Bell H-13 Sioux
|An OH-13 in flight|
|Role||Light observation helicopter|
|National origin||United States|
|Manufacturer||Bell Aircraft / Bell Helicopter|
|First flight||8 December 1945 (Bell 47 prototype)|
|Primary users||United States Army
United States Air Force
United States Navy
|Number built||At least 2,407|
|Developed from||Bell 47|
|Variants||Bell H-13J Sioux
|Developed into||Bell 207 Sioux Scout|
The Bell H-13 Sioux was a two-bladed, single engine, light helicopter built by Bell Helicopter. Westland Aircraft manufactured the Sioux under license for the British military as the Sioux AH.1 and HT.2.
In 1947, the United States Army Air Forces (later the United States Air Force) ordered the improved Bell Model 47A. Most were designated YR-13 and three winterized versions were designated YR-13A. The United States Army first ordered Bell 47s in 1948 under the designation H-13. These would later receive the name Sioux.
|This section requires expansion with: Fill in some details on early development. (March 2009)|
Initially, the United States Navy procured several Bell 47s, designated HTL-1, between 1947 and 1958. The United States Coast Guard evaluated this model, and procured two HTL-1s for multi-mission support in the New York Harbor. The most common U.S. Navy version of the 47 was designated the HTL-4, and dispenses with the fabric covering on the tail boom. The U.S. Coast Guard procured three HTL-5s in 1952 (similar to the HTL-4 but powered by a Franklin O-335-5 engine) and used these until 1960. The Coast Guard procured two of Bell's Model 47G and designated them HUL-1G in 1959.
The Bell 47 was ordered by the British Army as the Sioux to meet specification H.240, with licensed production by Westland Helicopters. In order to comply with the terms of its licence agreement with Sikorsky Aircraft, which prevented it building a U.S. competitors aircraft, Westland licensed the Model 47 from Agusta, who had purchased a license from Bell. the first contract was for 200 helicopters. The first 50 helicopters of the contract were built by Agusta at Gallarate in Italy followed by 150 built by Westland at Yeovil. The first Westland Sioux made its maiden flight on 9 March 1965.
The Sioux is a three-seat observation and basic training helicopter. In 1953 the Bell 47G design was introduced. It can be recognized by the full "soap bubble" canopy (as its designer Arthur M. Young termed it), exposed welded-tube tail boom, saddle fuel tanks and skid landing gear. In its UH-13J version, based on the Bell 47J, it had a metal-clad tail boom and fuselage and an enclosed cockpit and cabin.
A single 260 hp Lycoming VO-435 piston engine was fitted to the 47G variant. Fuel was fed from two high-mounted external tanks. A single two-bladed rotor with short inertial stabilising minor blades was used on the Sioux.
- [note 1] 28 Bell 47A helicopters procured by the United States Army Air Forces for evaluation. The YR-13 was powered by a 175 hp (130 kW) Franklin O-335-1 piston engine. 10 of the aircraft were evaluated by the U.S. Navy as trainers.
- 3 YR-13 aircraft winterized for cold-weather testing in Alaska. Redesignated YH-13A in 1948.
- US Navy equivalent of the commercial Model 47D. 12 built.
- US Navy equivalent of the commercial Model 47E, powered by a 200 hp (149 kW) Franklin 6V4-200-C32 engine. Nine built.
- 65 aircraft ordered in 1948 by the U.S. Army. All Army versions were later named Sioux.
- One H-13B used as engineering testbed. Fitted with skid undercarriage and open, uncovered tailboom.
- 16 H-13B aircraft converted to carry external stretchers in 1952, with skid landing gear and open tail boom of YH-13C.
- Army two-seat version based on commercial model 47D-1, with skid landing gear, stretcher carriers, and Franklin O-335-5 engine. 87 built.
- H-13D configuration with three-seat aircraft with dual controls. 490 built.
- XH-13F/Bell 201
- Modified Bell 47G powered by a Continental XT51-T-3 (Turbomeca Artouste) turboshaft. The first Bell helicopter powered by a turbine engine.
- Three-seater based on commercial model 47-G. Introduced a small elevator on the tailboom. 265 delivered to US Army.
- Based on 47G-2. Equipped with a 250 hp (186 kW) Lycoming VO-435 engine. At least 453 acquired by US Army. UH-13Hs were used by the U.S. Air Force.
- Two Bell 47J-1 Rangers acquired by the U.S. Air Force for VIP transport of the U.S. President. Originally designated H-13J.
- Two converted H-13Hs with a larger diameter rotor and a 225 hp (168 kW) Franklin 6VS-335 engine for test evaluation.
- Originally designated as the Navy HTL-4.
- Utilized a Lycoming O-335-5 engine.
- Incorporated a small movable elevator. Originally designated as the Navy HTL-6.
- Originally the HUL-1G, it was used by the U.S. Coast Guard for search and rescue.
- Powered by an Allison YT63-A-3 turbposhaft engine. Original US Navy designation HUL-1M.
- Three-seat observation helicopter based on 47G-3B to replace the OH-13H. 265 received by US Army.
- Two-seat instrument trainer for the U.S. Army based on the 47G-3B-1, powered by 270 hp (201 kW) Lycoming TVO-435-D1B. 411 purchased.
- Sioux AH.1
- General purpose helicopter for the British Army, 50 built by Agusta (Agusta-Bell 47G-3B1) and 250 built by Westland (Westland-Agusta-Bell 47G-3B1). A small number also used by 3 Commando Brigade Air Squadron of the Royal Marines.
