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Gyro Nation

the words every pilot should commit to memory
 . . . .Dare to dream, hope, believe, seek, find, build and fly.

 

 

FAA warns light sport aircraft manufacturers of violations

The Federal Aviation Administration has warned some manufacturers of light sport aircraft that they are violating safety standards. Most of the violations involved missing paperwork, said Dan Johnson, president of the Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association. "Missing a document doesn't mean an airplane wasn't built right. It just means you can't prove it was built a certain way," he said.

Find out more

 

 

 

 

divider 

engine

Parts is Parts

 

Did I see gyro plane floats? Yes I did! Les, the fellow that owns the parts in the pictures (to the left) some of us were looking at the other day, moved away from his gyro-friendly airport and so decided to sell his current project. I remember seeing a video of a gyro on floats once. How much fun that would be!

The floats and other parts are for sale.

The engine is a Subaru
EA-81 Turbo

The cabin is an older modle RAF 2000

There are a lot more parts than those pictured here, including the floats and Les wants to sell them. Check it out!

cabin old RAF 2000 model

 

100 US Per-Flight Fee - Researched by Aircraft Owners & Pilot Association

Say it isn’t so. After almost 9,000 people urged the president of the USA to take damaging aviation user fees off the table, the administration on Jan. 13 offered its response: No way.

“We are disappointed but not surprised that the administration continues to seek a $100 user fee on general aviation flights,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller.

Find out more on this topic in the January 2012 issue.

 

Air Traffic Control Tower - Hold Short

Have you recently been issued "hold short" instructions by a Control Tower and you acknowledged with just your "registration" number or even worse, the infamous "roger"? What happens next is the controller tries to get you to say the proper response. This is not because the controller is "having a bad day" and is hassling you. This has been leading to some interesting radio dialog and ties up valuable radio time.

All the USA Air Traffic Control Towers have been mandated to emphasize the use of proper radio phraseology concerning "hold short" instructions as stated in the Aeronautical Information Manual AIM. 

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EXAMPLE #1
Controller Phraseology; "November One Two Three Four Five, Hold Short of Runway Three Zero Left at Kilo"
Pilot Response: "November One Two Three Four Five, Hold Short of Runway Three Zero Left at Kilo",
or
Pilot Response: "Gyro Plane Three Four Five, Hold Short of Runway three Zero Left at Kilo"
 

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EXAMPLE #2
Controller Phraseology: "Experimental Rotorcraft 54321, hold short Runway Two Eight"

Unacceptable Responses:
"Gyro 321, holding short"
"Holding short"
"321"
"November 321, roger"

Acceptable Responses: "Experimental Rotorcraft 321, hold short Runway Two Eight"
"November 321, hold short of Two Eight"

Complacency and / or the lack of radio discipline has led to numerous runway incursions. Remember to maintain safety and professionalism by adhering to proper and precise radio communications.
 

 

Manual fuel Gage Batteries Not Needed

 

There have been at least two articles on simple fuel gauge installations.

If you are looking for a simple, inexpensive solution to your need for an accurate fuel gage, it might be easier to find than you thought. The basic procedure is defined in the  RAF Pilots July issue.

 

There is also a link to another article on the same subject.

These gauges are as accurate as it gets.

See: The July Issue.

 

Small Airports Are Perfect For Gyros!

As you drive your motorcycle, car or pickup truck onto your airport, look around. Many of us fly out of small family-oriented fields. And these scenes are open for all of us to enjoy and take pleasure in the ongoing airport story.

A recent trip brings this to mind. It was a holiday weekend and the taxiways had some non-aircrafts on them. There were kids’ tricycles , bicycles and coaster wagons on the paved surfaces to look out for. I forgot to mention some loose dogs as well. Now most of this occurred on the actual hanger ramps as opposed to the main airport taxiway, but non-the-less it was nice to see families enjoying the airport together. Did I mention folks cooking on charcoal grills? I wonder if that is even legal? Now I have a smile on my face thinking of all that going on.

There was work being accomplished as well. One antique airplane was getting some paint touched up on her wings and some new lettering being applied to a gyroplane.

The winter was officially over for these airport attendees and everyone could tell that this is truly “Spring” in the air. Real sunshine is coming and the winter blasts are behind us. Flip a page on our calendar.

Small airports are different than large ones. At small airports, folks drive past and wave as they leave the airport or arrive. Many won’t just waive, but feel compelled (by courtesy) to stop and say hello. Now, on this day, they don’t need to roll down the window first since Summer is coming! If you need a hand, the guy that stopped to say hello will be happy to lend his to hold a wrench or help push the gyro into the hanger.

God bless aviation.

