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Fun Helicopter and Airplane Facts for Wahiawa, HI
Under SFAR 73, a Robinson pilot must be signed off by an instructor act as pilot in command of a particular model of Robinson helicopter. Pilots with less experience must have a flight review every year rather than the standard two years. Any flight review must be accomplished in the precise model of Robinson helicopter to be flown. So, for example, a pilot who flew a Robinson R22 for 500 hours then upgraded to a four-seat R44 and flew it for a few years would not be legal to get back in and fly the R22 unless he or she first did a flight review with an instructor. An instructor cannot teach in the Robinson R22 or R44 unless he or she has been specifically signed off for that privilege by an FAA-designated examiner.
Aviation Training History and Facts for Wahiawa, HI
A separate issue is that the helicopter is reasonably stable when hovering nose-into-the-wind. If, however, the pilot deems it necessary to rotate the helicopter, perhaps to fit into a conventional parking space, the helicopter can be difficult to control. The left crosswind is the worst for an American helicopter such as the Robinson or JetRanger; it blows disturbed air pushed sideways by the tail rotor back into the tail rotor. In a strong enough left crosswind, even the world's best helicopter pilot may not be able to maintain control while hovering.