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Astar Hydraulics Off


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For the AS-350 crowd:

 

I know a check airman that teaches running landings for hydraulics off. I'll admit this is what it says in the flight manual emerg. proc. but I was taught to come to a hover and land. (Actually we were trained to land, take-off again, fly a pattern, and fly as fast as we could all without hydraulics). The reason was we were operating in an area where runways or other large flat and smooth areas were rare. I've had 4 actual hydraulic failures and every single one I flew it to a hover and landed normally. I think it is safer and you can get it in where a running landing wouldn't work. Don't know what Eurocopter's take is on this but it worked for me.

 

Anyone have any comments on how you teach/or do the hydraulics off emergency procedure and why you do it that way?

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Some will hover without exsesive forces and some will not. I don't know the reason, rigging, aircraft loading come to mind as the major variables. A local operator that has two has one that flies nicely Hyd Off and the other will not. the one that won't used to. Quien Sabe?

 

Follow the flight manual. The run on doesn't need to be much more than walking speed.

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That's interesting. Maybe that is why they state running landing in the flight manual so it gives everyone more of a safety buffer (if they are near a smooth, hard surface for landing). I agree that every Astar I've flown flies differently without hyd.

 

Anyone had a hyrdaulics failure while longlining?

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I'm guessing the Flight Manual instructs the pilot to "land with slight forward speed" because that requires fewer control inputs when close to the ground.  Personally, I interpret "slight" to mean dragging the heels about a foot or so (if that).  

 

We all know that you can't move one control without having to move them all.  No problem normally, but coordinated inputs can be a BIG problem with the forces required when the hydraulics are kaput.

 

In Arizona, coming to a hover in an unimproved landing area means a sure-fire brownout.  Being blind, without hydraulics, is probably not a good thing.  

 

Since no two emergencies are the same, and they rarely happen in a traffic pattern during re-current training, each pilot has to do what he thinks the situation dictates.  Books can't cover it all.

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I agree with you JAM about the slight forward speed thing. I think some people just interpret it incorrectly.

 

As far as the coordinated stuff: I don't move the pedals when I have hydraulic failures. I just stab them to where they should be when I touchdown and I don't need to move them anymore. I'm flying out of trim but I fly out of trim all the other times anyway. This seems to help me because I am also pretty small and leverage is more what I use than brute force. I don't put the collective down; just move it up a little before touchdown and use airspeed to control descent rate.

 

I also fly in AZ and brown outs would suck with hyd off. I think I would muscle the sucker to somewhere better (usually a runway within 30 minutes even in Northern AZ) than trying to put it down in brown flour (same thing in powder too(snow)). Alaska is different because there are places where there isn't a paved surface for hundreds of miles. In Alaska I've even thought about leap frogging it (land whenever my arms got tired and lift when I was rested again) to get to someplace where I can either radio a mechanic or get some help. I guess (like you said) you just deal with each emergency according to whatever works.

 

I agree; books don't teach you how to fly.

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