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Ideal helicopter for a new pilot to own


lwalling

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I have been reading online, browsing the for-sale ads, etc, looking at available ships.

 

I am going to be a "brand new" pilot and looking to buy my own craft for continuing to build time, primarily because I cannot rent an R44 or anything else suitable for my tall & fat body to fly in after I have completed my ppl, no one rents them it appears including the school I am working with - which is a damn shame! I will be continuing on going for my commercial and IFR training as well, but building time will be impossible if I can't keep flying.

 

My solution is to buy a helicopter. I am open to R44's, but the shear up front cost of a ship thats not close to being timed out is staggering considering how inexperienced I will be even when the first portion of the training is complete, it just doesn't seem like a great idea to me to spend that much money as a first time pilot/owner. Enstrom's appear to be a good lower cost alternative though I know nothing about them, and then theres the kit copters that seem to be ridiculously inexpensive when compared to even an older Enstrom.

 

What "good options" does someone like me have that make sense monetarily with my low flight experience in mind? (that is over the max seat weight for an R22)

 

Thanks for any advice on this subject.

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I feel your pain. I'm 6-5 and 240 pounds. I push the envelope in an R22, especially the knees!

 

The R44 is an awesome ship. And no you cannot be PIC in them due to most insurance req's. HOWEVER, you can become a fractional owner of one to get around that req...Some deals even let you own 1% of the ship, then , since you are an owner, with 50 hours, you can be PIC. Not a bad option. In VNY right now there are two R44's looking for fractional partners.

 

Now lets talk ships. The 300 has enough power for you..and room. See my other post on the downsides of it for big guys.

 

The Bell 47 has power. The best visibility of any bird, anywhere. Very safe auto's. Lots of spare parts avail because of its military background. But it is slow and old tech.

 

I would love to fly an Enstrom, never have, so all second hand info. Expensive to maintain compared to other ships....great rotor system, but like the 300, its a bit under powered so you are using max RPM all the time, and need to watch rotor rpm to not get behind the power curve.

 

There you go !!

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I feel your pain. I'm 6-5 and 240 pounds. I push the envelope in an R22, especially the knees!

 

The R44 is an awesome ship. And no you cannot be PIC in them due to most insurance req's. HOWEVER, you can become a fractional owner of one to get around that req...Some deals even let you own 1% of the ship, then , since you are an owner, with 50 hours, you can be PIC. Not a bad option. In VNY right now there are two R44's looking for fractional partners.

 

Now lets talk ships. The 300 has enough power for you..and room. See my other post on the downsides of it for big guys.

 

The Bell 47 has power. The best visibility of any bird, anywhere. Very safe auto's. Lots of spare parts avail because of its military background. But it is slow and old tech.

 

I would love to fly an Enstrom, never have, so all second hand info. Expensive to maintain compared to other ships....great rotor system, but like the 300, its a bit under powered so you are using max RPM all the time, and need to watch rotor rpm to not get behind the power curve.

 

There you go !! does flight time count in a non certificated ship count? if it does you could buy a like new rotorway exec for 80-90 g and maintain it yourself!!! just thinkin out loud. rayco5 :lol:

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I have been reading online, browsing the for-sale ads, etc, looking at available ships.

 

I am going to be a "brand new" pilot and looking to buy my own craft for continuing to build time, primarily because I cannot rent an R44 or anything else suitable for my tall & fat body to fly in after I have completed my ppl, no one rents them it appears including the school I am working with - which is a damn shame! I will be continuing on going for my commercial and IFR training as well, but building time will be impossible if I can't keep flying.

 

My solution is to buy a helicopter. I am open to R44's, but the shear up front cost of a ship thats not close to being timed out is staggering considering how inexperienced I will be even when the first portion of the training is complete, it just doesn't seem like a great idea to me to spend that much money as a first time pilot/owner. Enstrom's appear to be a good lower cost alternative though I know nothing about them, and then theres the kit copters that seem to be ridiculously inexpensive when compared to even an older Enstrom.

 

What "good options" does someone like me have that make sense monetarily with my low flight experience in mind? (that is over the max seat weight for an R22)

 

Thanks for any advice on this subject.

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I like the Enstrom, I've flown two of them and they auto better than the 300 but not quite as well as the Bell 47. Very stable, but i haven't flown one with a correlator so you really have to be on that throttle, its a handful in a hover and while transitioning into flight (i'd imagine it would be for a newbie anyway), but it is rock solid once you're cruising. I'd definitely get a few hours in one before buying so you can form your own opinion of it. Parts are expensive from what I hear.

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i am new to the site so a hiller is a good helicopter to build hours and have fun i got about 400 hrs

good autos and at 12 gallons an hour insurance is 6,000.00 full cov. easy maintaince,annuals are about 1,200.dollars .the 12b-c weight 1650 and loaded 2500 lb great leg room and vis. will hold 3 people in the seats . 60 knots top so what great trainer the army used them . price not bad

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I have about an hour or so in an Enstrom and thats all I want! The Enstrom makes me thankfull that I fly the 22. The Enstrom seems very sluggish and not "agile".

 

On the other hand, as far as ships, many used Raven I (44's) are becoming avialiable with a decent amount of time left on them. My guess because the the Raven II with a/c that is in such demand.

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but like the 300, its a bit under powered so you are using max RPM all the time, and need to watch rotor rpm to not get behind the power curve.

