SPICE  

Adding Some Spice  

Mac Para´s Sporty Addition for the Highly Experienced

 by Nick Sholtes

PARAGLIDER magazine Volume Four No.3

 

Eden 3

From the Eden 3 MAC PARA promise Eden on Earth.

Gleitschirm magazine has put this Eden bird under the magnifying glass.

 

Intox 28

   MAC PARA TECHNOLOGY has brought many well rounded products to the market in the last few years. The latest being the DHV 1 Muse and the DHV 1-2 Eden II. Gliders from this Czech producer are characterized mostly by excellent handling which ranks them amongst the leading gliders in their class. The Muse's properties are closer to those of an intermediate rather than an entry level glider. The Muse also shares the Eden II's great handling.
   Now Petr Recek has produced another perfect piece, the performance Intox. Though the glider's behaviour is well within the upper border of the class, with points like an aspect ratio of 5.83 and span flat of 12.74 it is definitely amongst the highly efficient gliders.
   From the beginning of this year the Skyline team has developed the distribution network in Germany and Austria, which has provided an expansion of recognition and sales of MAC in these countries. I tested an Intox 28 with weight range 85-110 kg.

Construction, fabrication

  The elongated and smart canopy uses a classic V-Rib system. Untypical and completely new is the use of short line pieces inbuilt between the suspension lines, parallel to the under-surface of the canopy. According to Petr Recek, this system will become the accepted norm in glider construction. "Working in conjunction with these internal lines are the outer "cross-lines", essential to precise adjustment, and they have no negative influence to the aerodynamics of the canopy" said Petr Recek.
  The canopy consists of 63 cells, all made from Porcher Marine Skytex. Each of the 6 outer cells is closed. The canopy sewing is good. The seam distance is unified; all seams are on the inside and in critical areas there is extra stitching. Only the stabilo requires some additional reinforcement. The suspension points on the inner surface are reinforced and quality control is strict. Each line level offers 10 line suspension points. The stabilo has four line connections. In total there are 48 suspension points. On the trailing edge of the canopy, the brake lines have multiple branches; the raff system control gives a clean trailing edge to the canopy whilst braking. The rubber rings on the lines locks prevent any slipping. Lines are made from Edelrid.

Launch properties

  Gliders with a high aspect ratio usually have a complicated launch. It is impossible to say this about the Intox. Completely the opposite, the Intox is a “launch-machine”, the canopy will rise confidently in every situation. It's the same if you lay out the canopy into the form of an arc or a wall, in either case the canopy will rise equally and reliably. A little precision is required while sorting lines. Although the setting is well-arranged, the construction embodies a relatively large number of branches, which requires a little conscientiousness. A line tangle hidden under part of the trailing edge is easy to overlook. Once preparations are made the hardest part of the take-off. Even in poor conditions and bad winds, the canopy rises directly over the pilot's head, with no tendency to turn sideways. As expected of a glider in DHV2, it has to be easy to stabilize the canopy at the high point, without over-fly. The Intox is up after a few steps. Rear launch with the Intox is a pleasure too. The canopy inflates immediately across the entire span and stays cleanly over the pilot.

Flight properties

  Expectations of a glider with such interesting technical data were satisfied after few minutes. The pilot feels as if he is precisely pulled through the air by the glider. This feeling is intensified during steering. With only a little input the glider banks into the turn. The radius of the turn is easy to change with weight shift or brake. The nattiness of the glider depends on the pilot's sensibility. By maintaining some outer brake the Intox turns both gently and moderately. The canopy is in its element in such manoeuvres. If you fly into thermals, the glider pulls you in and begins to rise without any attempt to turn you out.
  With the Intox it is possible to fly both narrow lift with steep turns and in weak thermals flat turns. In both cases the glider stays at a controlled rate of turn and sink rate, without any tendency to fall out of the lift abruptly. In turbulence the glider is in charge, though an active flight style is correct. Then the Intox shows all its nattiness. The sensitive canopy reacts well to gusts. In general, the Intox is very well-balanced in thermals; the stiff canopy has a very stable form. Brakes react after a few centimetres travel and you can immediately see the canopy's reaction.
  Trim speed of the Intox is 38 km/h. By applying the speed system (travel ca. 33 cm.) you can achieve 53 km/h. At maximum speed the glider remains stable in the air.
  The collapse behaviour is very predictable. In closures of the leading edge of up to 50%, the Intox reacts very positively. It banks and after a turn of about 90° will continue to fly straight. If the canopy stays closed, pumping out should help. Closures of more than 50% cause a gentle forward surge and a turn of about 180°. The canopy re-opens sufficiently quickly without any explosive reaction. It is possible to hold the glider in a direction, if You acts. You can easily change the direction of the turn at the same time.