 

Aircraft Re-Registration Schedule - USA

If your gyro is registered in the USA, these dates are very very important to
keeping your ship's registration current.

If the Certificate was issued in: The certificate expires on: The owner must apply for re-registration between these dates, - to allow delivery of a new certificate before expiration.
March of any year March 31, 2011 November 1, 2010 and January 31, 2011
April of any year June 30, 2011 February 1, 2011 and April 30, 2011
May of any year September 30, 2011 May 1, 2011 and July 31, 2011
June of any year December 31, 2011 August 1, 2011 and October 31, 2011
July of any year March 31, 2012 November 1, 2011 and January 31, 2012
August of any year June 30, 2012 February 1, 2012 and April 30, 2012
September of any year September 30, 2012 May 1, 2012 and July 31, 2012
October of any year December 31, 2012 August 1, 2012 and October 31, 2012
November of any year March 31, 2013 November 1, 2012 and January 31, 2013
December of any year June 30, 2013 February 1, 2013 and April 30, 2013
January of any year September 30, 2013 May 1, 2013 and July 31, 2013
February of any year December 31, 2013 August 1, 2013 and October 31, 2013

The first re-registration notices were sent on or shortly after October 1, 2010, for aircraft that were registered in March of any year.  These aircraft are assigned an expiration date of March 31, 2011.  The owners of these aircraft should have applied for re-registration between November 1, 2010 and January 31, 2011, their assigned timely filing window.

Look up your ship's registration date and address

 

 iPad App as an alternative to paper aeronautical charts

In a precedent-setting move, the FAA recently approved the use of an iPad App
as an alternative to paper aeronautical charts for charter airline Executive Jet Management.
The approval for the Jeppesen Mobile TC App for iPad came after a three-month
evaluation that involved both the FAA and members of Executive Jet Management.

iOS 5 Update Troubles For iPads
- Follow-Up

iPad and other Apple device users should take note of a quirk that can occur after updating the operating system to iOS 5. According to multiple application developers, the operating system could delete data, including charts and approach plates.

See also on this page an alternative to paper aeronautical charts.

More Information
 

Happy New Year 2012!

You know exactly when you'll hear it, and you’ll probably assume that you won't hear it again for a year. The clock will hit 11:59, the countdown will begin . . . 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 . . . . and the music will rise. The music lyrics will most probably be an old song of Scottish origin. It is wistful and so we have chosen it to describe friends and relationships we have made in our years of flying and talking in hangers and through emails and over Skype and across long distances.

More on That

 

New Rule on USA Aircraft Registration

There is a new wide-ranging FAA rule that will significantly affect all United States "N" - registered civil aircraft - essentially all gyros in the United States of America. It became effective this month, on October 1, 2010. More information on this topic.

 

US Catches Up With the Rest of the Globe

“Line Up and Wait” in Preparation for Takeoff  is a new Air Traffic Control term for many US pilots.  Beginning September 30, 2010 , the words “Line Up and Wait” will replace the words “Position and Hold” to instruct a pilot to enter the runway to await take-off clearance.  More information on this topic.

 

Multi-Function Display

Roberto Ferri is an Avionics Technician and has used his talents to update his RAF 2000.  For more information on this project check this out.  He has installed or is installing many new electronics and lighting features into and around his RAF 2000

 The Gyroplane Dilemma

Gyroplane Instructor Dofin Fritts is featured in an article on pages 52 and 53 in the February, 2010 Popular Mechanics Magazine.

Dofin Friits was also mentioned in the January, 2010 issue of 

EAA Sport Aviation Magazine "Blades of Glory - The Pitcairn Autogyro"

For more on these stories

 

Anthony Goddard's Beautiful RAF Dashboard

This winter's project is to convert the engine to fuel injection - I'm hoping to reduce it's dipsomaniac thirst for petrol.  More pictures of this ship on the Isle of Wight.

 

Picture your gyro with wings and two rotors

Many gyro pilots transitioned from airplane pilots. So picture your gyro with wings, two counter-rotating rotors and infinitely more complex. Picture it so much more complex that it takes three fly-by-wire computers to enable the pilot and co-pilot to fly it.  For more on the gyro to V22 comparison , including more video.

 

What is this used for?  Why would you want one?

Bill Bertram Says Hello!

 

 Hi Bill!  Happy Landings!

Did you go for a ski?

More information on snow skis for RAF 2000

 

Purple People Eater Wins Award

Mike Matthews named his ship Bugs (aka “the Purple People Eater”). This Purple RAF 2000 , is based at Gansbaai in the Western Cape Province of the Republic of South Africa. Mike's ship was voted the best looking RAF in SA – 2008.

 Congratulations Mike!

