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SR20 vs R44


lakeblake
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I fly a Cirrus SR20 and my principal mission is a 135NM weekly commute. It looks to me like it would be faster in an R44 as I could keep it at home and land at work, avoiding the airport commute and delay.

I really appreciate having the chute on the 20, especially at night. Would it be practical to mount a chute on an R44? A rocket extracts the chute. I wouldn't mind coming down in an unusual attitude.

I've read the NTSB reports. Are there accident statistics based on hours or miles flown?

Thanks in advance

 

Gaynor Blake

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The main rotor is your "parachute". If you are in a steady autorotation your ROD is about 1500 FPM (about 16-17 MPH closer rate with the earth.) Even if you don't do a flare at the end, the skids and seats will absorb that impact and one "should" be able to walk away from it. With the flare, you set it down without too much trouble.

 

In that respect, it's safer than an airplane with or without a chute because you can land it ZERO a/s and with a near zero ROD. What's the ROD on airplane with the chute deployed? I thought all those magazine articles said it was around 1500'FPM. Helicopter are built to withstand much greater vertical impacts than airplanes as well. I do have to say, that the chute is a no brainer--autorotations take quite a bit of practice.

 

REGARDLESS......The R44 is a VERY safe aircraft and you will never have to worry about anything we just talked about as long as you keep fuel in it.

 

Question: Do you live on the Lake?? If you do, email me before you start building a helipad on your dock. A few friends of mine and to pull some tricks to get it built and approved as a "party deck" because the Lake is VERY hesitant to approve helipads. I can put you in touch with one of them.

 

jonathan AT autorotate DOT com

 

Good luck!

 

-Jonathan

 

@ K39

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The main rotor is your "parachute". If you are in a steady autorotation your ROD is about 1500 FPM (about 16-17 MPH closer rate with the earth.) Even if you don't do a flare at the end, the skids and seats will absorb that impact and one "should" be able to walk away from it. With the flare, you set it down without too much trouble.

 

In that respect, it's safer than an airplane with or without a chute because you can land it ZERO a/s and with a near zero ROD. What's the ROD on airplane with the chute deployed? I thought all those magazine articles said it was around 1500'FPM. Helicopter are built to withstand much greater vertical impacts than airplanes as well. I do have to say, that the chute is a no brainer--autorotations take quite a bit of practice.

 

REGARDLESS......The R44 is a VERY safe aircraft and you will never have to worry about anything we just talked about as long as you keep fuel in it.

 

Question: Do you live on the Lake?? If you do, email me before you start building a helipad on your dock. A few friends of mine and to pull some tricks to get it built and approved as a "party deck" because the Lake is VERY hesitant to approve helipads. I can put you in touch with one of them.

 

jonathan AT autorotate DOT com

 

Good luck!

 

-Jonathan

 

@ K39

From the cirruspilots.org boards I found the terminal velocity. "1800 fpm is 30 fps which is about the speed you would obtain after 1 second of free fall. In other words, the speed of a fall from a 10 foot height." The gear and seats take care of the rest. Chute deployments over land have resulted in no injuries. One chute was deployed when the pilot lost consciousness, then came to and pulled the chute. It seemed unlikely he could have made a sucessful landing, especially if he blacked out a second time. In addition the chute works in spatial disorientation situations.

 

Yes, I'm on the lake and I can use some advice on a pad. I thought I might have to go with floats and taxi to the dock.

 

Thanks,

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Yes, I'm on the lake and I can use some advice on a pad. I thought I might have to go with floats and taxi to the dock.

 

Thanks,

 

Don't get the fixed floats. I don't know about the R44, but in the R22 they steal a 15+ knots and give you some serious yaw issues. It would probably take a lot more off the top end speed of the R44 because of the parasite drag curve. Not to mention the extra $10,000+.

 

Also, you can't taxi a helicopter on water like you can an airplane. Well, actually you can, but you don't. Robinson does not recommend landing their aircraft on the water in the first place. When you first start the aircraft, it will spin around 2-3 times before the tailrotor gains effectiveness (the same goes for shut down.) You REALLY have to use your pedals when you make power adjustments, do mag checks, etc.

 

If anything, get the pop-out floats. It will cost you an extra $20,000 and only steal a little speed and baggage space. Most people at the lake (that I've seen), don't have floats. My friend near Four Seasons has pop-outs on his R44 becuase he has a very young daughter who can't swim. The only time you'll need them is on takeoff and landing, and you'll have a really quick trigger finger to enter an auto, pop the floats, and get them fully inflated by the time you hit the water (50-100'+ ft. AGL maybe???). I'm not trying to talk you out of them or anything, but they're more for extended flights over open water or to meet 135 req's.

 

Once again, this is like the chute on your plane. YOU ARE NOT GOING TO NEED IT if the engine has fuel and is properly maintained.

 

Please email if you have any more Lake questions.

 

jonathan AT autorotate.com

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The fixed floats are not meant for regular operation to the water - yes they will keep the helicopter floating and upright, but the doors will at best be just above waterline If the aircraft is at MGW, they might go below waterline at times. Trust me on this, or better yet, read the POH for the Clipper on fixed floats. Taxiing is not recommended, to be honest, landing on the water is not recommended - the floats are only meant for emergency landings on water.

 

Speed-wise the floats reduce VNe by 10 knots, and steal about the same amount off of cruise. The also make getting in and out of the helicopter a bit more tricky. In the end, if you can afford the extra cost of the pop-outs, go that way.

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I commute to work in an R44 on fixed floats 100nm each day over the ocean from Vancouver Island to Vancouver, Canada. I have flown the machine without floats and with floats and the floats make little difference to the speed (about 5 knots) or handling of the R44. I like the way it handles with the floats even in heavy turbulance and I fly in pretty wild weather through the winter. Popout floats are great but they must be deployed at least 200 feet up. In low weather, I am ofter 100 feet off the water for quite bit of my trip. I have also done many practice auto's right to the water with fixed floats. There is no way to practice real autos with the popouts deployed.

 

You can land in fresh water with the floats but you would never land in a lake and taxi up to a dock on a routine basis. The Machine gets wet up in the engine compartment every time you land in water and leaving it parked in water like a float plane is not something you would do. I land on a solid dock at home. If float planes can land on your lake, then so can a chopper land on a dock. I would never consider a fixed wing for commuting now that I have logged over one thousand flights in the R44. It is a very safe and reliable machine. Two of my neighbors with float planes pay 2-3 times as much each year for maintenance. post-2538-1135060211_thumb.jpg

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