- Sioux HT.2
- Training helicopter for the Royal Air Force, 15 built by Westland.
- Texas Helicopter M74 Wasp
- Texas Helicopter Corporation conversion of OH-13E helicopters for agricultural use, powered by 200 hp (150 kW) Lycoming TVO-435-A1E engines.
- Texas Helicopter M74A
- Texas Helicopter Corporation conversion of OH-13H helicopters for agricultural use, powered by 240 hp (180 kW) Lycoming TVO-435 engines.
- Texas Helicopter M79S Wasp II
- Texas Helicopter Corporation conversion for agricultural use, powered by 270 hp (200 kW) Lycoming TVO-435 engines.
- Texas Helicopter M79T Jet Wasp II
- Texas Helicopter Corporation conversion of Bell 47G helicopters for agricultural use, powered by 420 hp (310 kW) Soloy-Allison 250-C20S engines.
- United States Air Force
- United States Army
- United States Navy
- United States Coast Guard
- The South Carolina Military Museum in Columbia SC has The first H-13B airframe for that production run came off the line in mid-July 1948 and was assigned serial number 1, tail number 48-796.
- The Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum, Pueblo, Colorado has a restored H-13G with a "M*A*S*H" look.
- The National Museum of Naval Aviation at NAS Pensacola, FL has a HTL-4 on display, hanging from the ceiling.
- The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City has a Bell 47D1 on permanent display.
- The Castle Air Museum at the former Castle AFB in Atwater, CA has a Bell H-13 with the M*A*S*H paint scheme in their "Hidden aircraft collection".
- Adventure Aviation in Tauranga, New Zealand uses a Bell 47G in a "M*A*S*H"paint scheme for tourist scenic flights.
- Bell 47G-2 AS7201 of the Armed Forces of Malta was formally retired on May 30, 2008 and donated to the Malta Aviation Museum at Ta'Qali.
- The United States Army Medical Museum located on base at Fort Sam Houston, in San Antonio Texas, has a Bell 47 on display with other helicopters.
- Wings of Freedom Aviation Museum located in Horsham, PA has an H-13 on display.
- H-13 on display at the War Memorial of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea
- The American Helicopter Museum & Education Center in West Chester, Pennsylvania has a restored Bell 47D1 converted to an H-13 and painted in "M*A*S*H"configuration.
- The Royal Thai Air Force Museum, Bangkok, Thailand has an OH-13H on display
- Fantasy of Flight,Polk City, Florida has a Bell 47G with a "M*A*S*H"paint scheme.
- The Polytechnic University of Catalonia has an OH-13H on display in the Aeronautical Laboratory of the School of Industrial and Aeronautical Engineering of Terrassa, Terrassa, Spain.
- The Army Museum of Pakistan Army in Rawalpindi has an OH 13 hanging from the ceiling.
- The Texas Air & Space Museum, Amarillo, Texas has a restored OH-13S with a "M*A*S*H" look.
- H-13D on display at U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum, Huntsville, Alabama
Specifications (Sioux AH.1)
- Crew: 1
- Capacity: 3
- Length: 31 ft 7 in (9.63 m)
- Main rotor diameter: 2× 37 ft 0 in (11.3 m)
- Height: 9 ft 8 in (2.95 m)
- Gross weight: 2952 lb (1339 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming TVO-435-A1A, 260 hp (194 kW)
- Maximum speed: 105 mph (169 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 84 mph (135 km/h)
- Range: 273 miles (439 km)
- Service ceiling: 16100 ft (4907 m)
- The OH-1 was capable of carrying twin M37C.30 caliber machine guns, or twin M60 machine guns. They rarely did so however, because according to a Military Channel documentary on the AH-1 attack helicopter ("World's Deadliest Aircraft" series), the guns' recoil was too great a strain on the engines.
The Bell 47 appeared, and played key roles, in film and television productions. It has been associated with both the M*A*S*H film, and the television series, as well the Whirlybirds TV series (1957–1959).
- Related development
- Bell 47
- H-13J Sioux
- Bell 207 Sioux Scout
- XH-13F (Bell 201)
- Kawasaki KH-4
- Agusta A.115
- Meridionali/Agusta EMA 124
- Continental Copters El Tomcat
- Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- In the military of the United States, the Bell 47 carried several designations prior to 1962. R-13 was the first designation by the United States Army Air Forces, while the Navy designated their training version as HTL. In 1948, the United States Air Force changed the designation to H-13 which was also adopted by the Army, adding the name Sioux. The Navy and Coast Guard designated utility models as HUL. In 1962, under a joint designation system created by the Department of Defense, the designations for all of the helicopters were changed to a mission symbol followed by the vehicle type designator creating a two-letter prefix (OH, UH, XH, etc.), but the Bell 47 retained its original series number, 13 and the Army's popular name. To denote different models, a letter suffix was appended to the designation.
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I thought the bubble was a great idea, and we tried it. It consisted of taking a large sheet of Plexiglas, and a plywood form, cut for the final dimension for the outside of the bubble, then heating the Plexiglas, putting it under the plywood form, letting air pressure come up through the middle, and it would blow just like a soap bubble. And, then we had a gauge saying how far to blow, and when it reached that point, we turned off the air pressure.
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- U.S. Helicopter Armament Subsystems
- "M*A*S*H". rotaryaction.com. Retrieved 6 April 2016.
- "Whirlybirds". rotaryaction.com. Retrieved 12 April 2016.
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