Whats the difference, Trendak, Argo, Celier??

Greg Vos

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its a total mess trying to pick through it all. I even have a name called Manufactura Lotnicaa and the Argon!

Made this - think it covers things.

Thanks Phil
well politics aside it’s still one of the greatest gyroplanes I have flown and instruct on 👍.....the guys in the UK miss out
 

ventana7

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I was the initial importer of the Cellier Xenon in 2007-08. I've spent considerable time in both Poland and the US with both Artur Trendak and Raphael Cellier.
I'm not up on the latest iterations of either the companies or players but can offer this:

That design of gyro flies beautifully and I doubt it matters whose version it is. (Greg Vos in a post above also endorses the joy of flying this design and he is a very experienced instructor with a wide range of teaching assignments). IMHO the Xenon/Tercel/Argo- whatever name- design is certainly nicer to fly than any of the other 2 place side by side gyros and again in my opinion more enjoyable to fly than Magni, Auto-gyro or Ela tandems. (I've flown them all). The key reason is very light stick forces- like slight pressure with thumb and forefinger - no more. Very little arm strain or vibration. I also think it is more comfortable seating sitting upright as opposed to others mentioned above that have you more reclined or your legs extended in front of you. In addition the visibility is better than the other side by side machines.

If I were buying today I would opt for the 915 as that seems the best way to go, however the RST engines have proved very reliable with good power and many units in use with high hours. I would not have any qualms about purchasing a unit with an RST engine. (Someone came on this forum and said they had heard otherwise but were unable to provide even a single instance of an RST failure).

When I imported the first 10 units of Xenon to the US Trendak was still involved with Cellier and between his dishonesty and Trendak's startup there were some issues but since tossing Raphael out and being in business for years now Trendak seems solid...BUT they are still in Poland and without a stable US distributor you would be shipping parts from Poland for things you could not source in the US and any warranty issues would be problematic. Maybe not a deal breaker but know in advance there might be challenges.

Any iteration of the current machines seem about 90% or more the same so if I were buying one how would I decide?
I would not send money to any organization Raphael is part of - he is simply dishonest and your deposit would be at risk and any warranty coverage would be very doubtful.
Trendak is solid and I would have no worries about the RST- but warranty issues and parts from Poland would be something of a concern.
If any company actually had a SOLID US presence and could be counted on for warranty and parts availability that would be a big plus. But if there is just a US sales rep who is not stocking parts and guaranteeing warranty service that is not much better than dealing with Trendak. And just because someone is starting up now you don't have much assurance they will be here in 5 years.

That's my 2 cents worth.

Rob

PS. One reason there is no intellectual property on the design is that Raphael developed it in partnership with a guy who built and paid for the molds and they jointly owned it. When the guy suddenly died Raphael stole the molds and was chased by the guys children. Raphael could never sue the subsequent companies because they were not his to begin with.
 
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Greg Vos

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Just wish to add that I have never had an issue getting parts for xenon, zen 1 from AT or Alvaro, service has been great and it seems they have parts for the older units.

If anyone is considering a gyro and you can get a xenon jump on it ....If side by side enclosed and comfort is your Thing. 😊 anyone ever in Cape Town who would like a free ride to exp the xenon Rolls Royce Comforts and a view of the best city in the world please look me up, if I’m in town it will be my pleasure to host you.
 

Philbennett

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No comment on the aircraft from me because I’ve never flown in one. Couple questions though. The molds to make an aircraft how come there isn’t better control of who the customer is? I mean you engage with company A to build bodies for company B. How can it be possible company A then starts building for so many others too? That surely has to have some commercial infringements somewhere. It’s like any old Tom, Dick or Harry making Ferrari clones because the panel maker will punt out bodies and panels to anyone.

Edited to add:- I kind of get the issue with Celier and Trendak but how come there are now others punting the same body etc but totally different brands?

I also don’t quite get why in 2020 Poland / UK / France / USA makes a hill of beans difference. You can see by this virus spread we are all just half a days flight away and immediately via web/mail/phone. There isn’t anything that can’t be dealt with with a phone call and shipping things quickly. No knowledge why but it just seems a very odd arrangement.

Commercially it would serve all parties to actually issue a joint release to clarify the cluster.
 
