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Kobra Vs Bailey


ek2000
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Hi,

I am going to get a new motor in the next few weeks. I was planning to make the final decision after the Flying Show on the 27th, but one of the brands I was hoping to see is not going to be there, so I have to ask my questions here.

I am looking for a bigger motor - I am 6'3" and a bit over 100kg on the bathroom scales. Oh, and I want to be able to take my wife flying tandem every now and again... But also I am a PG pilot and like flying XC and flying in the Alps. I know these requirements are not easy to combine, but it is worth a shot :)

I am down to a couple of motors: Bailey 4V with the 130cm prop, and the Kobra Rocco Super (Simonini 202cm + 3 blade 130 cm prop), and there is the outside chance of the Powerjet 160 Rotron.

Can you guys comment on these motors if you have experience with them? Ease of use, reliability, comfort in flight (I know this one is subjective) and noise levels, flying power off?

One motor that I would have liked is the Nirvana Instinct, but between the lack of dealer support in the UK and the stratospheric price tag (not to mention the waiting list until March...) it is off the list.

Thanks,

Eugene

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Hi Eugene,

I got your PM by email, but not in my message box here (??) so couldn't reply to you direct...

Like you I was flying a Walkerjet RR200 previously, which was great in many aspects but I wanted something more 'active' as I always felt like a passenger in it and not as 'involved' as when flying PG.

There is a good review of the Bailey here: http://footflyer.com/Equipment/Paramotors/bailey175/paramotor_review_Bailey175.htm but for more active flying I narrowed my choice to either Pap or Kobra, and went for the Rocco Super (Evo ST version). I hadn't seen the Bailey active chassis system, but having seen a similar design from AEF gliders at the St. Hilaire festival I imagine it would also work very well.

Weight is similar between the Bailey and Rocco super, and although the Bailey is quieter & more economical the Simonini powered Rocco offers more power / thrust. The Evo is overkill for solo use and slightly heavier, but I also wanted occasional tandem use and maybe even a trike in future, so went for this option as the cost diference was small. The engine will be less stressed at lower throttle power, and hopefully the further development has improved the already good Simonini reliability .... It is also slightly stronger than the standard model.

At 6'6 and 100kg I hardly notice the extra weight compared to the Walkerjet, and the harness is even more comfortable as the motor sits higher on your back. Loads of adjustment and comfort in flight, but similar drawbacks to the Bailey as the high thrustpoint tends to tilt the motor forwards under power or during climbout.

Not had a chance to try thermalling on it yet, but in turbulence the pivot arms and harness moves more like a free flight harness and you can feel what the wing is doing - unlike the Walkerjet which tried to fight it and left me feeling like I was just rattling around on a chair.

I bought mine direct from Kobra while I was in Europe this summer, and support from them has been superb. Leandro (their CEO) answers all my emails personally & promptly, and even gave me his mobile number for out of hours contact when he is travelling and while I was at the St. Hilaire festival. Whilst it may not be 100% perfect in every aspect it is one of the best machines currently available if you want an active system, and I reckon you would be happy with it.

Alan

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forget the bailey it will be down on power compared to the other two.

simonini is a tried and trusted motor.

Rotron, not tried one.

I have just been informed By Paul Bailey that the V200 Bailey four stroke is comparable with the Simonini on power and weight.

Please disregard the above statement. (I was going on information from other pilots)

If anyone gets the chance then please try all three and give us a report back

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If anyone gets the chance then please try all three and give us a report back

Just seeing them side by side would be an accomplishment - let alone flying all 3 - but if anyone wants to lend me a Bailey & a Rotron ..... :wink:

Had another great flight today on the Kobra which is now just about run-in after almost 5 hours. Carb needs tweaking to smooth out the idle - mid-range, which should improve the fuel economy even further. Already getting between 3.5 & 4 litres per hour which is pretty good for such a big motor and should give a 3 hour range on a full tank.

Still fine tuning the harness and hang point settings as it is very sensitive to weight distribution and small adjustments are necessary to get the best settings for launch, general flying and landing. Worth bearing in mind if you are planning a test flight, as it may take a few attempts to get it all right.

Long flights are now a pleasure as it is very comfortable and a pleasure to now have a machine that flys straight - unlike some where I constantly had to countersteer torque ... Weight shift is responsive but no chance of thermalling now for a few months ....

For power off thermalling the Airgate Mantis would be hard to beat ( http://www.paramotormag.com/news/2010/03/1773/ ) but certainly doesn't look as robust as the Kobra.

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Thank you guys for the replies.

I must say that I am glad to hear I was not the only one feeling like a passenger in the Walkerjet - a strange feeling if you are a PG pilot and used to feeling/controlling the wing with your bottom as much as your hands :lol:

The biggest attarction of Bailey is the fact that I do not have to worry about mixing oil and petrol before each flight, but I guess it is a minor issue, especially given that by the time I add the manual start and the active suspension it will be MUCH more expensive.

But I will wait a couple more weeks and check it out in person and the flying show.

One thing I have been wondering about is fitting a nice three blade prop to the Bailey (something like the one Nirvana advertises). A lot of the thrust and noise come from the props and spending a bit of money to clean it up and make it more efficient may pay off well down the line.

Any experience with replacing the standard Bailey prop?

Thanks guys,

Keep the comments coming. I will let you know what I end up getting, right after I ask you about the local flying sites 8)

Cheers,

Eugene

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Premixing only takes seconds so not really an issue. As for changing props, the manufacturers invest time & research into matching the prop to the engine power range so I doubt you would get much of a worthwhile difference in power, efficiency or noise by changing it - particularly if you factor in the cost of the prop and maybe a new reduction ratio ?

Bailey is marginally quieter but produces 22Hp at 8500 rpm compared to the Kobra Rocco Super's 26Hp at 7200 rpm and 85kg thrust at 6800 rpm. The bit of extra power would be handy for tandem but it really comes down to comfort and how they feel to fly .... I had a tough time deciding too !! :P

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  • 2 months later...

I have a Kobra Rocco and I've been flying with it over 150 hours

It have the same harness as Rocco Super

It is a comfortable low hang point harness and weight shift actually works on it and because of the electric start it is easy to shut it down and restart in the air.

If you have a tandem wing you can launch solo with it and shut the engine down for thermalling

With your solo wing you will be too much above the weight range of the glider to do that.

See you up there

Alex

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