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Achieving dreams has long been important to me. Especially dreams related to freedom and personal growth. In 1985, I took the initiative to begin working towards my private pilot's license. As a student with few funds, it took three summers of lifeguard earnings to pay for the lessons required. With turnover of instructors from year to year, it took me longer than it does for some. I earned my Single Engine Land rating in March 1988. In 1990, I first took the controls of a Robinson R-22 helicopter in a "Freedom Flight." I was hooked. Fixed wing flight is fun, but this was amazing!
My aviation dream took a back seat to more pressing life priorities for many years.
All of us have dreams that don't go away. And for me, rotary-wing flight has been one of those dreams. In 2012, I turned much more serious attention to how I would make this dream come true. Would I pursue an Autogyro? For several months, I thought this would be my solution. And then I discovered the Helicycle. I spent many hours looking at photos and reading stories on this Helicycle.com website.
I learned there was a Helicycle owner less than an hour north of me -- and his ship was for sale! So I called Dave Keck and made arrangements to see his Helicycle in person. There's nothing quite like the excitement of hearing the turbine in this sleek flying machine roar to life. Here's Dave Keck (builder of Kit 2-16) starting up his turbine...
We talked for a while, and he encouraged me to build my own if I were willing. His own workmanship was impeccable. "I wanted it to look like it came out of a factory." Looked to me as though he succeeded at that. It was truly a beautiful machine.
I was not in a big hurry, so I decided to follow this plan, and put myself on the waiting list for Eagle R&D production run #7.
For the next several months, I made contact with current owner / builders to find out if they had any reservations about the project, or would do it again. Most everyone I communicated with was friendly, helpful, and most importantly, VERY HAPPY with their Helicycle. I heard no builder regrets. It was obvious from my due diligence research that several people had purchased a kit and then sold it after spending some time on the project. Given my track record, I knew if I committed to the project, I would complete it.
New year's eve 2012, one of the builders I had been communicating with forwarded a for sale notice from a current kit owner. I called the owner immediately. I still well remember the excitement of the conversation, and the awakening possibility that this might be my chance to own a Helicycle. New Year's Eve 2012.
The next several days and few weeks were a blur of talking with the existing owner, the Eagle factory, and lining up cash for the purchase. I rented a trailer, and drove it empty from Austin to Farmington, New Mexico to take the next step... So far, I'm grateful to have taken that step. Here's what I've accomplished on the build during the two years. My hope is that If you're looking at the Helicycle as I was, that my story encourages you to pursue YOUR dream.
Click here to view a video of Peter telling his Toastmasters club about his good fortune acquiring the Helicycle kit.
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