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I was wondering what is the safest way to switch the radio frequency? Is it better to use collective friction and switch hands ( left hand on the cyclic ,right changing the radio), or to hold the cyclic with your knees and keep your left hand on the collective and use your right hand to adjust the radio?

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I was wondering what is the safest way to switch the radio frequency? Is it better to use collective friction and switch hands ( left hand on the cyclic ,right changing the radio), or to hold the cyclic with your knees and keep your left hand on the collective and use your right hand to adjust the radio?

 

Most folks I know fly with the collective adjusted so that it does not droop if you take your hand off it. Unless you are flying something with auto-stabilization, the same could never be said about cyclic control. So, doing "knee navigation" is a much more risky proposition -

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I was wondering what is the safest way to switch the radio frequency? Is it better to use collective friction and switch hands ( left hand on the cyclic ,right changing the radio), or to hold the cyclic with your knees and keep your left hand on the collective and use your right hand to adjust the radio?

 

It's funny, I've never really thought about this but anyway - I typically keep the collective lightly frictioned in cruise to keep it from moving around. Regardless of the PIC position - left or right seat - I always tune with my left hand. I've never had any issues with this approach. With the collective (theoretically) not moving up or down in those few seconds of tuning, I think this is safer than trying to fly a helcopter with your knees :blink: .

 

I have more problems in taking off the carb heat in a 300CB or R22/44 Raven I on short approach, or at least I did on my last 300CB flight, due to being a teeny bit rusty.

 

Dave Blevins

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Depends which seat you are in.

 

Right seat, use left hand. Have enough friction on collective to stop the drop, and/or lean your left leg across to hold it firm.

 

left seat, put left leg against collective, left hand onto cyclic, right hand for radios.

 

Once you are the Ace From Space, you can put the cyclic between your knees and keep laft hand on lever.

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the question was... what is the SAFEST way to change radio freq's??

 

First thing I show my passenger is how to change the radio channels. I direct them when, check the freq to make sure its correct, and keep both hands on the controls!

 

If solo, then I definitely use light collective friction, never take your hand off the cyclic..

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A lot depends on what you are flying! In an R22 (which everyone seems to be most familiar with here) I would not take my hand off the cyclic and try to fly with my knees. In an S76 for example you can probably fly almost the whole flight except take off and landing with out even touching the controls. I once flew a MD500E for 20 minutes without touching the controls. We were bored so we trimmed it out just right at 65 knots and then we saw how long we could go with out making corrections. We did everything by leaning inside the ship. We even made a 180 and went back the way we came. Of course we were "close" to the controls and ready in case the engine deceided to quit. You should always be ready for that engine cough, but taking your hand off the collective for 5 seconds to change frequencies should not be a problem.

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It does depend on the model, but one of the first things I learned to do in a TH55 was how to light a cigarette with gofer matches, with the collective frictioned and the cyclic between my knees. If the collective is frictioned, it shouldn't move, and I have never worried about it much. It doesn't take that long to get it down if it's absolutely necessary, whether your hand is on it or not. I seldom keep my hand on the collective unless I'm changing power, but I do fly turbines, so there is no need to adjust the throttle once it's full on. In the S76, they're overhead, so you learn to not worry about them. There isn't much you can do with them in any case, except go full off, and that isn't likely to happen. The copilot takes care of all that stuff anyway. In the S76C+ and C++, after the takeoff you turn on the flight director, and don't touch the controls at all. In the S76A series and the Bell 412, you only use the cyclic occasionally, to correct attitude deviations. In smaller models without helipilots or SAS, you have to keep control of the cyclic, but a few seconds with it between your knees isn't a big deal. In these, I generally keep the right hand around the cyclic, and do tuning and other chores with the left hand, because everything is on the left side. That's really why most helicopters are flown from the right seat - so the right hand stays on the cyclic and the left is free to do all the other stuff. There is no good reason to be afraid to remove your left hand from the collective in cruise flight.

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...or, you could be like EAGLE1 and have the observer change freqs (especially during chases through congested airspace) and not have these concerns...

 

-WATCH FOR THE WIRES-

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I WISH I could have the TFO change freqs for me! He is busier than I am. Usually I am changing freqs for him. He is busy watching the suspect, talking on the radio, using the searchlight or using the video camera and watching the moving map...... Heck, all I 'm doing is flying.

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Light friction on the collective, and switch with my left......if I'm flying left seat, then same, but fly with the left, switch with right.

 

Eric....everytime you post something.....I find myself staring at the girls B**BS! God bless! :)

 

Rob

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I'm like Gomer, I tend to either friction the collective or brace the cyclic with my knees and use either hand. In the 300 it's not hard to fly safely either way. On long cross countries I have been known to lightly friction the cyclic so it wants to stay put but not enough to prevent it from being easily manipulated. A well T&B'd 300 will actually fly for quite a while without pilot input this way. I find it to be a lot more relaxing flying on cross countries.

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