question - why did you choose that one?
I'm not familiar with it...have been reading a bit about the American Ranger...which looks similar. I'm sure there are pros and cons... What would you say are the big differences to consider?
The Tango has a good price point, the distributor/owner is in Roswell Georgia, so fairly local. All components are manufactured in Russia. Tango has worked with pilot input for the last few years to develop a good machine. The blades are very good, Yes it is an MTO clone as far as looks. The Tango uses the Yamaha YG3 snow machine engine, 130 HP fuel injected, Gobs of power, The American Ranger is top notch for sure, first class all the way, The tango does not use the $40k Rotax engine, so that is reflected in the price. I have flown both, and both are great machines just depends on what you want.
The price difference in AR-1 kit versus Tango kit is mainly between a new compliant aircraft engine and a used snow mobile Yamaha engine converted to use in the gyro. If you take that price out the real difference in price is about $4k. AR-1 is apples to apples $4k more expensive kit. Likely because manufactured with US labor.
Yes Ron That engine would be awesome on a light weight 2 place dominator that wieghed in at under 500lb.
Tha Yamaha engines are proving themselves to be a good engine, just as the subaru did decades ago on the home made 2 place gyros. The Yamaha may not be for everyone. There was no way I could afford to get a new Autogyro MTO, American Ranger, Magni etc, Not poor mouthing just cannot justify spending more than a years salary on a gyro. The Tango fit my price point, and the extra power is a real plus, The American Ranger is like a BMW, first class fit and finish, all aircraft grade wiring, engine etc, it is the cream of the crop for sure, The fit and finish of the Tango is not as fine as the Ranger, nothing wrong with it, the Tangos are getting better all the time with each new shipment. The engines are very low time sled engines mine had 900 miles on it and when I opened it up it was brand new clean on the inside. I can always ad carpet and other bells and whistles as time goes on. I really wanted a 2 place side by side like a Xenon/Trendak but they are not as agile as a tandem machine, plus they are out of my price range.
In all honesty, if comparing brand new to brand new, if I were to set out to fly across the ocean or over a jungle, I would feel safer flying something powered with a Rotax 912 over a yamaha conversion... but only just slightly. Rotax 912 engines can and do fail. they are of similar displacement as the sled engines, they run fairly high rpms, they have just as many points of failure potential as the sled engines.
My biggest " problem " with the sled engines is not the engine itself, but the gearbox. These engines were not designed for a gearbox to be attached. If you can get a good gearbox on it and its attached in a solid way, then it becomes a great engine alternative to the Rotax.
I agree with Ron's evaluation. The Yamaha's have proven to be dependable and the weak link COULD be the gearbox.
But it is a used engine that we are adapting right now and we do not really know now new. That is the other downside. I wish they would sell us new engines to modify but then the cost would go up.
Edge Performance is providing new Yamaha engines converted with a gearbox made by Teal in Arizona. However, the cost of the new engine converted is the same as Rotax 912ULS and its a single point of failure in electronics, ECU, ignition etc. unlike Rotax.
When it cost the same I'd rather have Rotax! Support would be easier for me with Rotax too and I can get training from Rotax.
At 2/3rds the cost I would choose the Yamaha and trust it about the same with the same preflight inspection, care, and feeding.
I'd have to find a snowmobile or motorcycle mechanic to inspect my work and engine.
Not sure why the yamaha engines being " Used " is a concern.
My yamaha I installed on my Dominator was used, but it had only like 200 miles of use. So yes it wasn't brand new, never been run... But 200 miles on a snowmobile equals like less than 20 hours, possibly less than 10 hours of engine run time.
Would you tell me that you would pay significantly more for a Rotax 912S with zero hours when you could save thousands of dollars buying one that is known to be running in perfect condition, and only has 10 to 20 hours of run time on it?
Some people I know would actually place a higher value on the used engine because its broke in, and proven.... compared to the engine that is brand new and not yet proven.
Rotax does have dual ignition, but losing ignition on a modern four stroke motorcycle / snowmobile / pwc watercraft type engine is EXTREMELY rare. enough that I would have very little concern or worry about that. My worries would be things like will the crank fail, will the cam chain fail, will a valve break off and drop, will a piston fail.... Or concerns over will the gearbox fail or will something about how the gearbox is attached or some kind of harmonic cause failure of something inside the engine.
Rotax 912 engines are well proven that other than some type of defect, the engine internals should not fail under normal operation. It is because of that, that if I were to fly over the amazon rainforest I would prefer the rotax over the yamaha. But I would feel even better with a Lycoming O-235 than the Rotax....
The Yamaha engines are racking up hours though. They have already long been proven in their original applications. Their motorcycles, their Snow machines, and their PWC's are legendary at being the most durable on the market. But there are way more people flying yamaha now then you might imagine. There are a TON of people putting them in fixed wings now. So fleet hours are going up and issues and problems are being sorted out.
A USED, but extremely low hour yamaha can be put together for less than half the cost of a Rotax, and for some people that savings is critical. But something else to consider is replacement parts and servicing on the yamaha is also a fraction of the cost of Rotax parts and service... and the yamaha engines also make more power at a similar weight.
This isn’t a dis on Yamaha conversions. This is simply a statement of fact why Tango is cheaper. People don’t realize where 75% of price difference in say an AR-1 kit and a Tango kit is coming from. It’s basically from the engine.
I don’t know how many Yamaha engines are flying and racking hours. Has any gyro or airplane reached 2000, 1500, 1000 hours without major work on a Yamaha conversion? I don’t know. I do know Rotax is about to reach 60000 91x series aircraft engines and 10,s of thousands of them have reached it gone beyond TBO and they are the original engine designer and manufacturer. So when a customer has technical issues we as OEM can get them connected with service technicians and centers. I have offered kits without engines for real home builders if they want to put on their own engine but it seems like people like to pay little and expect all the engineering and work already done for them and build little. That obviously doesn’t work like that. If one is a true builder and mechanically oriented than they they should figure out some things. So in the end no one has taken up that offer but they do continue to complain about Rotax and us not offering Yamaha or Viking or Aero-momentum. We offer the platform just as Zenith offers a 750 kit. Figure out how to put on the power plant you want on it guys just as an airplane kit builder figures it out. It means you have to really do some building and some fabrication for real. And that is where things kind of end in the gyro world as I am experiencing it. Very different builder in gyro world compared to Amateur Built airplane world.
I am willing to offer a Yamaha conversion but not from used stock. I will buy the converted package right from Edge Performance and if the engine has an issue, tell the customer to call Edge Performance like I tell them to call Lockwood or CPS for Rotax. Of course that also means the price is no different because Edge Performance is offering brand new Yamaha engines converted with a US made gearbox and a brand new aircraft quality wiring harness not from the sled
If someone is in a place in life where they can write a check for 70-100 grand for a gyroplane, to save 10 grand on a sled engine does not make alot of sense.
And as a manufacturer, like yourself, it is far easier to just buy a Rotax, its new.... likely has some warranty... bolt it on and go. No having to locate used sleds, pull engines, clean things, make wiring harness, etc.... etc.... and still not have a " Used " engine and no warranty.