A third-generation design from Noins Aeronautiques Alpaero, Exel is a sleek ultralight motorglider with a foot cantilever wingspan. Designed by Max Barel, the Graal is a multi-composite of molded wood and carbon fiber. It was successfully test-flown on January 4, Some Americans have seen the Silent at airshows. Lucky them. Pilots will find plenty of goodies in the Motor Swift. Handles or levers control flaps, trip, throttle, joy-stick and the rocket parachute.
The flying-wing Motor Swift is a California design built in the U. The ultralight motorglider evolution continues in Europe. While America has the lovely Esprit from Aero Dovron, our soaring friends across the Atlantic continue to lead this specialized market.
Like their larger siblings, these efficient designs can also cruise under power respectably well, giving them broader appeal than pure gliders. The Excel was so well received that delivery times initially jumped to one year. Noins also produces the Choucas model, a two-seat trainer, and the company formerly made the Sirius, a single-place.
The newer Excel returns to a lighter, somewhat simpler design but reveals its ancestry by incorporating the best features of the earlier models. With a wingspan of 45 feet, this is a serious soaring machine, boasting a glide ratio of and a sink rate of fpm.
The Excel is designed for a single-cylinder engine equipped with a folding prop that streamlines itself automatically when the engine is shut down for soaring flight.
Build Easy to Assemble Low-Cost Ultralight Aircraft From Kits
American pilots could operate it with an FAA motorglider rating, which does not require a medical. This aspect is common to all motorgliders. The Excel is also the heaviest of the ultralight motorgliders in this column with a pound empty weight. The Graal Max Barel seems as much artist as motorglider designer. Coupled with its distinctive construction, the Graal features a propeller situated aft of the tailplane. A tailwheel is streamlined in the bottom of an extended rudder. Once the engine has been shut down for soaring flight and has time to cool, a door over the exhaust port can be closed for maximum aerodynamic cleanliness.
With a claimed glide ratio, the Graal is the performance leader of our four subject aircraft. The design also achieves a sink rate of only fpm. Shipping and crating add to the delivered cost. When I first saw the Silent fly in a French airshow, I was amazed that the single-cylinder engine and its distinctive single-blade prop launched and ascended with such energy.
Ground roll was surprisingly short, and climb was healthy. Alisport uses a counterbalanced single-blade prop for efficiency-a lone blade passes through air undisturbed by other blades-but the company has another motivation. With one non-folding blade, the small engine and prop can be neatly retracted into a small cavity in the fuselage. Larger motorgliders use a similar retract technique, but the bigger engines and two blades needed to lift such aircraft also require a larger space for retraction.
With the engine and prop retracted and the cavity door closed, the Silent looks much like a sailplane. Naturally, this yields benefits for soaring efficiency while also preserving a familiar appearance.
Aeriane Motor Swift Although the Swift is the most unorthodox design of our four subject aircraft, it has won converts among the large European soaring community. With a glide ratio of and a sink rate of fpm, the Motor Swift is quite competitive, and it is unique for its tailless design.Trikes are just plain fun!
Flying an Ultralight trike in either configuration: Paraglider or Hang Glider style, are the most enjoyable way to enjoy the friendly skies! Paramotoring Trikes simply roll into flight, allowing a pilot to launch easily with their paraglider when there is no wind - the most challenging PPG launch condition. Imagine: No carrying the heavy motor unit on your back! No more running forward launches! Rolling easily into flight! Landing in no-wind conditions with no running!
Save your knees, legs and ankles and say goodbye to broken props and cages. With proper training, this new buggy will make those calm condition flights not just possible, but fun and easy! You'll actually smile when the other pilots worry about whether they can pull off a no-wind launch when the air is smooth and sweet, knowing that you can taxy along after inflation and roll right into a controlled launch.
Come into your landing at full speed, with just a nice flare to round out the approach, and roll into a superb touch-down! Some pilots simply do not have the physical strength or stamina to manage foot launch technique especially in light or no wind with a powerful, heavy machine on their back.
Now those with bad knees, back, or certain other physical challenges have an option to fly. Trikes are also ideal for women. PPG requires more strength than free flight paragliding, and now the trike offers your wife or girlfriend the opportunity to join you in the sky without having to become a female bodybuilder! People sometimes see powered paragliding as either foot launching or using wheels. The fact is that you don't have to limit yourself to one.
Both have significant advantages.
The ATF is a nanotrike intended for use as a motorglider, taking off under power and then shutting down the engine for soaring flight. The aircraft was designed to comply with US FAR Ultralight Vehicles rules, including the category's maximum empty weight of lb kg. The aircraft has a standard empty weight of approx lb 84 kg. It features a minimalist design, cable-braced hang glider-style high-wing, weight-shift controls, a single-seat, open cockpit, tricycle landing gear and a single engine in pusher configuration.