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Greg Vos

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No comment on the aircraft from me because I’ve never flown in one. Couple questions though. The molds to make an aircraft how come there isn’t better control of who the customer is? I mean you engage with company A to build bodies for company B. How can it be possible company A then starts building for so many others too? That surely has to have some commercial infringements somewhere. It’s like any old Tom, Dick or Harry making Ferrari clones because the panel maker will punt out bodies and panels to anyone.

Edited to add:- I kind of get the issue with Celier and Trendak but how come there are now others punting the same body etc but totally different brands?

I also don’t quite get why in 2020 Poland / UK / France / USA makes a hill of beans difference. You can see by this virus spread we are all just half a days flight away and immediately via web/mail/phone. There isn’t anything that can’t be dealt with with a phone call and shipping things quickly. No knowledge why but it just seems a very odd arrangement.

Commercially it would serve all parties to actually issue a joint release to clarify the cluster.
Phil you have hit the nail on the head ! I had this discussion with Fly Argo who were clearly a new start up (2016) and all I wanted for them was to say we are new, we have the rights to xenon, but no they insisted that the FA black wasn’t a xenon they were building a new machine from the ground up.... today still I do not know of a Fly Argo unit that has been delivered? They insisted they had nothing to do with RC? Until I presented them with his letter 😳😳 see my post above

They told me they were flying in the UK Phil Harwood confirmed this is untrue and I believe him and in the various parts of the Middle East incl Thailand 😳 When I ask who were the clients ....

I don’t think Steve May even today has record of any FA gyro...to say the least with the little I know I was instrumental in the local client here backing out of the distribution agreement .... but still waiting for the return of the 50% deposit
I look forward to hearing from a happy client who has a Fly Argo ..... but they still cannot deliver or provide warranty and claims procedures so be warned if you buy a xenon 4 from FA
But I’m sure dealing with Trendak will be fine or a kit from airgyro
 

ventana7

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😊 anyone ever in Cape Town who would like a free ride to exp the xenon Rolls Royce Comforts and a view of the best city in the world please look me up, if I’m in town it will be my pleasure to host you.

I'd take him up on this offer guys- I got to fly around Cape Town in a gyro with underwater photographer and pilot extraordinaire, Jean Tresfon and CT has to be one of the best cities in the world to fly from as within 50 miles there are so many awesome sights to see.
 

WaspAir

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The molds to make an aircraft how come there isn’t better control of who the customer is? I mean you engage with company A to build bodies for company B. How can it be possible company A then starts building for so many others too? That surely has to have some commercial infringements somewhere. It’s like any old Tom, Dick or Harry making Ferrari clones because the panel maker will punt out bodies and panels to anyone.
1) If you don't specify by contract that it is an exclusive arrangement with no right to sell to others, there is little to enforce (absence of such a contract term might induce the supplier to offer a lower price, so it could be intentional). Not everybody is sophisticated about the legal niceties.

2) Ferrari has successfully intimidated unrelated builders of kit-cars into relenting, such as one that used a Corvette chassis with a pseudo 375 GTS Daytona Spyder classic body, with Ferrari agressively protecting what they perceive as a shape that has instant recognition and world-wide trademark value. Xenon, not so much. Eons ago Don Johnson drove such a fake Ferrari in the Miami Vice tv show:

ratio3x2_575.jpg
As a new show on a relatively shoestring budget, an honest-to-goodness Ferrari was out of the question for Miami Vice, but the status of the main character as a high-profile boat racer demanded he have a flashy car to match. A Corvette-based Daytona kit car was used, and once Ferrari got wind, it took action.

Ferrari was so much more fun in the 1980s, and instead of just asking the producers of the show to take the badges off or stop using the vehicle, they asked for the Daytona to be blown up on screen. That moment ended up being one of the pivotal moments of the series, and a great spectacle.
The brand was even a good sport about the whole thing, and offered the show a real Ferrari Testarossa, the brand’s flagship at the time, to be used for the remainder of the series.
 

Philbennett

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Yeah no doubt the commercial arrangements were loose if what you say is the theme of events. Although that seems bizarre tbh.

