Aurogyro ATE-3 1968, OH-XYV.
With the rotor blade development successfully underway I set to design
the next machine, the ATE-3 (Autogiro-Tervamäki-Eerola). The
airframe was of welded steel tubing but rotor blades, propeller,
cockpit and tail surfaces were all of glass-reinforced plastics. The
cockpit was "stolen" from the Finnish UTU fiberglass sailplane under
development at the same time. The rotor diameter was first 6.5 m but
was later increased to 7 m. The power plant was a modified VW-1700
racing car engine.
Like so many other prototype
aircraft the ATE-3 at first had a number of dangerous defects which
caused some hair-raising situations and crashes: blade flutter, power
loss due to too lean mixture, carburetor icing, etc. But finally all of
them were ironed out and the thing started to fly well. The machine had
a role in the Finnish film "Leikkikalugansteri" (Toy Gangster) by Spede Pasanen and Ere Kokkonen.
Three different tail types were tested in the ATE-3. The third and
final one was a V-tail which offered the best longitudinal stability
(to prevent PIO, or Pilot Induced Oscillation) but the lateral
stability was not as good as with the other types. After flying the
machine for three years, we sold it to a flying club in Kokkola town
and started again a new project.
ATE-3 was described in detail in SPORT AVIATION magazine, in both the
Feb.1969 and May 1971 issues and in POPULAR ROTORCRAFT FLYING 1969.