This configuration folds down easily in minutes to be transported easily in your small pickup or SUV along with your Hang Glider. The ATF can be folded up to approx 27" x 30" x 55" 69 x 76 x cm for storage or ground transport. You can use your hang glider with the ATF Trike. Some pilots may want to use the specially-designed Solairus wing which has been built specifically for lightweight trikes, with a state-of-the-art airfoil design.
The new strutted, double surface Solairus wing provides best performance for cross-country, has a great sink rate and slow-speed handling, and is great for short-field take-offs. No mountain, no problem! Ascend effortlessly up to cloudbase. Shut the engine off and soar in silence with the birds all afternoon. When the lift gets light, pull the overhead starter and fly back to your flying field. Couple this super leightweight trike with the reliable Top 80 engine, and you have a very nice soaring trike!
This glider is very stable, predictable and responsive and just feels comfortable in just about every soaring situation.
Contact Us: info americanparagliding.Ultralight flying represents one of the fastest and purest ways to experience the joys of aviation. From powered-parachutes and trikes to traditional fixed wings and even amphibians and rotorcraft, ultralights are fun, exciting, and in most cases, remarkably affordable. Flying ultralights is not a step up or down, but a step into a completely different and exciting sector of the flying community. In the U. Part defines an ultralight as an aircraft that meets the following criteria:.
If the aircraft has more than 1-seat or exceeds any of the above criteria, it's not an ultralight, and thus not eligible for operation under Part These are the legal rules by which we fly; they are the most lenient in the world. These privileges, however, carry responsibilities: while there are no specific legal requirements, ultralight pilots must be trained just like any other pilot.
Register as an ultralight student or pilot and discover the types of ultralights you can have fun in! EAA members have access to aviation experts and advice for their ultralights and ultralight projects.
EAA Ultralight Chapters bring together people of all ages and backgrounds with an interest in Ultralight flight. Serving the needs of and representing EAA members involved in ultralight and light sport aviation.How Its Made Ultralight Aircraft
There's something special about the Ultralight Area at AirVenture. Maintenance will occur on Tuesday, March 10 from 6 p. Some site functionalities will be limited. Your browser is not compatible with this website. Org is currently undergoing some maintenance. Some pages or functions may not work correctly. Cookies are required for this site to operate correctly. Aviation Interests. Ultralights Ultralight flying represents one of the fastest and purest ways to experience the joys of aviation.
Part defines an ultralight as an aircraft that meets the following criteria: Seats 1 Max. Empty Weight Powered Aircraft lbs Max. Empty Weight Unpowered Aircraft lbs Max. Fuel Capacity 5 Gallons Max.
Speed Full Power 55 knots Max. Stall Speed Power Off 24 knots If the aircraft has more than 1-seat or exceeds any of the above criteria, it's not an ultralight, and thus not eligible for operation under Part Getting Started Register as an ultralight student or pilot and discover the types of ultralights you can have fun in!
Read More.Low-cost ultralight aircraft are cheap, easy to fly and assemble. It starts with a gentle rumbling in the seat of your pants, and a sudden burst of wind and speed that causes the skin on the back of your neck to tighten and your hand to firm on the stick.
Tires pitch and shake for a moment over clumps arid irregularities in the grass strip and any local dogs come bounding. The small engine mounted just ahead of the pilot's seat winds up and sends vibrations through the cab as the ground, barely a foot from your shoes, gradually and then suddenly fades away. The same engine that appeared so small on.
Nerves quickly ease, replaced by a spreading grin. Almost impossibly, it seems, local cornfields and pumpkin patches that you've only seen from the stunted view of the highways suddenly become a mosaic of colors and details.
Once you get to just over a thousand feet from the fields, the kid in you takes over and you throw the aircraft into some tight turns and steep descents over the pine trees. The freedom to fly an airplane that you build yourself, maintain yourself, and take absolute personal responsibility for is so redolent of the visions we had for this country in the first place. There is arguably no industry in the world as heavily regulated as powered flight. Becoming a private pilot typically requires hours of flight instruction as well as ground school, which combined take five to seven months to complete.
Completing a Class-3 medical exam is also mandatory, which weeds out, of course, any candidates with major health problems or those who've had procedures such as by-pass surgery.
Of course, costs of the licensing procedure are dwarfed by the daunting prospect of actually affording a plane. Burn 40 or 50 gallons of "av-gas" aviation fuel a crack and see the lifetime costs escalate further, both for yourself and the environment you pour the exhaust into.
Once in the air, much of a private pilot's time is spent adhering to the rules of the road. Takeoff, landing, and flight path patterns must be rigidly adhered to, meaning that significant amounts of time must be spent simply plotting position and correcting course, speed, and altitude. It's difficult to fault the government for these regulations; they are all intended to keep planes safely in the air, but many pilots have suggested to me that somewhere along the endless line of well-intentioned, sensible rules, all the fun has been taken out of flying.
