Xenon gyroplane

Owner John Salz, Springfield, Illinois treated Job Conger to a flight around the pea patch in his2007 Xenon gyroplane, designed by a French engineer and manufactured in Poland by Celier Aviation. It has a 100 hp Rotax 912ULS engine. During our encounter, he explained “Gyros fly very much like  a fixed-wing airplane because most gyros don’t have a collective control, like a helicopter.  When you’re doing 60 to 65 knots at tree-top level, you really feel like you’re flying very fast, and gusty  winds have little effect on it. When I first started flying mine, I thought ‘This is as close to flying an F-16 as I’m ever going to  get!'”

Most of John’s flying the Xenon has been trips from 100 to 200 miles. “I’ve always loved low and slow,” he says. “I knew I’d never have time to build a gyroplane, so I started looking at factory-built machines until I chose this one.” John soloed in the gyro in the summer of 2009, and flies as often as time permits. “It cruises about 70 knots, and he plans for a fuel consumption of 6 gph. I usually file flight plans for 65 knots and get 5 to 5.5 for a comfortable 3.5 hour range. I’ve taken off in as little as 100 feet and landed in about 50.”



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