Primoz Gricar: first flight with C13.5 GT New Generation. 2013-04-08

First flight with C13.5 GT New Generation

By the time Markus and myself met at the DHV to make the conclusive tests with the latest version of Carbon LE in the third week of March, the glider had passed the pitch test perfectly and the LE took over 6 G positive load. Thus we knew that now we had good and safe stuff which we can begin to use. After saying goodbye to Christof and Andreas from DHV, Markus took the glider back to Switzerland to install a new LE (the load tested one is certainly not going to be used), which was still in the oven at the time.

The meeting point of me and the ready NG would be Trofeo Montegrappa, friendly Swiss pilots Max and Hans Peter took the glider from Switzerland to Italy. Thanks a lot, guys!

At Bassano testflying a glider turned out to be quite a challenge, the weather was just terrible. So after 4 days of no flying and bad forecast for the 5th day I have decided to move to western Slovenia where the chances for flying were the highest.

I was sorry not being able to support the Montegrappa organisers till the end, but I had a job to do which couldn't wait.

At Nova Gorica I was invited by Matjaz to spend the night and go flying together on the next day. The morning started with a covered sky, so we took it easy. But as the sun was coming out more and more we were very soon on our way to the take off Lijak.

All around us there were clouds and too much north wind, only Lijak had south wind and sun.

So we made the gliders and ourselves ready at nice breeze and temperature, which the sun made easily tolerable.

I took the glider on my shoulders and started to turn it into the wind, the decrease in weight made this action very easy. I waited for a few minutes for perfect launching wind and started to run. The glider took off surprisingly soon, in a usual stable manner of a GT. I launched directly into a thermal, the feeling quite similar to the alu version, maybe the glider felt a bit bigger (after all the pilot-glider system has lost over 4 kg), so I might have been twisting the sail a bit less than usual. The trailing edge being tensioned as a string of a bow must have been adding to this effect as well.

I have been flying for 1.5 hours, being able to test several aspects of the new wing. All-in-all, very similar to the alu version, with 2 distinctive differences: VG is more effective and has shorter range, so 2 full puls get you 100% of VG. The second one is, the glide is extremely stable, like all disturbances are being cut through with no compromise. The feeling is very comfortable, with nice dynamic acceleration when pulling on the bar, it feels a bit like the Phantom rigid wing, with better dampening. Bar pressure is comfortably low.

Landing can be done very precisely due to high maneuverability of the wing. I was very happy about this flight and the first impressions, I think I like the glider a lot. :-) Great job, Markus!

Best regards,