 

   Congratulations to Gavin Mocke

Gavin Mocke flew his first solo flight April, 2009.  This is great stuff..... Fun stuff. As everyone who has soloed can recall. View music video.

John Miller died Monday on June 23, 2008

John Miller is shown in 1938 during the test flight period with Kellett KD-1 autogiro, the precursor to the helicopter. Miller died Monday on June 23, 2008 at the age of 102 years. (Photo courtesy of John Miller)

Robin Moore remembers the last words his grandfather, John Miller, said to him Sunday night. "I guess my flying days are over," recalled Moore.

If you are an RAF Pilot member read more in and view videos in the members area.

Miller's loss would be felt throughout the aviation world.

 

USA FAA Proposes 22 Changes to Sport Pilot Rule

In the almost four years since the sport pilot rule was implemented, the pilot community and the FAA have gained a lot of practical experience. Now the FAA has used that experience to develop 22 proposed changes to the rule that would affect aircraft, pilots, and procedures.

Some of the proposed changes, which were published April 15, 2008 already are drawing pilot comment. Among them is the plan to alter altitude limitations—now set at a maximum of 10,000 feet msl—to include an agl limitation. This would increase the operating window for pilots who live in mountainous terrain. Another change to the rule would allow the use of light sport aircraft (LSAs) in Part 141 flight training programs.

Other changes would replace proficiency checks currently done by flight instructors with checks done by pilot examiners, retroactively require sport pilots to receive one hour of flight training on the control and maneuvering of an airplane solely by reference to instruments, and replace category and class logbook endorsements with ratings on the pilot’s certificate, eliminating the need for pilots to carry their logbooks when they fly.

The FAA is allowing 120 days to file comments, and AOPA is carefully reviewing the proposed changes and their possible effects on members. You can review the full notice of proposed rulemaking online.

Ronnie Legge has a  Project Report

The flight testing of the new tail went very well. The rain stopped every time we wanted to fly.

The recommendations were that the VNE is lifted to 80 mph, doors can be fitted and the crosswind limit is lifted to 15 mph. The MAUW is now 50 lbs higher to 1275 lbs. The government paper work in the process. See details on the project.

New Oregon, USA Ethanol Law to Take Effect on January 1, 2008

Experimental Aviation Association members are responding to a newly passed law in the State of Oregon, USA requiring ethanol additives in gasoline distributed in that state. The new mandate is that all gasoline grades contain a 10 percent ethanol blend once state ethanol production reaches at least 40 million gallons. The law is scheduled to . EAA immediately alerted Oregon chapter leaders, the Oregon Pilots Association, and the Oregon Department of Aviation in a special Government e-Notice regarding the potential harmful flight safety effects the new law would have on thousands aircraft owners and operators.
Among those who could be adversely affected include pilots transitioning through the state; those with an FAA-approved auto fuel supplemental type certificate (STC); ultra light pilots; and experimental aircraft owners who require ethanol free auto fuel.

 

 Mariners Complain of Engine Outs - Costly Repair Problems  -  Ethanol Issue
              Are Gyro Pilots In Same Boat?

 

My RAF is placarded for 92 octane auto gas – no ethanol. At a recent fly-in several folks noticed that placard and asked me why the craft carried the no-ethanol note? I simply answered: “Although my aircraft is experimental, I don’t find the need to experiment with too many things at once.  Fuel is something someone else can experiment with.” Proponents of ethanol see it as a fuel additive that can reduce energy woes in the USA and Brazil. Farmers in my part of the USA see it as another market to sell corn to and in Brazil they use sugar cane to produce the stuff. Some boaters say they need it like a hole in the hull.  A Wall Street Journal article indicated that boat owners were encountering expensive repairs as a result of ethanol in their gasoline. The blended gasoline currently in wide use in many areas of the USA typically contains up to10% ethanol. Such blends now account for about 40% of all gasoline produced in the country, up from 33% in 2005, according to the American Petroleum Institute. The spread of ethanol, often made from corn, has been spurred by state and federal government moves to promote alternative fuels. Only 10% or RAF owners surveyed in July, 2006 indicated that they have burnt or will burn gasoline with ethanol. More Information

FAA Pilot Procedures

After a number of runway incursions at a variety of airports around the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration has recommended these procedures be followed while on the ground.  Although many of them don't apply to most of the airports our members fly in or out of, the procedures carry some merit for any pilot.
(Click on the procedures below to download a printable PDF file of them.)

Florida, USA - Some Fine Ship There Harry

 

Harry  Sieckmann has a load of fun with his beautiful RAF 2000 gyroplane over and around the Ocala area of Florida.

 

April Solo - Congratulations!