As you highlight Ferrari pursue even unrelated kit suppliers - can you imagine how they might react with what was an official supplier?
 

fara

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I was the initial importer of the Cellier Xenon in 2007-08. I've spent considerable time in both Poland and the US with both Artur Trendak and Raphael Cellier.
I'm not up on the latest iterations of either the companies or players but can offer this:

That design of gyro flies beautifully and I doubt it matters whose version it is. (Greg Vos in a post above also endorses the joy of flying this design and he is a very experienced instructor with a wide range of teaching assignments). IMHO the Xenon/Tercel/Argo- whatever name- design is certainly nicer to fly than any of the other 2 place side by side gyros and again in my opinion more enjoyable to fly than Magni, Auto-gyro or Ela tandems. (I've flown them all). The key reason is very light stick forces- like slight pressure with thumb and forefinger - no more. Very little arm strain or vibration. I also think it is more comfortable seating sitting upright as opposed to others mentioned above that have you more reclined or your legs extended in front of you. In addition the visibility is better than the other side by side machines.

If I were buying today I would opt for the 915 as that seems the best way to go, however the RST engines have proved very reliable with good power and many units in use with high hours. I would not have any qualms about purchasing a unit with an RST engine. (Someone came on this forum and said they had heard otherwise but were unable to provide even a single instance of an RST failure).

When I imported the first 10 units of Xenon to the US Trendak was still involved with Cellier and between his dishonesty and Trendak's startup there were some issues but since tossing Raphael out and being in business for years now Trendak seems solid...BUT they are still in Poland and without a stable US distributor you would be shipping parts from Poland for things you could not source in the US and any warranty issues would be problematic. Maybe not a deal breaker but know in advance there might be challenges.

Any iteration of the current machines seem about 90% or more the same so if I were buying one how would I decide?
I would not send money to any organization Raphael is part of - he is simply dishonest and your deposit would be at risk and any warranty coverage would be very doubtful.
Trendak is solid and I would have no worries about the RST- but warranty issues and parts from Poland would be something of a concern.
If any company actually had a SOLID US presence and could be counted on for warranty and parts availability that would be a big plus. But if there is just a US sales rep who is not stocking parts and guaranteeing warranty service that is not much better than dealing with Trendak. And just because someone is starting up now you don't have much assurance they will be here in 5 years.

That's my 2 cents worth.

Rob

PS. One reason there is no intellectual property on the design is that Raphael developed it in partnership with a guy who built and paid for the molds and they jointly owned it. When the guy suddenly died Raphael stole the molds and was chased by the guys children. Raphael could never sue the subsequent companies because they were not his to begin with.


I can tell you of three or four RST engine outs and the owners were left hanging with no support or warranty
1) Chris Lord had an engine out, blew the engine while flying it to the customer (Xenon)
2) Trendak Gyro in Florida with RST engine (135 HP not 125 HP one) has issues. I put in 4 hours flying it with Alvaro while he was in Florida. That's first hand. That engine only runs kind of ok with 100LL. 93 Octane does not cut it.
3) Engine out in Canada with RST engine for Xenon in Canada. No warranty or support
4) Engine out I think in NC or TN and Xenon crash landed. Its in NTSB records as well

That 135 HP engine is the whole reason why Alvaro wanted a 915iS on it instead and Trendak didn't want to do it and thus AirGyro's parting to do AG915 using at first, Fly Argo and now MBL as kit suppliers. I have also flown in AG915 in Florida which is the Fly Argo supplied version and there are some technical mistakes in engine installation and avionics but given its one of the first, I would expect that. The main thing is these should be caught in testing and corrected. For that you need someone who has good knowledge of 915 installation details and avionics details.

I have only flown M24 briefly and AG915 and Trendak gyro. M24 seemed better than the other two to me in handling but that's personal preference I believe. I think the name to fame for Xenon is its big. I guess if you are a big guy that matters. To me big is just big. What else is there to say about being a big aircraft. It certainly does not make the aircraft fly better. In theory it hurts performance for sure. But if you are big and you want to fly you certainly need to fit in the machine. If your mission is such that big or having space matters then and only then big makes sense
 

fara

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its a total mess trying to pick through it all. I even have a name called Manufactura Lotnicaa and the Argon!

Made this - think it covers things.


