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Nov
16
2015

Checkride Etiquette - Look Like a Rotorcraft Pro!

Posted by Randy Rowles

My wife and I recently went to see a movie starring Robert De Niro. I truly enjoy most of his movies, however I wasn’t really sure at first I would like his latest: The Intern. In it De Niro portrays 70-year-old widower Ben Whittaker looking to come out of retirement to fill a void left by the passing of his wife. I wound up enjoying the movie and related to Whittaker’s journey and perspective on the ever-changing workplace. In the movie, Whittaker’s co-workers are much younger than him, thus their work culture is somewhat different. From Day One, his co-workers comment on the way he dresses while mocking his work ethic. I won’t spoil the ending, however this movie got me thinking: Are my expectations of our younger pilot population too out of touch? After much thought and reflection, my answer is: I don’t think so. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Nov
16
2015

Learning to Fly Helicopters - Part 1

Posted by Francis Meyrick

When a chap has already logged several thousand hours fixed wing, and then starts getting involved with helicopters, people will ask 'why?'. When on top of that, he has previously been unkind about helicopters, people will be doubly intrigued. My quiet opinion, along with a great many fixed wing pilots, had always been along the lines of: "Fly helicopters? No chance! The day I climb into one of those contraptions will be the day I run over a Leprechaun! The most outlandish Heath Robinson concept ever thrown together. You need two nuts to fly a helicopter. One to hold the rotor on, and one to drive the infernal machine. There are more Jesus nuts and rotating parts than in an average scrapyard. It's far too complex a machine to have gyrating around the sky. At least in an aeroplane, if the engine quits, you've still got a wing. I do not fancy being suspended beneath a rotating paddle. If the engine quits on those damn things, you are going to know all about it. No thanks. I don't want to know. Should be banned from the sky." [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMoggy's Musings



Nov
16
2015

Helicopter Maintenance Tips - November 2015

Posted by Scott Skola

More old stuff. ATA 76 Rolls-Royce 250-C20 Series: These Bendix booklets used to be worth their weight in gold. They gave a better intro to adjusting the fuel controls back when engine manuals were lacking. Knowledge is king. You’ll need an Adobe Reader program to view. C-28 and C-30 books to follow. [Submitted by Rw] [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench



Oct
20
2015

Fundamentals of Learning…What’s that?

Posted by Randy Rowles

Over the years, I have developed a few instructional techniques that I use when teaching students. One such technique has proven beneficial time after time, and begins at the first meeting with the student. Once a student is assigned to me, I’ll reach out to them to introduce myself, and schedule their first ground school session. I request they bring their spouse or significant other, and let them know that this first ground school session is on me…as in FREE! [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Oct
20
2015

Why I Stayed On As a HEMS Pilot

Posted by Randy Mains

Children often wanted to interview me or one of the other two Life Flight pilots for papers they were writing in school. Many times, it was hard to live up to the lofty image they had of you. But the adulation didn’t come from just kids. At least once a week someone would stop one of us in the U.C. San Diego Medical Center hallways or the hospital cafeteria and thank us for, in their words, “the wonderful job you’re doing,” or “the humane service you provide,” or most likely for our personal contribution for saving the life of their friend or loved one. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMy Two Cents Worth



Oct
20
2015

Helicopters and Wires

Posted by Francis Meyrick

What I don’t enjoy looking back on, is the times we were left shocked. Pondering some truly awful accidents. There are times I have put the phone down, totally stunned. Lost for words. If you search the UK accident fixed wing database, under the call sign G-BCTV, Cessna 150, you will read of a fatal accident, that killed a father and his son. During a Precision Flying Competition. (arrive over such-and-such a spot at EXACTLY this-and-this pre-notified time) I know, this was a fixed wing, and this story is written for the world’s best value helicopter magazine, Rotorcraft Pro. (we move on to helicopters and wires further below) But here’s the rub: the conundrum/challenge for Flight Instructors is the same. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMoggy's Musings



Oct
20
2015

Helicopter Maintenance Tips October 2015

Posted by Scott Skola

Was cleaning out a few old tool boxes and ran across some ancient artifacts. ATA 76 Rolls-Royce 250-C20 Series: With CECO (Chandler Evans) fuel controls that is. Don’t know how many old CECO systems are still flying on C20s, but for those of us who remember, here is a little trip down memory lane. It’s a DIY version, but can you recognize what this tool was used for? [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench



Sep
24
2015

To Save A Life

Posted by Randy Mains

I’ve flown my share of dramatic life-saving helicopter missions in my 45-year aviation career. I’ve even put myself in harm’s way to save the lives of four soldiers pinned down by enemy fire in Vietnam. The most harrowing rescue to date didn’t occur while at the controls of a helicopter, rather it was a byproduct of having been a helicopter air ambulance pilot. The split-second decision I made that day held consequences too dire to contemplate, as I could have easily landed in a Middle Eastern jail charged with murder. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryMy Two Cents Worth



Sep
24
2015

The 61.75 Foreign Pilot Verification Process - Verify, Verify, Verify!

Posted by Randy Rowles

When a foreign pilot applies for a 61.75 PPL, they will complete FAA Form 8060-71: Verification of Authenticity of Foreign License, Rating, and Medical Certification. Once this form is submitted to the FAA, it usually takes about four to six weeks to complete. The speed of this process is directly affected by the response time of the foreign pilot regulatory agency. Once the verification is completed, the FAA will issue a letter to the foreign pilot applicant that will contain all foreign pilot certificates held by the applicant, both current and expired. This letter would be presented to an FAA representative to facilitate the issuance of a 61.75 PPL. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryRotorcraft Checkride



Sep
11
2015

Helicopter Maintenance Tips September 2015

Posted by Scott Skola

ATA 67Airbus H135: A quick reminder was sent in on the proper hardware stack up at the tailrotor hydraulic actuator input lever and tailrotor control rod. A situation can present itself where a 2nd (extra) spacer/washer can be left on the tailrotor gearbox side of the input lever hardware stack up. Especially when the hydraulic actuator is changed and includes new hardware. The existing washer can very easily be mistaken for part of the control rod assembly. The first potential clue of the extra washer is the control tube/input lever nut and lock washer interface is a “little” off. The second hard clue is the pilot will notice his tailrotor pedals are “off” a little in normal conditions. [Submitted by PA] [Read More...]



Categories: categoryROTORwrench


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