Metalworks Incorporated GP-10 Hummingbird Gyro-Plane:

Metalworks Incorporated is a company which has its headquarters west of the city of Tolkeen although it has facilities in several others places around North America. The company is known for constructing various ground vehicles, robots, and aircraft. Many of their designs are copies of products of other companies or nations. Several other designs are also based on pre-rifts designs. They have permission from Triax to produce under licence several Triax designs and sell them in North America.

Before the coming of the Rifts, Gyro-Planes were very popular among civil aviators as well as taking over many of the roles performed previously by helicopters. Some of these include news agencies, exploration, law enforcement use, and even some military applications. Most roles where those for more lightweight designs with the larger Tilt Rotor designs taking up roles which required the ability to carry more passengers or cargo.

Many of these Gyro-Plane aircraft survived the coming of the Rifts and several companies after the coming of the Rifts also produce these designs. Metalworks produces the Hummingbird with Northern Gun and Triax also producing competitive Gyro-Plane designs. These designs are popular with adventurers and they fill various roles with military and mercenary forces as well.

These aircraft can be considered a combination between a helicopter and a conventional propeller driven aircraft. The aircraft uses a rotor for short take off and landing. The rotor is heavier than a standard helicopter rotor. When traveling horizontally, the upper rotor is not powered, spinning freely, and instead relies on a pusher propellor. The Gyro-Plane has aircraft type wings to provide lift and has the same basic width as the rotor blades. The design allows the aircraft to reach speeds greater than those of a helicopter as well as requiring less power and therefore having greater fuel efficiency.

For most applications, speed is not tremendously important and the basic model of the Hummingbird has a top speed of two hundred and eighty miles per hour although there is a more powerful version with the increased top speed of three hundred and twenty miles per hour. There are two different versions produced by Metalworks, being a fusion powered model and one being a fuel cell powered model. Fusion powered versions have a normal duration of five years with the fuel cell version having a range of around 2,000 miles. While shorter ranged than many Pre-Rifts Gyro-Plane designs, the range is still quite respectable.

The technology for the fuel cell design was purchased from Archangel Heavy Industries who got the designs of fuel cells from pre-rifts records. The fuel cells operate by pulling the electrons off of an H2 molecule, splitting it into 2H+ molecules and 2 electrons. The electrons pass through the “load” (engines, weapons, avionics, etc.) creating current and powering the systems. Meanwhile, the 2H+ molecules pass from the anode to the cathode through the electrolyte. At the other “end,” the electrons then recombine with the 2H+ molecules and Oxygen (from the air) and are released as water from the rear of the aircraft. Unlike many of the ground vehicles that use the fuel cell system, the main aircraft fuel tank is fixed.

The aircraft is constructed mostly from high strength composites, stronger than those used in most Pre-Rift Gyro-Plane models, and can take incredible damage although it is not near as tough as most combat designs. There is an upgraded model of the Hummingbird which adds additional armor for the ability to withstand greater damage. Most mercenary companies purchasing the Hummingbird will have the armor upgraded. Electronic equipment is equal to that carried on most robot vehicles.

Standard models are unarmed but unlike Pre-Rifts versions, Metalworks offers factory versions of the aircraft which already carry light weaponry. The weaponry is basically standard Metalwork’s hardware which is mounted on other designs manufactured by the company. This is believed to have allowed more rapid development than might have otherwise been possible.

On armed models, the Hummingbird mounts a pair of forward mounted pulse lasers. These weapons are derived from the JA-12 Juicer Rifle using the pulse lasers but removing the grenade launcher portion. On fusion powered versions, power is pulled from the fusion reactor while on fuel cell versions, the weapons are powered by a high efficiency capacitor linked to the weaponry themselves.

Instead of having traditional hard points as those on most true fighter aircraft, the hard points are identical to those carried on the Hawkwing. Armed versions of the Hummingbird has two mini-missile pods on the tips of the wings and a light hard point on each wing. These wing mounts can carry missiles up to medium range in size, jamming pod, or anti-missile decoy packs. On fuel cell versions of this aircraft, extra fuel tanks can also be carried on inner hard points.

Designation: GP-10 Hummingbird.

Vehicle Type: Personal Gyro-Plane.

Crew: Two with two passengers (can be flown by one).

M.D.C. By Location:

Standard Model

Increased Armor


[1] Optional: Forward Mounted Laser Cannons (2):

40 each.

40 each.


Optional: Mini-Missile Launchers (2, Outer Wings):

80 each.

80 each.


[2] Main Rotor:




[2] Pusher Propellor:




[2] Wings (2):

100 each.

125 each.


[2] Tail:




Landing Gear (3):

10 each.

10 each.


Reinforced Cockpit:




[3] Main Body:




[1] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot.” Even then the attacker is at -4 to strike.

[2] The loss of the main rotor, tail, rear propeller, or wing will cause the aircraft to crash if in flight. Roll under the piloting skill -30% for a successful crash landing.

[3] Destroying the main body knocks the gyro-plane out of the sky and renders it completely useless.


Driving on Ground (Taxiing): Only possible for take offs and landings as well as for parking and storage. Speed is 40 mph (64 kph) when traveling on the runway / air field and not on take off or landing. The gyro-plane can land and take off from primitive runways.

