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Old 04-04-2020, 10:47 AM   #41
Icelander
 
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Default Re: UH-1 Huey for Maritime CSAR/TRAP/Medevac/Casevac

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Originally Posted by phayman53 View Post
There are several of problems with using the HH-52 though:

1) They are really old. The last one was built in 1969. While that doesn't mean you couldn't get one flying reliably, helicopters age significantly worse than fixed wing aircraft. You could get UH-1s that have much younger airframes. There is also a difference between getting sobering ready for occasional historical flights and combat operations.
2) Only 175 were ever built. That is a pretty small number compared to the more than 16,000 UH-1s of all variants. Finding surviving ones that can be made air worthy and cannibalizing parts will be much more difficult..
Those are certainly serious issues.

Basically, it looks like we'd want as many as we could plausibly get and keep running without spending obscene amounts that could better be devoted to line items that yield more benefit to their operations. That might be anywhere from one to three machines, but I expect that only one would regularly be ready for ops. And they wouldn't use them unless the mission profile suggested no other helicopter they had access to might work, probably because they expected severe Mana peaks.

Are there any other amphibious helicopters that might exist in greater (operational) numbers by 2018?

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3) It's performance was not great. It's speed topped it at 95 knots and it cruised at 85 knots. Even for a helicopter, that is a bit on the slow side. By comparison, the UH-1 cruises at 109 knots and tops out at 117 knots.

It does have the not insignificant advantage of being able to actually land in the water though, and it has 1.5x the range than the UH-1, so there are advantages.
As modern helicopters are available (through offshore oil logistical companies like ERA Group Inc. and PHI Inc. if nothing else), the archaic models would only be used for highly specialized work, where electronics tend to fail and devices with a lot of history and personal attention have significant advantages. As such, it's acceptable if they have lower performance than newer machines that might not function reliably anyway.

Besides, there will definitely be at least one Sikorsky S-61 helicopter available exclusively for occult support over water. I'm looking for smaller helicopters, for operations with a smaller footprint, to supplement it.
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Old 04-04-2020, 11:30 AM   #42
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Default Re: UH-1 Huey for Maritime CSAR/TRAP/Medevac/Casevac

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Those are certainly serious issues.
Are there any other amphibious helicopters that might exist in greater (operational) numbers by 2018?
I couldn't find any other smaller helicopters with a boat hull design besides the HH-52. Most seem to be in the size range of the S-61. The Russian Mi-8, for instance, is larger than the S-61.

However, if you needed amphibious ability in a smaller sized helicopter, you could apparently put floats on the skids of a UH-1 (which also probably means it is sufficiently resistant to salt water for ship board use):

https://www.flickr.com/photos/41910848@N06/34634527610

Actually, you can probably find a way to put floats on many helicopters with skids, but I am sure there is a performance hit.

Last edited by phayman53; 04-04-2020 at 11:34 AM. Reason: accidentally said the Mi-8 was larger than the HH-52 when I meant to say S-61
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Old 04-04-2020, 12:12 PM   #43
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Default Re: UH-1 Huey for Maritime CSAR/TRAP/Medevac/Casevac

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I couldn't find any other smaller helicopters with a boat hull design besides the HH-52. Most seem to be in the size range of the S-61. The Russian Mi-8, for instance, is larger than the S-61.
I wonder if the Mi-8 could be converted into a Mil Mi-14 or if the boat hull requires it to be built that way from the start. I assume that's the case.

It's actually likely that Kessler's people tried to use their connections in the international arms trade* to obtain Soviet amphibious SAR helicopters in the early 90s. Maybe they managed to acquire one Mi-14, to go with a Mi-8 or two.

*Kessler has some old buddies who were moderately successful in the grayish-to-black field of that business. These profited wildly from the fall of the Soviet Union.

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Originally Posted by phayman53 View Post
However, if you needed amphibious ability in a smaller sized helicopter, you could apparently put floats on the skids of a UH-1 (which also probably means it is sufficiently resistant to salt water for ship board use):

https://www.flickr.com/photos/41910848@N06/34634527610

Actually, you can probably find a way to put floats on many helicopters with skids, but I am sure there is a performance hit.
Great, thanks!
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Old 04-04-2020, 12:52 PM   #44
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Default Re: UH-1 Huey for Maritime CSAR/TRAP/Medevac/Casevac

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I wonder if the Mi-8 could be converted into a Mil Mi-14 or if the boat hull requires it to be built that way from the start. I assume that's the case.