Johan Venter went solo in his RAF 2000 with Eben Mocke Snr. Congrats to Johan and may there be many hours of happy flying.
Just some interesting facts to add..... Johan was once so nervous of flying he thought of every excuse not to fly every morning.
And look at him now!

When RAF Closed Its Doors

An Aviation icon, Rotary Air Force Marketing, Inc. (RAF) withdrew form the sport gyroplane marketplace. Their announcement  came as a shock to many of us.  The company had produced over 700 kits during their 20 years and was viewed as a positive and driving force in an industry where few survive and fewer still produce enclosed-cabin, high-performance machines. 

Over the years, they have strived to encourage gyro pilots, a fringe group of aviation aficionados' to be sure, to work towards safety and operate within the regulations of the aviation community.  They provided training and guidance to the aviation community around the globe.  They tested many engine types and finally settled on the Subaru engines, with modifications and tweaks, as the power plant of choice. That engine has become a choice for many homebuilt aircraft in the experimental category.  View the closing announcement from RAF, Rotary Air Force Marketing, Inc.

Enter Upington Microlight & RAF 2000 Training Center As the New Factory for RAF 2000  ...miles above the competition

Upington Microlight & RAF 2000 Training Center is located in Upington, South Africa.  RAF has, from a customer's viewpoint, only moved. For more information, see the article "RAF 2000 Has A New Logo!" on the training page of this website.

RAF Pilots, not associated with the RAF 2000 factory, will always be here as a support vehicle for all RAF pilots.  Our newsletters as well as the members only website monthly issues are still part of the aviation experience.  It you own an RAF and are not a member, you should join now!

US Pilots - There are Regulation Changes On Your Horizon

They are now in the notice of proposed rule making stage.

Gyroplane Specific Rule Changes from NPRM Document Number FAA-2006-26661

Proposal No. CFR designation Summary of the proposed changes

5 .........§ 61.19(b) .............Extend the duration period for student pilot certificates for persons under the age of 40 years.
7 .........§ 61.19(d) .............Establish flight instructor certificates without expiration dates.
26 .......§ 61.51(e)(1)(iv) …Permit a pilot who is performing the duties of PIC while under the supervision of a qualified PIC to log PIC time.
54 .......§ 61.109(d)(5)(ii) ...Change the distance on the solo cross-country flight for private pilot certification—gyroplane rating to conform to ICAO requirements. Change the distance on a cross-country flight for private pilot certification—gyroplane rating from ‘‘at least 25 nautical miles’’ to read ‘‘more than 25 nautical miles.’’
55 .......§ 61.127(b)(4)(vi) ...Add ‘‘ground reference maneuvers’’ as an area of operation for commercial pilot certification—gyroplane rating.
60 .......§ 61.129(d)(3)(i) .....Reduce the instrument training for commercial pilot certification—gyroplane rating to 2.5 hours on the control and maneuvering of a gyroplane solely by reference to instrument and permit it to be conducted in an aircraft, flight simulator, or flight training device. Clarify the control and maneuvering of a gyroplane solely by reference to instrument required for commercial pilot certification gyroplane rating must include training using a view-limiting device.
62 .......§ 61.129(d)(3)(ii) ....Allow the day cross-country flight for commercial pilot certification gyroplane rating to be performed under VFR or IFR.
63 .......§ 61.129(d)(3)(iii) ...Delete the requirement for a cross-country flight at night time for commercial pilot certification—gyroplane rating and establish it as ‘‘At least two hours of flight training during night-time conditions in a gyroplane at an airport, that includes 10 takeoffs and 10 landings to a full stop
(with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern).’’
64 .......§ 61.129(d)(4) ........Permit training for commercial pilot certification—gyroplane rating to be performed solo or with an instructor onboard.

 

 

 

Mid-February Solo Event - Congratulations to Johan Pienaar

Johan Pienaar conducted his first solo flight in his RAF-2000 in mid-February, 2007 in Upington, South Africa with Eben Mocke Sr as his flight instructor. 

Congrats from the entire gyro community on a fine job done goes out to Johan and to Eben as always.

(by the way, if you get a chance, check out the Kalahari  Bundu Bash Fly-in.)

These guys are out having some flight fun in South Africa.

Pictured from the front to the back: Eben Mocke Senior
John van der Merwe
Eben Mocke Junior

This photo was taken  just before they flew from Upington to the Augrabies Waterfalls and back. The round trip was about 100miles.

(The Orange River drops 191 meters at the Augrabies Falls.)

More on the trip.

Manchester England
Home of An Absolute Beauty!

This RAF belongs to Ronnie Legge and the workmanship is beyond superb.  He runs a carbureted EJ-22 with a four blade propeller.

