13000 Robinson's delivered...

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TheGreenGoblin
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13000 Robinson's delivered...

#1 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Tue May 04, 2021 6:48 pm

Robinson Helicopter delivered its 13,000th helicopter—an R44 model, S/N 14438—to longtime Robinson dealer Sky Helicopters of Dallas, Texas on April 23rd. S/N 14438 features a new paint scheme and is equipped with the latest R44 options such as a Lithium-ion battery, heated seats, and a 4K cockpit video camera. The helicopter also includes glass panel avionics featuring the touchscreen Garmin G700 TXi and GTN 650Xi navigator, as well as a Genesys HeliSAS autopilot.

Sky president Ken Pyatt said he wanted a new-generation R44 to round out the company’s fleet. “We purchased this R44 for our Part 135 air taxi and tour operations,” he said. Sky has been a Robinson dealer since 1996 and this latest acquisition puts the company’s Robinson fleet at 27 aircraft.

Robinson delivered its first two-place R22 piston in 1979 and today still produces this model, in addition to the four-seat R44 piston and five-seat R66 turbine. Robinson delivered its 12,000th helicopter in 2017, 11,000th in 2013, and 10,000th in 2011. The company shipped 177 helicopters last year, but president Kurt Robinson told AIN that he expects deliveries in 2021 to surpass this number.
R44.JPG
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#2 Post by Ex-Ascot » Wed May 05, 2021 8:09 am

'Yes, Madam, I am drunk, but in the morning I shall be sober and you will still be ugly.' Sir Winston Churchill.

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#3 Post by tango15 » Wed May 05, 2021 8:34 am

I'm not a fan of helicopters at all, but I have found myself inside them more often than I would care for, and 75% of them were Russian(!).
I dislike the Robinson intensely. It's not necessarily the helicopter's fault, but you would never get me inside one of them. The accident rate to all series seems disproportionate when compared with other helicopters. What brought this home to me was death of Rolim Amaro, a friend and the founder of one of Latin America's largest airlines, (TAM), who lost his life in one of those machines in 2001. He was a fully qualified fixed-wing and helicopter pilot and I flew with him a number of times.

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#4 Post by Ex-Ascot » Wed May 05, 2021 9:24 am

Yes T15 we have them here and there is no way I am getting into one. The helicopter company also have Jet Rangers. I have told the owner never to send a Robinson for us if a runway in the bush is flooded. We have had 3 free trips in a JR because of this. Terrific fun at about 30'.
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#5 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Wed May 05, 2021 9:46 am

Well, I do appreciate your concern Ex-Ascot, and am apt to be more cautious of my mangy hide as I get older, so I will take care.

Must say that I think that Robinson helicopters get a bad reputation because they are so ubiquitous and tend to be flown by tyros, and low hours pilots, (some might say nincompoops) like myself, but respect both your and tango15's thoughts on these matters. Hoping to get up in the air this Saturday and praying for reasonable weather.
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#6 Post by Ex-Ascot » Wed May 05, 2021 11:58 am

Well GG we will be praying for a reasonable egg whisk.
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#7 Post by CharlieOneSix » Wed May 05, 2021 12:33 pm

TheGreenGoblin wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 9:46 am
.......I think that Robinson helicopters get a bad reputation because they are so ubiquitous and tend to be flown by tyros, and low hours pilots......
There is certainly a lot of truth in that statement. However I've said it before on here - any helicopter manufacturer who feels it necessary to put out a Safety Notice - No.32 in Robinson's case - that states "Flying in high winds or turbulence should be avoided" means that his products are ones in which I will not fly.

Every Tuesday we have a gas pipeline inspection helicopter fly past the house as we have a 36" gas main located about 500 metres away which takes gas south from the St Fergus terminal near Peterhead. For years it was a JetRanger that carried out the weekly task but in the last year or so that has changed to a R44. We are in a high wind and rolling countryside area to the east of the Grampians yet the R44 is deemed suitable for this low altitude commercial work throughout the year. The bottom line wins as usual.

Sadly in 2005 the JetRanger then carrying out inspections on this gas grid fatally crashed in Perthshire due to a maintenance error where paint had incorrectly been applied to the mating surfaces between the tail boom and vertical fin. That probably resulted in incorrect torque being applied to the attachment bolts and the subsequent loss of the vertical stabiliser. BBC News October 2007. I knew the pilot well as he previously was in the same company as FD2 and me in the 1980s on North Sea ops flying the S61.
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#8 Post by ian16th » Wed May 05, 2021 12:40 pm

For once, I'll beat TGG to the music!

