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McCulloch Super J-2

A picture of the McCulloch Super J-2

Autogyros were first developed in the 1930s and are a predecessor to the helicopter.  They use a conventional aircraft engine and propeller to provide forward thrust and an unpowered rotor to give lift.  Gyrocopters fly like a conventional aircraft, but have the ability to take off and land in very short distances.  The J-2 was designed to be easy to fly and capable of operating from areas little larger than a normal driveway.  Unfortunately, it never quite lived up to this standard and safe operation required a conventional runway and while they are relatively easy to fly they are not the “everyman’s airplane” they were touted to be.  Just over 100 of the J-2s were built between 1971 and 1973.  The Super J-2 is identical to the standard aircraft with the exception of a metal three-blade propeller replacing the original two-blade wooden prop.

Service History:

Built by the McCulloch Aircraft Corporation at Lake Havasu City, Arizona and completed May 28, 1971.

June 1971                    To Winn Air Aviation, Van Nuys, California.  The first production aircraft delivered to a customer.

June 1971                    To Ben Parker Company, Carson City, Nevada.

March 1987                 To Daryl Riva, Tucson, Arizona.

July 1989                     Donated to the Pima Air & Space Museum.

Rotor Diameter

26 ft


16 ft


8 ft 6 in.


1,500 lbs (loaded)

Maximum Speed

122 MPH

Service Ceiling

10,000 ft


200 miles


One Lycoming O-360-A2D four-cylinder engine with 180 horsepower




Daryl Riva, Tucson, Arizona, 1987



Serial Number

Pima Air & Space Museum

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