He has also designed an enclosed trailer that allows him to transport his machine with the rotors on.

See what else Ronnie is up to.

See more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RAF Pilots In New Electronic Home

The RAF Pilots site was moved at 8:00 PM US CST on 11/24/06. By midnight, the thousands of files were loaded. And by 7:30 AM on 11/25/06 We were able to access those files across the Internet. Both Gyro Nation and RAF Pilots have now been moved and were running with them accessible within a few hours, rather than the potential days that were predicted.

We had the opportunity to run many of the videos on the websites and have to say wow! They never get old.
 

First LSA Repairman Inspection Gyroplane Course Completed!

By Martin Weaver

Paul Patterson, center in picture, has had a great October. Paul successfully added sport pilot gyroplane privileges to his private pilot certificate on October 7th in his RAF-2000 by completing a proficiency check. On October 22nd, Paul received the first Repairman (LSA) Inspection certificate issued by the FAA from Inspector Edsel Ford, on right, from the Light Sport Aviation Branch. Paul completed FUN AIR, LLC’s repairman inspection course for gyroplanes after 16 hours of academic training and practical exercises. Upon receiving his repairman certificate Paul will now be able to conduct annual condition inspections on his ELSA RAF-2000. Martin Weaver, left and Kelly Teague, not pictured, are the instructors for the FAA accepted repairman course. This is the first course conducted since the advent of the national LSA program.

Fly the El Mirage Dry Lake!

THE KEN BROCK ROTORCRAFT ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (PRA - CHAPTER ONE) sponsors a fantastic annual event that every gyro enthusiast should plan to attend. It is appropriately called the Ken Brock Freedom Fly-In.

Several years back, there was a free video reproduced and distributed to encourage people to have fun with their gyros.  We were all asked to spread it around.  The video had a simple title: It was simply 5 EZ Steps to Fly a Gyro.

In the interest of the gyro sport, this video streaming is provided by the RAF Pilots Association along with Gyro Nation.

Step 1, Go to a Fly-In

There couldn’t be a better fly-in to get introduced to gyros than the one at El Mirage on the actual dry lake bed.

Video size options:

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640X480 23 MB Play

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320X240 11 MB Play

Step 2, Get quality Instruction

There are a number of fun-filled scenes of flight lessons nicely edited

Video size options:

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640X480 16.6 MB Play

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320X240 4.6 MB Play

Step 3, Build a gyro

Humorous scenes depicting the steps in building a Ken Brock gyro

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640X480 47.1 MB Play

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320X240 13.8 MB Play

Step 4, If you want to fly like Ken Brock, You've Got To Look like Ken Brock

There are a number of the great Ken Brock's legend flight maneuvers

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640X480 34.2 MB Play

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320X240 9.5 MB Play

Step 5, Go have fun

Loads of fun on a Ken Brock gyro plane

Video size options:

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640X480 34.2 MB Play

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320X240 37.5 MB Play

Let us know your thoughts on the video or the fly-in. Email the webmaster or use the comments page.

 

Gyro Enthusiast International Get Together

Be sure to attend the free Gyro Enthusiast International Get Together at Fond du Lac, the day after the EAA Airventure.  This event is a must for anyone interested in gyroplanes. For more on the event go to Get Together '06.

The July, 2006 Survey Results are in

To everyone that took the time to fill in the digital survey, Thank You. 

The results, pictured on the right, are the breakdown from the question, "How many flight hours are on your gyro?"

View the entire survey results on the survey page

Solo Event - Congratulations Paul Patterson

At 7:50 a.m. on July 17th, Paul Patterson of Guthrie, OK conducted his first solo flight in his RAF-2000, N227E. Paul built his gyroplane and certificated it as an Experimental Light Sport Aircraft (ELSA) on March 1st this year. Paul is a Vietnam era helicopter pilot and bought his gyroplane kit about two years ago. He put off building his gyroplane kit until after be rebuilt a Taylorcraft and obtained his Private Pilot airplane certificate. Since November of last year Paul has worked at completing his RAF-2000 and learning how to fly gyroplanes. Paul has persevered and succeeded in accomplishing his goal of soloing his gyroplane. Now he is working towards completing the Sport Pilot proficiency check sometime in August. Congratulations Paul!!

Solo Event - Congratulations Roger Hooker

On Wednesday, May 31, 2006 at 09:35 CDT, Roger Hooker took to the skies of Oklahoma, USA in solo flight in his ELSA RAF2000, N4208Q, for the first time.

Roger made three successful takeoffs and landings in his fun machine.

Roger Hooker Solo

More pictures of the solo's celebration!