Descent helps

   "Big-Ears" :
  
Using the outermost A-lines makes initiating "Big Ears" very easy, they then stay closed with very little input. The sink rate is ca. 2,3 m/s and by using the speed system it grows to 3,7 m/s. By weight shifting the glider remains easily controllable. To recover, one or two light impulses on the brakes are enough.

   B-Stall :
  You need a little strength to initiate it. The airflow breaks cleanly and the Intox stays in a stable stall. You can maintain straight line stability by symmetricaly pulling the B-risers. The sink rate is ca. 7.5 m/s. On recovery the glider can surge a little. I didn't register any stall tendency.

   Spiral dive :
  This dexterous glider needs only a little brake line input to initiate a spiral dive. Sink rate of about 18 m/s and more is quickly reached. The dynamics of the spiral dive can be precisely balanced between braking and weight shifting. By weight shifting without breaking the glider stays in the spiral dive. The recovery has to be done gently and sensitively to prevent a fly into own selfmade turbulence from spiral and following possibly collapse of the canopy.

Specification

  The Intox remains well inside the top end of the DHV 2 criteria. With its excellent and sensitive handling during take off, in strong winds and in thermals it will give pilots who can work with such a sensible glider a great deal of real fun. Therefore it is of primary interest to skilled and cross country pilots. Also pilots seeking efficiency will rate the new Intox as a glider with very comfortable achievement and flying behaviour.
  The Intox is a powerful glider predestined for the XC and competition environment. For pure thermal flight it is almost a pity that “Mother Mountain” will soon be too small for everyone who decides to fly the Intox.

Peter Feichtinger, testpilot
Gleitschirm, 10/03




A kiss of the Muse

Construction

   The Muse is the first glider certified by Mac Para Technology in the important DHV 1 category. With this step, very important to the paragliding school market, Mac Para and importers Skyline and Fly Over create an important influence over paraglider beginners. The development of the glider was much more thorough than that of the Muse's predecessor the Diva (certified AFNOR Standard). Mac Para designer Peter Recek didn't want just a DHV certified glider, but a wing which in all points like handling, behaviour in thermic conditions and safety he was looking to create an excellent glider. Like other MAC gliders the Muse was designed with the aid of MAC's self developed computer software "PG Cad". With its help, and numerous test flights, the Muse evolved over 8 months.
   A first look at the canopy after launch reveals a lot about the glider: aspect ratio and line lengths are rather short, openings are fairly large.
   The concept of diagonal cells allows greater distances between suspension points and helps save on the number of lines and therefore both drag and the weight of the canopy. Tapes between suspension points at the A-, B-, C- and D-levels evenly distribute the power in the canopy. Brake lines lead directly to the trailing edge of the canopy. The Ring-Raff-System controls any tendency for dissimilar braking of the glider at the wingtip.

