Candice - Just registered


Junior Member
I'm researching the Hornet as a means to get flying again after losing my medical. I have a private pilot rating with a glider add-on. Perhaps 430 hours in fixed wing, another 70 or so flying gliders out of Minden, NV. I have completed approx. 70% of a full scale Graham Lee Niieport 17, but sold my Rotec engine after losing the medical. Most bummed, The hornet is just about perfect for my flying needs as FAR 103 compliant that I can take off and land in my 10 acre back yard. I have the Hornet plans Ver. 13.2 as a start point. Any tips, pointers, etc. will be much appreciated. If anyone knows of a autogyro flying clubin the Central Valley (Visalia/Fresno) of California I would love to get in touch.


Active Member
Welcome to the forum Candice :welcome:
Hornet ultralight ? I have not seen one . Actually you have to do without a lot to make ultralight weight with a gyroplane . It's possible to build a Gyrobee ultralight and also maybe find a butterfly ultralight. The gyrobee is a known good flyer the Butterfly not so much... may be one out there left that hasn't been cracked up .
If you haven't already had a flight in a tandem gyro you should do that first or even better get a hour of instruction .
Good luck with your build !


Gyroplane CFI
Welcome to the Rotary Wing Forum Candace.

Please get some training before you fly a gyroplane.

They are very different than a fixed wing or a helicopter.

I suspect you won't be satisfied with an ultralight gyroplane.

The five gallons is very limiting particularly with a two stroke.

Sport Pilot may get you around your health challenges and you only need to be trained to proficiency; typically around ten hours of dual..


David McCutchen
Sport Pilot may get you around your health challenges and you only need to be trained to proficiency; typically around ten hours of dual..
I am not to sure Vance. To operate at the Sport level within FAR 61.23 in 2iii and 2iv stops him.
Because he stated he lost his medical not expired. It sounds like his medical was under revocation or denial or surrender, and not expired.
and #iv basically requires you to self evaluate for each flight
This regulation ( #4 ) applies to every one of us which fly with a Sport rating; and just because you have a Drivers License does not mean you can fly
Basically, if you have a known medical condition which would keep you from getting a third class medical, then you are out at the Sport level.

(2) A person using a U.S. driver's license to meet the requirements of paragraph (c) while exercising sport pilot privileges must—
(i) Comply with each restriction and limitation imposed by that person's U.S. driver's license and any judicial or administrative order applying to the operation of a motor vehicle;
(ii) Have been found eligible for the issuance of at least a third-class airman medical certificate at the time of his or her most recent application (if the person has applied for a medical certificate);
(iii) Not have had his or her most recently issued medical certificate (if the person has held a medical certificate) suspended or revoked or most recent Authorization for a Special Issuance of a Medical Certificate withdrawn; and
(iv) Not know or have reason to know of any medical condition that would make that person unable to operate a light-sport aircraft in a safe manner
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David McCutchen
I personally do not have any experience with the Hornet design. I think there has been some discussion here on the forum about the design and potential flaws. And it seems there has been several Pilots to crash and die. I don't know if it is a one off design of the GyroBee or not.
Ralph Taggerts design call Gyro Bee is a known design and flyer. It seems like any of the Bee derivatives have do well.
I think the guy over in the Carolina's has been posting some videos here flying his Bee.


Active Member
Georgi;n1125863 said:
Boots,what was wrong with Butterfly?
Thank you.
The Butterfly looks great and easily makes 103 ultralight rules.
As far as what's wrong with them . Kits no longer available... = No support product
The tail flutters and has a small H-stab
The 20' rotor is a little small.. I would prefer 23' rotor ...
The rotor head / prerotator assembly is a little tacky with all those washer stacks for spacing .
The main gear is narrow and may be easier to tip over .
The scrub brake on the front tire will fade on a long taxiway.
The pod mount is flimsy ( unstable) I've seen extra support added .

A factory spec. Butterfly was flown at our airport by 2 High time pilots both agreed the gyro was twitchy ... Felt like it wanted to swap ends...

Ultralight doesn't mean a gyro will be forgiving or easy to fly .
Off the top of my head I know of 4 Ultralight Butterfly gyros 1 has not been flown as far as I know the other 3 have been crashed and one of those has been crashed twice !

I think a Butterfly built / assembled to factory specifications makes a unforgiving gyro. Make a mistake and it will at minimum skin your azz....

But it is definitely a legal ultralight Gyroplane :cool:
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Just saw your reply today (replies have no automatic notifications). Thank you for a thorough ,detailed answer. Has anybody from Butterfly owners tried to fix all, mentioned by you problems to your knowledge ?
Thanks again.