Miss Champion on The Grass

Steve Pitcairn started the throaty-sounding 1931 Pitcairn PCA-2 autogiro named Miss Champion, pointed her into a  steady breeze and in  about 30 feet was airborne. NC 11609 gently lifted off the runway, climbed and headed over to EAA's Pioneer Airport where it landed vertically in front of its new home, the Pitcairn Hangar at EAA’s Pioneer Airport.

>> Clcik picture for video >>

(See Part I of this video)

  London Air Show - Gyro Success

By Martyn Love

This was a seriously good show. I reckon about 10,000 people passed through the London Air show over the 3 days (21st - 23rd April 2006), and judging by my throat, I think most of them visited the British Rotorcraft stand.

We had a fantastic response, and our stand was easily the busiest at the show.  We had 4 gyros on the stand, with 10 people on hand to offer information, plus a DVD playing the entire time. It generated a lot of interest, and in particular we had some of the head guys from the CAA paying us a visit, they intimated that the raising of the profile was long overdue, and it meant that gyros could now start to be taken more seriously. We had an RAF, a Magni, an MT03 and a Cricket on static display. My take on it was that if we had a pre-built 2-seater enclosed gyro we could have sold quite a few; everyone loved the RAF but not all wanted to build it. 

After this show, I am really looking forward to the start of the flying season, with our first major fly-in at Popham Airfield (about 20 miles due west of where I am located) on this Saturday (April 29th/30th, 2006).

 

Two New Experimental Light Sport Gyroplanes Certificated

by Martin Weaver

 
Pictured above (left to right) Martin Weaver, flight instructor; Roger Hooker, proud owner and builder of N4608Q (white machine); Edsel Ford, Airworthiness Inspector from the FAA’s Light Sport Aviation Branch; Steve Keesey, FAA Airworthiness Inspector from the OKC FSDO; Paul Patterson, proud builder and owner of N227E (red machine); and Duane Hunn, Rotary Air Force flight instructor and test pilot.

 

On March 1st, at Fun Air, LLC hangar, in Mustang, OK, USA, two new RAF-2000s were certificated as Experimental Light Sport Aircraft (ELSA). The ability to certificate both gyroplanes on the same day required collaboration between the owners (one from Albuquerque, NM and the other from Guthrie, OK), the FAA inspectors and the flight instructors. Planning started for this event in November 2005. Duane Hunn conducted the initial test flights. N4608Q made her first flight at 10:17 a.m. on March 2nd. N227E made her first flight at 11:36 a.m. on March 3rd. Both builder/owners are proud of what they have accomplished after many hours of labor. Mr. Hooker is working towards a Sport Pilot certificate and has a goal of becoming a Sport Pilot Flight Instructor in the future. Mr. Patterson is working towards a Commercial Pilot certificate and is also has a goal to be a gyroplane flight instructor. Congratulations to both these gentlemen for a job well done!
 

Some people have all the luck.

Jerry Tiahrt, who hangs out as an "Airport Bum" at the Waycross, Georgia, USA Airport, was doing just that (hanging out) when this good-looking blond pulls up in an Extra 300L. You cannot make these kinds of stories up - guys.  So he introduces himself to the Extra pilot who is Patty Wagstaff, a six-time member of the US Aerobatic Team. Patty has won the gold, silver and bronze medals in Olympic-level international aerobatic competition and was the first woman to win the title of US National Aerobatic Champion and one of the few people to win it three times.

We understand that they will be exchanging rides in her airplane and Jerry's RAF 2000  gyrocopter at a later date.

Giddy With Pride -  RAF Owner Speaks Out

We had an open survey online of the puzzler below for over 40 days and nobody guessed the identity of the widely-known and outspoken person quoted.  He built and flew an RAF for years, converted it with an American Autogyro modification kit.  He kept that a relatively short time and sold it.  The survey results show that it was hard to guess the answer.

Guess Who This Happy RAF 2000 Owner Is.

Below is the widely-published quote from the happy RAF 2000 owner. Since the quote included a specific date (Month, Day, and Year) and Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter (in his home town) we  dropped those specifics to keep you all guessing.  We now let you all know who this mystery owner is.

The mystery Quote:

“I flew my Rotary Air Force gyroplane for the first time on” Month, Day, Year. “The flight was also my first gyro solo after 25 hours of dual instruction. The kit went together in a little over 300 hours spread over 9 1/2 enjoyable months. I flew 106 hours in the first year and am on track for doing the same thing during the second year. I'm a member of the EAA Chapter” in my hometown “and just received my pin for flying more than 10 Young Eagles last year. The RAF is the most fun flying I’ve experienced and I share it with as many people as I can. She cruises near 80 mph and the view is fantastic."

