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Do you use your helicopter to go anywhere?!


i4iq
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Just been hearing the "other side" of the fence's comments about flying helicopters.

 

Apparently, most users of helicopters don't actually "go anywhere" compared with fixed wingers. They tend to stay in the same area whereas fixed wingers frequently travel interstate - allegedly. Is this the case? If so, why? (They seem to be a lot faster, more efficient and less to run!)

 

Anyway, thought I'd ask how many here do go somewhere - whether for business, weekends in the mountains etc. I've got no doubt about helicopters being the way ahead from a career point of view but it makes me wonder if I should get my Private Fixed wing too and buy/rent a plane for personal travel further afield.

 

Any thoughts?

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If you are travelling any distance in a helo, you need deep pockets.

 

However, i have a friend who flies his B206 from his home north of Sydney down to his beach house 90 miles south, and to a ski lodge 250 miles south, and for a holiday to Tasmania 700 miles south, and to a little couple of islands called New Zillund, 1200 miles east. (Via a couple of other islands for fuel)

 

Also he flies to central Australia and to anywhere that looks interesting.

 

And yes, he has deep pockets.

 

For us regular humans, take a plank for a quarter the hourly rate and half the time.

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I used to use them all the time when I was in college. I finished class in the early afternoon, drove to work, then would fly to my night classes. In rush hour traffic some of these would take me over an hour to get to, but the helicopter made it a 8-10 minute flight. After that, I'd fly back to work, get everything ready for the next morning, then drive home. That allowed me to get at least an extra two hours of work in a day.

 

I used to fly out to my fiancee's (now wife's) parents' house to pick her up all the time. It was at least an hour drive from work at non-traffic hours, but I could fly it in the R22 in 24 minutes. It was less than 20 in the R44, so sometimes I would take a student and let them get the time at 1/2 price. Again, that let me get in an extra hour or two of work in a day.

 

For both of those applications, it only REALLY saves you time if you have the helicopter RIGHT THERE.....and it's preflighted, fueled, etc. If you have to drive to the airport, then do all that stuff, you might not be saving any time.

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I go somewhere all the time. 150 miles or so out to a rig in the GOM, back to base, back out to another rig, etc. 3 trips and I have 7 hours or so of flight time, and it's time to go to bed, because 4AM comes very, very quickly. If those hands had to go out by boat, it's a long, long ride and they wouldn't be worth squat for at least another day.

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:D I use my R22 to travel about. The range and fuel economy is pretty conducive to travel. My girlfriend only weighs 100 lbs, so we can take quite a bit of gear, a pair of wheels and off we go. Seen some pretty interesting countryside and a few one of a kind FBO operations. 500 miles is a pretty easy day of touring with lunch and fuel wherever it comes up handy.
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I ocassionaly use the R22 for personal flights, but those are not that often due to the cost. I can rent a D20 from the FBO next to me and do the same flight for less than half the cost, take more bags and cruise at 120kts. I do fly fixed wing as well and am looking at getting checked out in the D20 and save myself some bucks.

 

Doug

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I own a R44. I use it everyday ... well... almost... I had a plane for more than 20 years before (floatplane) . I used it only 6 months a year. Then I made the licence for heli 8 years ago. I had a R22 (Beta II), then a R44 (Astro), and I bought a new one (Raven I) just a couple weeks ago. I made the 22 hours travel from L.A. to Montreal, Canada. I can say I made a lot more big trips with the chopper than with the floatplane. But I use it very often, to go to work, to visit friends, to go on vacation, to go fishing, to go picnic on a top of a mountain, etc... I must say, the chopper is always in the hangar near the house, and I live out of town. So it is ready when I am, all the time. Summer, automn, winter, spring, anytime when weather permit.

Toxedo

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Doug & Toxedo

 

What do you calculate your hourly rates to be on the R44? I've been looking at the costs on the Robinson site but have hear they can be almost double that. I know it'll depend upon hours flown.

 

Cheers

 

I would say around 300$ an hour, (I do not include the initial cost of the machine) I fly an average of 200 hours a year. Must say too that the haul is not insured. Just responsability and passengers are. You're wright about the under estimation of the Robinson hourly operation rate. Anyway, we only live once. And we use to say here that the safe dont follow the coffin.

Toxedo

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Doug & Toxedo

 

What do you calculate your hourly rates to be on the R44? I've been looking at the costs on the Robinson site but have hear they can be almost double that. I know it'll depend upon hours flown.

 

Cheers

 

Factoring in the lease cost and my direct operating costs, I originally budgeted $300 an hour for the Raven II and $150 and hour for the Beta II. These direct operating costs were in part based upon the numbers from the Robinson website, adjusted for realistic shop rates and fuel prices. After being in business for a while, I can tell you that these numbers were a bit on the low side, maybe $10 per hour. I've sold off the portion of the business with the R44, but I know that the new owner is running into more maintenance costs than what Robinson wants you to believe you will have. Note that my direct operating costs are lease, fuel, oil, and maintenance costs; the leasing company covers overhaul costs. Insurance costs are not factored into the hourly costs. The costs were figured at flying 3-4 hours per day on the R22 and 3 hours a day on the R44.

 

Doug

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http://groups.yahoo.com/group/robinsonr22helicopters/ <=== tox is quickly becoming a legend there.

 

:D :D :D

 

For those who are familiar with the Robinsonr22helicopters yahoo group, what I propose you next is not a scoop. You could go to my web site, to have a look at few short QuickTime films I made with my chopper for the fun of it.

Just go to www.tuxedoproductions.com ,(you'll see a french text, but you dont have to understand it...) click on the "Productions" tab. The films are there. You'll have to be patient and wait for the complete download of each film before try to view them, since most of them are not in streaming.

Few titles I like most: "Dans le lit de la Caniapiscau", Le chercheur d'or", "La Haute-Mauricie vue du ciel", "Le chant du Nord"

Enjoy

Toxedo

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Thanks for that Tox

 

The default movie streams and seems to be a finer resolution. Strikes me as being French-meets Chinese - meets Celtic cinema. Nice countryside!

 

How have you taken the footage btw? I have a Sony VX1000E which produces a nice image (despite it's age) and want to take my own footage at some point. I seem to recall reading somewhere that attachments such as cameras need some kind of approval or approved attachment method.

 

(P.S. If you ever need 3D Animation for your productions, let me know!)

 

Google does offer a translation (of sorts!) for the pages if anyone's interested

 

http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=e...6lr%3D%26sa%3DG

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Thanks for that Tox

 

The default movie streams and seems to be a finer resolution. Strikes me as being French-meets Chinese - meets Celtic cinema. Nice countryside!

 

How have you taken the footage btw? I have a Sony VX1000E which produces a nice image (despite it's age) and want to take my own footage at some point. I seem to recall reading somewhere that attachments such as cameras need some kind of approval or approved attachment method.

 

Thanks i4iq

The default movie is in fact a photos montage, and this one is in streaming.

 

The VX1000 is a very good camera. Mine is a Sony PD 150. And what I used to hold my camera is a kind of stand I made and adapted to the sling anchor under the belly. Works very well.

If I can put a sling, sure I can put a camera. But it is a grey zone, I agree.

 

Tox

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