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Skis for Helio

Started by akflyr, October 16, 2013, 12:03:43 AM

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Hello everyone!  I am looking at getting a set of skis for my Helio this winter.  I have seen a lot of Airglas LW3600 skis for sale that have come off of Cessna's.  Is it possible to have a pair from a cessna fit a helio?  I have heard that the attach points are different and you need helio specific Airglas skis.  Also, anybody hear of anyone getting field approval for Schneider skis?

Ofcourse, if someone out there happens to be selling skis...let me know!


Michael Dietz

Doug Johnson

Dennis Branham installed the 3600's on N4195D an H-395A. Should Work on Your H-250. I have a copy of the 337 with a sketch if you want it, or contact Branham Adventures there in anchorage, they may be able to help you.

Send me an email if you want copy can't attach to PM


Hi, are there any hydraulically wheel skies for the Helio's certified? I would love to have hydraulically wheel skies with bigger tires than 8.5- so I can land in the morning on the beach and in the afternoon on an glacier!
Anybody can help!

Thanks Philipp


AWB 3500 for 391.  Field approval for the 250 and 295.

Did also one time field approval on the big 4000 on an Helio 800



Not sure anymore if you do need field approval.  There is that mention on the type certificate.  The debate here was more on if we can go up to the 3400 pounds or if we are limited to the 391 gross weight on all models.

The basic required equipment as prescribed in the applicable airworthiness regulations (see Certification Basis) must be installed in the aircraft for certification. The equipment portion of Aircraft Specification 1A8, Revision 18, dated July 7, 1969, or the equipment list provided with each airplane should be used for equipment references on Helio Models H-391, H-391B, H-395, H-395A, H-250, and H-295 (prior to serial number 1458). Refer to the applicable equipment list for Model H-295, serial number 1458 and on, Model H-700,
and Model H-800.

In addition, the following FAA approved Airplane Flight Manuals and Airplane Flight Manual Supplements are required.

(snip )

FAA Approved Airplane Flight Manual Supplement dated January 24, 1956 (H-391B, H-395, H-395A) required when Federal AWB-3500A main and AWT-3500 tailwheel skis are installed. Federal Installation drawing 11R1241.

Ken Berger

Doug's got it right.  Branham has done a number of these ski installs and carries the knowledge needed.  Let me know if you want some contact phone numbers as I know their mechanics.  Very talented on Helios.

360 794-8882



Thanks Doug- Chris Branham was super helpful with the skies.- I hope to see you one of this days in ANC. Philipp N395HC 907 259 5502

Bill Miller

Looking for LW3600 and LWT3600 skis for 391B. Plane's log has several 337s for Federals and a Airglas tail ski back in the 1970s in AK.
What FSDO approval is required for the LW3600 penetration skis. Can this be done in the lower 48?


It says they are STC. So no fsdo approval needed. Just have to buy the STC and follow the drawings


I have been working with the Airglass  folks for the NEW composite retractable wheel ski GLH3000.  They are presently making some modificadtions to the 206 model and in doing so will be incorporating changes that would fit helio gear equiped with the Clevland Wheels and Brakes.  If you would like more info, please email me.  This would likely be a field approval at first but may lead to an STC.  AS for other skiis, I found that the old red wheel penetration ski is inadequate on the helio...not enough flotation, especially the tail. 


Quoteauthor=n69vj especially the tail. 

It Won't be easy to solve.  I used to have a Beaver ski on the tail.  Around what ?  four times the surface of the small airglass one.   It wasn't really enough.  But for shimy, this ski was a champion of the shimy.  I solved part of it by a second small wheel at the back of the ski.  When the big ski wanted to shimy, the small wheels would prevent the side movement.  I got tired and tried a very small ski.  Well, small compare to the beaver one.  I was sure to have a lot of problem of sinking into the snow three feet deep.  Did not see any difference in penetration than the Beaver ski.  Now i prefer the small ski.  On the main gear, i have those great AWB banana style skis.  I think the reason i am satisfied with the stupid little ski in the back is that everythig happens in the front.   If your main gear skis are good, and you start moving, the tailwheel ski will get out of the snow right away with the movement.  Make the main gear skis works well, and you won't notice the tailwheel ski penetration.

I prefer also the small tailwheel ski, because since they do penetrate in slush about the same than the big one, but they are a lot faster to work on to clear them from the ice with an axe.  Big long skis also put a chalenge when you crossed skidoo trace.  The big lever their lenght does can turn them 90 degrees very fast.

With the cub, i experienced about the same thing.  I was on straight ski a long time before, at th etime we had snow everywhere until first of may.  I could get into deep snow you could not imagine.  When i switched to Wheelskis, and switch from a 150 hp to 180 hp, i could not go in the places i was used to be able to go.  I had the same tailwheel skis.  Looking how deep it was in the snow and thinking he was the problem.  But it was the same ski i had when the main gear was on striaght skis.  And i never even think about it when i was on straight ski in deeper snow.

Big skis at the back is not very relevant..... i think.   Main gear skis are very important.  Their forms, their size, their lenght vs their widht.  The surface, boy the surface !!  I tried real Teflon, HD polytehylene, polypro, some kind of horefull miracle paint.  They do make a huge difference.  Switch from one surface to another, and the tailwheel ski won't even be noticed.

Once in Iceland, my tailwheel ( not on ski) was block from moving around by some gravel i took on a gravel bar.  I landed on sand and the tailwheel was completely burried into hard and wet sand.  I could not see the tailwheel.   I Was sure not to be able to take off again.  Pffffff.  At half throttle, the plane was moving and i could not even feel the drag.

My point is that small tailwheel ski at the back comes with problems.  Big skis with bigger problems.  They are not really part of the solution.  The main gear is.  This is where the weight is.

We also experience the same thing this winter with the Antonov.  Put a small hard pack snow in front of the main skis, and the 1000 hp is not enough to pull the weight over it.  Put what you want in front of the tailski, you won't feel it.


The tailwhhel was blocked 90 degrees.  I did not even notice it when taxiing.  But the main wheels were working good: