Part 61 Changes - as we understand them!

Part 61 was introduced on November 1 with limited fanfare! however, we the pilots / users of the system need to understand what we are dealing with. Here I have tried to decipher what we need to know for us to remain current.

Firstly, we all have a class endorsement - namely a single engine one and the heli’s we are familiar with in this group are the Bell47, Bell 206, Guimbal G2, Hughes 269 / Schweizer 300 to name a few. The Robinson series of 22, 44 and 66 all come under the type rated category and require separate checks to fly. My understanding is that if you do your HFR ( class rating flight review ) in a Robinson 44 ( you will also need to do a proficiency check in the 22 if you want to continue flying one of these ) then you are automatically allowed to fly any of the single engine class rated heli’s if you have an endorsement in one. If you do a flight review on alternate years in say the 22 and then the 44 the other year, this may be a way to stay current. Only problem is a flight examiner is required each time - $$$$. At the time of writing I am unsure if the 66 is in or out of the class rating and is type rated as some publications from CASA say yes, others say no; my feeling is that the 66 is type rated and will have to be flown as a check with an examiner to retain this type rating!

The Part 61 changes are to bring us in line with the international system - ICAO and is like the New Zealand and US systems. At least when we are all up to speed with the new requirements we will have an international license. We all have had non compliant licenses in this country for many years and new licenses if you do not meet the instrument requirements will be appended with “NON Compliant”, a way to become compliant would be to do 10 hours of basic instrument or better still get a use out of your training and?get your NVFR ( night VFR rating ), this meets / ticks all the boxes for compliancy in the new system so if you have or get this on your license you are free to have a new un encumbered Part 61 license!

When I understand more I will post on the site, or if you would like to call me with your questions, I would be pleased to find out the answer for you.

More information can be found on the CASA web site

booklet overview of part 61 changes

Information sheets

Safe flying



Bell 47 now available for Training, Scenic Flights and Private Hire

We now have a Bell 47. Yes, the M.A.S.H type helicopter for training, scenic flights and private hire.

Our machine is a G5A, one of the latest built - if 1969 was late!

B47 For Hire 2 B47 For Hire

After a fresh rebuild, including a great new engine, it is now available for endorsement training. If you spend time in one of these classic machines, you certainly learn throttle management - no governor here! A keen listen out is what’s needed to maintain engine RPM at 3100 in the middle of the green arc. It’s a very stable machine with amazing visibility.

Everyone should fly this machine at least once in their career.

Drop by and have a look, its worth it!


Governor Safety - On or Off - that is the question?

Many schools teach pilots to have the governor in a Robinson 22 or 44 turned off on start up and after you have wound down the throttle below 70%. Many pilots I fly with do this - but WHY?

Well, I guess if your taught that way - you continue to do this after you gain your license, makes sense! It’s a good thing pilots continue doing the same as they were taught after they have gained their license, it means they should continue to fly safe. However - my question is why do some pilots turn the governor off at all? Why do some pilots place the helicopter in an undesirable state when we consider TEM (threat and error management).

Lets look at the Robinson POH ( pilot operating handbook ) Daily or Preflight Checks - page 4-6 Normal Procedures of the R22. Before starting engine - item 10 says Governor ON. Then on page 4-7, item 23 says Governor ON. We check its ON and move ahead in our checklist.

The take off Procedure page 4-8 says verify governor ON. Page 4-9 notes during practice autorotation that the governor is inactive below 80% engine RPM regardless of the switch position. Now we may be getting somewhere with why the governor gets turned off by some, is it they think it stops a student over speeding the helicopter?

The Robinson POH on page 7-4.2 says that the RPM Governor, is only active above 80% and can be switched on or off using the switch at the end of the right seat collective. The Robinson 22 POH also notes that the “Governor may not prevent over or under speed conditions generated by aggressive flight maneuvers”- nothing says TURN IT OFF. I am lead to believe some instructors and pilots believe it stops the possibility of engine and rotor over speed, particularly when doing magneto and sprag clutch checks. Well if the governor takes over during any of these events, just wind it down again below 80% and set it again at the RPM for your check and continue your checks.

The Robinson handbook does however mention that the governor remains ON and that it should only be switched OFF in the course of training - done with an instructor of course!

If something happens to the helicopter you are flying, I bet that the POH for your Robinson machine will be shown to you in court and the next question will be “Why do you turn the governor OFF?”

If anyone can tell me why they turn the Governor OFF for any reason that is mentioned in the Robinson POH or for safety, please let me know. I would be interested in your thoughts.


Free Theory Classes - Helicopter subjects now run 2 days per week!

As of this week, Heli Scenic Flights and Training is now running theory classes two nights a week. Yes, you heard right. Monday night is AGK (Aircraft General Knowledge) and Wednesday evening is Operations, Performance and Planning.

These two classes are run free for our students and are for private and commercial pilot students alike, both are run at 6.30pm for a 7pm start and generally run till around 9.30pm.

If your not a student with us, contact Paul and he will be able to offer a very competitive rate for non students of the school - the more the merrier, as they say!

These courses have proven very successful and it is the fourth time we have offered these theory classes with great success.

One on one sessions can be arranged at any time, just let Paul know when you’re available and he’ll book you in.

Hope to see some new faces soon.


Welcome to the Heli Scenic Staff Blog

While the News section of our website deals with more formal Heli Scenic news, this blog is the domain of our illustrious staff who’ll use it to share their random insights, wisdom and commentary on all things rotary.

If you have any requests for information, this is likely where it’ll end up… so, ask away.