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Discovery Channel Fairytale

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MG - I have heard of that on several occasions.


3BX3 - At 8000', you are absolutely correct. Then again, if you are unfortunate enough to have a hard landing at any elevation, which machine do you think you are more likely to walk away from?



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Interesting read.


I have time on both so I will toss in my penny here.


1st thing though - Huffy has goe PC! :lol::lol: JAD was "retired" a few years ago? :lol: Not like you Huffy! Must have smiling when you wrote that! JAD is now a 212 in their fleet.



As for the 120/206 head to head fight -


1) The 120 is quicker than your average 2x6 nowadays though it seems to me the 206 has lost speed over the years. They used to do 120mph at 80% but I rarely see that now. The 120 will do 115 knots though when I flew a new one it would get 120knots. I do not know why they slow down as they age.

2) Why are some people comparing the 120 to the 206L series? Would that not be apples to oranges? Shouldn't the L be compared to the Squirrel?

3) Assuming those who say the 120 is underpowered are talking about the engine - pick up the FM and have a look. It is hugely downrated and in my opinion the turbine hardly ever works - it is idling most of the time. The lack of power, especially at altitude, comes mostly from those wimpy little blades. I was told in the late 90's EC was going to beef up the blades and tranny after the 200th one off the line but so far I have not seen that. Consequently both hot or high performance are degraded. As for Ng, it does seem to poop out at altitude but so does the Squirrel B3 which absolutely shocked me when I found that out. You're in the yellow with both machines very quickly on a standard summer day at 5000'.

4) I once moved a drill with a 206 in the summer and had as much success as a 500. It was a very light A/F - 1637 on high gear. Wish they were all like that! In the winter when the 120 was still fairly new I moved a drill several times and had high 1400s on the hook. (Temp was below -25 most of the time.) Low fuel of course, maybe 15 - 20% at pick up. In the summer the 120 loses useful load much faster than the 206 - see above on the skinny blades.

5) The EC 120 DOES NOT burn less fuel than the 206 at cruise power. The 206 actual burn rate is probably around 105 litres per hour and the 120 is never below 120 litres per hour and you can bank on that regardless of what the book says. I use 122 LPH. See above on airspeeds - nowadays the 120 gets better fuel MILEAGE than the average 206 because you are cruising a little quicker.

6) Slow, low power work and you will find the 206 fuel burn rate goes down and you will get more air time. Do not count on that in the 120. See above on engine, for the 120 is usually just at idle anyway!

7) 120 kills the 206 for comfort. Not even a milleseconds discussion required on that.

8) The 206 kills the 120 for ease of slinging.

9) Because of the lower fuel burn per mile and higher cruise speed, customers who have longer distances to travel like 120 and it is gaining favour.

10) BRRRRRRR!!!! 120 is a bit chilly in the winter. My opinion is again the engine just does not have to work that hard. Therfore the bleed air in not available. The fact it was designed for richies on the south coast of France does not help its winter performance in this regard!

11) Power checks are easier on the 120 Just like the Squirrel B3/B4.


Thats all I have to say about that! (F.G.)



Now, lets compare the Squirrel B4/EC130 to ..... ??? a brick??? Not going to get started on that one! :lol:

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Good comments Bugman


I would respectfully disagree about a B3 being in the yellow at 5000' unless you have about 2500 lbs on the hook.


If you check the FM for the 120 and you actually fly one at a lower speed (65knots) you will find the fuel burn is 80 ltrs an hour give or take 5.


Looking forward to the next upgrade on this machine.



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Excellent post Bugman! I agree with everything you said except the engine issue. We consider our EC120's to be under powered in hot weather because they reach their NG limit before the torque limit.

That is pure and simple reaching the power limit the engine can deliver. The aircraft would lift more in the same conditions if it had enough power to torque out every time.

Turbomeca has told us that this engine is set up to deliver as much power as it is structurally possible. They can't squeeze any more out of it.

You're right about it being de-rated when it torques out but when it NG's out, that's it! No more power available.

Eurocopter said that there are no plans to improve the EC120's performance because any change would be very expensive. There are only approx. 700 ships worldwide and there are over 3000 Astars so guess where they're dedicating their resources?

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