Trailering

alanbarker

Newbie
Joined
Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Hi, I'm looking for info on trailering a gyro. I'm a retired pilot; my bucket list in the next couple of years is to RV+trailer around the 48 states, and to fly from each state.

Is this a reasonable thing to do with a gyro (AR-1/M-16)? I have no gyro experience; do I need an airport, or can I find "unprepared" takeoff and landing areas with gyros? My other option/consideration is to do this with paramotor trike. The trike is much easier to trailer and needs less of a "runway", but is VERY limited in range, capabilities, and flying conditions.
 

Vance

Gyroplane CFI
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Nipomo,California
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Givens Predator
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Welcome to the Rotary Wing Forum Alan,

A gyroplane is easy to trailer and set up with the proper equipment.

Some gyroplanes will do pretty well off airport, some not so much.

A gyroplane can land in very little space and can manage winds better than any light fixed wing or weight shift control aircraft.

The takeoff can be a little long.

As a pilot the transition to gyroplanes is pretty straight forward and not very expensive.

Air work is similar enough to a fixed wing to where learning will be fairly quick.

You may find slow flight disquieting.

Takeoffs and landings are a little harder to learn and you need to remember takeoffs are about indicated air speed and rotor rpm. If you don’t manage the rotor you can have problems. Approach to land tends to be steep but fairly easy to learn as long as you don’t try to fly a gyroplane like an airplane.

In my opinion best thing you can do is fly as many different gyroplanes as you can and see how you like it. It is very different than flying an airplane. The questions of how far, how fast and how high become much less relevant.

A good fixed wing pilot typically takes seven to ten hours of dual to pass the practical test standards.
 

Tyger

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453
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Germantown, NY
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Magni M16
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If you want to trailer, you'll need to take the rotor off. And put it back on again when you get there. I know some folks do it, but I'd rather just fly it to where I'm going. Maybe your wife can drive the RV while you fly? :)
I'm going to guess finding "unprepared" places to take off/land is going to be a challenge. Whose land is that likely to be on? There are lots of small airfields out there, though. I personally would stick with those.
 

DavePA11

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
492
Location
Northborough
Don’t you need perfectly calm wind to fly a para trike? I found even most trike pilots will only fly early morning or near sunset when there is little wind.

Buy a Sport Copter Vortex M912 single seat since it’s the best one for off airport flying, but I think taking the rotor on and off would be a pain. You can rig a wench at top of the trailer and take the rotor assembly off then remove one blade so can store in an enclosed trailer. Not sure where you could just pull over and take off for a flight. Maybe best just to go to a local uncontrolled airport.

Fara, how difficult would it be to take rotor on/off before/after every flight if Alan wanted a two seater?

I mean winch up there. :) Just in case Tyger grades my post. I think he is an English teacher. :)
 

ultracruiser41

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One bolt removes the rotor. I’d never trailer with the rotor on. I’ve always had a long rack to hold the completely assembled rotor once I remove it from the head. Easy winch assembly eliminated the need to man handle the rotors.
Pretty simple rig.
 

alanbarker

Newbie
Joined
Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Hi there, and thanks for all the replies! I've seen a few trailers online, where the rotor is left on top, and supported at each end. I assume that the supports relieve some weight and pressure off the hub assembly, but you all seem to indicate that this is NOT good for longevity.

My hope is to be able to fly out west, and so much easier to trailer from the east coast than fly. For example, I love Utah and South Dakota and would love to stay out there for a month's worth of flying.

Unlike general aviation, I assume that there are no rentals of gyros in the US (or Europe, for that matter)? I'd have a minimum of 100 hours flying and private pilot's with endorsement...
 

fara

AR-1 gyro manufacturer
Joined
Oct 31, 2011
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3,361
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Tampa, FL
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AR-1
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3600+ .. New to gyroplanes
Alan:
Bad idea to trailer with the rotor on. Shock loading in the kinds of long trips you are thinking of doing can reach humongous values. Can you do it. Yes. Is it smart to do that. Not in my opinion. Shorter trips on good roads its more advisable. Taking the teeter bolt off, pulling the rotor up with soft ties using a top mounted arm and winch is not so hard. Then you can set the blades system intact (instead of taking 2 blades apart) on top of the trailer with proper box and cover on it. Your trailer needs to be about 24 foot in length. Folding mast will easily get you in standard trailers whose door height is 7 foot or slightly lower.

With the right setup you can take the rotor system off and put it on in less than 15 minutes. We can help you put the arm and winch on your trailer if you decided to go with us. We can mock it up in SolidWorks and get the swing arm for the winch laser cut and welded for a nominal fee.

In reality you have to stick with small airparks or airstrips. Unless you have permission from the land owner and he has no neighbors, you really can't just take off of any place you want to. That will get you in trouble with the law. In the US there are over 19700 airports, 5,700 of them are completely open to the general public. With a little planning there is no need to do the flying from illegal land spots.

