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Length of Long Line

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I've noticed differing lengths of the line used in long line work. What goes into determining what length to use?

 

I'm guessing rotor wash is a big factor both in the ground crew working ( A/C roof installs) and effect on load in flight??

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Solid question!

 

Lots goes into determining what length of line to use. Some factors are; what type of helicopter you're using (the heavier the helicopter the more down wash you're going to put off), what's on the end of the line, precision or non precision set, production or non production work, the height of the surrounding trees and or terrain, etc.

 

Air conditioner units are typically precision and production without much of anything in the way. If you're quick the ground crew doesn't have to spend much time under the down wash so you may want to use a 50' line. The shorter the line the faster you can move.

 

A power pole set in a steep canyon with tall trees may require you to use an extremely long line just to clear the trees, then add the length of the pole into play and you could be up to 300' from the bottom of the pole. Down wash is not a factor from that height but your visual cues are seriously diminished. You have to move slow and remember the "slow is smooth and smooth is fast". Just do it right once.

 

Dropping water on a fire? The longer the line, the slower you can move over the fire line without your downwash effecting the flames. That's a plus because tanked helicopters have to get low enough that the water actually does something and fast enough that the downwash doesn't make the fire grow….use a long line and you can drop more accurately on flames at a slow forward speed or no forward speed for a concentrated drop.

 

Physics don't change with the length of line you use so don't be intimidated with a longer line if it keeps you more clear of terrain.

 

Hope that helps answer your question.

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Visibility is another factor. With some aircraft like a 500 or a lama you can use a shot line and see the load quite well. In some aircraft like the AS350, Bell medium or I would imagine, a Blackhawk you need at least 75" just to get the load to where you can see it.

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I live in Nor Cal and the county uses a 96' 407 to do rescue and law enforcement, nicked name "henry one" they use a pretty long line, about 85'. You can look it up, apparently the Sonoma sheriff rescue unit is pretty famous as they're one of the few helicopter units to perform long line rescues. I live right on the ocean and it flies by everyday I used to watch it when I was kid. It start by helicopter obsession :D

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I live in Nor Cal and the county uses a 96' 407 to do rescue and law enforcement, nicked name "henry one" they use a pretty long line, about 85'. You can look it up, apparently the Sonoma sheriff rescue unit is pretty famous as they're one of the few helicopter units to perform long line rescues. I live right on the ocean and it flies by everyday I used to watch it when I was kid. It start by helicopter obsession :D

Henry One was one of my first up close experiences with a helicopter as well! I was on the Camp Meeker Volunteer Fire Department and got to do training with them to scout out an LZ and go over how to move around a running helicopter. One of the best memories in my late teens. Spurred my fascination which lead me into the Marines to work on them, get out to get my ratings, and now I'm working on my WOFT package.

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Henry One was one of my first up close experiences with a helicopter as well! I was on the Camp Meeker Volunteer Fire Department and got to do training with them to scout out an LZ and go over how to move around a running helicopter. One of the best memories in my late teens. Spurred my fascination which lead me into the Marines to work on them, get out to get my ratings, and now I'm working on my WOFT package.

That's awesome! They plan on replacing the 1996 bell 407 with a new GXP soon, they were considering a 429 but they only have 3 million from asset forfeiture money they collect so the GXP is more affordable.

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You can look it up, apparently the Sonoma sheriff rescue unit is pretty famous as they're one of the few helicopter units to perform long line rescues.

A lot of law enforcement aviation units around the country do long-line rescues.....

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A lot of law enforcement aviation units around the country do long-line rescues.....

Do them, yes. Do them in style like Henry 1, nope. Lol

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A lot of law enforcement aviation units around the country do long-line rescues.....

Most have hoist units

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