By The Observer
A logging contractor from Summerville has been recognized as the first to use his Kaman helicopter more than 10,000 hours.
Tom Woody acquired a Kaman K-Max external lift helicopter in 1996 for logging in Idaho, Montana and Oregon.
An announcement from the Bloomfield, Conn., company, Kaman Aerospace Corporation, said that Woody had become the first in the fleet to surpass 10,000 airframe flight hours.
We decided in the very beginning that if we were going to continue helicopter logging, we would need a current production helicopter that was built for the mission and supported by the manufacturer and that there would be spare-parts accountability, Woody said.
The K-max met all those objectives, and it has proved a good fit for our type of operations.
During a ceremony in the Bloomfield, Conn., offices, Woody and his wife, Sharon, accepted a plaque citing their companys achievement.
Steven Daniels, Kamans director of K-max marketing and sales, noted that all the hours accumulated by Woody Contracting were accident free.
That says a lot for the quality of Tom Woodys operation, his pilot staffs flying skill, his maintenance staffs dedication and the reliability of the K-max, Daniels said.
The helicopter is the first aircraft specifically designed for repetitive medium-to-heavy lift applications, the company said. It is the first helicopter designed for vertical reference flight, an important feature for external load work. The aircrafts narrow profile gives the pilot a clear view of the external load looking out either side of the aircraft, according to the manufacturer.
The aircrafts intermeshing rotor system gives it a lift advantage over other helicopters when operating in hot-and-high mountain areas and hot-and-low jungle environment, Kaman officials said.
With its counter-rotating main rotors, the machine does not require a tail rotor. All engine power goes directly to the rotors for the highest lifting efficiency of any rotor configuration, Kaman states.