Seems like there are several threads on here which somewhat ask about the same question: how does the R66 stack up or compare to the B206?
I have quite a bit of experience with both and offer an opinion here.
The 66 is much faster, smoother, and more cost effective than a B206. Maintenance is minimal. You fly into one 100 hr inspection after another which cost about $1000 each if that much. Since it is new, there is very little if no non-scheduled maintenance. The SB's have been few and not expensive, despite the bitching. No AD's that I am aware of which is amazing for any new helicopter model. The air conditioner works very well and is relatively light weight. One biggee, from my perspective, is the TBO limit of 3000 start cycles on the RR 300 engine. If you are doing a lot of short flights, less than 45 minutes per flight average, you will cycle out this engine long before you reach the TBO of 2000 hours. This is an important consideration for some. If all are long flights, 45 minutes or above, or if you will expect to go 12 years before either 3000 starts or 2000 hours, it is no factor. The other biggee from my perspective is turbulence. If you live in a mountainous/turbulent area, this is not the helicopter for you. It will terrorize all aboard sooner or later, probably sooner. With that said, few pilots live and fly in a truly mountainous/turbulent area.
In summation: it is fast, smooth and cost effective. You will not need to have an A&P on staff or close by with this helicopter. Bring in a good mechanic every 100 hours and you are all set. For passenger ops in most part of the U.S. the R66 will outperform and cost less then a B206.
On the flip side, the B206 will outperform in the windy/turbulent environs. Meaning you will turn around and go home in comfort where if in a 66 you will pray to God the entire way home. The 206 is a heavier, sturdier, and a slower platform that is more utility and less speed. The MR blades are hinged differently then the 66 giving better stability in turbulence and also giving a slower speed and bounce. It's all an engineering trade off.
The after market air conditioning systems for B206's don't work well on their best days. A lot of rotable parts can and will break down on you and will be very expensive. But they will give you lots of warning first and these are not unsafe. Better have an A&P on staff or one close by cause you will need the service. You will need maintenance expertise even to keep track of everything on a 206.
I hope my 2 cents helps those who are considering these things.
Member Since : 2007
If you only flew 40 hours a year, which would you choose?