Posts Tagged bell

Pilot harvests Christmas trees the crazy way

As Christmas approaches, we thought it would be a good idea to resurrect this video of daredevil pilot Dan Clark harvesting Christmas trees in the US state of Oregon.

Flying a Bell 206B3 Jetranger, Clark uses inertia  and big cojones to get the job done in double-quick time.

Comments on the web indicate that this is not unusual behaviour in Christmas tree country, with Robert Bachelder saying, “The helis are running around like this all day every day during harvest (I have even seen some crazy ones run at night with lights but that is really dangerous).

“The growers usually pay by the pound or by the tree for getting them out of the field so the pilots run at the edge of their abilities to save fuel and increase profit.  Obviously it takes a lot of skill and practice, but the guys that run trees are all skilled and usually have thousands of flying hours in their logbooks and/or military flight training.”

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Bell SLS attracting strong interest in Aus/NZ

Bell Helicopter’s new Short Light Single (SLS) helicopter product – which we announced back in June – is attracting a lot of interest in Australia and New Zealand, according to local distributor Hawker Pacific.

The five-seat entry-level helicopter is expected to complete its first flight in 2014 with certification to follow shortly after.

Hawker Pacific says Bell’s advisory-council-led design focuses on costs and useful load, which has contributed to its overwhelming reception.

“There just isn’t another aircraft in the world that is so well-suited to our requirements here, which is why we are extremely excited about its arrival, and so are our customers,” says Tony Jones, Hawker Pacific’s Senior Vice President, Aircraft Sales Group. “While the customer base for light single helicopters is spread right across the globe, there is a healthy appetite in Australia/New Zealand, and with the price point just right, the market is understandably excited.”

The SLS features a high-visibility, fully flat cabin floor with five forward-facing seats. Additional safety enhancing design features will reduce pilot workload, improve situational awareness and deliver superior auto rotation capabilities.

For more information or to place an Expression of Interest (EOI), please contact Hawker Pacific’s Mathew Hardy on +61 (0) 404 886 810 or email

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Bell 412EPI gets all-clear for elevated helipads

Bell’s 412EPI helicopter, the newly upgraded version of the 412EP, is now compliant with single pilot Category “A” operations for elevated helipads.

This compiance means “almost no mission or operating environment is beyond reach for the 412EPI”, says Tony Jones, Senior Vice President, Aircraft Sales and Flight Services Group for Hawker Pacific, Bell Helicopter’s appointed distributor for Australia and New Zealand.

“The new certification further adds to the aircraft’s incredible appeal and capability as a special mission, offshore and emergency medical services (EMS) aircraft,” he adds.

Hawker Pacific is to bring a new 412EPI demonstrator to Australia in August to coincide with the 2013 ASA+FNA Aeromedical Conference to be held in Melbourne on August 28-30. It will be available for demonstration flights.

The 412EPI, unveiled at Heli Expo 2013 in Las Vegas, improves on the 412EP with the Bell BasiX Pro fully integrated glass flight deck – which features four 10.4in high-resolution LCD primary/multi-function flight information display units – and incorporates Pratt & Whitney’s PT6T-9 Twin Pac engines with the BLR Strake and FastFin System. The aircraft, Bell says, has a 15 percent increase in Shaft Horse Power (SHP), enabling improved performance and single-engine capabilities.

The avionics suite also includes high-resolution digital maps, electronic charts and approach plates, ADS-B transponder and optional HTAWS and XM satellite links.

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Bell re-enters Short Light Single market

Bell Helicopter has announced its return to the Short Light Single (SLS) engine helicopter market with a five-seat entry-level aircraft featuring a high visibility, fully flat cabin floor with five forward-facing seats.

Bell says the new aircraft, based on the input of a customer advisory council, is designed for a speed of 125 knots (232 km/h), a range of 360 to 420 nautical miles (667km) and a useful load of 608kg. It should complete its first flight next year.

“Bell Helicopter is no stranger to the Short Light Single market,” Bell Helicopter president and CEO John Garrison said this week at the 2013 Paris Air Show.

“We developed it nearly 50 years ago with the introduction of the Bell 206 JetRanger and are proud to have produced nearly 7,400 Bell 206 series aircraft since 1967 with over 4,400 remaining in service today.

“However, we needed to create a new, modernised aircraft to meet [the] requirements of five-seat utility, training, private and law enforcement operators,” Garrison said.

“The SLS class is both extremely competitive and price sensitive, so we collaborated with customers to incorporate their mission needs in a high performance, high value helicopter at a very competitive price.”

In a press release Bell said the new aircraft would be powered by the Turbomeca Arrius 2R engine, “which will offer the benchmark for performance and power in the 450-550 shp class, while improving safety and lowering pilot workload with Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC).It will also meet IATA Stage 4 noise targets.”

The Fort Worth, Texas-based company said the helicopter’s design would reduce pilot workload, improve situational awareness and deliver superior auto rotation capabilities.

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