The Mystery Owner is? . . . . .    >>>>>                       Ken Janulewicz

 

Second Gyro Accomplishes Landings in All 48 Lower US States

By Jim West

 

Congratulations to Rob Dubin who completed his series of flights across the lower 48 United States in his RAF 2000 with the AAI-modified gyroplane on February 28, 2005.  RAF Pilots celebrates his accomplishment which certainly helps to get gyroplanes more publicity.  A job well done, this is no small accomplishment since landings in all 48 have only been flown  once before.

 

Rob flew his gyro-journey from Mesa, Arizona to St. George, Utah, flying over 10,000 miles as he was supported and followed by his wife, Dee, in the couple’s motor home.

During their trip, Rob flew his gyro over at an average speed of 55 mph with the couple stopping at more than 140 airports along the way.   Most in the gyroplane community followed Rob’s website log which is a fantastic read.  The entire trip was marred by only two interruptions.  The journey was first delayed about a week while a crew of mechanics from North East Florida Aviation Maintenance at Jacksonville Florida's Craig airport repaired the gyro after its drive belt lost teeth and subsequently encountered a hard gear-busting landing.  Later the trip was held up for a month and a half while Rob’s wrist and thumb were healing from being broken when the gyro’s prop compression-kicked back as he tried to turn it by hand.

The first gyro to successfully land in all 48 lower United States was Chuck Feil’s RAF 2000 affectionately referred to as “Rooty Kazooty”.  Chuck’s trip sponsored through Spirit of American Youth 2000 ended at the EAA Airventure in July 2000. 

 

 

United Kingdom Insurance - Moves Forward – Slowly

European legislation that has come into force effective the first of May, 2005, states that it is compulsory for all aircraft to carry passenger insurance. Since no insurers in the United Kingdom cover gyro passengers the new law effectively means we RAF 2000 pilots can no longer carry passengers over the UK. This change has obvious serious impact on our British and Scottish members. Do not take a chance flying passengers without insurance coverage unless you are willing to risk a fine of £5,000 and or 6 months imprisonment.

It is now February, 2006. The UK insurance industry leaders still have nothing substantial to report on the passenger insurance front. The deal is that the premium for the entire UK, based on the RAF 2000 fleet, was US $130,000. There are approximately 80 RAF 2000's in the UK, of which (a rough guess would be) only half are currently flying, and of those (another rough guess again) only half would take up the insurance. The arithmetic would indicate that the pilot/owners wanting to take passengers legally are possibly looking at an annual premium of $6000 or more. As the whole gyro-flying culture puts us all into the ''poor relation or risk'' category, there isn’t a lot of hope. As the European Union passed this law without providing a comment period for collecting a proper response from the UK gyro pilots, or the insurance industry, we are all waiting for the next chapter to be written. We will keep you posted on future developments.

We asked a question last year and it is appropriate to ask it again. How long will it take to fix this problem?

A background article

If there are any comments or updates, please let us know.
 

2.5 Liter Fuel Injected RAF Wins Pylon Race AT 2005 PRA Convention

By Jim West

Congratulations to Jim Logan (pictured on the left), RAF Flight Instructor, winner of the 2005 Popular Rotorcraft Association Pylon Race held at Mentone, Indiana, USA on July 22nd, 2005  Jim flew his green and very swift RAF 2000 in figure-eights around the white banded orange drum pylons with careful precision.

More information

 

RAF Pilots First Annual International Get-Together

by Jim West

The EAA Airventure began at Oshkosh, WI USA on Monday July 25, 2005 and ended on Sunday, July 31, 2005.  With that came a new chapter in RAF Pilots history.  RAF Pilots enjoyed themselves at their  first Annual International get-together. So mark your 2006 calendars because there will be another such event the day following EAA Airventure 2006.

This event unofficially started on the last day of Airventure for some and in the local Holiday Inn breakfast on Monday August 1st  for others.

The actual  and official start was at Fond du Lac airport on  August 1, 2005. Where? Fond du Lac Airport FLD Wisconsin USA.   Fond du Lac is very near the EAA convention.

For more of this story and photos, simply click on the line-up of ships pictured here.

The all-day flying and talking and asking and photo-taking party was held at the airport.  Attendees included members, drop-in guests, pilots and builders and "wanna be" pilots and builders. 

The Senior RAF 2000 staff members graciously did the cooking and eat everyone did.  Even my eighty-nine year old uncle who had never attended the EAA convention stopped in (drove his car to the event after playing an early round of golf) to see what we were all up to and soak up the fellowship of pilots always exuded when fully involved with their sport.

