Unique Engineering Solutions

Three Bladed Fully Articulated Rotor

The 280FX and the 480B have a heavy, fully articulated, three-bladed rotor system which has over 4,000,000 flying hours with excellent Safety record and no catastrophic failure. The 280FX and the 480B rotor system is very high inertia, providing much better performance during an autorotation than the lighter weight 2 bladed helicopters. The 3-bladed rotor also has a lower disc loading, meaning it can recover more easily from a loss of energy. A 3-bladed rotor performs better in low-G maneuvers, or in high load situations such as high density altitude, wind gusts, or high airspeed. It is not subject to mast bumping like lighter two blades helicopters.
It also allows for slope landings of up to 15 deg. This gives instructors more options when choosing training sites.
The control system on the 280FX and 480B is entirely mechanical. There are no hydraulics needed, and a powerful electro-spring trim system is used. The controls are extremely smooth due to the use of ball bearings and heavy duty control rods.

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