Build Your Own SparrowHawk III Gyroplane
It is a legal requirement in the United States that all amateur built and homebuilt aircraft must be inspected and then registered with the Federation Aviation Administration (FAA) before an Airworthiness Certificate can be issued. This is a thorough, and sometimes painstaking, process which can be drastically simplified for the builder if the aircraft kit is on the FAA Eligible Amateur-Built Aircraft Kits list. On 21 February 2008, Groen Brothers Aviation, Inc. announced that the FAA has confirmed that their SparrowHawk III gyroplane kit meets the necessary specifications to be included on the Eligible Amateur-Built Aircraft Kits list.
The FAA designation of Amateur-Built Experimental Aircraft has been in operation for more than 50 years and defines aircraft that are used strictly for recreational purposes. There are currently over 23,000 aircraft licensed by the FAA in this category. Some of these have truly been home-built virtually from scratch, but the majority of these aircraft were built from meticulously engineered kits which have a proven safety record – such as the SparrowHawk III.
American Autogyro, as a division of Groen Brothers Aviation, has been actively involved in gyroplane design and development for more than 20 years and has continued to refine the SparrowHawk design. Designers of the SparrowHawk III kit have examined several critical areas in the assembly process that could compromise safety standards, due to special tooling requirements or even mistakes made by the aircraft’s builder. These parts are now completed in the factory which, apart from improving safety standards, cuts down on assembly time. The estimated time for completion of the SparrowHawk III is approximately 300 hours which is a significant reduction in build time from the previous SparrowHawk model, making assembling the aircraft a more satisfying and enjoyable experience for the amateur builder.
The SparrowHawk III is a two-seat, aluminum frame, gyroplane with a molded fiberglass cabin. In addition to private use, the SparrowHawk III is suitable for law enforcement purposes, surveillance, aerial spraying and ranch work. The fuselage length is 12 foot 3 inches, with a height of 10 foot and a width of 6 foot one inch. The two-blade rotor diameter is 30 feet. The Subaru EJ25 – 165 horsepower engine runs on premium unleaded fuel with a fuel capacity of 23 gallons and fuel consumption of 6.5 gallons per hour at 75%. At the retail price of US$ 45,500, owning the nifty little SparrowHawk III is not an impossible dream.