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#9 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Wed May 05, 2021 1:06 pm

ian16th wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:40 pm
For once, I'll beat TGG to the music!
Really good performance of the Mrs Robinson song! ;)))

@ C16...You are quite right about
who feels it necessary to put out a Safety Notice - No.32 in Robinson's case - that states "Flying in high winds or turbulence should be avoided"
https://robinsonheli.com/wp-content/upl ... c_sn32.pdf

I think this was promulgated as a legal escape from the number of mast bumping incidents that were bedeviling the R22, but I must admit that I was somewhat taken aback when I saw it.
Depressed, feeling a slump, then remember Lift = Coefficient of Lift x 1/2 x ρ x V-squared X S!

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#10 Post by fareastdriver » Wed May 05, 2021 8:20 pm

I first saw an R22 at some Helicopter do at Redhill; the one where the MI 26 performed, in the 90s. They were brand new and this salesgirl was trying to interest me in one. I went up to it and dismissed it with " I've never flown anything that small!"

There are basic machines and there are basic machines; but a Robinson?

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#11 Post by G-CPTN » Wed May 05, 2021 8:24 pm

Maybe for the price you could buy two - for when one breaks.

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#12 Post by Undried Plum » Wed May 05, 2021 8:34 pm

I remember the eponymous Mr Robinson saying that he would not allow any family member to fly in one of his helicopters unless the pilot had well over 500 hours on type.

I flew one, once. Those flimsy main rotor blades are so light that an auto is actually frightening when you are accustomed to a 212 or a 206 or a 47.

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#13 Post by bob2s » Wed May 05, 2021 10:40 pm

As they say,There are helicopters and there are Robinsons.

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In defence of the Robinson R44

#14 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Thu Jun 03, 2021 1:38 pm

I am currently in tyro exam study mode, so my interest in the workings of the R44 are at a new peak, as have have been the comments of the few helicopter pilots I do know (one a chief pilot for a local commercial outfit) in their comments about Robinsons, and many of those comments have been negative so, I thought, an alternative, more balanced (like a good rotor blade ) perspective, might be necessary, and I think I found that in this very good article in the Air Facts Journal that looks at the US fatality statistics for the R44 for 5 year period up to 2019.
What’s wrong with Robinson R44 pilots?
Robinson R44 helicopters are death traps, right up there with Mitsubishi MU-2s and Cirrus SR22s – at least that’s according to a lot of articles you read online. A dramatic headline in The Los Angeles Times late last year was the most recent example, warning residents of southern California that “Danger spins from the sky.” It’s a compelling story, and the newspaper even went so far as to calculate the numbers (something most non-aviation publications neglect). But does it tell the whole story?
https://airfactsjournal.com/2019/01/wha ... 44-pilots/
Depressed, feeling a slump, then remember Lift = Coefficient of Lift x 1/2 x ρ x V-squared X S!

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#15 Post by FD2 » Sat Jun 12, 2021 8:35 pm

https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/12542 ... pter-crash

1623485576077.jpg

Possible interpretation from eye witness accounts - heavy with 4 up, ran out of power or engine failed at awkward point, hit ground hard, broke off tail boom, crinkling fuselage and injuring pax. Hope they all get out of hospital soon.

It will all come out in the wash. As GG says, with so many sold around the world there are bound to be accidents but I still wouldn't go up in one!
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#16 Post by FD2 » Sat Jun 12, 2021 8:37 pm

Runways are for beauty queens. 8-|

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#17 Post by ian16th » Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:22 pm

That's 13 000 of them that I haven't been in!
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#18 Post by FD2 » Sat Jun 12, 2021 10:16 pm

ian 16th o:-) ditto!

When the 'whirring' stopped I guess there was very little time to react and very little momentum in those little blades to cushion them at the bottom. The main problem is that they are 'cheap' and so many are flown by inexperienced people - though that's not to say that was the case here.

