Ben Cope Experimental BUG Helicopters – Mark 2 Bug Helicopter & Ring Rotor System

BMW motorcycle engine bug helicopterThe BUG Mark 3 helicopter during it's new composite cabin metamorphosis.

The BUG Homebuilt Helicopter Design

Editors note : Further information on the homebuilt BUG helicopter range transition and evolution along with individual model detail including the mockup proof of concept Ring Rotor System. His base designs remain basic and true to the tradition helicopter layout, nothing fancy (besides his new rotor concept).

While there are many questions and opinions regarding his helicopter creations, one thing is for sure, Ben is indeed a homebuilt helicopter pioneer and pro-active builder. His work is of high quality with some neat looking designs. This is the type of mindset required to create your own helicopter design. The ability to take a concept from an idea to flying completion – without procrastination.

Ben Cope's BUG Mark 3 helicopter

The BUG Mark 3 helicopter during it’s new composite cabin metamorphosis.

BMW motorcycle engine powered Bug Helicopter Mark 3

Here we see the Mark 3 Bug Helicopter design by Ben Cope on display at another airshow. This picture shows the BMW K75 motorcycle engine installation and composite mounted landing gear. Clearly seen are the exhaust system, radiator cooling fan and ignition coils.

The BUG Mark 1 Helicopter under tethered flight

Very much “BUG” looking, the helicopter has unusual side windscreens partially blocking forward view. Mounted on ground handling wheels, you can see how the cabin clearly hangs forward of the landing gear. Displayed at the Weston Super Mare Helidays 2007. Photo credit: UK Emergency Aviation

The little device propped on top of the BUG helicopter rotor is a 5 foot demonstration model of my patented ring rotor system. This rotor system provides very high inertia without the necessity for a huge rotor hub whilst at the same time it reduces tip losses to a minimum due to its blade ring tiplets. The Bug 3 helicopter is currently being tested and ground tethered to prove as much as possible any weaknesses in the critical components.

The BUG 3 helicopter showing the new advanced rotor system concept

The BUG 3 helicopter showing the a mock-up of Ben Cope’s new advanced rotor system concept.

Once this testing program is complete, a full sized ring rotor which is currently under construction, will be fitted and commence the necessary testing to verify that the fluid dynamic analysis that has been carried out on the ring rotor, works as the test results would suggest. I may then be somewhere near the goal of producing a VLH (Very Light Helicopter) machine that is reasonably safe to further test the idea.

BUG helicopter advanced rotor-blade mockup

The BUG 3 helicopter showing a mock-up of Ben Cope’s new advanced rotor system concept.

In the photos above it shows the MK 3 helicopter BUG helicopter which has a ring rotor device mounted above its normal pair of blades. This was done just to expose the ring rotor concept to interested parties at an airshow. The actual ring rotor will be fifteen feet diameter. The Ringrotor is something i have been working on to provide great inertia with a minimum weight penalty. The MK 4 has been designed so as to be able to retro fit the ring rotor when airframe once the drive systems are proven. This is why the tail-boom length is adjustable. The current engine is a Yamaha FZR motorcycle.


PHOTO CREDITS : All photos courtesy Ben Cope unless otherwise specified.


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Ben Cope's Experimental BUG Helicopters - Mark 2 Bug Helicopter
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