The range of gyroplanes available in the UK are covered on the Gyroexperience website. There are two leading manufactures, Auto-Gyro imported by RotorSport UK and Magni an Italian manufacturer. Each offers an open, two seat tandem and a covered two seat version. All have the engines and propeller in the rear in a pusher configuration. A more complete list of Gyroplane manufactures will be fount on The World Internet Directory of Light Aviation which list manufacturers in Poland, Germany, Austria, France, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, and the USA. The 2019 printed version listed 72 different models.
There are some larger and higher performing gyroplanes manufactured in Europe but they are not currently certificated for sale in the UK. In part this is because of the weight limitations and stringent design requirements laid down in the CAA CAP643 BCAR Section T. (2001-13)
In the USA they have the concept of experimental aircraft and this has resulted in a plethora of different designs and some are very interesting. Enter the Littlewing.
There is a real hunger in the UK for a gyroplane with the propeller and engine in the front, called a tractor rather than a pusher, and a tail dragger appeals to those in-touch with the history of the type and early aviation. I acquired a set of plans and the rights to manufacture and set about making it available. Having spoken to two manufacturers and an engineering consultancy, I was confident it could be done.
Discussion commenced with the Light Aircraft Association LAA who would have to oversee any construction project in order to issue the required “Permit to Fly” in the UK. The Littlewing did not find favour with them for a number of valid reasons and it was evident there could be no shortcuts to getting the Littlewing design flying in the UK; even if a completed flying aircraft was initially imported.
There is a lot to like about the Littlewing but there are certain features I didn’t like. Also I am more interested in the next generation of gyroplanes rather than having nostalgia for the past.
This new design and build is the basis for the current AcolocA project and the team is being assembled. Get in touch if you would like to participate.