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Helicopters / Seaplanes on Yachts

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by mp-willow, Mar 16, 2006.

  1. AMG

    AMG YF Moderator

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    In Sweden we have about 25 Robinson, a friend of mine have had his 44 several years and seems to be happy with it. However, another one crashed just a week ago despite CAVOK. It caught fire at the impact and the pilot died, so we don´t know what happened yet.

    I wouldn´t really like to be far out over the sea with it since it must be more sensitive to wind than a bigger helicopter, and if I should land it on a yacht, it should be a large pad and not one of these small pick-up and emergency pads that many yachts are fitted with...

    I guess a MD 500 is a better choice with small pads..?
  2. mp-willow

    mp-willow Senior Member

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    R44 Crash?

    If you can post the accident findings that would be a nice help. I would take the MD-500 for longer over water flights, and if it were for charter work. But what we are reading it is for personal use.

    As for the platform, I think I understand it, and if si, it will be a nice addition, but the platform will need to be strong, and hydrolics take up space, and cash. :rolleyes:
  3. kc135delta

    kc135delta Member

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    I allready posted te NTSB crash reports.
  4. Talon

    Talon Senior Member

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    I would prefer to have to ditch in a Seawinds Plane, rather than in a heli.
    A heli is fine for close to shore transport and ease of deck landings, but seaplanes are inherently more stable.
    Yes you have to recover them from the water, but you have more range, can land on any surrounding airfields on normal gear.

    My father has had to ascertain helicopter failures for FAA & NTSB at water crash sites. Not a job for those with a weak gut!
    Even the best pilots may succumb to a rollover on a ditch, without the ability to escape.

    I'm for an amphib!!:)
  5. mp-willow

    mp-willow Senior Member

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    Talon, I can a gree the amphib is better with range and the safty, but yo have a hard time geting into some places, and storing it on the yacht is a problum. Now that is not a problum if the Yacht is big or designed for it. Or you use a shadow boat. But I would jusst as well use an amphib heli if I could get one that is light and could work off the Yacht.

    As for the heli serviving I was watching a program on the USCG in the Bearing Sea, and the J-Hack was downed by a 70ft wave. It just flooded the engines. 3 crew were saved from the sea by a Cutter launched chopper, but the 5 fisherman that were rescued off the oil tanker were never found :(
  6. Talon

    Talon Senior Member

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    Willow, I understand your point.
    It's all down to preference and what size yacht you have and also depends on where you are operating.

    I think it is now law that ALL helis that complete deck landings must have flotation devices of sorts, so they would remain upright and allow escape.

    Another point that weighs me towards a heli this time, is the fact that Amphib planes need calmish waters to take off/land, whereas a heli launch and recovery is not so restricted.

    If I had a shadow vessel, then I would choose a Eurocopter EC135 or MD500N (Notar) because of enclosed or no rear blades.
  7. The Reverend

    The Reverend New Member

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  8. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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  9. AMG

    AMG YF Moderator

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    Yes he was lucky. We have seen and discussed this clip in another thread, but I think it was the rope-net that saved him. With a MD Notar heli, maybe he could have managed a take-off, but I think he was not experienced enough to flying on boats...
  10. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    I didn't realize it was a repost.

    Take it off if you like.

    I was sent it by a guy who is heavily involved in Shipborne Heli Ops.

    I did some work on an MD 600 NOTAR with him and would be surprised if the tail boom didn't just snap off where it is bolted on, they are very flimsily constructed, being held on with 4 bolts which I think were 2 x 1/4" and 2 x 5/16".
  11. AMG

    AMG YF Moderator

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    It is a fascinating movie clip and I couldn´t find the other thread so I think it should remain here. I agree that both helis and all aircrafts are sensitive creatures, all structures except the landing gear are built to not hit anything but air...
  12. Codger

    Codger YF Wisdom Dept.

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    A little detail on that clip. Normal ops on that Greenpeace ship were done using a 500d, first time for the Enstrom. Pilot let the collective come up at just the time that the stern of the ship dropped since she was going through shut down checklist. She did manage to get the Enstrom back down without a tail rotor and nobody was hurt. Offshore ops can bite very quickly.
  13. mp-willow

    mp-willow Senior Member

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    Hello All, it has been fun reading. If you readers could have an amphibian on your yacht, what would you have?
    :)
  14. AMG

    AMG YF Moderator

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    A Catalina...:)
  15. Codger

    Codger YF Wisdom Dept.

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    YES! AMG, a man with taste. The PBY is a great piece if you need to be social.
    For less company, a J2F Grumman Duck.
  16. viking 58

    viking 58 YF Historian

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  17. YachtForum

    YachtForum Publisher/Admin

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    Whoa! Good find Joe. One of the most unusual pictures on YF. There appears to be a square patch of blue on the front deck, possibly a non-skid surface, which might indicate this is a dedicated heli-pad. I guess it shows you can land a gnat anywhere, but it doesn't mean it will stay put if you turn the windshield wipers on.

    BTW... nice avatar.
  18. Codger

    Codger YF Wisdom Dept.

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  19. YachtForum

    YachtForum Publisher/Admin

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    A turbine-powered, 5-seater with Robinson simplicity for under one million? This could open up a whole new sector, similar to what's happening with VLJ's. I bet MD and Sikorsky will spool up for this as well.

    On a side note... it was strange to see Frank Robinson. The last time I saw him was on the owner's video cassette that came with the R-22, nearly 20 years ago! Time goes on...
  20. AMG

    AMG YF Moderator

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    If I should consider this R66 over a used Jet-Ranger, I would like a more sexy design than the present R44 exterior. This can´t be too expensive or complicated to build and certify compared to the more technical issues...?

    Maybe a "Wally-copter"? Call Luca Bassani...! :) (He is a Helipilot as well.)