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Ec130b4


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..following a couple of threads on justhelicopters.com Re: the B4,

 

seems there's troubles in paradise...

-no support, Blue Hawaiian has one parked for Parts, stripped to keep the others flying, as the factory can't supply.

-Poor power, the Las Veags tour boys are complaining about power and T/R (anti-torque) authority with all seats full.

-No certified hook?

 

Are there any in Canada Yet?

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407Driver - Just checked in with friends at Blue and seems the info is correct. One ship is parked in the hangar and stripped down to keep the others running. Its not because of mechanical problems but because parts are not available. Seems like Eurocopter didnt think they would be flying them as much as they do.

 

Blue take delivery of ships nine and ten in the next six weeks.

 

Bubbleboy - Depends on what you do with them as to where they excel. We have four here in New Zealand with another two coming and one of them is being used to take fishermen and hunters in and out of the mountains. Not sure if they are putting a hook on it but will find out.

 

So far all those that I have spoken to think it is a great machine, but again, once someone actually puts it into the utility role, then we will see how it really goes.

 

Heli Ops

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Ummmm I dunno. I had the chance to take the B4 for a spin around the block this spring. Interesting ship. I don't think that it would be too good sling out of though. The left drive sits far enough in the cabin that getting out past the collective to look down would be a reach.

The tail took lots of throw, kind of like a 500, in the pedals to get the input that was needed.

On a positive note, does the cabin have a lot of room. Infront of the dual front seat there is enough room for a square dance. That being said the baggage compartment is no bigger than a normal Astar. No basket at this point either.

I think that the B4 will find it's place in the world, but I don't think that it'll be in the bush.

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dart were working on a basket , I think that Onboard Systems have a hook , the factory I believe was working with them also as Siren seem to have a few problems . Probably not a utility machine fer sure not sure how many you will see in Canada but who would have thunk there would be a Koala here !!Nice pics in that other unnamed magazine this month.

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Widgeon - I know that one of Blue's machines on the Big Island has a hook on it and has been OAS approved for fire fighting etc.

 

There are also a few in Europe that are being used for utility work and have got emails into the guys to see how they are going. Will post what I find out here.

 

Heli Ops

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Bunch of the gang here gave it a pretty good once over here in the hangar one night when it was passin thru and all pretty much came up with the same thoughts.

 

Would make maybe at best a OK bush machine but would be great for the Ski or Tour business. Very roomy cabin with great visibilty for all, although it felt as if you were sitting right on the floor in the pilots seat with your legs straight out.

For vertical reference, even a short a$$ like me could hang out the left side with enough vis to see a line.

 

Tail (fenestrom) almost seemed as a afterthought though, freakin thing is humugus, looks like it came of someting much much larger, and would appear that the aircraft would be tail heavy, altought appearence are normally decieving.

 

Overall, nope ............. still think the 407 is the "sled" in the category. :up: :up:

 

(can i have that hat now 407D) ;)

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RDM - You are right about the Fenestron on the EC130. That aircraft is actually made up of parts from three specific aircraft. The main centre section from start of the tail boom to the back end of the cabin is AS350-B3 but I think the running gear is upgraded B2 stuff. The tailboom and Fenstron is from the EC135 but the blades on that go reverse direction, because the 135 was German built hence its main blades go opposite direction to those on the AS350.

 

The front cabin is basically EC120 with a plug put into the middle, ie: they sawed it down the middle, made it wider and glued it back together. The reason it is so bulbous is that in the AS350 the sides of the aircraft start tapering inwards towards the nose from behind the passenger seats. However on the EC130 the sides are straight until it gets to the pilots seat and then starts curving, hence a lot more room and that ugly look across the front.

 

Hope that helps.

 

Heli Ops

 

P.S. It was actually grandfather claused in under the AS350 Type Cert so it didnt have to get recertified. Thats why it is actually an AS350-B4 but known as an EC130-B4.

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