Flying: Standard Model: Hover to 280 mph (450.6 kph / 243.3 kt) with a ceiling of 32,000 feet (9,753.6 meters).

Upgrade Model: Hover to 320 mph (515.0 kph / 278.1 kt) with a ceiling of 32,000 feet (9,753.6 meters).

All models of the gyro-plane has great maneuverability and VTOL capabilities.

Range: Fusion Reactor: Effectively Unlimited. Thrusters overheat after twenty hours of use below 300 mph (482.8 kph), 10 hours of use over 300 mph (482.8 kph) for upgraded models.

Fuel Cell Version: 2,000 miles (3,218.7 km) with no external ordnance load. The fuel cell version can carry up to two external fuel tanks style ( inner wing hard points only) that extend range by 800 miles (1,287.5 km) each. Reduce aircraft’s range by 15% if partially loaded (Over two short range missiles or four mini-missiles.) and by 25% if fully loaded.

Statistical Data:

Height: 14.5 feet (4.42 meters).

Wingspan / Rotor Width:  46.8 feet (14.26 meters).

Length: 28.5 feet (8.69 meters).

Weight: 2,800 pounds (1,270.1 kg) empty and 4,200 pounds (1,905.1 kg) fully loaded.

Power System: Two versions. Nuclear with 5 year fusion reactor and fuel cell version that uses Hydrogen as a fuel to produce electricity.

Cargo: Minimal (Storage for small equipment), without passengers can carry 600 lbs (272.2 kg) in rear area of cockpit. Does not include hard points.

Black Market Cost: Fusion Reactor: 2.5 million credits (Add 750,000 for upgrade model) Fuel Cell Version: 800,000 credits (Add 200,000 for upgrade model). Additional armor costs 250,000 credits and armed versions cost 400,000 credits.

Weapon Systems (Combat Models Only):

  1. Two (2) Laser Cannons: Laser cannons are mounted on either side of the cockpit in the front of the aircraft. The aircraft’s laser cannons are from the barrels and inner working of the JA-12 Assault Rifle. On the nuclear powered version, the laser cannons pull power directly from the fusion reactor of the fighter. On the fuel cell version, the laser cannons are powered by a high efficiency capacitor.

    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters).

    Mega Damage: 4D6 for one cannon, 8D6 for both cannons, 1D6x10+10 for three blast burst from one cannon, 2D6x10+20 for three blast burst from both barrels (6 total blasts).

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the pilot (usually 4 or 5).

    Payload: Nuclear Reactor: Effectively Unlimited (draws power off the main reactor.) Fuel Cell Version: 240 shots stored in a high efficiency capacitor. However, for damage purposes, consider a “magazine” to be 40 bursts of 6 blasts.

  2. Two (2) Mini-Missile Launchers: Mini-missile pods are permanently mounted on the outside edge of each wing. The launchers are normally used for ground strafing, anti-troop, and anti-emplacement attacks. Normal missile used are armor piercing, plasma, or fragmentation mini-missiles.

    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, mini-missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: Varies with missile types, mini-missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Each launcher can fire mini-missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) mini-missiles.

    Payload: Each launcher carries eight (8) mini-missile for a total of sixteen (16) mini-missiles.

  3. Two (2) External Hard Points: The Hummingbird has a total of two hard points with one hard points under each wing of the flight pack. Hard Points can carry missiles, jamming pods, and chaff pods. In the case of fuel cell powered versions of the aircraft, extra fuel for the fuel cell version can be carried on the wing hard points as well - extends range by 800 miles (1,287.5 km) each.

    1. Missiles: Each hard point may carry one medium range missiles, two short range missiles, or four mini-missiles. All hard points must carry the same type of ordnance.

      Maximum Effective Range: Varies by missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

      Mega Damage: Varies by missile (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

      Rate of Fire: Missiles can be fired one at a time or in volleys of two (2) missiles.

      Payload: One (1) medium range missile, two (2) short range missiles, or four (4) mini-missiles per hard point.

    2. Active Jamming Pod: One pod takes place of all ordnance on the hard point. Each pod causes -10% to detection by radar systems and creates a -2 penalty to all radar guided weapons (such as missiles.) Carrying two pods will give a -20% to detection by radar and causes a -4 penalty to all radar guided weapons. However, the jamming signal can be detected and some missiles will home in on jamming signals. In addition, active electronically scanned array radar systems can often find unjammed frequencies.

    3. Anti-Missile Chaff Dispenser Pod: One pod takes place of all ordnance on the hard point. When tailed by a missile, a cloud of chaff and other obtrusive particles can be released to confuse or detonate the enemy’s attack. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies missiles due to technological difference and not as effective against smart missile. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles.)



      Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.



      Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)



      No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.

      Also note that the chaff cloud will also blind flying monsters that fly through cloud. They will suffer the following penalties: reduce melee attacks/actions, combat bonuses, and speed by half. Duration: 1D4 melee rounds.

      Payload: Four (4) per pod [Eight (8) total with both hard points carrying chaff pods.]

Combat Bonuses:

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

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