The Hiller OH-23 Raven was a three-place, light observation helicopter based on the Hiller Model 360. United Helicopters began producing the Model 360 as the UH-12. In 1949, the UH-12 became the first helicopter to make a transcontinental flight from California to New York. When Hiller upgraded the engine and the rotor blades, the company designated the new model the UH-12A. It was the UH-12A that would be adopted by both the French and United States militaries, as well as being used by civil commercial operators in several countries.
The H-23 Raven performed as a utility, observation, and MedEvac helicopter during the Korean war. Model numbers ranged A through D, F and G. The H-23A had a sloping front windshield. The H-23B was used as a primary helicopter trainer. Beginning with the UH-23C, all later models featured the "Goldfish bowl" canopy similar to the Bell 47. The OH-23 had a top speed of 97 mph (84 knots). The Raven had a two-bladed main rotor, a metal two-bladed tail rotor. Both the OH-23B and the OH-23C were powered by one Franklin O-335-5D engine. The OH-23D was a purely military version.
The Raven saw service in the USAF as a scout during the early part of the Vietnam war before being replaced by the Hughes OH-6 Cayuse in early 1968. The Raven could be armed with twin M37C .30 Cal. machine guns on the XM1 armament subsystem or twin M60C 7.62 mm machine guns on the M2 armament subsystem. The XM76 sighting system was used for sighting the guns.
This helicopter in a former Raven used by the Dutch air force. It was the only one of the OH-23C version used, with a different canopy and code "O-36" (serial 57-6521) and used until the mid sixties.
It was on display at the Dutch AF museum MLM (that is closed and to relocate end 2014 to a new museum)
Photographed, May 2013 by Cees Hendriks (C) Copyright IPMS Nederland
OH-23 / UH-12D Raven
This helicopter in a civil scheme, N689HS (cn 1169), is a Hiller UH-12D, and on display at Kissimmee Air Museum, Florida, USA.
Photographed, January 2012 by Cees Hendriks (C) Copyright IPMS Nederland
UH-12C / H-23C
This Raven was used by the West German "BundesGrenzSchutz" (border protection unit) from 1955 and later BundesPolizei. It has the "Goldfish bowl" canopy type. This one was seen at the German Helicopter museum in Buckeburg (D).
Photographed September 2018 by Meindert de Vreeze (C) Copyright IPMS Nederland
Just a few scale models are available of the UH-12 / H-23: in 1/72 by RugRat resin and a good kit by Special Hobby
Some 36 Ravens were used by the Royal Netherlands Air Force, enthusiasts can read more here on our site...
this walk around page was first published January 2012 by M. de Vreeze