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You need the differences course. The engine and electrical system is different.

The ones I used to work on at CHC were electrical nightmares.

The one operated by Talon Heli with their own STC'd electrical system is sweet. The guys indicate no snags at all in the last year.

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Besides the electrical, were they any more of a nightmare than any other twin?

 

I think that an operator would be a fool not to do one of the available STCs to rewire them...

 

Is the differences course offered by anyone other than Eurocopter?

 

Thanks.

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Besides the electrical, were they any more of a nightmare than any other twin?

 

As far as the mechanical system goes, the aircraft is quite reliable. It's a Eurocopter, so in some ways, it's overbuilt.

The engine is an Allison 250. Pretty darn reliable and easy to maintain.

 

But the electrical system....

 

And you know, in winter seismic, at minus 30 degrees, a multimeter doesn't work either. And it was my second tour as a licensed AME. The ink was still wet on the license.

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As far as the mechanical system goes, the aircraft is quite reliable. It's a Eurocopter, so in some ways, it's overbuilt.

The engine is an Allison 250. Pretty darn reliable and easy to maintain.

 

But the electrical system....

 

And you know, in winter seismic, at minus 30 degrees, a multimeter doesn't work either. And it was my second tour as a licensed AME. The ink was still wet on the license.

 

What the heck was a twinstar doing out on seismic? Short trips and no bags? ;-) Must have been water or a weird client requirement.

 

Everything Ray says about the twin is pretty much right. Airframe is pretty much all AS350 so it`s nice that way. The electrical...well it`s like an old AS350 x 2. The newer 355N and NP have a bit better luck that way but the old F1`s especially - expect some electrical issues.

 

The main mod to get (as with any 350 355) is to get tha crappy switch panel tossed and replaced with toggle switches. Even the new variety in the 355NP and 350B3 are total garbage.

 

The master electrical box is always an issue sooner or later so off the shelf GCU`s like Heli-Lynx put in are nice. Heli-Lynx throttle cables are a constant propblem so it`s a bit of a trade off.

 

Laurie does not have a 355 differences course. She does have a 355F-3555N NP differences course. The 355 courses are few and far between....kind of like the helicopters.

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Are they really as much of a nightmare as people make them out to be?

 

The older non electrical moded versions (E-F), yes. Newer and electrical moded (FX, N, NP), no. I only worked on them for a bit, but I kinda liked 'em. Even the electrical moded ones still have a number of ongoing issues just because there's so many more extra bits, so electrical trouble-shooting skills are still needed. Once had an old AME tell me the old E and F models were about as much work as a 212 (I never worked 212's so I can't compare). From the short time I worked on 355's (with electrical mods), seems to me they were about the same amount of work as two A-Stars. Much of the FX electrical mod is nice, but some things like changing a circuit breaker in the rear baggage compartment can be a real pain in the behind.

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