It's actually likely that Kessler's people tried to use their connections in the international arms trade* to obtain Soviet amphibious SAR helicopters in the early 90s. Maybe they managed to acquire one Mi-14, to go with a Mi-8 or two.

*Kessler has some old buddies who were moderately successful in the grayish-to-black field of that business. These profited wildly from the fall of the Soviet Union.
Oops, my mistake. I thought the Mi-8 was amphibious. I misread the Wikipedia article on the Mi-14 and thought the Mi-8 was an amphibious predecessor. I doubt either the Mi-8 or Mi-14 could operate even from a super yacht. You may want, in fact, to figure out how large a helicopter could work on the various ships available to this group. I get the impression that the sorts of helicopters that land on super yachts are not generally even UH-1 size (which is 57 ft long from tail to rotor tip), but it is hard to say.

As for converting from the Mi-8 to the Mi-14, I doubt you could just convert from one to the other, the difference in hull shape doubtlessly is at the structural level, not just an exterior change.
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Old 04-04-2020, 01:00 PM   #45
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Default Re: [High-Tech/Vehicles] Rugged, Simple SAR/Medevac Helicopters

Here is an article about super yachts and helipads so you can make some deductions about what the Penemue could carry:

https://yachtharbour.com/news/what-y..._view_page_bar
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Old 04-04-2020, 01:43 PM   #46
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Default Re: [High-Tech/Vehicles] Rugged, Simple SAR/Medevac Helicopters

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Here is an article about super yachts and helipads so you can make some deductions about what the Penemue could carry:

https://yachtharbour.com/news/what-y..._view_page_bar
The Penemue probably won't actually carry a helicopter. It's got quite sleek racing lines for a superyacht and as it was built in the 1960s, there was no expectation that it would ever carry helicopters (it was also built before there was magic snd monsters in the world). It has provisions for refueling seaplanes, but not carrying helicopters. Of course, helicopters will rendezvous with it at sea and lower passengers down, but they'll have to have somewhere else to land and refuel.

However, an amphibious helicopter that can land at sea seems like something that any watercraft, lonely pier or supply dump that can refuel old seaplanes could maybe support during operations, which would be an awesome benefit.

As for other ships capable of supporting helicopter operations, you need the kind of beam that correlates with a 200' superyacht. Less than a hundred of those in the entire world...

However, if you use a light and compact helicopter and buy an old ship specifically for deck space to convert into a helipad, you can probably get away with smaller and less noticable vessels.

I'm talking something like surplus Coast Guard cutters, small naval vessels or research ships, converted to a configuration that fits a cover like oceanographic survey ship, scientific vessel funded by oil and gas corporations, offshore logistics vessels, etc.
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Old 04-05-2020, 12:05 AM   #47
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Default Re: Helicopters for Maritime CSAR/TRAP/Medevac/Casevac

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Oops, my mistake. I thought the Mi-8 was amphibious. I misread the Wikipedia article on the Mi-14 and thought the Mi-8 was an amphibious predecessor. I doubt either the Mi-8 or Mi-14 could operate even from a super yacht.
The point of an amphibious helicopter is that presumably you could land it at sea and refuel it from a boat too small to actually have helicopters land on it.

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Originally Posted by phayman53 View Post
You may want, in fact, to figure out how large a helicopter could work on the various ships available to this group. I get the impression that the sorts of helicopters that land on super yachts are not generally even UH-1 size (which is 57 ft long from tail to rotor tip), but it is hard to say.
Well, let's say that we'll try to keep the watercraft as low profile as possible.

Any suggestions for ships that can support helicopter operations, either by default or with plausible alterations?

Some kind of vessel that is used in scientific research, offshore oil and gas, logistics or something else which could allow them to be plausibly present in various Caribbean locations and not be noticed too much.

Bonus points for being converted Coast Guard or naval vessels bought as surplus and relatively economical, at least for ships of that size.

