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How To Crash A Helicopter


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Interesting read, indeed. Thanks, Splitpin.


Anyone out there train autos in the 407 with a ski basket installed? If so, how successful are you at getting the thing slowed down to that “zero ground speed” mentioned in the article? And if successful, what works best?



There is no difference . you take what you get at the bottom.

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  • 2 weeks later...

An old UH-1B pilot I know with 10+ crashes in 'Nam to his credit would pretty much agree with this document. He would add/reinforce the very nose-high settling into trees, as he noted a backwards slide using the tailboom as a shock absorber was quite effective. Pitching forward because one actually followed the Bell RFM procedure only served to point the cockpit ground-wards after the synch elevators became tripped on foliage. He would also clarify the document's point of rolling in water...always roll to the advancing blade's side, thus twisting the transmission rearwards, vice forwards. He carries more than a few pounds of metal rods and pins in his arms and legs from 'experimenting' with landing methods, so I took his recommendations to heart. This manual appears very close to the desired solution set, I believe.


Biggest thing I think is for the pilot to mentally accept the situation, and move very quickly beyond either denial or indecision. The machine has forced your decision, get on with getting you and your pax on the ground with a committed, well-flown approach that more than likely requires minimization of forward speed to better absorb energy in the vertical. May sound like motherhood/stating-the-obvious, but never stop flying the aircraft. When everything stops grinding, you can loosen your grip on the cyclic/collective, confirm the shut-down is done right, and get everyone out.




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