Could Gyro-Gliders Soar?

birdy

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I guess you had about 3/4 throttle to mantain position.
This old machine cruises 55kts at 50% throttle.
Most of the throttle position in the clip woulda been bout 20-30%.
 

scandtours

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Bensen has given all answers in his operating manuals and in his Bensen Flying News. In his Flying News magazines, he explains in detail most of the questions and wonders.... ( How many have these magazines?)
Below, Gyroglider kiting in the wind.
 

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Chris Burgess

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Some Gliding on a stake

Some Gliding on a stake

Couple of shots, staked in a wind, 25 gust to maybe 35. It's about as "green" of flying that you can get. No engine, no electrical system, no fuel, very few moving parts.!!!
 

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WaspAir

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stopped caring at 1000
Couple of shots, staked in a wind, 25 gust to maybe 35. It's about as "green" of flying that you can get. No engine, no electrical system, no fuel, very few moving parts.!!!
Unfortunately, it's also zero miles per gallon, because you don't go anywhere!
 

All_In

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Not sure over 10,000+ logged FW, 260+ ultralights, sailplane, hang-gliders
Unfortunately, it's also zero miles per gallon, because you don't go anywhere!
Yeah but it looks like fun to me!!!:noidea:

We could do this at EL Mirage?
 

SandL

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longest flight ??

longest flight ??

So ... if you do the same in a gyro with engine , and log it maybe you could get a record for the longest gyro flight in history, but is it technically a flightas it's still attached to the ground , yet the pilot does intend flying and the "wings" are giving lift any thoughts on that ?
 

RotoPlane

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The guy that trained me on his gyro glider, use to fly on ~100 feet of rope that was attached to a beach piling....whenever a tropical depression rolled inland. Once steady winds reached 30 mph, he would fly there for at least an hour or until some gusts would begin to make landings difficult or if it started to rain.

It didn't bother him that he went nowhere beyond a semi-circle....he just loved the sound of the rotor and feeling the control hints the wind gave him as he flew.

I think the grounded seagulls envied him.....
 

scandtours

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Couple of shots, staked in a wind, 25 gust to maybe 35. It's about as "green" of flying that you can get. No engine, no electrical system, no fuel, very few moving parts.!!!
Liked those fotos, Chris Burgess.
 

PW_Plack

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So ... if you do the same in a gyro with engine , and log it maybe you could get a record for the longest gyro flight in history, but is it technically a flightas it's still attached to the ground , yet the pilot does intend flying and the "wings" are giving lift any thoughts on that ?
Peter, in the US our FAA considers a tethered gyroglider to be a kite, and since it's designed to lift over five pounds it is subject to Part 101 of our regulations. It could certainly be considered a "flight," and it could impart valuable experience in managing the cyclic, but the operator is not considered a pilot while the machine is tethered, and the time aloft cannot be logged for any official purpose.
 

okikuma

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Marion has said and wrote in her book that her "first flight" in a gyro was in her own husband's gyroglider that was tethered. He was unable to get up (too heavy for the light winds) but since Marion was lighter, the glider rose up and she was hooked! In the DVD "Gyroplane Refrain," there's an 8mm film clip of Marion "kiting."

If I thought I could get away with it, I'd go to the near by California Air National Guard base and "kite" my soon to be completed gyroglider behind a C-130 that is performing a maintenance ground run! LOL Either that or go over to Warner Brothers in Burbank and "borrow" one of their "wind machines" LOL

Wayne
 

All_In

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Not sure over 10,000+ logged FW, 260+ ultralights, sailplane, hang-gliders
...

If I thought I could get away with it, I'd go to the near by California Air National Guard base and "kite" my soon to be completed gyroglider behind a C-130 that is performing a maintenance ground run! LOL Either that or go over to Warner Brothers in Burbank and "borrow" one of their "wind machines" LOL

Wayne
Hey that sounds like it would work to me... take pictures for us Wayne?:yo:
 

PW_Plack

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...and "kite" my soon to be completed gyroglider behind a C-130 that is performing a maintenance ground run!...
...or just tether near a campaign event during election season and ride the wind as it's actually created!

Wayne, what are you building? Pictures, man, pictures!
 

okikuma

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Hi Paul,

Not exactly building, but restoring.

