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Aug
17
2016

Fatigue – The New Drunk Driving

Posted by Randy Mains

I’d been awake for 17 hours when the phone rang at 12:45 a.m. The communications specialist said, “There’s a scene call on Palomar Mountain. Will you be able to take the flight?” [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMy Two Cents Worth



Aug
17
2016

Maximum Performance Takeoff — Into IMC?

Posted by Randy Rowles

A few months ago I was visiting a large helicopter flight school. While touring the school, I had the opportunity to sit in on a ground school class. The students were training toward their helicopter instrument rating, so the material being presented was on that topic. My initial impression was very positive. I thought: Wow, these young aviators are getting a great education in a highly standardized, quality-based training environment. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Aug
17
2016

ROTORwrench…Tips, Tricks, and Info - August 2016

Posted by Scott Skola

Back when the only inlet filter option for an Arriel engine was the bleed air type, it was a pain to comply with ground runs as the cowling had to remain installed with the filter bleed air line connected. There supposedly was a factory cap for the fitting on the engine that enabled removal of the cowling/filter assembly. But we, nor the tech reps, could ever procure one. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench



Jul
22
2016

ROTORwrench…Tips, Tricks, and Info - July 2016

Posted by Scott Skola

ATA 76 - Rolls-Royce 250-C20 Series - Found another booklet, but this one is a real collector item: Chandler Evans (CECO) MC-40 Fuel Control System Questions and Answers. I still shudder when I hear the word CECO. Bleed, bleed, bleed…starts running through my mind. And I don’t mean the red stuff. For those who hadn’t had the pleasure, a CECO system used fuel pressure to control function instead of air pressure like a Bendix system. Air in the control side would cause all kinds of problems. One tiny bubble of air and it seemed like you were bleeding the system for hours, days, weeks…. [Submitted by Rw] [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench



Jul
22
2016

ATP Helicopter Certification…Is The Bar Set Too Low?

Posted by Randy Rowles

The highest level of FAA airman certification is the Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate. Upon reaching this level of certification, the airman is expected to have built a treasure trove of experiences only found through years of experience. The title alone infers that the individual holding such certification is capable of operating aircraft utilized in airline-type operations. Not as much make and model of aircraft as it is the capabilities of an airline to include operating within poor weather conditions, high density airspace, and the IFR system. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Jul
22
2016

Training Safely

Posted by Randy Mains

I’ve been a flight instructor in the military, a senior instructor for Bell Helicopter in Iran teaching pilots how to be instructor pilots, head of training and a flight examiner for 13 years while working for the Royal Oman Police Air Wing in the Sultanate of Oman with British, American and Australian pilots and a type-rating instructor and type-rating examiner in the Bell 412EP and Bell 212 while working for Abu Dhabi Aviation. While in Abu Dhabi, I trained and examined airline transport pilots hailing from more than 20 countries around the world. In my 47-year and 13,000-hour flying career I have developed habits I use to keep us safe while training that I will pass along to you to, hopefully, keep you safe. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMy Two Cents Worth



Jun
20
2016

ROTORwrench…Tips, Tricks, and Info - June 2016

Posted by Scott Skola

Been a busy month. One interesting note, the Germans have 3D printed a flying aircraft. No BS. It’s small and unmanned. But, think of the future possibilities. Find a P/C link corroded, no problem. Instead of going through the antiquated process of ordering a new one, just mosey up to your handy-dandy Snap-On 3D part printer. Puts a whole new meaning to signing it off… “Fabricated new P/C link from….” [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench



Jun
20
2016

FAA Updated Guidance: Almost Lost in Translation

Posted by Randy Rowles

Beginning last year, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released several training-related guidance updates. These releases included advisory circulars, a national policy notice, and most recently, the Flight Instructor Helicopter Practical Test Standards (PTS). In several of my previous training articles, I referred to subject matter affected by the release of this new guidance. I would now like to review a few of the specific documents released by the FAA and provide an overview of how changes may affect you. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Jun
20
2016

The Evolution of CRM by Randy Mains

Posted by Randy Mains

In the 1960s and ‘70s a disease seemed to strike the airline industry that caused airliners to crash for no known reason. NASA called a “Resource Management on the Flight Deck” workshop that identified human error as the main cause of several high-profile accidents. NASA’s research uncovered that from 1968 to 1976 there were 60 airliners that crashed due to elements of human error. Researching back further through the Boeing archives to 1940, NASA discovered that four out of five accidents—80 percent—had an element of human error. Since that workshop, six generations of CRM have emerged. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMy Two Cents Worth



May
23
2016

Attitude…The Key to Safety and Success!

Posted by Randy Rowles

When I entered the helicopter industry, I was eighteen years old with very little insight into the complexities of the real world. I held an FAA certificate that told the world I was a helicopter pilot; however, it was apparent that my peers viewed me as nothing more than a kid with a new hobby. It took years to garner the respect of the seasoned pilots I had come to know. With time, I was afforded opportunities to grow and learn from industry leaders that took an interest in me. In retrospect, I often wondered “why me”? [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride


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