Bell Textron inc.- Helicopters

The Bell 47J Ranger is an American single-engine single-rotor light helicopter manufactured by Bell Helicopter


Bell 47J Ranger/Sioux

Design and development

The 47J was a four-seat variant of the earlier three-seat Bell 47H. The 47H was a deluxe variant of the 47G with a fully clad fuselage and an enclosed cabin. The 47H proved to be too small, so Bell developed the 47J. The 47J was a single pilot aircraft with the pilot seat and controls centered in the front of the cabin, and positioned close to the 180° view unobstructed Lexan "bubble" windscreen. A single bench seat at the rear of the cabin spanned its entire width and allowed for a passenger capacity limited by weight to typically 3 or 4 adults.

Operational history

In March 1957 two Bell 47Js were bought by the United States Air Force as presidential transport and designated H-13J. On 13 July 1957 a H-13J was the first helicopter used by a United States president when it carried Dwight D. Eisenhower from the White House. In March 1962 the two helicopters were moved from presidential duties but were used as VIP transports for the next five years until retired in July 1967.

Two Bell 47J-2s were used during the 1966 film production of Paradise, Hawaiian Style starring Elvis Presley. Throughout the film Presley's character, Rick Richards, was flying a Bell 47J-2 over the Hawaiian Islands.


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13 May 1949, a Bell 47 set an altitude record of 18,550 feet (5,650 m).

21 September 1950, first helicopter to fly over the Alps.

17 September 1952, Bell pilot Elton J. Smith set a world distance record for piston helicopters of 1,217 miles (1,959 km) by flying nonstop from Hurst, Texas, to Buffalo, New York. As of 2018, this record still stands.

Bell Textron
Bell 47J Ranger/Sioux

47J Ranger Production variant powered by a 220hp Lycoming VO-435-A1B engine., 135 built.

47J-1 Ranger Military VIP variant as the H-13J, two built.

47J-2 Ranger Production variant with a 240hp Lycoming VO-540-B1B engine, powered controls and metal blades., 104 built.

47J-2A Ranger Production variant with a 260hp Lycoming VO-540-B1B3 engine and a collective boost system, 75 built.

  • History

    Role Utility helicopter

    National origin United States

    Manufacturer Bell Helicopter

    Introduction 1956

    Retired July 1967 (UH-13J)


  • Users

    Status Retired

    Number built 361

    Unit cost


    Developed from Bell 47


  • Performance

    Crew: 1

    Capacity: 3 passengers
    Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming VO-540-B1B vertically mounted air-cooled flat-six, 260 hp (190 kW)

    Length: 32 ft 5 in (9.87 m)

    Height: 9 ft 3 in (2.83 m)
    Maximum speed: 105 mph (169 km/h; 91 kn) at sea level

    Cruise speed: 91 mph (146 km/h; 79 kn

Bell 47J Ranger/Sioux


The Bell 47J Ranger is an American single-engine single-rotor light helicopter manufactured by Bell Helicopter. It was an executive variant of the highly successful Bell 47 and was the first helicopter to carry a United States president.


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