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  • #46
    Low priced Sails for SSDR

    Paul Dewhurst wrote:
    Originally posted by Wayne Lofts

    Paul D obviously has to pin his loyalty to P&M.
    It'st ime to take the blinkers off.
    Remember the motto, "Microlighting, affordable aviation".
    That motto is is flying high and true with John and Ace Aviation.
    Hi Wayne - why do I obviously have to pin my loyalties to P&M? - take a look at their dealer list and you won't find Flylight - removed many years ago when we started selling Aur Creation! - even if we were I kind of resent the assumption that you are saying that it would make my advice any different.

    I am trying to work on a general point about the risks of buying copies that haven't been through any official verification. Aces copies may be very good. But others may not be. It's up to us to do our own research and quantify and accept what risks we are taking - it should not be lightly done.

    Hypothetically how about someone who had done a bit of work for john heading off to Africa or China and making cheaper copies of Ace sails. How would you view that if you needed a new one? - I guess you would be more comfortable with an original - but how much cheaper would attract you to going for the copy - where does the risk / cost balance lie?

    I guess I might have my caution coloured by the fact that I have had a real life sail failure. I was very lucky to get away with it - another couple of mins and it would have been curtains ( which incidentally the wings resembled after landing!) the culprit was a bit of small detail design in the stitching pattern attaching some reinforcement webbing. The workmanship was excellent but that didn't help. I had around 5000 hours and 15 years microlighting under my belt at that point and thought I knew a thing or two. After I had my perceptions rapidly recalibrated! Subsequently I have had far more respect for the details and the risks we take. Sorry if that makes me sound a bit if a nanny - but we all live and learn and have our perceptions developed from personal experiences / frights!

    Paul
    Hi Paul....
    The point I was trying to make was that the BMAA as a association would be in turmoil if P&M were to cease trading ( very unlikely I know) as there is no other permit aircraft choice as far as flex wing goes. Forgive me if its not correct but I assumed you were on the council? And I was seeing it from that point as apposed to you being one of the bosses of Flylight.
    John Kendall stole my thunder somewhat when he asked if a process could be set up to approve other sails. Let's get to the nitty gritty, would the BMAA actually welcome more competition for P&M? It is still rather bizarre that in 2015 there is no alternative. No completion, and as somebody else has pointed out, P&M can set the price at whatever they like.
    Of course my sail knowledge is minuscule compared to yours Paul.
    However John at Ace Aviation is extremely knowledgeable and he should be congratulated for giving us another option.
    You cannot judge the build quality of aircraft from their looks alone. However having owned a Dragonfly and now a Ace Aviation Easy Riser, the Ace machine certainly looks and feels more substantially built. Especially the hang bolt bracket and flying wires.
    I for one wish Ace Aviation every success for 2016. They really do allow pilots to own their own aircraft for a very reasonable cost.

    Comment


    • #47
      Low priced Sails for SSDR

      Donald Walker wrote:
      Originally posted by Ace Aviation customer
      This is a good Q2 replacement sail. There are a number of areas where the sail maker / Ace Aviation has used his experience to improve the original sail and the quality of work is generally very high.

      The wing tip stitching has been cleverly covered up by the addition of a sewn-on patch on the leading edge tip. This has the advantage of protecting the stitching from UV. ( Me - - - - - What ever anyone says you DO NOT want this critical anchorage point of the wing tip to have any UV degradation at all. Reason why we always protect the critical wing tip webbing stitches with a separate cloth cover that makes sure the UV rays have little effect on the stitches. P&M`s sails at this high stress point are exposed to the sun - - - what hope have we got? ).
      That's a load of rubbish. The wing tip webbing stitches on my 1997 Q2 were UV protected by a removable mylar cover.
      It was a modification after Paul's incident I think?

      Comment


      • #48
        Low priced Sails for SSDR

        Wayne Lofts wrote:
        However John at Ace Aviation is extremely knowledgeable and he should be congratulated for giving us another option.
        You cannot judge the build quality of aircraft from their looks alone. However having owned a Dragonfly and now a Ace Aviation Easy Riser, the Ace machine certainly looks and feels more substantially built. Especially the hang bolt bracket and flying wires.
        I for one wish Ace Aviation every success for 2016. They really do allow pilots to own their own aircraft for a very reasonable cost.
        I suppose with Ace Aviation we have John who has a good track record and history in microlighting to back him up,... and we know he's put the trikes through section S testing to put customers minds at rest. John is certainly on the top end of the quality and engineering scale, so the opportunity in SSDR for John is there to be had... He is coming up with some very compelling products and at fantastic prices due to reduced labour costs and production optimisations.

        I think Paul makes a valid point though, that with the freedom of SSDR we do have to be extra vigilant.. it comes back down to pilot training and responsibility. So it's up to the SSDR suppliers to show how their products are safe for us to fly so we can make up our own minds. It seems that John's reputation / proven quality parts and trikes (as well as the fact that I know at least the Cyclone wing/magic trike combo has been tested to Section S) will stand him in very good stead.

