Wednesday 19 December 2012

Dudek Synthesis coastal flying


I had a couple of opportunities to fly coastal cliffs in Stanwell Park with Dudek Synthesis in free flight configuration  (without paramotor and with standard harness).

My take off weight is c.a. 90 kg. The wing size is 25 so it is 25m^2 wing.

On the one hand it is a bit small for me but on the other I have Sigma 6 which is 28m^2 and I am a bit light to fly it. Depending on the wind conditions I can switch wings and most of the time both are out and ready to fly on the hill.

The take off

I was taking off only in the classic way (i.e. standing front to the wing) because of strong wind on the site in Stanwell Park. There were no problems with rising the glider over the head. With Synthesis I am not afraid of overshooting and total front collapsing during inflation period. Reflex wings are resistant to this which I can confirm.

Ground handling is easier then with Sigma, glider wants to stay above you.

The flight

Right after take off I was sinking down like stone unlike the others who were gaining height. Sink rate is significantly greater even with fully closed trimmers in comparison to Sigma and other pilots flying that day. The knowledge about the site was helpful and I gained height quickly. However I was still the lowest flying paraglider pilot that day.

What happens when you fully open the trimmers?

You can fell the acceleration. Woah! It is so fast, almost like hang glider. I was overtaking every single PG pilot on the site. Sink rate increases even more but with strong wind conditions you want to fly in this configuration. It is the safest and fastest one.
The breaks become heavier and it is convenient to steer with small balls to make a turn (line is going to the tip of the wing). They are surprisingly effective. On speedbar the wing becomes 60+km/h fast but the sink rate... you know what happens ;) ... I did not want to end up on the beach just because of playing around with the speedbar.

The landing

I did the top landings only. With use of trimmers it is easy to maintain level flight during the approach (Stanwell Park site is quite specific for top landing). In the final  moment I pull the trimmers totally to slow down the wing (not too late!) and decrease the sink rate. Then stalling the wing is as easy as that and you are on the ground.

Is it good coastal flying wing? 

In my opinion it is good wing for strong wind conditions when you would no be flying normal (non-reflex) wing. I am happy to keep both wings for different weather conditions.

Here is movie of Martin Wysocki (a.k.a Hollywood) landing in Stanwell Park on Synthesis.


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