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Helicopter Model Add-ons

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A much appreciated add-on is the aircraft model. There are huge numbers of different aircraft types in the world and there are an almost equal number of add-ons. So, you will probably be able to find your favourite helicopter model somewhere. Helicopter models are added by installing the associated files into the Aircraft/Rotorcraft directory (FSX) or Aircraft/Helicopters (X-Plane).

Another good reason to get a model add-on is the flight dynamics. This is especially true for helicopters which, by their nature, need sophisticated flight models if you want to add maximum realism (that is, if you are looking for a realistic flight experience). In this respect, the DodoSim's Bell 206 Jetranger add-on is a must have (FSX). It stands out because of its very realistic flight dynamics (including torque yaw, rotor droop, inflow role, vertex ring state, LTE, and much more), making it very useful for those who want to experience what real helicopter flying is all about, or want to use the FSX as a training aid. The X-Plane uses a different approach to flight models and, as a consequence, all of the X-Plane helicopters (and planes) should have good real life flight dynamics.

Bell 412
Bell 412 (Cera Sim)
Alouette II
Alouette II

Overview of Helicopter Models

There are quite a few helicopter models out there. However, they differ a lot when it comes to flight quality. A good model pays a great deal of attention to flight characteristics, the instruments and, of course, the fuselage and its textures. The list below therefore starts with a selection of the best helicopter models around, and ends with three general categories of helicopters, because there are a lot of them!

Name Supplier Description Compatibility Pros Cons Shopping
206 FSX Dodosim

Of all of the models around, this one is, undoubtedly, the version that most accurately resembles real helicopter flight. A hover in the Dodosim 206 needs an experienced pilot. But relax, you can adjust the level of difficulty.

The Dodosim 206 is also a good candidate for a helicopter procedure trainer, because not only is the flight model accurate, but so is the simulation of the hydraulic and electrical systems.

Compatible with FSX. There also is a FS2004 version available (Advanced 206).
  • Excellent modelling of flight characteristics: torque-induced yaw, transverse flow effect, flap back, translating tendency, dissymmetry of lift, induced flow rotor RPM modulation, rotor droop, vortex ring state, loss of tail rotor effectiveness, retreating blade stall and tail wind effect on horizontal stabiliser
  • Realistic simulation of engine, mechanical and electrical systems. Featuring wear and failures.
  • Engine start-up and shut down procedures
  • Several realism and training modes
  • High quality visuals and sound.
  • Several models available, including floats, low and high skid, utility with a cargo hook and door-less versions.
  • I really can't think of one.
Flight 1 - Dodosim 206
Flight 1 - Dodosim 206
212 / 412 Cera Sim The Bell 212 utility helicopter is directly derived from the famous Bell 204/205 "Huey." The 212 is powered by two turbine engines. Cera Sim manages to simulate realistic flight dynamics. The model uses detailed textures and a lot of animations. FSX SP2
  • Realistic flight dynamics.
  • Fully clickable 3D virtual cockpit.
  • Highly detailed 3D model.
  • HD exterior textures.
  • Nine liveries and a paint kit.
  • Very good sound quality.
  • Lots of animations, accessible through an animation panel.
  • Autopilot is not simulated
Cera Sim Helicopters Cera Sim Helicopters
Huey Aerosoft The Bell 205 Huey is a milestone in helicopter development. It was the first military helicopter to use a turbine engine. The Huey proved to be a very robust and versatile machine. Due to the war in Vietnam where thousands of them were in operation, the Huey gained an almost iconic status. FSX SP2
  • Both the military UH-1H (or German UH-1D) and the civilian Bell 205 A-1 models.
  • Accurate flight model using a separate flight model engine including: torque induced yaw, stabilized rotor head simulation, control travels in hover and cruise flight, tail rotor effectiveness, retreating blade stall, and control effectiveness depending on hydraulic pressure.
  • Detailed systems make use of all possible checklists.
  • Good sound quality
  • Detailed external models with lots of animations.
  • No 2D cockpit; only the virtual cockpit is available.
  • Sound not always 100% in sync during engine start-up and shutdown.
Aerosoft - Huey X
Aerosoft - Huey X
Category one of Helicopter models Several suppliers FlightSim store with all available helicopter add-ons. FS2004, FSX, EPS, Prepar3D, X-Plane. - - Helicopters
Helicopters 1
Category two of Helicopter models Several suppliers FlightSim store with all available helicopter add-ons. FS2004, FSX, EPS, Prepar3D, X-Plane. - - Helicopters
Helicopters 2
Category three of Helicopter models Several suppliers FlightSim store with all available helicopter add-ons. FS2004, FSX, EPS, Prepar3D, X-Plane. - - Helicopters
Helicopters 3

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HeliStart is authored by Peter Goossens.


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