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Pie Eating vs Rate Of Climb (newbie) Wing Question

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Hi, just a quick newbie question if anyone has a few minutes to comment.

I am 105-110 kilos (16.5-17 stone) approx. I did a course recently to learn to fly and on day 2 managed to get airborne OK and did a short flight.

For those that are interested :

The major issue for me (among minor learning bits and bobs) was rate of climb. I am an ex-skydiver and essentially I am not happy unless I have a bit of distance between me and the floor, as you can see from the video , my rate of climb was dismal.

I have been advised that the student wing I had was to blame - which makes complete sense. I am also advised that an Apco Thrust (large or extra large) would be a good wing to sort the rate of climb problem.

I was flying a 2 stroke AXB paramotor , which longer term, I would like to buy - partly as Paul Haxby taught me and he came highly recomended, I trust him, and if it breaks I have somewhere to return it.

Now, to my question. Is my rate of climb likely to be corrected by the wing alone, or do I need a more powerful motor. With that wing and the AXB motor, what kind of rate of climb might I expect? If I upgraded to a bigger/more powerful motor, how much difference would it make?

Cheers for any thoughts/comments anyone might have.



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congrats --- that was good for your fisrt flight -- alot better than mine!!

im no expert and im sure il be corrected by far wiser men than me, but to me it looks like you need a power injection!

im 19st, have a parajet macro -- soon to be a flat top, and climb distinctly better than that even with trims out.

obviously the wing / weather / conditions etc have a bearing on things but as i understand it power = climb

good luck bud

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Hi Skiesnpies

this is my first flight with a Apco Thrust HP medium and an A X B Hawk ,the clime rate was good for me i weighed 10.5 stone at the time

now i weigh 12 stone ( lots of pies for me LOL) and have a Macro with the same wing and my climb rate is about 350 ft -400 ft (approx) on 3/4 throttle) and I have never used full throttle.

Here's a vid with the Macro

as you can hear from the engine I back the throttle of as I take of as I don't need all that power ,but you may need to go up a size for your weight (check it out before you buy) or try before you buy :!:

Regards Mark :)

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Well done on your first flight. That wing looks like a very old design to me. Understandable perhaps for a training wing but just bear in mind that wing technology is advancing at at an incredible rate and I suspect you'll find very different results with most modern gliders. Make sure you try a more modern wing before drawing any serious conclusions which I'm sure is what you've been advised anyway.

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The rate of climb is influenced by;

a) The wing, size and design

b) Surplus power from the motor, beyond that required for level flight

c) All up weight of the whole shebang, including you, motor, wing & everything else

To increase rate of climb you must alter one of the above;

a) by making the wing larger, you are decreasing the wing loading i.e. the weight per square meter of fabric above you. You will climb faster. Care must be taken however that you remain within the correct all up weight envelope for that wing at that size. Paramotorists tend to fly 'heavy' on their wings, that is towards (or even beyond) the upper weight limit for a wing. In that case, they are increasing the wing loading, and will tend to climb slower. By doing so, it reduces the chance of a collapse (although if such a collapse occurs, it will likely be more dynamic). It also increases the airspeed of the wing, thus improving penetration in windy conditions.

Modern wing designs are undoubtedly more efficient than some of their older cousins, and so give you increases in both climb rate AND speed. However the paradox remains, that in order to increase horizontal speed, and maintain the same rate of climb (or maintain the same speed while increasing rate of climb) you need to supply more power, either by opening the throttle further, or fitting a more powerful engine.

b) Increase power available. As mentioned above, the more power you have available, beyond that required for level flight on a given wing at a given load, the greater will be your rate of climb.

c) become lighter. Thus you will have a greater surplus of power. Be cautious of moving too close, or even beyond the lower weight limit of your wing.

For most, if not all paramotorists, we have to perform a three way balancing act involving the above three factors. You must choose what combination suits you best for your particular requirements. E.g., are you happy to fly slowly on very calm days, and perhaps climb to greater heights faster, or do you want to really go places, even in marginal wind conditions, where you need extra penetration in order to move forward against the wind? Are you willing to carry the extra fuel you are likely to need if you move to a more powerful motor and improve your climb rate and/or air speed?

For what it's worth, I flew a Swing Arcus (not 2, 3 etc.) XL wing with paramotor (trimmable) risers. I flew at an all up weight, somewhere near 160 kg. when first starting. My Adventure F3 with Solo 210 Plus engine (the 'plus gives an extra couple of HP) gave me a positive rate of climb even with trimmers at full fast, but not VERY positive. However with speed bar applied, I would descend even at full throttle. Most folks with a more modern wing left me pretty much for dead, both horizontally and vertically.

I am now flying at closer to 140kg AUW and have switched to an APCO Thrust HP '09 in medium. My power unit is now a Bailey 170 four stroke. The Bailey is probably not substantially more powerful than the Adventure F3, although my personal feeling is that the Helix prop provides a noticeable increase in thrust. With this wing/motor/weight I am now very quick through the air, on a par with anything I've come up against. My rate of climb remains positive, but not sparkling, but I would say better than the previous combination, despite the much higher speeds. I can also just about use 'bar and stay level.

So it looks like I have pretty much traded weight loss for speed increase. The bit I like, is that due to the good fuel economy of the Bailey, I have about halved my fuel consumption. This particular compromise suits me.

Hope some of that is of some use to you.


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