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Maiden Flight Stories

I wanted a gyro that was safe thatís why I got this one and I made some changes to the rotor head, steering, landing gear and wiring. I am not signed off, so I haven't flown it yet. It is really hard to get an instructor around my area. We have our own air field and there is a private air field close by.

John Finco


Independence, Oregon, USA

February, 2006

by Patrick Tope

WELL WELL WELL... We have an official flying aircraft. We spent the first hour doing the static test and getting the propeller blades pitched correctly. The tachometer needs to be 5200 rpm at full throttle. We settled at 5400 because we have been bouncing back and forth around that so we figured that was close enough.

Dave Overman, CFI from Seattle, came down to fly off our first few hours. He did an excellent job, and is an excellent instructor and an asset to the Gyro / Aviation community. Dave took it out for a high speed taxi down the runway, he brought it back and we re-inspected it. Then we added a couple of zip ties that Gary Kaminski had noticed were needed. Oh yea, I didnít tell you about him yet. Gary has a yellow RAF that has been modified with Jim Vaneks blades and a proto type rotor system that Vanek made. Plus, it has a rather large stab.  He belongs to the club and Iíve been keeping him updated as of our progress so he flew in from Aurora. Heís based at Linhearts. Gary followed Dave around for the first hour checking things from the air and taking some really cool pictures.

So anyway, after the preflight Dave took it out for a crow hop down the runway. It really wanted to climb, he was about 70 feet before he knew it and was easing it back down for a landing at the end of the runway. We did another preflight then he took it and did a right hand pattern for 16 so he could stay over the fields. That went very smooth so he came back for another preflight then he took off with Gary following. They ďbored some holes in the skyĒ for about 40 minutes. He then came back and took it up for another hour. Total time today 2.5 hours! The only adjustment that we had to make was to tighten the pre-rotator cable. It was slightly loose so he wasnít getting the pre-rotation speed we should have been getting. That adjustment fixed it. It ran great. Sounded good and Dave was real impressed with the 2.5. He said that when he took off and climbed out he had to reduce power because he had plenty spare keeping the climb to about 1000ft per minute.

Nick McCleskey and Patrick Tope are the co-owners of the Sparrow Hawk and of Angel Air Aviation.


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 Last modified: 12/05/2012.