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Cold flying and new Solo wing.


alan_k
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Doesn't look like any flying is going to take place soon now the cold and wet spell is with us, so I thought I would write up my last flight on 1st of December.

Went up to the field thinking if it is really wet I would give it a miss, fortunately it wasn't. Took my time, watching the wind streamer, it was a little gusty. In 2 minds but the gusts were infrequent.

Took off forward at 14:33, good climb rate with the breeze then skirted Wombourne and headed north. Progress was quite slow at 17mph even with the trims fully out. A couple of little bumps but nothing to worry about, I double checked the brake lines as I had shortened them a lot from the delivered length. Happy that there is 1-2 inches of free play, that is perfect.

I made my way past Lower Penn (posh) as far as Perton then turned around over Perton golf course. Pulled the trimmers right in and was still doing about 38mph downwind.

Landed after 52 minutes, was cold up there (no surprise) but had dressed for the occasion. 2 pairs of socks, long johns under jogging bottoms, 2 T shirts (one long sleeved), pullover, body warmer with tall collar all zipped up, 4 layer flying suit, balaclava and 2 pairs of gloves. Not bad, chest still cold at speed plus ankles slightly.

Overcast conditions so a bit dull but good to be up, whay hay. I am loving the new Solo 24 wing, I now have almost 3 1/2 hours on it. Lovely feel to it like being in a comfy chair. The brake handles are larger than previous Dudek wings so appear slightly further back on the risers.

The handling is great and using the tip steering toggles is exquisite, the cascade pulls a little more tip width than the Reportair so you can turn very smartly. Not pulling the brake lines keeps the wing in reflex mode so the turns feel SO solid. Some Solo owners have said they intend to combine the tip and brake lines but I think they are best left separate.

Just want more flyable weather even more now.

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Did you have a report air previously?

If so how to they compare for speed, stability and passive safety?

I'd like to get a few more hours on my A rated wing then try and skip the roadster/universal level and jump to a solo/report air.

But at the same time don't want to get too ahead of myself. Is there a minimum no of hours before one should be considering a solo?

 

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I still have the Reportair, also a 24. I think I need to fly it again after the Solo to get a better handle on any differences.

Both offer the same stability and passive safety, the Reportair has a faster min speed and slightly faster ultimate limit on speedbar, which I haven't used (yet) on either wing. The speed range on the trimmers is identical however the Solo has a greater max weight range, with experience, which would/will be ideal for trike flying.

If you are near the top of the Reportair weight range landings are fast in nil/low wind. What is your weight and total hours?

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Thanks.

Not many, I only learned this year. I'd be 130-140 all up.

Was just looking ahead to next year, and wondering if I can get away with either of these wings once I get to 20-25 hours, or if they would be too advanced. 

P.S. I find the ozone and dudek websites give little away re comparisons between wings. 

The dudek description even mentions the solo being similar to the universal, though my understanding is it suitable for more advanced pilots? Or is it as passively safe as a universal?

Edited by paraflyer17
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I wouldn't be overly concerned about the stated level of passive safety as both wings are in the B category level and are modern designs.

With 25 hours you should be able to confidently fly these wings, however at your all up weight/hours I would suggest aiming at the middle of the weight range, so Reportair26 or Solo27.

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Agree with your observations on brake line lengths Alan, I measured seven inches of slack on the brakes with trims fully out (the lines are set at the shortest of the three factory lengths). I'm taking a double wrap to land to give the control that I like. When I first launched the Solo I thought there was something wrong with it, as if there's a breeze it feels like it's going to overshoot but the brakes go down to your waist to try and damp it out. I don't think it will overshoot generally, just gives you the feeling it will and the lack of brake control is weird. I'm going to take about four inches out of the lines and see how that goes. 

I think Dudek have provided over-long brake lines for the same reason as they lock the wing tip steering handles with velcro, to stop newer pilots getting carried away. But I think the brake line length is a mistake as it makes the wing feel a little sloppy until you realise what's going on.

Having said that, I think the Solo is awesome - like you, I think the wing tip steering is sublime and it's easy to generate enough energy for solid wingovers and spirals. It also rides like my old XJ8's magic carpet ride. 

I launched it last week in zero wind with tiny cross wind gusts and (being aware of the long brake lines) it was perfectly behaved. The ability to handle cross winds is awesome. 

I'm coming at this wing from a GTX so have gone into the upper 'advanced' weight range and I'm seriously impressed with it. 

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I took 6 inches off the lines and still have to pull over one inch before any turning effect, so perfect in my book.

I have held one side of the tip toggle velcro under the edge of the main velcro holding things on so it doesn't get in the way.

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1 hour ago, Hann__ said:

How come you guys have taken a `sidestep` from your previous wings to a Solo?

Not knocking the Dudek, but it`s a very `mild` option?

Several reasons, one of which is needing a stable hands-free platform for my photography and video work and also something less tiring for long XCs. I have held off for a long while as wings I had flown like the Roadster 3 felt too numb and I thought I'd not find something 'milder' that I would like - but the Solo is quite nimble when not in novice mode (but not as wicked as the GTX) and is a very pleasant cruiser.  

I was going to test fly the Speedster 3 and the Hadron 3 but by chance I got an unexpected opportunity to fly the Solo and I realised how good it was for what I need so bought it there and then.  

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 05/12/2020 at 09:10, alan_k said:

That's a good question. I don't make use of the 2D steering and the wing now has some hours on it.

The Solo offers the possibility to move to trike flying, I'm not getting any younger 🙄

I've looked at the Dudek website and I really cant see anything to choose between the Report Air and Solo.

Speeds etc all look identical.

From what I can see the only difference in theory is the RA has 2D steering and the solo doesn't.

And as you've already said, the Solo has a wider weight range.

So I still dont really understand why I should choose one over the other as long as I'm within the weight range and dont want to fly a trike?

The Solo is 4 years newer? Does that make it safer, more efficient, easier to launch, more/easier something else or is the 2d steering on the RA worth having? Why do Dudek even sell both models when they appear so similar? There must be some difference my inexperienced eye is missing.

Thanks

 

 

 

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