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As for converting from the Mi-8 to the Mi-14, I doubt you could just convert from one to the other, the difference in hull shape doubtlessly is at the structural level, not just an exterior change.
I think you are right.
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Old 04-05-2020, 12:57 AM   #48
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Default Re: [High-Tech/Vehicles] Rugged, Simple SAR/Medevac Helicopters

So I looked over the wikipedia pages at the different classes of US Coast Guard cutters to see what kinds of helicopters they carried. To my surprise, I got some reasonably useful results, though there is still some guesswork:

The Medium Endurance Cutters of about 210ish feet in length and smaller cutters that have helicopter pads only seem to be able to take the HH-65 Dolphins. This probably means they could take most helicopters of about 10k lbs and smaller (loaded weight, not empty). Not sure if the limiting factor is the length or the weight though. Probably a bit of both. The HH-65 is relatively short at a little over 44 ft long (including the main rotor I think) compared to the UH-1 at 57 including the main rotor, but much of that could hang over the fantail.

The larger Medium Endurance Cutters and larger ships are 270 feet or more in length. They can land both the HH-65 and the HH-60J Jayhawks. The HH-60J is 14,500 lbs empty and maxes at 21,884 lbs. It is also almost 65 ft long.

I guess the moral of the story is ships over about 250 ft can probably take helicopters in the 10k-25k lbs range and ships under 250 ft but above probably 190ish feet (?) can take up to about a 10k lbs helicopter.

EDIT: And, of course, this would change with hull design. Wider beam ships could probably take relatively heavier helicopters at a shorter length than sleek hulled ships like Coast Guard Cutters. Anyway, I hope this gives some guidelines you can use.

Last edited by phayman53; 04-05-2020 at 01:05 AM.
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Old 04-05-2020, 01:17 PM   #49
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Default Re: [High-Tech/Vehicles] Rugged, Simple SAR/Medevac Helicopters

Quote:
Originally Posted by phayman53 View Post
So I looked over the wikipedia pages at the different classes of US Coast Guard cutters to see what kinds of helicopters they carried. To my surprise, I got some reasonably useful results, though there is still some guesswork:

The Medium Endurance Cutters of about 210ish feet in length and smaller cutters that have helicopter pads only seem to be able to take the HH-65 Dolphins. This probably means they could take most helicopters of about 10k lbs and smaller (loaded weight, not empty). Not sure if the limiting factor is the length or the weight though. Probably a bit of both. The HH-65 is relatively short at a little over 44 ft long (including the main rotor I think) compared to the UH-1 at 57 including the main rotor, but much of that could hang over the fantail.

The larger Medium Endurance Cutters and larger ships are 270 feet or more in length. They can land both the HH-65 and the HH-60J Jayhawks. The HH-60J is 14,500 lbs empty and maxes at 21,884 lbs. It is also almost 65 ft long.

I guess the moral of the story is ships over about 250 ft can probably take helicopters in the 10k-25k lbs range and ships under 250 ft but above probably 190ish feet (?) can take up to about a 10k lbs helicopter.

EDIT: And, of course, this would change with hull design. Wider beam ships could probably take relatively heavier helicopters at a shorter length than sleek hulled ships like Coast Guard Cutters. Anyway, I hope this gives some guidelines you can use.
Ooh, I really want a surplus Seaplane tender or two.

I also thought about USCGC Courageous (WMEC-622). In real life, it was decommissioned in September 2001 and eventually it was donated to Sri Lanka in June 2004. I'm wondering if a private buyer might have bought it (without weapon systems or the like, of course) in 2001-2004 and what kind of money that would cost.
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Old 04-05-2020, 01:42 PM   #50
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Default Re: [High-Tech/Vehicles] Rugged, Simple SAR/Medevac Helicopters

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I also thought about USCGC Courageous (WMEC-622). In real life, it was decommissioned in September 2001 and eventually it was donated to Sri Lanka in June 2004. I'm wondering if a private buyer might have bought it (without weapon systems or the like, of course) in 2001-2004 and what kind of money that would cost.
Well, here's the manual for disposing of USCG vessels. I'm not keen enough to read it.

The Siri Lankan career of USCGC Courageous illustrates a point that people doing smuggling sometimes fail to grasp. When caught by a naval vessel, fighting them is always foolish. They're much better at it than amateurs. This probably even applies to the Venezuelans.
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