One local TV news reported it with sad faces as a 'tragedy'. I wish they'd get a grip and learn the difference between a tragedy and a sad or unfortunate accident. It would have been a tragedy if it had crashed and killed all on board. They were lucky it happened over the golf course. A few minutes later over the mountains it might have been a real tragedy.
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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#19 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Sun Jun 13, 2021 7:19 am

The whole wedding aircraft (of any type) trip notion always begs questions of relative risk and safety in my mind. A wedding, is a time constricted, plan oriented, emotionally charged, physically and mentally fatiguing, and often alcohol fueled day for the wedding party concerned. The wedding plan, most likely, does not allow any contingency, for delays or diversions due to weather, technical or other reasons, lest the whole tight timing of the carefully orchestrated day unravels. This puts enormous pressure on a single pilot, often in a single engine, VFR equipped aircraft, most likely due to the budget constraints of the wedding planners, to get the flight flown, which is where the safety/risk parameters come under duress, as the average passenger has absolutely no conception of the relevant relative risks involved, and the planners are absolutely mission focused and can become very demanding or even emotional if their plan is challenged due to inclement weather, or other reasons. Inserting a segment into a wedding day plan that includes a needless single engine light helicopter trip to get some nice wedding photographs is indicative of that risk ignorance.

Apart from the unfortunate accident noted above, I can think of three accidents that should be pointed out to any would be helicopter users before they make a flight an integral task on the critical path of their wedding day plan.

The two Brazilian R44 crashes are truly disturbing to watch.





Depressed, feeling a slump, then remember Lift = Coefficient of Lift x 1/2 x ρ x V-squared X S!

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Re: 13000 Robinson's delivered...

#20 Post by TheGreenGoblin » Sun Jun 13, 2021 7:32 am

The Texas, (not Robinson R44 associated) night flight crash interim report was released I believe... in this case the aircraft was a twin (I believe), suitable for the flight, and the pilot was suitably qualified albeit an older pilot (with cataracts!). He was a family friend. Once again, emotion, possibly, trumping the risk consideration, particularly for a night flight involving an older man with impaired vision.

https://www.uvaldeleadernews.com/articl ... re-impact/
The cause of a Nov. 3, 2018, helicopter crash that left a newlywed couple and their pilot dead near Uvalde may have been due to a disparity in the altimeter setting, indicating the Bell 206B Jet Ranger was higher than it actually was, according to the final report issued May 19 by the National Transportation Safety Board.

The official probable cause of this accident is listed as, “The pilot’s controlled flight into terrain during night visual meteorological conditions. Contributing to the accident was the pilot’s improper decision to inhibit the helicopter’s terrain warning systems and flight at low altitude.”

Killed in the wreck were Sam Houston State University students Bailee Raye Ackerman Byler and Will Byler, both 23, and 76-year-old pilot Gerald Douglas Lawrence.

The couple departed Byler Ranch at around 11:45 p.m. that night en route to their honeymoon, flown by longtime family pilot Lawrence, a former U.S. Army captain and Vietnam veteran with more than 24,000 flight hours.

Within less than 10 minutes of departure from the ranch about 20 miles northwest of Uvalde, the helicopter crashed into a rocky hillside approximately seven miles east of the ranch.

Investigation indicates the helicopter’s terrain avoidance and warning system low altitude alerts were turned off and therefore would not have warned the pilot of obstacles.

According to the NTSB report, information from flight displays did not record any evasive maneuvering, and investigators concluded it was likely the pilot did not see the hilly terrain before the impact.

The report reads, “Examination of the helicopter revealed no evidence of any mechanical malfunctions or anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. Data from the helicopter’s flight displays revealed that the helicopter’s altimeter was set at 30.05 inches of mercury (inHg); the altimeter setting at the station nearest the accident site was 29.97 inHg. This difference would have resulted in the helicopter’s altimeter indicating a higher altitude than the helicopter’s actual altitude.”

According to the NTSB the flight display’s last indicated altitude was 1,538 feet, which investigators determined would have only provided marginal clearance in the terrain.

At the time of the crash, the Federal Aviation Administration database showed that Lawrence, a licensed airline transport pilot, had an up-to-date medical certificate, but the NTSB report notes he was diagnosed with early cataracts, which he reported to the FAA in 2005.

The autopsy did not reveal evidence of incapacitation in Lawrence, but said of the cataracts, “… it is possible that they could have increased in severity enough to have compromised his night vision and contributed to his difficulty avoiding the hill. Additionally, the pilot’s eyesight may not have adjusted to the night conditions after being exposed to bright lights during departure. However, the severity of his cataracts at the time of the accident is unknown, and whether visual limitations from cataracts or bright lights contributed to the accident, could not be determined.”
http://aerossurance.com/helicopters/tex ... night-vmc/
Depressed, feeling a slump, then remember Lift = Coefficient of Lift x 1/2 x ρ x V-squared X S!

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