Start and Flight

   To launch the Muse is very easy, as expected of a glider in DHV1. To raise the canopy requires only a little input. Then it comes progressively and gently to the high point. The A-risers only need light control. The Muse has no tendency to over-fly. Just the opposite: the glider is very simple to stabilize and hold over the pilot. Rear launch is very simple too, the less than six kilogram canopy is very controllable.
   In the air the glider has very good directional stability. Even turbulence can't throw the glider off course. Any tendency to tip the pilot to one side is damped, which is very useful especially during any collapse. In our comparative tests, during asymmetric collapse, the Muse surged forward a little, and then it turns aside and re-opens itself, without any pilot input, after a turn of 90 to 120°. Also when the speed system is activated, the glider shows a similar behaviour, no pitch moment or increase in turning speed appears. Correction is very easy: the pilot only needs to brake strongly on the open side.
   During flight in lift, the canopy behaves classically. The turning behaviour in thermals is very good: the Muse reacts immediately to control input, but remains sufficiently flat, without the wing tips digging in The best way to turn the glider is light use of the outer brake combined with weight shift, supported by a little inner brake. If so done, the Muse shows very comfortable climbing characteristics. Brake handles are fabric, travel is about 15 cm, when applied they act progressively.
   If you continue to apply brake, impending danger of a stall is recognised by the increase in pressure, and can be easily avoided by releasing the brake handles.
   The Muse's speed system runs through pulleys, when activated it shortens the A-, B- and C-risers. Thanks to its relatively short travel it is very usable with the standard foot operated bar. It requires a moderate amount of pressure to activate it. The maximum available speed of 44 km/h is low, but sufficient for this class of gliders. Much important and positive is high the collapse resistance at maximum speed, which paragliding students call "safe use of the gas pedal". Even at maximum speed no deformation on the leading edge appears.

Descent helps

   The Muse doesn't have any special aids for "Big Ears". They are initiated by using the outer A-lines. To guarantee the effectiveness of this manoeuvre it is necessary to grasp them at the correct height, which can be a little bit difficult for small pilots. After the initiation of the manoeuvre with the folded cells clearly empty, there nevertheless remains a striking pressure on the A-lines. The sink rate we reached in our tests was around 2,5 m/s rising to more than 3 m/s. After releasing the lines the "Big ears" open with a little delay.
   With moderate tension it is very easy to initiate a B-line stall. The pressure on the B-risers decreases once the stall is in, so it is possible to perform the manoeuvre for relatively long periods. While in the B-stall the canopy remains stable, the sink rate is between 7 and 8 m/s. The recovery should be done progressively to retard any surge of the glider.
   To establish itself in a spiral dive the Muse requires some time to get itself to the correct angle. Preliminary wing over simplifies entry to the spiral. The outer side of the glider remains stable during the manoeuvre, the sink rate comes close to 14 m/s.

Summary

   The Muse's characteristics place it fully in the DHV 1 class: it has an easy launch, the resistance to asymmetric collapse is very high and the behaviour in thermals is also very good. As a school glider or as a first glider, the glider brings its owner a lot of fun and a lot of pleasant flights. It is also the right choice for the occasional or recreational pilot.

Alex Hollwarth, testpilot
Fly and Glide, 5/03




Eden II

  MAC gliders are designed with the aid of their self developed computer software “PG Cad.” The programmes' power lies especially in exact preload calculations and the ability to edit all parts of the glider. All MAC gliders are characterized by very precise handling and high performance; this is the case with the Eden II.

Construction

  While the main goal of the Eden I was to probe conditions of the DHV Certification and to explore the scope of the German market, it was certified in only one size. The Eden II will be certified in five sizes. Sizes already available are 23; 25; 27 and 30. The Eden II 33 with a maximum take-off weight of 145 kg is close to finalization. These five sizes cover a take-off weight range starting at 62 kg up to 140 kg.
  Before the Eden II was presented for DHV testing, it was subjected to almost a year of intensive tests by the MAC test team. During this test period there were eight prototypes, each flown for over 100 hours.
  “Even before beginning the homologation process, we want to have exact information about the flight properties of an aged glider”, says Peter Recek. The team of company test pilots was strengthened by Austrian Christian Amon, who acted as consultant on detailed trim for the DHV tests.
  The Eden II uses the classic diagonal segment construction. Every second, of the 51 main ribs is attached to lines. Additional bracing between attachments evenly distributes both load and power in the canopy. There are four risers, each with three main lines. Unusual is the attachment of the line from wingtip to the D riser. Thanks to this, the glider extends its projected area when using the speed system, a feature highlighted by the positive effects on performance and on passive safety.

