A question ... when a company like Garmin or any other after-market manufacturer wants to get a blanket STC for a fleet ... how do they do it? Do they convert to experimental while testing is going on? Or do they do it another way? Seems like a catch-22 if they don't use an experimental certificate (for R & D), then they are technically breaking FARs, right? Tom P.S. - SORRY! JUST SAW THAT YOU ACTUALLY ANSWERED ME ALREADY!
  22. Thanks Chris ... we were basically saying the same thing ... however you did it better. In essence ... if you convert to experimental it is not a "short cut" to adding unapproved equipment. Either way, an STC must be gotten. So my question ... wen Garmin, Aspen or any other manufacturer gets an STC for an entire fleet ... are they using an experimental aircraft? Or are they using computer models? Or something else. (I guess converting to experimental for the purposes of getting an STC for an entire fleet could be one of the few times this process is worth it.) How do they do it?
  23. Yes ... you CAN convert a certified aircraft into an experimental aircraft for the purposes of Research and Development (and some other reasons See FAR 21.191) ... and that is one way to get STC approvals. But you can get STC approval without that conversion ... so why go through all that trouble? Converting back to a standard certification means the aircraft conforms to ALL aspects of the original type certificate - in essence you would have to undue the changes you made or get an STC. But the STC can be gotten without going "experimental". So you may as well just get the field approval to begin with - make sense? If you think for a minute that you can get a "new" standard airworthiness certificate for your own "altered" design and simply call it something "new" ... you are mistaken. The certification process takes hundreds of thousands of dollars not to mention the "intellectual property" problems you would have with the original manufacturer. I have been restoring and building aircraft (certified and experimental) for 30-years. Never once do I recall anyone converting to experimental, then back to standard without either putting the aircraft back to its original condition or getting STC approval for all modifications. Seems like a long way around for getting an STC.
  24. Chris, Based on your reputation here, I do not doubt what you say ... but after being involved in experimental aviation for 30-years you have told me something I did not know. I ask this in an effort to learn more and not as a challenge ... but can you quote for me the FAR clause that actually says you can convert the aircraft back and forth? Thanks! Tom
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