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Old 07-23-2009, 01:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Helicopters

Can anyone explain the difference between flying a helicopter and an airplane? I think helicopters are cool but they seem like they could be difficult.
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Let's start with the similarities:

They fly.
That's it. Done. No more similarities.

They're entirely different vehicles, flown in entirely different ways requiring an entirely different skillset. Well, I shouldn't say entirely different, radio handling etc like that would be pretty similar, but as far as actually flying the aircraft there is very little similarity.
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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With a helicopter there are a lot more items and limits to keep an eye on. A friend is a Rotor CFI and gave me a couple hours dual in a Schweitzer 300 a couple months back. Overall, it's a more intricate type of flying, but once mastered, allows a whole new world of freedom.

It's just extremely expensive.

I'll stick to aerobatics.
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Old 07-24-2009, 01:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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More moving parts=more potential problems=more dangerous=more badass
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Old 07-24-2009, 03:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Throw a few buckets of ball bearings on the floor and walk over them. If you can do that without going arse over kite then we'll make you an honarary rotorhead. the hardest part is learning to hover.

Once past that you learn to lean it like on a bike. You wanna stop you have to rear up against the direction you're moving in until the momentum stops. Faster your'e going the more you have to rear up.

I heard a funny story in 1974 about an RNZAF Sioux (Bell 47G) being parked inside a hanger at RNZAF base Wigram. The pilot didn't want to land outside and wheel it in. He decided to fly it inside the big hanger. That was cool until he had to stop and then he reared it up. the rotor disc tilted up and collected the ceiling and made an awful mess.
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Old 07-24-2009, 03:59 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by eagledriver View Post
It's just extremely expensive.

I'll stick to aerobatics.
That's a good point. I've been wondering for a while since I've started my PPL training. At my flying school an R22 is 292.00 per hour training, as opposed to 140 on a Piper single engine. Why??
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Old 07-24-2009, 04:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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So Twice as much for helicopter training...
I guess I will stick with planes for now lol. Just the thought though of being able to land and take off almost anywhere just seems awesome.
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Old 07-24-2009, 06:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Let's start with the similarities:

They fly.
That's it. Done. No more similarities.
Stephen Coonts will tell you they don't even both do that. He says helicopters levitate and airplanes aviate.
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Old 07-24-2009, 07:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Srilankan-A340 View Post
That's a good point. I've been wondering for a while since I've started my PPL training. At my flying school an R22 is 292.00 per hour training, as opposed to 140 on a Piper single engine. Why??

Two reasons.

1. Helicopters have a higher maintenance hours per flight hours ratio due to the higher number of moving parts and due to life limited items. For instance, rotor blades can only be used for X thousand of hours before they have to be replaced (differs from model to model).

2. Insurance is much higher for a helicopter than an airplane. Why? I dunno the actual answer, you'll have to ask the insurance companies.
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Old 07-24-2009, 10:01 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Helicopters are definatly fun to fly and can require a little bit more skill. As many have said, they are more expensive to operate because of the life limits of several parts. Helicopters do have many practical uses though, like for air ambulace services for hosiptals to taking people to very remote destinations such as oil rigs or yahts.

As with flying airplanes, with a bit of training, you can become very efficent in flying helicopters. I know that there are several people that get their airplane rating first, then add the helicopter on, although that is necessary.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:28 AM   #11 (permalink)
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As with flying airplanes, with a bit of training, you can become very efficent in flying helicopters. I know that there are several people that get their airplane rating first, then add the helicopter on, although that is necessary.
This is actually what I intend to do...I'm working on my PPL fixed wing, and will eventually get my PPL with helicopters and eventually get my commercial license and a job doing that with an oil field helicopter company.....I work in the oil industry now, and spend a lot of hours in them, I figured when I get tired of making oil, but still want some supplemental income, I'll make a switch over after 20 more years of hour building...
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Old 07-27-2009, 12:26 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Airplanes fly by creating lift ... helicopters beat the air into submission.

Helicopters have a Jeezus Nut, airplanes don't.

Helicopter: A mass of moving parts flying loosely in formation and getting looser by the minute.
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