Founded in 1954 as Helicopter Engineering Research Corporation by Harold E. Emigh, designer of the Emigh Trojan lightplane, to develop and market a single-seat personal helicopter. Known as the Helicom Commuter Jr Model H- 1 A, the prototype first flew in 1960, and was sold both in ready-to-fly form and as a kit for assembly by amateur constructors. A ground trainer version was developed also, mounted via a gimbal to a castoring base which was too heavy for the helicopter to lift from the ground.

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