Sport Copter is a second generation family business (since 1958). Building the worlds finest gyroplanes has been the sole function of the company. They have proven over the years to be the leader in design concept and continue to improve quality, enhance performance and increase safety standards within the rotorcraft industry.
- CUSTOM DESIGN on all levels of rotorcraft concept
- SALES kits, rotorblade/rotorhead conversion and parts
- SERVICE on all models of craft
- FLIGHT TRAINING FAA-accredited from Sport Pilot to rotorcraft ratings
JIM VANEK, president and chief designer for Sport Copter, Inc., test pilot, airshow performer, currently ranked as the top autogyro pilot in the world and sought after for his expertise in rotorcraft design. Jim revamped the Vancraft designs including the award winning world’s first two-place gyroplane which took the prestigious “Charles Lindbergh” award at the Osh Kosh Airshow in 1985. His new design,SCII, was voted as one of the Top Ten Bes Designs at Airventure in Oshkosh, 2011.
He was asked to be a test pilot for a federally funded (NASA) aviation experiment, the “Carter Copter project”. Was also invited and participated as a design consultant on the same project (1998). Jim wrote the parameters and guidelines for gyroplane looping for the FAA in 1998 after performing the world’s first loop in a conventional gyroplane (1997). He is the only gyro pilot in the world that holds an ICAS (International Council of Air Shows) card for gyroplane looping and rolling. He also holds the “Statement of Acrobatic Competency” card, from the FAA, which authorizes him to perform aerobatics, “to loop and roll consecutively” and “in formation”, in a Sport Copter gyroplane.
Jim worked with “Jeppesen Sanderson”, of aircraft manual fame. They referred to him as an “expert in his field”, and requested him to contribute writings to their “Rotorcraft” section of their new 2000 publication manual called, “Rotorcraft Handbook”, which is distributed by the FAA. He was noted in the Kitplanes magazine “Gyroplanes’ article in regards to his work in design concept and they referred to Jim as the “future legend in gyroplane designs.” (April 2003). Jim, honored for his work, was given the “Gyroplane Pioneer, “ award by the Hofstra University,(NY) in April 2003, and was also asked to be a guest speaker. He has been an educator and authority in the field for the past 20 years and continues to seek ways to break down old barriers and enhance designs to find new ways to use rotorcraft to better our transportation paradigm.
CHUCK VANEK, Jim’s father, an avid fixed wing pilot and founder of the EAA chapter in the Northwest, was one of the early pioneers of gyroplane design and development. Beginning his work in 1957, he designed and privately built a VTOL (Vertical, Take Off and Landing) aircraft, the world’s first “Tall-Tail” gyroplane, the first Two-Place gyroplane, of which he was awarded the “Charles Lindbergh” award in 1985, and the first ultralight gyroplane with a semi-enclosed body. He was honored for this, and given a “Gyroplane Pioneer,” award by the Hofstra University (NY) in April 2003. Also in recognition of his early contributions to gyroplane design and the development of the “flying ring”, Chuck Vanek is noted in the famed book “JANE’S ALL THE WORLD BOOK OF AIRCRAFT HISTORY.”
SPORT COPTER has some of the best technicians not only working on their design team, but am experienced,talented, production crew. They are also producing the top selling line of Sport Rotors rotorsystems. They have a friendly office staff who are here to answer your questions and two CFI’s (certified flight instructor) including an FAA Examiner are also available for flight training.
Their vision in the future is to design highly sophisticated four person gyroplanes along with unmanned craft. Gyroplanes of the future, Jim says, will be built as a compound design type (gyroplane/helicopter.). They will achieve vertical take off with a high-speed cruise. The future designs of all aircraft will use an electric power fuel cell then will turn to ion propulsion or some means other than pushing air molecules and burning fossil fuels. Sport Copter believes they will be a strong force in this movement to help change current technology.