        If I was considering an SSDR trike I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole if I didn't see any good evidence of compliance with section S (with test results published), as it is a good reference standard. If a supplier cannot do that, I would walk away. I'm also a bit of a chicken.. I wouldn't buy one unless I can see a few out there operating successfully already!

        The Ace Aviation range is very impressive and in my view probably offers the best in terms of value for money at the moment.. it would be one of the top contenders (along with the dragonfly range) for me if considering an SSDR trike.

        Comment


        • #49
          Low priced Sails for SSDR

          No Wayne I am not on council - on my second year off!

          It's tough being an aircaft manufacturer in a country where you have to pay wages that comply with minimum wage legislation and company taxes that fund the welfare and health system as opposed to third world labour rates with none of that. Especially when you are building hand built aircraft such as ours where you can't invest in mechanised production lines to cut out the labour content.

          So you can't really compare prices and conclude that the likes of P&M are ripping people off. They have been struggling financially for some time, and have a history of being re financed to keep going.

          The trike market these days is very tiny. I am not sure there is competition for them or that it would help in any way. Compare the other major two seat trike producers and P&M have very competitive prices - aircreation and Airborne are considerably more expensive and the biggest U.S. Manufactuerer Revo charge around 1.5-2 times the price for their trikes. Go and work out a business plan for manufacturing and selling two seat trikes and it will quickly become apparent it's a thin job, and might discourage you setting up in competition with P&M!

          Maybe they have all got their focus wrong, but all experiments at making simpler budget two seat trikes have found no one buys them. The problem is the planes they have made previously that are still flying around happily 20 plus years later. And satisfying that budget market very well. Compare that to the car market where most are thrown away in less than half that.

          Paul

          Comment


          • #50
            Low priced Sails for SSDR

            Andy Fell wrote:
            Originally posted by Donald Walker
            Originally posted by Ace Aviation customer
            This is a good Q2 replacement sail. There are a number of areas where the sail maker / Ace Aviation has used his experience to improve the original sail and the quality of work is generally very high.

            The wing tip stitching has been cleverly covered up by the addition of a sewn-on patch on the leading edge tip. This has the advantage of protecting the stitching from UV. ( Me - - - - - What ever anyone says you DO NOT want this critical anchorage point of the wing tip to have any UV degradation at all. Reason why we always protect the critical wing tip webbing stitches with a separate cloth cover that makes sure the UV rays have little effect on the stitches. P&M`s sails at this high stress point are exposed to the sun - - - what hope have we got? ).
            That's a load of rubbish. The wing tip webbing stitches on my 1997 Q2 were UV protected by a removable mylar cover.
            It was a modification after Paul's incident I think?
            Sb97 - bit scary that the U.S. Guys were oblivious of this mandatory service bulletin!

            Comment


            • #51
              Low priced Sails for SSDR

              I had a Quantum after I first qualified (bought it from a guy in the same club, so new it was ok) ....I didn't know anything about SB97 either until I wised up.... turned out the guy who'd inspected the machine for the previous 10 years didn't know about it either! It wasn't fitted!
              Couldn't friggin' believe it. Inspector eh?

              STYX happened after that... things had to sharpen up!!

              Comment


              • #52
                Low priced Sails for SSDR

                Andy Fell wrote:
                Originally posted by Wayne Lofts
                However John at Ace Aviation is extremely knowledgeable and he should be congratulated for giving us another option.
                You cannot judge the build quality of aircraft from their looks alone. However having owned a Dragonfly and now a Ace Aviation Easy Riser, the Ace machine certainly looks and feels more substantially built. Especially the hang bolt bracket and flying wires.
                I for one wish Ace Aviation every success for 2016. They really do allow pilots to own their own aircraft for a very reasonable cost.
                I suppose with Ace Aviation we have John who has a good track record and history in microlighting to back him up,... and we know he's put the trikes through section S testing to put customers minds at rest. John is certainly on the top end of the quality and engineering scale, so the opportunity in SSDR for John is there to be had... He is coming up with some very compelling products and at fantastic prices due to reduced labour costs and production optimisations.

                I think Paul makes a valid point though, that with the freedom of SSDR we do have to be extra vigilant.. it comes back down to pilot training and responsibility. So it's up to the SSDR suppliers to show how their products are safe for us to fly so we can make up our own minds. It seems that John's reputation / proven quality parts and trikes (as well as the fact that I know at least the Cyclone wing/magic trike combo has been tested to Section S) will stand him in very good stead.

                If I was considering an SSDR trike I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole if I didn't see any good evidence of compliance with section S (with test results published), as it is a good reference standard. If a supplier cannot do that, I would walk away. I'm also a bit of a chicken.. I wouldn't buy one unless I can see a few out there operating successfully already!