 

..:::choking noises:::.. What?? Ive never skipped along the tarmac on a hot day in an enstrom or a schwiezer but I sure as heck have in a robbie.

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If it sounds to good to be true it probably is. I would look at a R44 if you were going to buy one. Good resale value and lots of buyers. It can carry a load and is safer in autos than the R22. Plus there is tonnes more room in it than a R22. Also if you get one with the AC it kicks ass! The R22 can be a squeeze toi get into I see some people have mentioned they were 6feet pluss and having difficulties getting into one. Try me 6' 8"!!! Had to get down to below 210lbs to get a job. Must of looked like I needed food stamps! But thats what I needed to do to make it happen. Also to the guy who mentioned working in the hanger, I have seen several people who have done that while also working as a CFI and can gained some valuable hrs, Turbine to boot!

 

Fly Safe

BEN

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..:::choking noises:::.. What?? Ive never skipped along the tarmac on a hot day in an enstrom or a schwiezer but I sure as heck have in a robbie.

 

 

Hey Helliboy- do you need me to do a Heimlich maneuver or anything ?

 

What I was saying is this.. The 300 has a much larger capacity to lift weights. However, the R 22 has a much larger power margin. ie. safety margin of power. In a 300 or F28, my belief is you are using almost all the HP available, in an R22 you cant lift as much, but the engine continues to produce the same hp at higher DA's, due to the de-rating of the engine. Does that make any sense at all ???

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I feel your pain. I'm 6-5 and 240 pounds. I push the envelope in an R22, especially the knees!

 

The R44 is an awesome ship. And no you cannot be PIC in them due to most insurance req's. HOWEVER, you can become a fractional owner of one to get around that req...

 

I did my homework- purchased an R44, Raven 1.

Bang for the buck, a 44 is hard to beat.

Base price is around 300K. Two year warranty, excellent resale value-

As a matter of fact I have had the oppurtunity to sell my 44 twice and turned both offers down.

Plenty of room for my 260lb butt, girlfriend and dog.

Plenty of power too- I've had max load on board and had very comfortable flight.

It's just to damn much fun to fly, can't bear to part with it. Maybe next year.

 

My insurance is thru Pathfinder, they have simple restrictions for low time pilots.

You can be PIC, just no passengers untill you have one hundred hours, no passengers in the back seat untill you have 200 hrs. Pathfinder quote was $11K, less than 1/2 what any other insurance company quoted. Made the restrictions a bit easier to swallow. Of course if you don't have a lien on your aircraft there is no law that says you have to buy insurance. You just have to determine if you can afford a loss, or lawsuit, etc.

 

There's nothing inexpensive about owning any type of aircraft.

Each person has to weigh their own situation to determine what type aircraft fits them best.

In my case the new bird w/ warranty, reasonable price and excellent re-sale value fit perfect.

 

gft

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Thanks for the replies on this topic folks.

 

I'd also like to use the prospective ship for traveling, so it should be fairly quick. This eliminates 300s and probably most Hillers. Traveling is how I'd probably build up the most hours.

 

I probably should look closer at the r44 and possibly Enstrom market. What resources other than the obvious (controller, aerotrader) do you suggest?

 

Does anyone know what year Enstrom added a correlator and then governor? I can live without a gov, but prefer a correlator at least.

 

Any other opinions at all? Kit craft weren't discussed, but theres probably a reason for that :).

 

I have someone willing to provide assistance in the industry for 4plus % (my current instructor) of the purchase price, but he won't answer any of the basic selection questions above to help me make a initial decision on what to buy, what to expect price wise, for some reason (i call it prepurchase questions) so I might go it alone.

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Any other opinions at all? Kit craft weren't discussed, but theres probably a reason for that :).

 

rayco5 mentioned the Rotorway. I just looked at its specifications, and it appears like it might work..

http://www.rotorway.com/specs.html

......Pilot and Passenger Load 425 lbs. (193 kg)

......Fuel Capacity 17 U.S. Gallons (64 liters)

if we assume that gasoline is 6.5 lbs/gal, that is 110 lbs of fuel.. which leaves 314 lbs for pilot.

It may or may not be able to handle that on one seat.. but if you're only a bit over 240lbs, it might handle that one one seat.

You'd have to check with rotorway to make sure.

 

You said that you need more than the max seat weight or the r22, so that will rule out the helicycle at 220lbs max pilot weight.

 

As rayco5 said, you could maintain it yourself rather than having to pay an A&P to do it for you.. that is, if you're mech inclined, and inclined to do so. Will a non-cert (experimental) produce the type of hours you want?

 

-Darwin

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OK- Maybe I'm the only pilot that feels this way...but its not enough that you fly helicopters...you have to fly a non-certificated version at that? Hell, I'm pretty damn careful when flying the R22, I couldnt even imagine flying, let alone having my son or wife as a passenger in an experimental....no thanks.

 

Goldy

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I just got back from AeroKopter and trianed in the AK1-3. See the report on the www.ptarmigan-heli.com site Monday.

 

Issue will be getting your hands on one. I have never flown anything like it. It is a cross between a Gazelle and a Supercub. The most stable helicopter in the world. It will be 2 more years before ceritfication with the Deltahwk engine however (unless a better one comes out) but it is legal to build time in for now. Fine for your size.

 

Kind Regards,

 

MROSE

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