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Helicopter quickbuild kit meets 51-percent rule

Helicopter quickbuild Vertical Aviation Technologies of Orlando, Fla., announced it has received FAA notice that its new Hummingbird 260L Quickbuild kits are eligible as amateur build kits meeting the 51-percent rule. 

The company developed the Quickbuild kit two years ago to assist builders through the sheet-metal construction of the Hummingbird fuselage and tail cone. This includes the lower cabin, upper cabin, firewall, nose, windshields, chin windows, center console, instrument panel, tail cone, and tail vertical and horizontal stabilizers, all assembled and sitting on preassembled landing gear.

The company claims that the Hummingbird 260L was originally designed to be a certified helicopter, but chose to sell it in kit form because the helicopter kit-built market lacked a reliable design. This fact is cited as an advantage in performance, craftsmanship, and safety over conventional experimental kits.

The Hummingbird is a four-place, single-engine, single three-blade main rotor type helicopter, with a conventional tail-rotor design. The helicopter’s fuselage is made of aluminum and composites, and it is powered by an FAA-approved VO-435-A1F Lycoming aircraft engine. (There is a Hummingbird 300LS powered by a Corvette LS7 engine.) The gross weight is 2,700 lbs with a useful load of 950 lbs. The company claims a cruise speed of 95 mph and a range of 375 miles.

The price of the quickbuild kit including the engine (Lycoming) is $240,670. Instruments, paint, upholstery, battery, and freight are additional. For more information and other available options, see the Web site.

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