The industry is and always will be at odds with itself. Flight is freedom, a temporary compromise with air and gravity, and the more we weigh it down with earthly considerations, the less enjoyable it becomes. After a lifetime of dreaming of model planes, graduating to casual study and then to endless hours hanging around at the local airport in Burlington, VT, I was forced to turn tail and move on. There has been an alternative to this dilemma, though much maligned, for over a generation, however.
Small and light with incredible lift characteristics, the experimental wing made pioneer hang-gliders very curious. Pilots of these early gliders would control direction and angle of ascent or attack by simply shifting their weight.
With a good understanding of how to steer the wing, as well as "thermals," or the powerful updrafts of hot air that could lift a glider several thousand feet, flights of an hour or more were possible. By the early s, a few enterprising hang-gliders bolted two-stroke chain saw engines outfitted with propellers to the frame, and the ultralight was born.
Considering these novice builders as merely dangers to themselves, the government ignored them. The Fed's "laissez-faire" attitude ended when FAA investigators discovered that landing gear was appearing on these very experimental aircraft. The FAA then declared that engines were permitted but that the plane would have to be "foot launched" at all times, their thinking being that gear meant speed, and they wanted ultralights to be as slow as possible.
In a trend that continues today with countless renegade tinkerers in backyards across North America, builders simply ignored the regulations and designed heavier and faster ultralights. MOTHER jumped at the chance to underwrite several different models and airshows, including an ethanol-fueled, cross-country trip in More than anything else, the mid s era of rabid experimentation mimicked the earliest days of aviation, in which no design, however ridiculous or dangerous, was unexplored.
Engines that were essentially lawn-mower and chain saw knockoffs were tinkered and ratcheted up to very torquey, high revving output, and of course they frequently failed.
Training was virtually non-existent, since the vast majority of ultralights were one-seaters. Aspiring pilots would just hop into the seat, grab the stick, and fly. The reader is left to imagine the consequences.There is a certain mystique and allure about ultralight aircraft. They are reminiscent of the early days of aviation when would-be pilots built their own aircrafts and took to the skies for their own test flights.
Ultralights are affordable and exciting. Building them from a kit evokes a sense of accomplishment and pride. With all the brands and models on the market, it can be hard to sift through the noise and zero in on the best options for your ultralight purchase. Keeping that in mind, we have put together a list of the top 3 single place seat and two place ultralight aircraft currently available. Read on to discover the wings that will take you on your next adventure.
Single place ultralights have just one seat for you — the pilot. To qualify as an ultralight, your prospective aircraft must meet certain weight requirements. Under these rules, your aircraft must be registered and have a current airworthiness certificate issued by an FAA inspector. You will also be required to obtain a minimum of a sport pilot certificate. The Gull is designed for pilots who want a lightweight aircraft that can fly under the Part FAA rules. The Gull may be light on weight, but it delivers on performance with smooth flight and phenomenal fuel economy.
Pilots looking for the best bang for their buck on a tried and true ultralight will be delighted with the Jordan Lake Air-Bike This ultralight originally debuted inwas discontinued for a while, and has since made a return with the Jordan Lake Aero company.
The narrow fuselage means that the rudder pedals are on the outside of the aircraft, giving the pilot the appearance of riding a motorcycle — hence the inspiration for the Air-Bike name. Expect an inexpensive, easy to build and fun to fly aircraft. It is known for its versatility, light weight, sporty handling and rapid climb rate. The second category of ultralight aircraft is two place or two seaters.
With a two-place ultralight, you can take a passenger along for the ride. As previously mentioned, under these rules, you must register your aircraft and have a current airworthiness certificate issued by an FAA inspector. The maximum approved gross weight for a two-place ultralight is 1, pounds. To solo in a two-place ultralight, you will need at least a sport pilot certificate. If you intend to fly with a passenger, you are required to earn a recreational pilot certificate.
WHISPER MOTOR GLIDER
Hawk Ultralights have been around since when the single place classic model scored 3 prestigious awards in its first year of production and went on to scoop up many more. The outstanding new design winner from the EAA International Air Show earned that title with high scores for appearance, design, engineering, flying performance and portability. It was the first fully enclosed ultralight on the market and has become a time-honored classic. The Arrow II builds on that legend with better visibility and modern jet-like lines.
A second seat is added behind the pilot. This tandem style seating configuration minimizes the difference in center of gravity when flying alone vs with a passenger.
It is based off the Mark III Classic design with some aerodynamic enhancements to generate an extra mph cruise speed. The MX II Sprint was built with the new pilot in mind and is one of the easiest two place ultralights to assemble and learn to fly.