To be honest if your purpose is to go poke holes in the ground in back country with big tires, I hate to bust any gyroplane pilot's bubble but we who have experience in other categories of aircraft as well easily know no in production gyroplane is as good and safe and easy as a bush STOL airplane for that purpose. None. Not a single model from any manufacturer. What gyroplanes will be good at is with some experience you will be able to fly in moderate conditions where it may be uncomfortable for winged aircraft to fly. So you have to define the parameters of your mission and choose the tool that fits your needs best. I know despite your thinking you are most likely to fly from airstrips if you are going to be in the US. Unless you are Burt Reynolds. Some Americans have always been a little crazy.


I do not know of places renting gyroplanes right now but that doesn't mean there aren't any. There are some Primary Category certified gyroplanes that AutoGyro produced that could be used for renting but practically the real limitation is going to be insurance because its not available for that purpose. But may be I am wrong.
 
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Joe Pires

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Geneva FL FD92
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Aviomania GS2.
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600 ish solo gyro and 190 ish two place
Hi, I'm looking for info on trailering a gyro. I'm a retired pilot; my bucket list in the next couple of years is to RV+trailer around the 48 states, and to fly from each state.

Is this a reasonable thing to do with a gyro (AR-1/M-16)? I have no gyro experience; do I need an airport, or can I find "unprepared" takeoff and landing areas with gyros? My other option/consideration is to do this with paramotor trike. The trike is much easier to trailer and needs less of a "runway", but is VERY limited in range, capabilities, and flying conditions.
Alan I have similar goals. I want to fly some of the iconic and beautiful landscapes across our country. I hope to pickup my trailer on Tuesday having been at the fabricators since March. I as m hoping to make my first trip to North Carolina in October. I am in Florida, wh as t part of the country are you in?
 

alanbarker

Newbie
Joined
Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Alan:
Bad idea to trailer with the rotor on. Shock loading in the kinds of long trips you are thinking of doing can reach humongous values. Can you do it. Yes. Is it smart to do that. Not in my opinion. Shorter trips on good roads its more advisable. Taking the teeter bolt off, pulling the rotor up with soft ties using a top mounted arm and winch is not so hard. Then you can set the blades system intact (instead of taking 2 blades apart) on top of the trailer with proper box and cover on it. Your trailer needs to be about 24 foot in length. Folding mast will easily get you in standard trailers whose door height is 7 foot or slightly lower.

With the right setup you can take the rotor system off and put it on in less than 15 minutes. We can help you put the arm and winch on your trailer if you decided to go with us. We can mock it up in SolidWorks and get the swing arm for the winch laser cut and welded for a nominal fee.

In reality you have to stick with small airparks or airstrips. Unless you have permission from the land owner and he has no neighbors, you really can't just take off of any place you want to. That will get you in trouble with the law. In the US there are over 19700 airports, 5,700 of them are completely open to the general public. With a little planning there is no need to do the flying from illegal land spots.

To be honest if your purpose is to go poke holes in the ground in back country with big tires, I hate to bust any gyroplane pilot's bubble but we who have experience in other categories of aircraft as well easily know no in production gyroplane is as good and safe and easy as a bush STOL airplane for that purpose. None. Not a single model from any manufacturer. What gyroplanes will be good at is with some experience you will be able to fly in moderate conditions where it may be uncomfortable for winged aircraft to fly. So you have to define the parameters of your mission and choose the tool that fits your needs best. I know despite your thinking you are most likely to fly from airstrips if you are going to be in the US. Unless you are Burt Reynolds. Some Americans have always been a little crazy.


I do not know of places renting gyroplanes right now but that doesn't mean there aren't any. There are some Primary Category certified gyroplanes that AutoGyro produced that could be used for renting but practically the real limitation is going to be insurance because its not available for that purpose. But may be I am wrong.
Love it! Thanks for the reply!!!
 

MilesW

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2012
Messages
50
Location
Western Australia
Aircraft
Sportcopter M912
Total Flight Time
1400+ Gyro
To be honest if your purpose is to go poke holes in the ground in back country with big tires, I hate to bust any gyroplane pilot's bubble but we who have experience in other categories of aircraft as well easily know no in production gyroplane is as good and safe and easy as a bush STOL airplane for that purpose. None. Not a single model from any manufacturer. What gyroplanes will be good at is with some experience you will be able to fly in moderate conditions where it may be uncomfortable for winged aircraft to fly.
I'll bite. Your experience in other other categories of aircraft may be extensive and admirable, but you appear to be woefully ignorant of the the true capabilities of a gyroplane, including at least one production model. The bush STOL airplane will have it over the gyro amongst the larger river stones, and maybe a few other scenarios, but in most cases it will be as good, and certainly never no less safe.
As to, "what gyroplanes will be good at is with some experience you will be able to fly in moderate conditions where it may be uncomfortable for winged aircraft to fly". Complete uninformed drivel. A gyro will fly in extreme conditions no fixed wing would even contemplate flying in. A gyro is the safest thing you will ever fly.



