4-seat gyrocopters

yak-aviation

Junior Member
I'm looking into forming a group around one of these in Titusville, FL and wondering what folks think - generally - about 4-seat gyrocopters such as the one in the picture? Are they powerful enough? Have gyrocopters matured enough, do they have a high enough payload? In my view, 240kg's useful payload is more like a 2+2 as opposed to an outright 4-seater, I'm just 84kg and so 2 of me up front and that leaves just 72kg in the rear i.e. two youngish teens at best. Anyway, would appreciate your thoughts, and anyone potentially interested in the group, please pm me.
 

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Vance

Gyroplane CFI
What do you mean by forming a group around a four seat gyroplane?

I have not flown any of the four seat gyroplanes so I don't have an opinion.

In the USA one would need to have a Private Pilot, Rotorcraft Gyroplane Certificate or better to fly a four passenger gyroplane legally.

Most gyroplane pilots in the USA are Sport Pilot rated restricting them to two seat gyroplanes during the day.

If it was an experimental, amateur built gyroplane (as most gyroplanes in the USA are) you would not be allowed to rent it to anyone or charge for flights unless you were a flight instructor giving dual instruction.

I wish you all the best on your aviation adventure.
 

WaspAir

Supreme Allied Gyro CFI
The only 4+ seat gyroplane I have seen in actual flight was the Groen Brothers Hawk machine. It was a great design, but it was also turbine powered.
It is common in fixed wing aircraft to have plenty of seats but still not be able to fill them with passengers and simultaneously carry full fuel. The extra space if not filled with people is still helpful for baggage, pets, etc.

Perhaps you just need skinnier friends; I'm only 65kg.
 

Doug Riley

Platinum Member
A couple observations:

The artwork accompanying this post appears to be a digital painting, not a photo of actual hardware. A/k/a vaporware.

The term "gyrocopter" is not normally applied to cabin-class gyroplanes such the Groen Hawk, or even the 2-place Xenon, upon which the painting appears to be based. The word was coined by Igor Bensen to identify his bare-bones, open-frame one-seat gyro, which he derived from the WWII Rotachute. Other similar bare-bones machines are sometimes called "gyrocopters." More sophisticated gyroplanes are usually called gyroplanes or autogyros. "Gyrocopter" has negative associations in the larger aviation world -- it's often used as a shorthand for "crazy windowmaker contraption."

There are aircraft piston engines big enough to power a 4-place gyro, but a turboprop certainly would be lighter. Small gyros need about 1 hp per 10 lb. of gross weight.

How many did the Fairey Rotodyne seat? It was a small airliner autogyro with twin turboprops.
 

Tyger

Active Member
"windowmaker" ? :)
I totally agree about the word "gyrocopter". It was a malformed word from the beginning. If you want to use the "pter" form, it should be "gyropter" (circle wing). The "co" comes from "helico" (spiral).
 

Doug Riley

Platinum Member
You are a classical-language scholar, sir. In the fifties and sixties, when Bensen started marketing his inventions, there was a plethora of ----copters. In general, cornball names for products were high fashion. We had hobbi-copters, the Hoppi-copter, the Jeri-copter, the Youmercopter and probably somewhere the E-Z-copter, kiddi-copter and who knows what else.

English speakers aren't used to syllables that begin with "pt." Putting a "co" in front makes a word look more familiar.

Over in the ultralight world, Jack McCornack had great fun with this, marketing the Pterodactyl, the Pfledge, Ptug, Ptiger and so on.
 

Tyger

Active Member
That reminds me a bit of the PG Wodehouse character, Psmith ("the P is silent, as in pshrimp").
 

Kolibri

FW and Gyros
I've seen well-developed plans for Sport Copter's SC4, the design of which they'll complete once M2 production is humming along. Power:weight of motor choices had delayed things, but they've two 250+hp engines they like. The SC4 will have many new features not on any of their other gyros, including the M2. A 2+2 "off-road" x/country touring gyro!

Any used M2s for sale in a couple of years will probably be those owners moving into an SC4.

Regards,

Farles Wickens with four M's and a silent Q
 
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Doug Riley

Platinum Member
500 hp? I presume that, for a price, they'll throw in an 18-wheel fuel-tanker truck that can drive along under the gyro as ground support. With the truck driver, it'll be a 5-person touring ensemble; six if the trucker picks up hitchhikers.
 

Greg Vos

Newbie
I'm looking into forming a group around one of these in Titusville, FL and wondering what folks think - generally - about 4-seat gyrocopters such as the one in the picture? Are they powerful enough? Have gyrocopters matured enough, do they have a high enough payload? In my view, 240kg's useful payload is more like a 2+2 as opposed to an outright 4-seater, I'm just 84kg and so 2 of me up front and that leaves just 72kg in the rear i.e. two youngish teens at best. Anyway, would appreciate your thoughts, and anyone potentially interested in the group, please pm me.
The pic you posted was sent to me a while back by Fly Argo the polish guys I'm communicating with to get a machine registered here in SA, now my concern with the thing apart from what you guys mention is what about the mast wall thickness? What about the mounting points? I rebuilt a Xenon from the ground up for a student of mine and observing how the mast attaches to the cabin is ok Okish IMO for two up ops, but four people the weight and stress on the mast and its mounting points .....let us not forget the issue of resonance and frequency calculating the extra weight.....and if we go back to the mouth from France now in Malta captain luitenant clolonal seargent Rafial Cillier who isn't on record and we have documents down loaded from his old web site showing mast frequency damping data .....one wonders what this would look like with an extra 200kg hanging off it.... I think that there are very bright students employed in this game who are going to wind up building vacuum cleaners who push the boundaries of flight yet have no pilot exp!

R22 and R44 very diffrent machines from a blade and power plant perspective and MAUW capacity yet the gyro is still fitted with a Rotax....

The comment widow maker is quite accurate
 
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