Manufaktura Lotnicza (Poland) is Fly Argo aka Argon aka Xenon 4 aka AG915 (1st batch of units brought in USA). The manufacturing entity is run by Krzysztof Wrinowski. Just to make it clear or may be not.


 
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Illini85

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To confuse matters even more, I found this notice posted on the FlyArgo website under the "Announcement" tab. I'm going to start a publishing company and print and sell trading cards of all the people in this story. That's where the money to be made is. This would be a wonderful reality TV show.



In light of disturbing information coming to our attention, which could potentially mislead our customers, we wish to inform, that FLYARGO Company is the only licensee of XENON IV family gyrocopters. Also, we want to point out, that we are in no way connected to website http://www.argo.aero or entities such as ArgoAero/ K. Wronowski/ Manufaktura Lotnicza, which entity, without our knowledge or approval/ has showcased on that website, as well as via Facebook, promotional material of products, to distribution of which FLYARGO is the only entitled entity i.e. XENON IV family gyrocopters. Also, the showroom showed in those contents is sole property of FLYARGO, and only FLYARGO has a legal title to it.

Our company has issued an appropriate call to entity responsible for abovementioned infringements in order for them to stop any actions misleading our customers regarding the identity of their company, content published by them, and a call for them to remove from their website, argo.aero, any mentions about products owned by FLYARGO. If this call will have no effect, we will pursue legal action.
 

fara

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To confuse matters even more, I found this notice posted on the FlyArgo website under the "Announcement" tab. I'm going to start a publishing company and print and sell trading cards of all the people in this story. That's where the money to be made is. This would be a wonderful reality TV show.



In light of disturbing information coming to our attention, which could potentially mislead our customers, we wish to inform, that FLYARGO Company is the only licensee of XENON IV family gyrocopters. Also, we want to point out, that we are in no way connected to website http://www.argo.aero or entities such as ArgoAero/ K. Wronowski/ Manufaktura Lotnicza, which entity, without our knowledge or approval/ has showcased on that website, as well as via Facebook, promotional material of products, to distribution of which FLYARGO is the only entitled entity i.e. XENON IV family gyrocopters. Also, the showroom showed in those contents is sole property of FLYARGO, and only FLYARGO has a legal title to it.

Our company has issued an appropriate call to entity responsible for abovementioned infringements in order for them to stop any actions misleading our customers regarding the identity of their company, content published by them, and a call for them to remove from their website, argo.aero, any mentions about products owned by FLYARGO. If this call will have no effect, we will pursue legal action.

That's pretty screwed up given that I know first hand that Krzysztof Wrinowski is running the factory ... the whole Xenon or any derivative is drowned in complexity
 
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Illini85

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Abid I'm glad you don't have this kind of drama to deal with. Designing, manufacturing and marketing is stressful enough without this seemingly never ending conflict. Its a shame because I have always thought the Xenon design was basically a good and fresh concept with beautiful lines. While I only know Alvaro from his YouTube videos I admire his obvious passion and hope all this doesn't impact him.
 

DavePA11

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Seems like a lot of risk putting money for any of these. Just go buy an AR-1 and avoid all the risk in losing your money...
 

Greg Vos

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I can tell you of three or four RST engine outs and the owners were left hanging with no support or warranty
1) Chris Lord had an engine out, blew the engine while flying it to the customer (Xenon)
2) Trendak Gyro in Florida with RST engine (135 HP not 125 HP one) has issues. I put in 4 hours flying it with Alvaro while he was in Florida. That's first hand. That engine only runs kind of ok with 100LL. 93 Octane does not cut it.
3) Engine out in Canada with RST engine for Xenon in Canada. No warranty or support
4) Engine out I think in NC or TN and Xenon crash landed. Its in NTSB records as well

That 135 HP engine is the whole reason why Alvaro wanted a 915iS on it instead and Trendak didn't want to do it and thus AirGyro's parting to do AG915 using at first, Fly Argo and now MBL as kit suppliers. I have also flown in AG915 in Florida which is the Fly Argo supplied version and there are some technical mistakes in engine installation and avionics but given its one of the first, I would expect that. The main thing is these should be caught in testing and corrected. For that you need someone who has good knowledge of 915 installation details and avionics details.

