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  • Bell 407

    407GX Hot & High

    Greg Maitlen pivoted the Bell 407GX carefully as we approached a ridge slightly lower than nearby 10,064-foot Mount San Antonio (also known as Mount Baldy), the highest peak in southern California’s tinder-dry San Gabriel mountain range. Maitlen, Bell Helicopter’s regional sales manager for the mountain U.S., was piloting a demo of the 407GX’s new flight manual supplement allowing carriage of a heavier payload in hot-and-high conditions. The new AFM supplement was certified in July and involves no changes to the 407GX other than placing the new FMS-12 supplement in the helicopter.

    We took off from Van Nuys Airport at about 4,800 pounds, 450 below the internal mtow and with about 670 pounds of fuel and five people on board. BJ Raysor, senior vice president of operations at SevenBar Aviation, was flying up front with Maitlen and wanted to see the performance of the 407GX in the mountains, so we flew about 50 nm and 45 minutes to the north side of Mount San Antonio, avoiding the wilderness areas but also seeing dramatic evidence of the severe drought afflicting California. Reservoirs were distinctly low and some of the mountains still were blackened from earlier fires, while one area was blocked by a temporary flight restriction to facilitate firefighting operations.

    Bell's 407GX demonstrator N407SG lands on a 9,550-foot mountain ridge near Mount San Antonio

    Maitlen landed the 407GX at about 9,550 feet. The local temperature was 14 deg C, about ISA +20. After takeoff, he said that he pulled the power into the yellow arc on takeoff but could have stayed in the green if it were necessary. We lifted off the ridge then moved downhill and picked up speed for the flight back to Van Nuys.

    The FMS-12 AFM supplement for the 407GX allows carriage of about 300 pounds more external payload in ISA +20 deg C conditions at 6,000 feet, according to Bell.

    G1000H Provides Situational Awareness

    The 407GX’s Garmin G1000H synthetic vision system helps sharpen the pilot’s situational awareness when flying in mountainous terrain, and some added features in the avionics make calculating hover performance much easier. The G1000H has built-in weight-and balance calculations, too. On the hover performance page, the pilot can determine power required for OGE or IGE hover, either in the existing conditions (OAT, pressure altitude, wind) and current weight or by plugging in expected conditions and expected weight at the destination for pre-flight planning purposes. The benefit is that a pilot can quickly figure out whether the helicopter will be able to take off from a destination where hot-high conditions might make the operation risky.​

  • #2
    Two More 407's For Russia

    Bell Helicopter has announced today an agreement with Uralhelicom LLC for two Bell 407GXs to be used for utility and medical evacuation missions in the Primorsky government region in Russia.

    “The Bell 407 continues to be our most popular utility helicopter in Russia, making up over 50 percent of Bell Helicopter’s fleet in the region,” said Patrick Moulay, vice president of European sales. “We continue to see a great response to the superior performance and reliability of the Bell 407GX throughout all of Europe across multiple segments.”

    Two more Bell 407's have been sold to Russia. Both units will be used for medevac missions

    Uralhelicom is a full service company offering services and support during the purchasing, operation and maintenance of helicopters produced in the United States, Europe, Russian Federation territory and CIS states. The company has a pilot and technician training facility on site, and offers a wide selection of helicopter models.

    “We made the decision to purchase the Bell 407GX because of its advanced safety features and multi-mission capability,” said Dmitry Danschikov, general director of Uralhelicom. “We needed an aircraft to provide rapid transport safely and efficiently, and the Bell 407GX provides that for us.”

    The sale of these two Bell 407GXs was made by Bell Helicopter’s Independent Representative (IR) in Moscow, Jet Transfer. The IR provides a full range of services to Bell Helicopter customers in Russia.