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HomeScale✈️AircraftScale HeliScale Helicopter Main Discussion › Magnum P. I. Hughes 500 helicopter
11-29-2018 10:47 PM  10 months ago
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OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Magnum P. I. Hughes 500 helicopter
Hey guys. Over the years, I have been doing extensive research on the various Hughes 500’s that were used to depict T. C.’s helicopter on Magnum P.I.

This is what I have learned so far. There were a total of 4 helicopters that depicted T. C.’s helicopter in the eight seasons of Magnum P.I. in the 1980’s.

These are the four helicopters that depicted T. C.’s helicopter:

N58243 - S1
N1095A - S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6
N4943T - S6, S7, S8

and possibly
N9267F (500C with fake registration as N58243) S5

Here are some good reference pictures for anyone building a replica of T. C.’s Hughes 500D helicopter.

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11-29-2018 11:23 PM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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I have done extensive research on the helicopters used on Magnum P.I.

There were a total of four different helicopters that depicted T. C.’s helicopter:

N58243 - S1
N1095A - S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6
N4943T - S6, S7, S8

and possibly
N9267F (500C with fake registration as N58243)

N1095A was THE most used 500D on the show, going into use after N58243 crashed during Season One.

At one point, a 500C with the Y tail, was painted up, with N58243’s (the crashed 500D’s) registration number, after the crash. I have not been able to find this 500C’s real registration number yet. It is possible that it could have been N9267F, in temporary peel paint, until they got N1095A, as a permanent replacement.

N1095A was the most prolific helicopter used on the show, with a tenure that spanned S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, and part of S6.

Towards the end of S6, N4943T (with the white window vent, on the back door) took over and was used for S6, S7 and S8. N4943T was the only Island Hopper Helicopter that had its registration number, on the tail boom.
———————————————————————-
The Second Crash

One week after Magnum P.I. ended, on Friday, May 13, 1988, N4943T, crashed into a drainage ditch, because of a runaway trim motor.

Former Magnum pilot, Steve Kux was seriously injured. and would have drowned, if a man nicknamed, “Tiny”, hadn’t lifted the helicopter.

—————————————————————————
The N58428 Myth

There has been an erroneous myth going around that N58428 depicted T.C.’s Island Hopper Helicopter!

Apparently that myth has been propagated because people have misconstrued notations in its log book which says, “Mag PI film work” and “MPI equipment trans.”

It was owned by Jetcopters Incorporated, based at Van Nuys Airport, in California.

N58428 was too busy being used extensively in Hollywood, on virtually every t.v. show from the 1980’s (ie. Knight Rider, AIRWOLF, Streethawk, The A-Team, T.J. Hooker, Hardcastle and McCormick, The Fall Guy, Simon & Simon etc.)!

It most famously portrayed the bad guy helicopter flown by Malcom McDowell’s character in Columbia Pictures movie, Blue Thunder.

The Magnum P.I. episode, “Two Birds of a Feather” was mostly filmed in California, and N58428 was used as a camera ship, for that episode and possibly some others. Hence; “Mag PI film work and MPI equipment trans", in its logbook, indicating its use as a camera ship, that people have misconstrued.

But the bottom line is, N58428 never depicted T.C.’s helicopter with the famous orange, yellow and brown, bands. It was just used on Magnum as a camera helicopter and to haul equipment around.

If you don’t believe me, borrow the DVD’s from the library, and watch all 8 seasons, (fast forwarding) to the helicopter scenes, a majority of the time, you can clearly see the registration numbers when they show the various helicopters... and N58428 was never one of them.

It is unfortunate that people presumed, and assumed that N58428 depicted T. C.’s Helicopter, on Magnum just from the camera ship references in its logbooks.

People who owned it mistakenly told people, without doing any research, that it was used as T.C.’s helicopter when in reality it was NOT. It was just a camera helicopter and used to haul equipment around.

Furthermore they ignore its famous use on AIRWOLF and Blue Thunder, and dozens of other, stateside 80’s tv shows.

N58428 is a very famous Hollywood helicopter, but contrary to popular misconception, it was never used as T.C.’s helicopter.
———————————————————————-

Other research references that back up my research:

https://books.google.com/books?id=N...%20500d&f=false

http://magnum-mania.com/Articles/The_Chopper.html

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11-29-2018 11:27 PM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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This 500C has the fake registration number of N58243, which was the number of the 500D with emergency floats on its skids that crashed in 1981.

It appeared in Season 5 episode “Underworld”.

Does anyone know the real registration number of this 500C, that impersonated N48243?

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11-29-2018 11:34 PM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Initially I had suspected N9267F, a 500C which appeared in two other episodes as a plain, regular helicopter, might have been temporarily painted up as the fake 500C, that impersonated N58243.

But the fake N58243, had high skids and N9267F had low skids.

So, far, this is the only Magnum P. I. Helicopter registration number I have not been able to figure out.

Since, some of the helicopters were supplied by Jetcopters Inc, it is possible it could have been one of the 500C’s used on AIRWOLF?

Does anyone know the real registration number of this 500C (369HS).

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11-29-2018 11:57 PM  10 months ago
JuanRodriguez

rrProfessor

The Villages, Florida

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💎Sustaining Member
I think you should try to get some sleep .... Been there, done that and old enough to know better.....
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11-30-2018 12:17 AM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Also, I wanted to mention the “band” paint job was a factory paint job by Hughes in the 1970’s and 80’s, not a custom paint job as implied in the show.

Here are some photos of different color variations of the band paint jobs on different Hughes 500’s.

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12-01-2018 12:03 AM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Nice rc replica!

Watch at YouTube

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12-01-2018 12:24 AM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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12-02-2018 03:15 PM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Since CBS revamped Magnum P.I., it seems appropriate to revamp some life back into this post!

There are new Island Hopper Choppers buzzing around Hawaii now.

Hence; there will be more modelers who will want to start building rc model’s of T.C.’s iconic Island Hopper 500D helicopter.

So, this post is still very relevant.

Mahalo!
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12-02-2018 03:19 PM  10 months ago
chopper37

rrVeteran

NJ and Long Island

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As I stated prior here is one of them, saw it this past oct
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12-04-2018 05:26 PM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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Wow! That is a nice looking replica!

N357MH is one of the helicopters that they have used on the new Magnum P.I. tv series.

I have not seen Paradise Helicopters’ replica of N58243,appear on the show yet.

N58243 the same registration number as THE original Magnum P.I. helicopter that crashed in 1980.
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12-05-2018 12:37 AM  10 months ago
OneHoof

rrApprentice

Cold Spring, Kentucky

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It looks like N1095A is the only surviving helicopter from Magnum P.I.

C/N 500701D N1095A

Here are some of its other registration numbers.

N31AS, N700DG, N3TJ, N3NT, N503SH, N717MA

N1095A is currently registered as N717MA, flying for Air 2.

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