From The Past
An early gyro fly-in from the 1960s. The location is Raleigh , North Carolina.
Dr. Igor Bensen and his wife, Mary , are in the foreground.
Thats me , Marion Springer, with the McCulloch J2 gyroplane.
stubby nose of the J2 always made me feel like I was sitting on top of a beach
when I flew the machine . In a descent with engine at idle the J2 had
the glide ratio of a greased brick.
It was a neat machine but definitely
not the sporty little Bensen gyro.
Dr. Igor Bensen
flying his gyro on floats. Note the overhead stick.
Bensen flew both the
joy stick and the overhead but preferred the overhead stick.
The gyro in
this photo has the early heavy cooling cowlings. I think every gyro pilot
was happy when Bensen finally came out with the smaller light weight cowlings.
Photo is from the mid 60s.
A PRA Chapter 5 member with his float equipped Bensen gyro on a lake in Northern
Two pilots from Ch. 5 flew gyros on floats for one season.
The pilots found there were two problems associated with flying
that had nothing whatever to do with the floats.
The first problem was boaters
wanting a close up view of the gyro created a dangerous
situation by attempting
to get too close to the gyro , especially as the gyro was taking off or landing.
The other problem was that the propeller had to be re-varnished after every outing
the water spray stripped the varnish from the wooden prop.
is from the 60s.
Igor Bensen flying his gyro equipped with canister and spray bars for crop dusting.
Note the small cooling cowlings on the engine and the 1 hp. Olsen Rice Prerotator
as well as the
gimbal head which replaced the original tapered shaft spindle
Photo believed to be from early 70s.