Quicksilver made this aircraft to handle predictably at low flight speeds and to be capable of a very short take-off and landing roll. This will walk you through exactly what to look for and what to avoid when selecting your next ultralight. Soon you will take to the air flying the best ultralight aircraft for the money. My Account. Welcome to PilotMall. Login Create Account.Technically these aircraft are ultralight sailplanes, but they are best described as "airchairs", which are simple, slow flying gliders with the pilot sitting out in the open air rather than inside a fuselage.
My airchair dersigns are intended to provide open air soaring, forgiving flight characteristics, convenient transport, simple "garage technology" construction, and a high level of crash safety. In the United States, all unpowered ultralights, including paragliders, hang gliders, and airchairs are regulated under FAR Partwhich allows gliders to be built and flown with no direct official oversight as long as they weigh less than lbs.
The complete descriptive drawings of the Pig1, Goat4, Bug4, and some of their predecessors are free and available for downloading in CAD format select "Drawings" from menu above.
In addition, the the Goat4 drawings can be viewed on the Web. My activities are noncommercial and all of the materials on my website are available for whatever purposes the user may consider worthwhile. A Bug, Goat, or Pig can be strapped down onto an ordinary hang glider rack, with no special saddles or pads. Here we see me with Bug4 on my truck, ready to roll down the highway. Truck Tow.
Rolling Launch. My gliders fly at about the same speeds as a hang glider, readily mixing with hang glider and paraglider traffic. No formal performance measurements have been made, but all are in the hang glider range and can stay up in good lift conditions. I designed, built, and flew the Bug2, Bug4,Goatsand the Pig. In the Bug and Goats and have soared thousands of feet above take off altitude in each of them Pig1 has flown high but not soared as of this writing.
Its construction is "low tech", at the hand drill and hacksaw level, for easy home building, from readily available materials it is made mostly from aluminum tubing and steel cable with polyester fabric covering. Light wing loading results in slow flight, which is safe, comfortable, and allows soaring in small thermals because of the ability to turn tightly. Slow flight provides the unique ability to self launch by rolling down open slopes, usually at the same mountain launch sites used by hang gliders and paragliders.
This rolling launch has become a standard procedure for local weekend soaring.
The launch slope I most often use has a vertical drop of about 17 feet over a rolling distance of 72 feet so, the rolling distance is two wing spans for the Goat. I launch here only with a headwind; a longer slope is required by me for calm air launching. Photo by Floyd Fronius, in Goat1. Li n ks:. Airchair Discussion Group Yahoo Forum. HillHopper Page.
Irfanview photo viewer Beamboy beam analysis Bloop Ultralight Airplane. Favorite Video of Goat cross country soaring Update Page News. Pig Page. Technical Drawings. Goat Page. An airchair can be launched by ultralight aerotow, car tow, winch cable, or just by rolling down an open slope. Ultralight Aero Tow. Open air soaring is a special kind of adventure. Here my feet are out in the breeze as I soar my airchair high over the California desert. Construction is of aluminum tubing and steel cable covered with a heat shrunk fabric.Ultralight sailplanes are being seen more and more.
Reason: less expensive than a normal sailplane and still having very good performances to make cross-country flights. You can see, in my remake of Stewart Midwinter's Rigidwing overview, several ultralight sailplanes. There are still a few more. But they were too heavy to be inside this overview of rigidwing hanggliders. Ultralight sailplanes are not really intended for beginners. You need to be able to fly before you get flying in one of these.
Reason: they fly faster than paragliders or hanggliders and are therefore less easy to land. I know only of one two-seater ultralight sailplane. I learned to fly in that one. Luckily it has room for a instructor next to you. You need it! Be assured Once you gained his and your own confidence, you are free to enjoy the sky on your own. Depending which model you choose, you will get costs from more expensive than hangglider to nearly as expensive as your house. Those at lower prices will probably be homebuilt projects.
I have a own project called BirdGlider, which is a homebuild, low cost ultralight sailplane. Maybe something for you. The construction plans are for free.
Most ultralight sailplanes are made for cross-country. Some are just to soar around the local church. That guy is close to a god for most ultralight gliderpilots like us. Going cross country means that you always need somebody to pick you up. Flying in a area where you are sure about good portable phone connection is a help. Open air is a disadvantage in winter. Flying at low temperatures is only for the die-hards. Remember, normally it is a fact that when you go higher, you get in more colder air.
You can even get in cold air in spring or autumn. The rain drops deform the airfoil and you start like flying a brick. I never experienced it, but my one of my instructors did and he never wants to experience the same. Pilots know there is a thing called turbulences. It is when the wind does things you would not expect in a steady wind. Suddenly you are thrown upwards or pulled downward. Or you get diverted to left or right.
Some air-vehicles have not much trouble with those small turbulences. Reason: they are really heavy. They are harder to push around.