Miles
 

alanbarker

Newbie
Joined
Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Alan I have similar goals. I want to fly some of the iconic and beautiful landscapes across our country. I hope to pickup my trailer on Tuesday having been at the fabricators since March. I as m hoping to make my first trip to North Carolina in October. I am in Florida, wh as t part of the country are you in?
Hi, Joe! Thanks for the reply. When you get your trailer, I'd love to get some pictures and info on your specs. Do you plan to remove the rotor when trailering?
I'm a 6-7 month snowbird, wintering in Ft Myers. I head south soon, and will be looking for a flying and hanger location.
 

rickloon

Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2011
Messages
238
Location
Paulden AZ
Aircraft
soma gyro ,aurora butterfly
RE stol off airport opperations, a gyro can land shorter than anything else, one of my gyros has a long stroke landing gear that will land a 0 forward speed. However the take off is the problem. Unless you have a jump to gyro getting the rotor up to speed is the big thing. My 912 powered gyro has a very powerfull pre-rotater that can get the rotor all the way to 300+ rpm . The problem that no one thinks about is that unless the runway is not rough the bumping can disrupt the rotor so it will not pick up speed as it should.
Rick
 

fara

AR-1 gyro manufacturer
Joined
Oct 31, 2011
Messages
3,361
Location
Tampa, FL
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AR-1
Total Flight Time
3600+ .. New to gyroplanes
I'll bite. Your experience in other other categories of aircraft may be extensive and admirable, but you appear to be woefully ignorant of the the true capabilities of a gyroplane, including at least one production model. The bush STOL airplane will have it over the gyro amongst the larger river stones, and maybe a few other scenarios, but in most cases it will be as good, and certainly never no less safe.
As to, "what gyroplanes will be good at is with some experience you will be able to fly in moderate conditions where it may be uncomfortable for winged aircraft to fly". Complete uninformed drivel. A gyro will fly in extreme conditions no fixed wing would even contemplate flying in. A gyro is the safest thing you will ever fly.



Miles
Yes I know what you are saying but unless you have a jump takeoff gyro which isn't in production nor is it allowed with a SP license, there is no way you can guarantee as short a takeoff at gross weight as a STOL airplane can do while it goes over the rough surface. The problem is takeoff to clear 50 foot obstacle given very rough ground.
Larger engine with more HP can help the gyroplane accelerate to Vx and get more out of pre-rotation for cost in $$$. Still way better value than a STOL airplane overall.
 
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ultracruiser41

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Hey Miles......think Fara knows everything there is to know about gyros and their capabilities. Better back off the attitude a bit. Geez.
 

Gyro28866

David McCutchen
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I have had both, open flat trailers and a fully enclosed trailer. fully enclosed is the only way to go.
Currently, I have a 38' Gooseneck with an inside height of 10'. I built a blade support on one wall that is 28' long. It has the pitch and cone angle for each blade built into it. My rotor sits nestled in the pre coned and pitched position, in theory - no stress on the blades or hubbar. Actually, I have had both my Dominator Gyro and a Kolb Firefly ride comfortably together.
30 minutes to teardown and load and 30 minutes to unload and put the rotor on and I am ready for preflight inspection or kick the tires and light the fires.
 

Joe Pires

star hoarder
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Geneva FL FD92
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Aviomania GS2.
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600 ish solo gyro and 190 ish two place
Hi, Joe! Thanks for the reply. When you get your trailer, I'd love to get some pictures and info on your specs. Do you plan to remove the rotor when trailering?
I'm a 6-7 month snowbird, wintering in Ft Myers. I head south soon, and will be looking for a flying and hanger location.
Yes, I will definitely be removing my rotor blades. My fabricator has promised completion by tomorrow, but its likely to be two more weeks. I am 15 miles west if 95, maybe you can stop by on your way south.
 

alanbarker

Newbie
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Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Yes, I will definitely be removing my rotor blades. My fabricator has promised completion by tomorrow, but its likely to be two more weeks. I am 15 miles west if 95, maybe you can stop by on your way south.
Joe, let me know when it's done. I'm heading down next week, so will check in with you. Thanks!
 

alanbarker

Newbie
Joined
Aug 7, 2019
Messages
28
Location
Florida
Total Flight Time
10000+
Yes, I will definitely be removing my rotor blades. My fabricator has promised completion by tomorrow, but its likely to be two more weeks. I am 15 miles west if 95, maybe you can stop by on your way south.
By the way, love your house and the videos. Amazing!!!
 

MilesW

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2012
Messages
50
Location
Western Australia
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Sportcopter M912
Total Flight Time
1400+ Gyro
Hey Miles......think Fara knows everything there is to know about gyros and their capabilities. Better back off the attitude a bit. Geez.
"Fara knows everything there is to know about gyros and their capabilities"

Wow, is that right? . It is quite obvious that he does not.

A very broad statement was made about gyro's that was not entirely correct. I countered. No attitude. Just fact.

Another fact. There is no one who "knows everything there is to know about gyros and their capabilities". Absolutely no one. A dangerous thought to think there is, and I would caution anyone thinking of getting into gyro's and reading these forums to be very wary of anyone claimed to, or claiming to know it all.
 
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