NTSB Identification: ERA09LA438
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, July 30, 2009 in Norridgewock, ME
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/12/2010
Aircraft: Christopher John P CHR-1, registration: N179TC
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot of the gyroplane stated that after takeoff he climbed to pattern altitude and, while on downwind and abeam the runway numbers, he heard a “pop and then experienced a terrible, violent vibration, seemingly catastrophic in nature. There was no power, but the engine was still running.” As he was conducting a forced landing in rough terrain, the wheel and then the main rotor dug into the ground, causing the ship to roll onto its side. The main rotor, mast, landing gear, and horizontal stabilizer sustained damage. Further examination by the pilot revealed that the engine crankshaft was broken near the No. 1 cylinder. The pistons of the non-certified engine had been replaced about 10 operational hours earlier.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

A loss of engine power due to a broken crankshaft for undetermined reasons.

Full narrative available

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