Mariano Cordorniu's MC-1 Helicopter

There is not alot known about this mighty little machine. Peolpe have noted it's resemblence to the chinese clone of the CH-6 and CH-7 helicopters. A picture of the MC-1 helicopter was featured on page 31 of the Jan/Feb issue of Rotorcraft Magazine and has been seen in other periodicals, homebuilt helicopter forums and aviation discussion groups (Rotary Forum and Yahoo Experimental Helicopter Discussion Groups). It has also been seen flying at El Mirage events in the past.

The MC1 helicopter at El Mirage fly-in
The MC1 homebuilt helicopter at El Mirage fly-in, 2005.
Clearly seen is the Subaru EA81 engine and cooling radiator plus the simple yet strong triangulated airframe.

As confirmed by a French Aviation Journalist, it seems the French MicroCopter MC-1 (having a MC-1 prototype name, and aiming towards the production of a radial diesel powered MC-2), has no connection to the American MC-1 that has been identified at the above events as built by Mariano Cordorniu.

Apparently the helicopters builder and designer Mr Mariano Codorniu is a Cuban refugee that left there years ago (2006) and now lives in Riverton Ave, North Hollywood, LA (last known). He is said to have gone into some level of production. There are still a few projects floating around so keep an ear to the ground if you are interested!

The MC1 helicopter airframe
The MC1 helicopter airframe.

Some (unconfirmed) design features are: simple homebuilt construction with very neat and professional welding done by Mariano Codorniu.

Hughes 269 helicopter cones for the rotorhead and a seemingly little rear-end unit out of a 4-wheel ATV motorcycle, like a Honda or something, for the main rotor transmission.

This could possibly be insufficient for long-term use due to different stresses - though to date there have been many installed and flying without issue.

The MC1 helicopter cabin
The MC1 helicopters very smart looking cabin.

Further information is that while there was some good thinking involved, some of the stuff might raise your eyebrows.

One possible weight saving area is the 1/2 inch thick 2 foot by 3 foot solid aluminum plate just to hold the engine on as per the original design.

The MC1 helicopter
Clean and simple lines on the MC1 helicopter.

Reports are that it is a very impressive machine with quality workmanship throughout.

Quote from a helicopter enthusiast that viewed the machine: "I fell in love with it..."

MC1 helicopter tail rotor gearbox
A very neat looking tail rotor assemblywith rotorblade set-up similar to the Mini 500 helicopter.
MC1 helicopter with Subaru EA81 engine
The re-powered MC1 helicopter with Subaru EA81 engine.

See page two (2) for more on the MC1 homebuilt helicopter.