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The Air & Space 18A

It's an airplane - it's a helicopter - no, it's a gyroplane!  (Some call it a gyrocopter or autogyro.)

A gyroplane is an aircraft that moves forward using a propeller, like an airplane - and stays aloft using a rotary wing, like a helicopter.

Gyroplanes can take off with very little ground roll - a couple hundred feet - and land in a couple dozen feet.

Gyroplanes were used to deliver the mail in the '30s but once the helicopter was developed their VSTOL (very short takeoff and landing) capabilities didn't excite people the way the helicopter's VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing) capabilities do.

Gyroplane manufacturers:

Farrington Aircraft of Paducah, KY, manufacturers of the Air & Space 18A

The CarterCopter modern gyroplane (in development)

The Hawk gyroplane (in development by Groen Brothers Aviation)

Makers of gyroplane kits:

Royal Air Force, makers of the RAF 2000

Farrington Aircraft, makers of the TwinStar

Ken Brock

The PRA's directory of gyroplane kit manufacturers lists over thirty manufacturers!

List of gyroplane instructors

Pictures of gyroplanes 


Commercial Pilot - Gyroplane, 1996


To learn more check out the Popular Rotorcraft Association's web page