                The Ace Aviation range is very impressive and in my view probably offers the best in terms of value for money at the moment.. it would be one of the top contenders (along with the dragonfly range) for me if considering an SSDR trike.
                Hi Andy....
                I couldn't agree more.
                I was only voicing my approval for Ace Aviation.
                The topic was solely about Ace Aviation.
                It was Paul D who said " not all suppliers may be worthy of uniformed trust".
                And that may certainly be true, but not a concern at all with John at Ace.
                I also would never ever even consider flying a SSDR that wasn't proven.
                We are not talking about some bloke knocking together a machine in his garage, just like Wesley in Last Of The Summer Wine :-)

                Comment


                • #53
                  Low priced Sails for SSDR

                  Sorry Wayne! Promise not to steal any more thunder.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Low priced Sails for SSDR

                    Andy Fell wrote: I had a Quantum after I first qualified (bought it from a guy in the same club, so new it was ok) ....I didn't know anything about SB97 either until I wised up.... turned out the guy who'd inspected the machine for the previous 10 years didn't know about it either! It wasn't fitted!
                    Couldn't friggin' believe it. Inspector eh?

                    STYX happened after that... things had to sharpen up!!
                    But with SSDR we are all directly responsible ourselves - no inspectors to defer responsibility to. Important we get that message and skill set to the newly qualified in a meaningful way?

                    Off to do an instructor test today - it has become one of my standard test questions to exercise their minds!

                    Paul

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Low priced Sails for SSDR

                      Paul Dewhurst wrote:
                      Originally posted by Andy Fell
                      I had a Quantum after I first qualified (bought it from a guy in the same club, so knew it was ok) ....I didn't know anything about SB97 either until I wised up.... turned out the guy who'd inspected the machine for the previous 10 years didn't know about it either! It wasn't fitted!
                      Couldn't friggin' believe it. Inspector eh?

                      STYX happened after that... things had to sharpen up!!
                      But with SSDR we are all directly responsible ourselves - no inspectors to defer responsibility to. Important we get that message and skill set to the newly qualified in a meaningful way?

                      Off to do an instructor test today - it has become one of my standard test questions to exercise their minds!

                      Paul
                      Indeed. But then I was new to it and was on a sharp learning curve, so to some extent did rely on that safety net. . Even after a few years it's not possible to know everything unless you are on it 24hrs a day. So a lot of research is required, which is easier with experience.

                      This I think is a factor which means buying second hand in ssdr requires more experience and may drive down second hand resale values (in ssdr).. looking at afors activity on ssdr a/c I think we may be seeing this affect? . With ssdr keeping the costs down, buying new can help reduce these risk factors. .. although it's no guarantee of course in either ssdr or permitted.

                      You can transfer the correct mind set (possibly), but you can only transfer a limited amount of experience.

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Low priced Sails for SSDR

                        Andy Fell wrote:

                        If I was considering an SSDR trike I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole if I didn't see any good evidence of compliance with section S (with test results published), as it is a good reference standard.
                        Why not LTF-UL? There are many Czech and German single seaters out there that comply with that standard.

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Low priced Sails for SSDR

                          Donald Walker wrote:
                          Originally posted by Andy Fell

                          If I was considering an SSDR trike I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole if I didn't see any good evidence of compliance with section S (with test results published), as it is a good reference standard.
                          Why not LTF-UL? There are many Czech and German single seaters out there that comply with that standard.
                          Good point! :-) I'm not so familiar with the Czech and German trikes.. must take a look.

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Low priced Sails for SSDR

                            SSDR is the best thing that has happened to microlight flying in the UK for a LONG TIME. It allows our own designers and engineers, such as John Penry Evans, to bring new, exciting and most of all affordable flying to happen again in the UK.

                            For too long Microlight Flying has been strangled by Over Regulation and Bureaucracy, within the UK. I truly hope that it doesn't stop here. DSDR is the next logical step.

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Low priced Sails for SSDR

                              DSDR is unlikely to happen any time soon. In my opinion, the next logical step is acceptance of LTF-UL. Many manufacturers in Europe build to the German standard and the ability to buy an LTF-UL compliant aircraft direct from the factory in the Czech Republic, for instance, would greatly reduce the cost of new aircraft.

                              There would be no need for a local agent or BMAA approval of the design.

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Low priced Sails for SSDR

                                So would we need all the BMAA structures? Can't see the staff fighting for that change, plus we've always arrogantly assumed Johnny Foreigner less good at certifying stuff...
                                G-KEVA
                                BMAA 5696

                                "If anybody ever tells you anything about an aeroplane which is so bloody complicated you can't understand it, take it from me: it's all balls."

                                R.J. Mitchell :- Designer of the Supermarine Spitfire

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