I have only flown M24 briefly and AG915 and Trendak gyro. M24 seemed better than the other two to me in handling but that's personal preference I believe. I think the name to fame for Xenon is its big. I guess if you are a big guy that matters. To me big is just big. What else is there to say about being a big aircraft. It certainly does not make the aircraft fly better. In theory it hurts performance for sure. But if you are big and you want to fly you certainly need to fit in the machine. If your mission is such that big or having space matters then and only then big makes sense
You seem to miss a very important aspect the xenon offers? It’s visibility? The M24 two up, and I’m not a big guy is very cozy.
The other thing is if a pilot is used to just banging in full throttle and not paying attention to MAP you will damage the engine.

Lets not overlook many pilots are licensed and have not been trained to monitor a MAP gauge, casing point many MTO’s do not even have a MAP gauge. Monitoring MAP is vital if your using a turbo charged engine.
Back to the M24 not saying one is better than the other but since I’m rated on it I can comment with some experience, it’s well built has good resale value and is just heavy on the stick, if you need that stability (in flight) because your ham fisted with the stick all good and well, Magni’s are by far the easiest to fly, the heavy composite rotors are responsible for this stable in flight characteristic and many guys need and want that....most helicopter pilots are familiar with light stick inputs 🙂

Re Fly Argo, Alvaro has stared clearly he has nothing to do with Fly Argo, please read the insert in my post above.

Please can you send me a tail number or a contact person who has a Fly Argo ? I don’t know of one, kit or other, but then I have been stuck at home for the last two months.
 

Greg Vos

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Seems like a lot of risk putting money for any of these. Just go buy an AR-1 and avoid all the risk in losing your money...
When they build a side by side version with provinence that can be sold as serious platform for law enforcement and other uses I’m sure it will be a winner 👍
 

fara

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You seem to miss a very important aspect the xenon offers? It’s visibility? The M24 two up, and I’m not a big guy is very cozy.
The other thing is if a pilot is used to just banging in full throttle and not paying attention to MAP you will damage the engine.

Lets not overlook many pilots are licensed and have not been trained to monitor a MAP gauge, casing point many MTO’s do not even have a MAP gauge. Monitoring MAP is vital if your using a turbo charged engine.
Back to the M24 not saying one is better than the other but since I’m rated on it I can comment with some experience, it’s well built has good resale value and is just heavy on the stick, if you need that stability (in flight) because your ham fisted with the stick all good and well, Magni’s are by far the easiest to fly, the heavy composite rotors are responsible for this stable in flight characteristic and many guys need and want that....most helicopter pilots are familiar with light stick inputs 🙂

Re Fly Argo, Alvaro has stared clearly he has nothing to do with Fly Argo, please read the insert in my post above.

Please can you send me a tail number or a contact person who has a Fly Argo ? I don’t know of one, kit or other, but then I have been stuck at home for the last two months.

yes Magni does have a heavy stick because of over balanced rotors and visibility is fine but yes less than Xenon. As I said these are all personal preferences really.
I have not seen a 914 powered MTO yet without a MAP gauge and Rotax cuts the MAP down automatically after 5 minutes. RST doesn’t. Now that 915 engine is out, I do not think the standard is RST or Edge Performance.

I think someone mentioned LAw Enforcement model. I think when it comes to North American market we should give up this dream. They go for helicopters and they can get them from government and military surplus. LE Gyroplane will not be a common occurrence here. Money here isn’t the problem. Perhaps in other countries. Not here. Lots of bias towards helicopters by their pilots here.

Alvaro told you he is getting away from Manufaktura Lotnicza (to me its the same as Fly Argo) as a supplier and that's true and he is starting to use MBL who are also a supplier to Manufaktura Lotnicza/Xenon/Argon/Fly Argo/Argo Helicopters/RotorTech (same company and owners) but hey a blind man can see the Gyroplanes that have come to the US as AG915 are exactly what Xenon 4 with 915 are. The body and tail are slightly different than previous models. I have flown in one.

As per who owns Argon 915 coming to the US and is becoming their importer. I believe this was announced on Facebook. There are 2 AG915 owned by the same guy who has taken dealership of Manufaktura Lotnicza and ordered a Argon 915 (Xenon 4 based) unit as well so he will have 3 units of the same machine basically. He went to Poland to visit the factory himself. This is all public knowledge and all over FB and the web. You are not keeping up and doing your homework :).

