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R22 or R44 as Experimental Helicopter


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Hello,

 

I am new here so please forgive me if i get the placing and post wrong. I am very interested in finding out what the legalities would be should one purchase a TIMEX R22 or R44 and fly it under the experimental "banner" or "on condition". My opinion (my opinion only) would be that if one removed the Robinson serial numbers, data plate and anything stating Robinson (for "peace of mind" on Robinsons side in the event of an incident/accident), then would one be able to fly them on condition? I am aware of the Part 91 rule but i am more interested in the Experimental side of it. 

 

This would give a second (albeit shorter) life for the TIMEX heli in the case where an owner does not have the cash to rebuild a helicopter, however would like to fly something "safe" (with respect and without stepping on any toes in the current experimental helicopter manufacturer industry).

 

I look forward to your expert responses.

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A special airworthiness certificate in the experimental category is issued to operate an aircraft that does not have a type certificate or does not conform to its type certificate and is in a condition for safe operation.

A time-x aircraft, particularly an R22, is not in a safe condition. 

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On 3/18/2020 at 10:39 PM, R22 chopper said:

Hello,

I am new here so please forgive me if i get the placing and post wrong. I am very interested in finding out what the legalities would be should one purchase a TIMEX R22 or R44 and fly it under the experimental "banner" or "on condition". My opinion (my opinion only) would be that if one removed the Robinson serial numbers, data plate and anything stating Robinson (for "peace of mind" on Robinsons side in the event of an incident/accident), then would one be able to fly them on condition? I am aware of the Part 91 rule but i am more interested in the Experimental side of it. 

This would give a second (albeit shorter) life for the TIMEX heli in the case where an owner does not have the cash to rebuild a helicopter, however would like to fly something "safe" (with respect and without stepping on any toes in the current experimental helicopter manufacturer industry).

You don’t need to rebuild the R22/R44 helicopter or overhaul its engine. However, regardless of the certificate, the aircraft has to be airworthy. It is well-established that an aircraft is deemed 'airworthy' only when it conforms to its type certificate (if and as that certificate has been modified by supplemental type certificates and by Airworthiness Directives), and is in condition for safe operation. Experimental won’t get you pass that. 

It's a documented practice in line with FAR 43.15c and Appendix D to Part 43. If the aircraft is not used for compensation or hire it could be operated part 91 under the annual inspection only requirements of 91.409a. In that case (with respect to the engine) there would be no required engine overhaul. You could continue on each year as long as the engine passes the annual inspection requirements in Appendix D to Part 43. That’s your on-condition operation.

 Also, as long as the owner complies with chapter 3 page 3.9 or page 3.10 in the R22 maintenance manual, the aircraft and engine can be maintained under FAR 91.409a, 43.15c, and Appendix D to Part 43 in an airworthy condition. To fully understand you may need to read the posts below and the supporting documentation.

  R22 Airworthiness past 2200hrs/12yrs

  R44 12-Year Inspection Required for Part 91?

 Legal Interpretation MacMillan Apr 22, 2011

 FAA Order 8620.2B - Applicability and Enforcement of Manufacturer’s Data 

 

 

Edited by iChris
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  • 2 weeks later...

I spoke with a DAR about this recently.  A certificated aircraft may be placed in experimental category for the purpose of evaluating an experimental modification.  The maximum period is 1 year with 6 month authorizations being more common.  Extensions may be granted with proof of benefit for further experimentation.  An example would be fitting and testing of composite blades, power plant modification, etc..  Upon conclusion of experimentation the AC must be returned to standard category and certified airworthy for continued use.   Another possibility would be Experimental Exhibition but aimed more at vintage aircraft.

"A certificate for experimental exhibition must only be issued when an aircraft is to be used for valid exhibition purposes. Included in those purposes are organized air shows, organized fly-in activities, organized exhibitions, youth education events, organized aerobatic competition, fly-ins or meets, and movie or television productions."

 

Mike

 

Edited by MLH
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On 3/23/2020 at 7:13 AM, iChris said:

You don’t need to rebuild the R22/R44 helicopter or overhaul its engine. However, regardless of the certificate, the aircraft has to be airworthy. It is well-established that an aircraft is deemed 'airworthy' only when it conforms to its type certificate (if and as that certificate has been modified by supplemental type certificates and by Airworthiness Directives), and is in condition for safe operation. Experimental won’t get you pass that. 

It's a documented practice in line with FAR 43.15c and Appendix D to Part 43. If the aircraft is not used for compensation or hire it could be operated part 91 under the annual inspection only requirements of 91.409a. In that case (with respect to the engine) there would be no required engine overhaul. You could continue on each year as long as the engine passes the annual inspection requirements in Appendix D to Part 43. That’s your on-condition operation.

 Also, as long as the owner complies with chapter 3 page 3.9 or page 3.10 in the R22 maintenance manual, the aircraft and engine can be maintained under FAR 91.409a, 43.15c, and Appendix D to Part 43 in an airworthy condition. To fully understand you may need to read the posts below and the supporting documentation.

  R22 Airworthiness past 2200hrs/12yrs

  R44 12-Year Inspection Required for Part 91?

 Legal Interpretation MacMillan Apr 22, 2011

 FAA Order 8620.2B - Applicability and Enforcement of Manufacturer’s Data 

 

 

Much appreciated. Thank you

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On 3/31/2020 at 9:55 PM, MLH said:

I spoke with a DAR about this recently.  A certificated aircraft may be placed in experimental category for the purpose of evaluating an experimental modification.  The maximum period is 1 year with 6 month authorizations being more common.  Extensions may be granted with proof of benefit for further experimentation.  An example would be fitting and testing of composite blades, power plant modification, etc..  Upon conclusion of experimentation the AC must be returned to standard category and certified airworthy for continued use.   Another possibility would be Experimental Exhibition but aimed more at vintage aircraft.

"A certificate for experimental exhibition must only be issued when an aircraft is to be used for valid exhibition purposes. Included in those purposes are organized air shows, organized fly-in activities, organized exhibitions, youth education events, organized aerobatic competition, fly-ins or meets, and movie or television productions."

 

Mike

 

Thanks Mike. I guess that one could be debated - for example if i want to put a turbine engine into a R22 and need to modify the frame then there is no ways it will be able to be reverted back to a certified R22. However i get the picture, thank you!

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10 hours ago, Scarab said:

15 years or so ago there was an R22 being fitted with a turbine, I think it was for sale on ebay.  Never heard anymore about it.

I remember seeing that somewhere, it was part built when I saw it - wonder if it ever got finished, if so, wonder if it's still flying?

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On 4/4/2020 at 3:08 AM, R22 chopper said:

Thanks Mike. I guess that one could be debated - for example if i want to put a turbine engine into a R22 and need to modify the frame then there is no ways it will be able to be reverted back to a certified R22. However i get the picture, thank you!

It's conceivable that a turbine installation might be flown in perpetuity if the DAR could be convinced every six months or annually that there is evidence for renewing the experimental certificate. At some point the legitimate claim to engineering tweaks runs out.  The Bell 47 Soloy traveled this path.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 4/10/2020 at 11:42 AM, TomPPL said:

I remember seeing that somewhere, it was part built when I saw it - wonder if it ever got finished, if so, wonder if it's still flying?

i heard about it too like 3 years or so ago when was working as a healthy recipes chef and someone from staff told me. yep. was still flying. not sure about this now.

iChris, much appreciated the links. i already found lots of useful info althought i haven't even read it all.

can i ask you questions in future? thanks

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