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Little Wing Autogyros LW-3


The LW-2 craft was so stable that Herron was prepared to compare it to a similar machine with a fully tilting head. Thus, LW-3 was born.
This craft was built with some other changes implemented besides the control method. A shock absorbing, outrigger landing gear, and a 2180cc Volkswagen conversion, with dual ignition. This had a rotor brake and a simple electric prerotator, the centrifugal flyweights and also a control stick lock to hold the stick full forward any time the craft was operated on the ground prior to take-off and after landing. This precluded the rotor contacting the tail prior to the blades reaching stable speed prior to take-off and as the rotor slowed after landing.
This aircraft flew exceptionally well from the very beginning. Any fears of it being anything less than completely stable were quickly squelched. It used the same horizontal stabilizer as LW-2 but omitted the elevator. After about 20 hours of flight, a special damper system was designed for the rotor pylon. This diminished the two-per-rev vibrations typically felt in two-biaded rotor systems.




Single-seat enclosed tractor autogyro.
Practically any popular engine package can be mounted to these airframes. These aircraft feature engine thrust lines below aircraft CG...No PPO problem. 100% 4130 chromoly steel construction.
Pre-welded fuselage: $3,500, Plans: $175 in 2009.


Engines: Hirth 65-120 hp; 70 hp T.E.C. 2180 cc;
Rotax 582, 912, 914, Rotec Radial 110 hp
Propeller: Warp Drive up to 72", Prince or Sterba 74"-76"
Rotor Blades: 25' Dragon Wings
Min Speed 15-20 mph
Cruise 60-70 mph
Top Speed 100 mph
Empty Weight 350 lbs, 2-stroke
575 lbs, Radial
Useful Load 300 lbs
Gross Weight 700-900 lbs
Width 7'
Height 8'6"
Length 16' - LW-3S, 18' - LW-3

Main Rotor: 23 to 27 feet
Blade Chord: 7 inches
Length Overall: (rotor turning) 23-27 feet
Length of Aircraft without Rotor installed: 18 feet (16 feet, short-versions)
Wheel Track: 7 feet
Wheel Base: 13 feet - (11.5 feet, short-versions)
Landing Gear: Conventional (tailgear)
Overall Height: 8.5 feet
Cabin Width: 26 inches
Cabin Height: 42 inches
Cabin Length:
Approx. 49 inches (single)
Baggage: Small shelf aft seat(s) 10 lbs. max.
Rotor Disc Area: 415 Sq. feet (23 ft.) / 573 Sq. feet (27 ft.)
Disc Loading (@ gross wt.): 1.8 lb./sq. ft. single-place (23 ft.)
Tailplane Area:
Vertical Fin: 4.52 Sq. feet
Tip Shields: (2) 1.59 Sq. feet each
Rudder: 3.3 Sq. feet
Horizontal Stabilizer: 8.8 Sq. feet LW-3 series (8 Sq. feet for elevator models)
Control Method: Conventional rudder, fully-tilting head
Rotor/horizontal tail volume ratio: 22% for long frame / 14.9% for short frame.
Empty Weight: 351 lbs. w/Rotax 582-618, 2Si 540-L(two-stroke powered) / 452 lbs. w/ 2180 VW (four-stroke powered)
Gross Weight: 750 lbs. Single-Place
Fuel Capacity: 8.5 US gal. (single-place)
Cruise Speed: 65 - 75 mph
Minimum Speed: 15 - 20 mph
Landing Speed: 10 - 15 mph
Takeoff distance: 100-750 ft
Landing Roll: 0-25 ft.
Rate of Climb: Varies with powerplant, density altitude and weight.
Construction: Welded SAE 4130 steel tubing, Dacron fabric covering.



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