Flight

   The behaviour of the Eden II can be described, without any exaggeration, as exemplary. Laying-out and sorting of lines is quickly done, especially on the critical wingtip. It is easy to recognise the aramid lines with different coloured braids. The shape of the glider helps you to lay out the canopy in a horseshoe for a forward launch. The facility to play with the glider easily on the ground generates enthusiasm during training on the practise slopes and during a rear launch.
  Even in the early turns the Eden II offers very direct and agile handling. The glider's reactions to braking inputs are practically prompt; the free travel of brake lines is up to 15 cm. The special brake lines equipped with the Ring-Raff system on the wingtip controls, enable pilots, by applying constant brake pressure, to hold the glider in a flat turn without banking. If you leave the outer brake unapplied, then the sink rate in turns, and the canopy's bank angle grow rapidly. Therefore Eden II pilots should have sensitive hands on the brakes to climb economically. If the pilot can do this, i.e. he uses weight shift and the outer brake, than it is possible to upgrade the Eden II's performance to match that of gliders in a much higher DHV category, thanks to its precise handling and climbing characteristics. It is possible to turn it precisely in thermals; even narrow areas of lift can be used. The canopy also remains very stable in very turbulent conditions. The very pleasant damping in the cross axis contributes to only small reverse bank (in comparison to other gliders) whilst flying into thermals. Accordingly it is possible to carry almost all the gliders speed into the centre of the lift. Pilots with corresponding flying experiences will state that the turn characteristics are very pleasant. For the first few centimetres of travel, the brake pressure is average, it then grows progressively and shortly before disruption it is very hard. During extreme flight manoeuvres the Eden II is close to the borders of the DHV 1-2 category. During intentional massive collapse, without pilot input the glider turns and dives. Initially the turn is quick, but it soon slows down and the canopy begins to open. It reopens without input after a turn of about 180°, sometimes with a little delay. With pilot input, then the Eden II is quick to stabilize and maintain direction.
  Measurements of the gliders performance were done using the middle size Eden II 25, which we tested with a take-off weight of over 80 kg. The Fly & Glide test-pilot Alex Höllwarth reached a maximum speed of 36 km/h, and by fully activating the speed system 48 km/h. When on a glide, when using the speed system and when thermaling, the Eden II's performance takes it to the top of its class when compared to gliders with a similar rating. The speed system is on the risers and even though it goes through one pulley, it requires minimal strength to activate. The canopy remains stable, even during full acceleration.

Descent aids

   Because there are no split A-risers, “Big Ears” is initiated using the outer A-line on each side. The line has to be grasped high enough, making the initiation more difficult, especially in turbulence. Maximum upright position in the harness is recommended before initiation of this manoeuvre. The pressure required to maintain the “ears” is medium. Until the closed outer cells is almost empty a little pressure remains. The sink rate is about 2.8 m/s, when the speed system is activated it becomes about 3.3 m/s. After releasing the A-lines the closed parts of the canopy reopen only indecisively and need to be pumped.
  
The B-line stall is a very effective manoeuvre on the Eden II. After overcoming medium pressure during initiation, the canopy loses a lot of its area and cleanly closes together. Since the remaining pressure is very small, the sink rates can reach 8 m/s. After releasing the B-risers the Eden II resumes forward motion promptly and safely.
  Due to its noticeably high dexterity the Eden II reacts promptly to speed and bank during initiation of a spiral dive. Once the spiral is established it is recommended that the pilot sits in a neutral position and faithfully uses the outer brake, because there is no problem to reach sink rates exceeding 18 m/s for the Eden II. With sink rates so extreme it is obvious that recovery from a spiral is better done with the aid of active piloting.

Summary

   The Eden II is one of the most dexterous and agile gliders in the DHV 1-2 category. It has an extra precise handling, which is well suited to an acrobatic glider. Asymmetric closures of a pitched glider and whilst using the speed system are rather more difficult than on other very inhibited gliders in this category. The Eden II is identified for pilots looking for an agile and efficient glider with safe DHV classification. For more skilled pilots it is an ideal toy for wingovers and dynamic manoeuvres.

Alex Hollwarth, testpilot
Fly and Glide, 07/02

:::Main page:::