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Well after years of sitting on the sidelines I've now finally signed up to a training course with Steve Haze & will be starting my training in 4 weeks time.

Now things are starting to get a bit more real I thought now would be a good time to start to gather information & opinions (based upon peoples' personal experiences) so that I can buy what's right for me the first time & not have to spend money (that I don't have a huge amount of) on something that I could/should have avoided in the first place.

I have absolutely no doubt that Steve will be giving me good information & that similar questions have been asked on the forum before but I know the kit is constantly improving & that personal opinions change over time & something that seemed great at the start maybe isn't quite so good once the novelty has worn off (or maybe it's the other way around?).

This is also this is a much wider forum, with more people to ask the questions to. Hopefully this will be of help to other people in my position.

So my questions are:

1. What would you buy, with the benefit of hindsight if you could start again from scratch & why?

2. Is there anything you would avoid & why?

3. Would you buy 2 stroke or 4 stroke?

4. Anything other pieces of advice you wish someone had told you & you've found really useful?

All my questions apply equally to the smaller things such as helmets, instruments etc right up to the big stuff like motors & wings.

I'm really interested in hearing what everyone has to say ........

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Hi Phil,

Go for a simple vario, not a top end with all the bells and whistles, you just don't need them when you're a low hour pilot, or perhaps ever.

Get yourself a modern wing such as the Dudek Synthesis (2007) and you can't go far wrong.

Cheers,

Alan

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Hi Phil,

Get yourself a modern wing such as the Dudek Synthesis (2007) and you can't go far wrong.

Cheers,

Alan

I probably wouldn't recommend a C rated wing for a beginner, maybe the Synthesis was one of the best choices back in 2007, but things have moved on since then, now there are plenty of good reflex and non reflex paramotor wings with a B certification.

Paul D

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I'd be interested to hear your reasons..given that I am a beginner...with a new Dudek Synthesis!

I'm with Paul on this - I don't see the reasoning in putting a beginner on a 'C' rated wing when there are safer alternatives. The Synthesis in particular is a strange beast - it comes out worse in test (a lot more 'C's) than even the Nucleon, which is aimed at more experienced pilots. Lets not forget the tests are all performed with trimmers closed, and the wing becomes totally uncertified when they are released.

Of course the argument is that tests measure the gliders recovery, not how resistant it is to tucks, collapses etc - but ALL wings will collapse in certain air or pilot inputs. You could argue it will all be fine if you only fly in benign conditions - but then why have tests and ratings at all ???

I am a big fan of Dudek wings - they feel rock solid and stable in flight - and maybe it is just my PG background, but I would prefer a beginner to learn on an A or B rated wing, even if it is slower or non-reflex, until they develop active piloting skills. Simply opening the trimmers if things get rough is not the answer.

That's not saying your new Synthesis is unsafe dude, (far from it), it is a great wing but you should read the test reports to try and understand the reasons it is 'C' rated.

http://www.dudek.eu/images/stories/pliki/skrzydla/synthesis/Synthesis_29_flight_report.pdf

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I'd be interested to hear your reasons..given that I am a beginner...with a new Dudek Synthesis!

My reasoning is the same as the answer from 'aquatix' The test reports will tell you a lot about how your wing is likely to react when you get a collapse or fly into turbulent air, but basically a wing with a C rating is potentially going to react more dynamically than a wing that has an A or B rating and require precise pilot input to get it to recover.

The most important point for a beginner (in my opinion) is that with wing an A or B rating will recover without any pilot input.

Paul

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I'd be interested to hear your reasons..given that I am a beginner...with a new Dudek Synthesis!

My reasoning is the same as the answer from 'aquatix' The test reports will tell you a lot about how your wing is likely to react when you get a collapse or fly into turbulent air, but basically a wing with a C rating is potentially going to react more dynamically than a wing that has an A or B rating and require precise pilot input to get it to recover.

The most important point for a beginner (in my opinion) is that with wing an A or B rating will recover without any pilot input.

Paul

Whilst I appreciate that it is hard to suggest a noob buys a en C when the Revo 2 is en B, for example.

My thoughts are as follows

I have flown the synth for a year without so much as a rustle from above and the wing flys in a beginner friendly fashion.

The main risk associated with deflations and recovery is the choice of the weather conditions you choose to fly in.

An instructor will help you choose the less turbulent times thus minimising risk.

The synth is a highly acclaimed glider and is pitched by Dudek at beginners and intermediates

Cheers simon

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Simon, I agree with your reasoning (and the hundreds of other satisfied Synthesis owners) but on that basis why not put a beginner straight on a Nucleon ? It is also C rated (and actually fares better in tests) has similar speed & handling to a Synth, same risers etc. I've never had a collapse or any drama with it and it feels rock solid even in turbulent air. In calm conditions a beginner would fare equally well on either.

Of course it is very important to follow the designers & manufacturers recommendations, but I can't help feeling there is a somewhat 'laissez-faire' attitude with motor flight - and the reasoning that 'it won't happen to me'.... It seems that 'anything goes', from purpose built motor gliders, massively overloaded ultralight mountain wings, speed wings to high rated or even uncertified wings.....

In free flying it would be almost unthinkable for a beginner to buy an EN-C, DHV2 or 2-3 wing - even if they only ever wanted to fly it in fairly calm conditions. IMO it doesn't seem right to disregard such 'wisdom' and then add additional complications of power, pitch and torque effects.

Most other sports (sailing, wind surfing, kiting etc) have a similarly progressive range of equipment, with probably the same tendency for beginners to jump straight into purchasing intermediate gear. Is it only dealers and instructors who should consider 'duty of care' when recommending kit, or is there any point in manufacturers producing A and B rated wings if customers don't want them ?

Not having a go at anyone here - just thinking aloud ... :?

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Thanks for the replies, it's interesting to hear everyones opinions. I'll probably go with whatever wing Steve advises based upon how I get on!

I'll probably end up with a vario (and a helmet camera etc etc) - I do like my gadgets.

Does anyone have a favorite gadget that they cannot live without? Also interested in the whole 2 stroke vs 4 stroke thing as (without the benefit of any real world experience) 4 stroke seems to be the way to go, or am I wrong?

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I'll probably end up with a vario (and a helmet camera etc etc) - I do like my gadgets.

Does anyone have a favorite gadget that they cannot live without?

Iphone with Weather Pro and Memory map with airspace, every trail recorder, flight recorder, bog standard GPS, iVario, and so on and so forth...

If you had to pay £1k for one... you would save £1k at least to buy all of the above stuff.

I hated gagets until I got an iPhone, it's like it was made for people who paramotor. :-)

SW :D

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