A gentleman told me about "some kind of helicopter" that was being sold at an estate sale. I went over and immediately saw that it was a Bensen B8 airframe, minus the cyclic control, rotorhead, and blades. The gyro was never completed nor flown.

The person selling the estate stuff didn't really know exactly what a Bensen Gyrocopter was and saw it as a collection of "junk aluminum." I asked how much and the person said, "Make me an offer." I said $50 and he said, "It yours." I quickly handed over the cash and ran with the parts to my vehicle! I figure the airframe is at least 40 yrs old with all the parts being stored in the rafters of a garage during that whole time.

Most of you know I'm too large and heavy to put an engine on the Bensen B8 airframe and fly it safely. Therefore, I've decided to restore it as a single place gyroglider. I've since milled out a rotorhead and drawing up my own design of a "pump handle" cyclic control using 4130 tubing; keeping the throw inputs to PRA suggested levels. The airframe will be red with a white vertical stab and rudder.

I haven't done much to finish the restoration lately because some house improvement projects have taken precedence.

Wayne
 

PW_Plack

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Wayne, that's a great reincarnation for an unfinished B8. I wonder how many more there are in rafters out there. If you're building it with a rudder, does that mean you're anticipating releasing it for free flight?
 

PW_Plack

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...I surprised John Potter at Farrington's place once long ago by pulling the power back and thermalling up several hundred feet in an 18A ("I didn't know this s.o.b. could do that", he said).

With no power at all, it's another matter, because you need really strong conditions...a rotary wing glider wouldn't offer much practicality.
JR, I appreciate the confirmation that it's possible and agree it would be impractical everyday practice. I will confess that part of this mental exercise on my part is in laying some hypothetical groundwork for regulatory questions. If a gyroglider is ever to have a role in a formal transition training program, it may have to escape the limitations of FAR Part 101, and ideally move past Part 103 as well. I'm wondering about a full-on EAB gyroglider operating under Part 91. Even if transition training was accomplished without ever releasing the cable, just getting a new glider through a Phase I test plan might require demonstrating the capability for free flight, determining the few applicable V-speeds, etc..

At Rotors Over The Rockies this year, someone tried ridge soaring east of the airport and was reporting a 500 FPM climb in a two-place gyro, two aboard, with the engine at idle, on an average spring day with moderate temps and light winds. So, at least, we've moved on from the laws of physics to the issues of logistics and techniques.

It may be possible to string together a fairly long (>100 nm) chain of lift locations to allow traveling significant north/south distances along the Wasatch Range east of the Salt Lake City area, but getting through KSLC's Mode C Veil would pose some challenges.
 
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dinoa

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To do 100miles cross country in a gyroglider is highly unlikely. I think you need closer to 1000fpm lift which while not unheard of is not common especially in a straight line. Of greater significance is at 4:1 glide ratio the gyro will not be able to bridge the inevitable gaps in lift even in those areas blessed with perfect ridge conditions.

Dino
 

PW_Plack

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...at 4:1 glide ratio the gyro will not be able to bridge the inevitable gaps in lift even in those areas blessed with perfect ridge conditions.
I would submit that this depends on how big those gaps are, and how high you could ride the lift before choosing to leave it for the next area of lift along your trip. I'm told some of the ridge lift locations in our area can sustain climbs of thousands of feet if you can stay in the column.

Granted, this would be a slow, tedious way to travel, but it doesn't seem any more ridiculous than any number of other attempts to stretch the aviation envelope.

And if you upgrade from the riveted blades and poor airframe aerodynamics of a Bensen, I suspect 4:1 could be bettered. Without an engine to work around, imagine how much cleaner the shape of a gyro could be made, and how much smaller and more effective the tail.
 

okikuma

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Paul,

The B8 came with the plywood rudder and "prop guard". The wood is in great condition, so I just lightly sanded the varnish and then painted over with white Krylon and added the Red Bensen designed stripe on the rudder.

If operated as a towed gyroglider, I have no plans on releasing the tow line in flight.

Daydream thought: It would be really cool to have an airshow routine were as the gyroglider be aerotowed up to about 10,000 agl, released and descend with a burning smoke pot, flying downward with various right and left spirals, and with a landing in front of the crowd.

Wayne
 
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