Hanger facilities, fuel and food were be available at the airport.  RAF Flight instructors also provided lessons and introduction flights. With the EAA over, there were plenty of hotel rooms nearby as well as one member's home, which was open as an inn for RAF Pilots members.

Those that arrived by air prior to Monday, were greeted by the busiest air traffic system in the world. Pilots were required to follow the relatively simple posted procedure. Transponders were not a requirement and aircraft were referred to by general type and color. I have to say that I never heard controllers talk so fast.  They were like auctioneers moving aircraft along through the transaction of airport arrival and departure sequencing.

For more of this story and photos, simply click on the line-up of ships pictured above. for the report on the planning behind the event see the August Issue in our members only section.

 

RAF Pilots North Central Chapter Get Together

This event took place at the  Burlington airport, WI USA.  Food was provided by the local Burlington Kiwanis Club as part of the town's fly-in breakfast.  Gyros were parked in front of Hanger 904 on the north side of runway 11/29. All rotor craft are welcome to these events, including size differences from Benson to Blackhawk.

Burlington Airport BUU is a nice airport with two runways, one hard top and the other grass. There were nearly 100 experimental and antique aircraft attending as well as gyros.  This annual event took place Sunday August 28, 2005.  Breakfast was served at the airport.

These events are constantly under planning discussion and open to members input.  If you have a comment, please send it Jim West.

 

RAF Pilots From Wisconsin, USA Visit Weilerbach, Germany

Chuck & Cathy Lukas, from Appleton, Wisconsin, USA are enjoying a holiday in Germany, where they are visiting their daughter and her husband.  Chuck Lucas has some EAA gyro notoriety since he won the Ken Brock award for workmanship in 2002 and the Bronze Lindy in 2003 for his Champion, RAF 2000 GTX SE.

Last week they traveled to Zugspitze, the tallest mountain in Germany at 9,724 feet. The first picture shows that an RAF Pilots hat has made it to the top of Zugspitze which is also the dividing point between Germany and Austria (the cross in the background). The second picture shows there is still some snow at the top of the mountain. By the way, as they toasted the RAF Pilots around the globe, Chuck and Cathy indicated that a German beer tastes very good at this altitude.

RAF Pilot Chuck Lucas at the German / Austrian border.

Summer snow on the mountain.

Cathy and Chuck enjoying some of the historic culture of area.

 

I am an RAF Pilot

Get your mail sent to you@rafpilots.com. RAF Pilots will forward emails sent to you@rafpilots.com to your existing email address free, as part of your membership benefit. This is a $20.00 per year service provided for free to the membership. Ask our webmaster to set you up and say "I am an RAF Pilot" with every email that you send.  RAF pilots are fun-omenal!

 

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Russ Kempka Gets The Ticket at EAA Airventure!

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Ship is award-winning RAF - twice at EAA Airventure

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Bronze Lindy Champion in 2004

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Silver Lindy, Reserve Grand Champion in 2005

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Received Rotorcraft Gyroplane ticket at Airventure 2005

 

 

Russ Kempka must really like the EAA event. Russ  won the Bronze Lindy in 2004 and the Silver Lindy in 2005 for his Champion, RAF 2000 GTX SE FI and then received his Rotorcraft Gyroplane ticket at Airventure 2005.    Congratulations Russ!

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Dave Reich Wins Ken Brock Award And Bronze Lindy at EAA Airventure

Dave Reich must really be proud of his accomplishment.  His RAF 2000 GTX SE FI won two awards at the 2005 EAA Airventure prior to our RAF Pilots get together on Monday August 1.
EAA Awards to Gyros
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Gyro Escape RAF 2000 GTX SE FI

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Won Bronze Lindy Champion

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Won the Ken Brock Workmanship Award

Dave is not new to Oshkosh Airventure.  He also won the Ken Brock Workmanship award in 2003.

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RAF Booth at EAA Airventure 2005

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Flight instruction and demonstration rides

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Exhibit tent on the Oshkosh main taxiway 

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Linda LaFleur was Always Smiling At The RAF Booth

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What a great bunch of people to buy a gyro from

(click on the photos to zoom in)

   

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RAF Pilots Website Is A Hit!

Around 1,500 individuals on average have visited the RAF pilots website almost 3,000 times in a month.  That is great, since we opened our doors only three years ago.  To view this information, check out the traffic page.

 

 

Visit the "What's New" Archive

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 Express Concepts, LLC is the sole owner of this publication; opinions expressed on these pages are presented as news items and have been neither scientifically tested nor verified. Any mention of opinions, products or services within these web pages is for information only; it does not imply recommendation or endorsement by Express Concepts, LLC, RAF Pilots, or Gyro Nation. Last modified: 12/13/2013