Here is their announcement on their public FB page on April 8, 2020

"Manufaktura Lotnicza would like to announce our official USA Distributor - Gyrocopter Flight Training Academy by Sonja and Tom Latshaw located at Florida Vero Beach. The first order- fully equipped ARGON 915 iS MacLaren Vulcano Red colour is going soon to USA.
In meantime our Workshop is full and busy.
Volcano Red and White Pearl on final stage.
Lamborghini Lemone Green at paint shop
Carbon Look under preparation, Green Hulk waiting for packaging and shipping.

#ARGON915
#ARGONSTi
#GyroGang
#RotorTech
#Manufaktura_Lotnicza"


Gyrocopter Flight Training Academy
Vero Beach, Florida 32967, United States
(904) 710-6656
772-217-3094

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Gyrocopter-Flight-Training-Academy-105482467825277/

Note RotorTech is the company also owned by the same Chris and Marek Paracha (formerly GyroTech) that supplies the composite rotors for Argon 915, Fly Argo or Xenon 4 etc. etc. The older company of Marek Paracha is GyroTech that still also makes rotors

Regardless there are two entities (people) in play. Xenon (Argon 915) with Chris and looks like still some ownership of Celier in it and AT (Artur) with of course Artur owning it. These are the two main entities. The rest are suppliers using moulds that basically are for the benefit of these entities. How the suppliers are able to sell parts to a 3rd party around the two main entities is beyond me and fishy but above my pay grade. I would have sued the supplier by now. May be that design doesn't belong to anyone and its a free for all. At least that is how Alvaro thinks and explained to me. May be I can get those parts and put out my version of that gyro (not that I am interested).
 
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ventana7

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The rest are suppliers using moulds that basically are for the benefit of these entities. How the suppliers are able to sell parts to a 3rd party around the two main entities is beyond me and fishy but above my pay grade. I would have sued the supplier by now.

Abid as I indicated above the original body mold used in Xenon 2 was stolen by Raphel from his partner in France and the partner's kids were after Raphael but as far as I know did not pursue legal remedies in Poland. While I was still involved with Celier/AT they were in the process of building a second set of molds but since they did not have cash they were attempting to get the fiberglass company to front the molds cost.

If I were to read between the lines and add up what I know and what I surmise (but don't know as fact) I would guess Raphael stiffed a number of parts suppliers: molds, aluminum parts, etc. Those suppliers are now happy to sell parts to whomever will pay them. Since Raphael stole the molds and likely owes money on the other parts he does not have legal recourse to stop it. (As I said this is part first hand knowledge and part surmise).

Rob
 

fara

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Abid as I indicated above the original body mold used in Xenon 2 was stolen by Raphel from his partner in France and the partner's kids were after Raphael but as far as I know did not pursue legal remedies in Poland. While I was still involved with Celier/AT they were in the process of building a second set of molds but since they did not have cash they were attempting to get the fiberglass company to front the molds cost.

If I were to read between the lines and add up what I know and what I surmise (but don't know as fact) I would guess Raphael stiffed a number of parts suppliers: molds, aluminum parts, etc. Those suppliers are now happy to sell parts to whomever will pay them. Since Raphael stole the molds and likely owes money on the other parts he does not have legal recourse to stop it. (As I said this is part first hand knowledge and part surmise).

Rob

You are probably right Rob. I think I have dodged some bullets when I almost considered becoming a rep for Artur and then Celier and then more recently Manufaktura Lotnicza ... Whew.
 
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Philbennett

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Thing is if theft is involved then thats pretty clear isn't it? Lets not forget Poland is an EU country that respects property rights - its not a joke nation run by gangsters. If you are the customer of a supplier that ships things to competitors from the back door then it goes legal immediately. You don't just let anyone run you over and worse destroy reputations in the process. If you can't go legal then its because actually nothing has been done thats wrong. But in that case I'd not be making the same looking aircraft or dealing with the supplier.

Now seems FlyArgo v Manufactura Lotnicaa.... whats that about if they are the same? Obs. not.

What can anyone say about Tercel N640BE?
 
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