Friday, 12 October 2007

I need a plan!

Ok, after searching around on the internet for ages I came across three web sites that offered plans to build your very own paramotor or powered paraglider as it's also called. The first one was easyup which I've been aware of for a couple of years but never really felt confident enough with what was on offer to commit to buying the plans and after reading some pretty negative comments on the "out-dated design" I'm glad I stayed away.

The second web site I found offering plans to build a PPG (powered paraglider) was Skytribe which are based in South Africa, I really like the feel of this web site and it has some really useful info available and if I knew what engine I would finally end up with I would have definitely considered buying the Skytribe plans, I have subsequently spoken to Dave (the owner of Skytribe) for some advice on my engine choice (which I'll tell you about a bit later) and he has been very helpful and friendly (even though I didn't buy his plans).

The third web site I found (and the one I ended up going for) was that of Jeff Baumgartner's Skybolt design. I had a good look around the site and did quite a bit of research on the Skybolt and everyone seemed to agree that it's the best design out there for the D.I.Y. PPG builder and probably the best designed PPG yet. As well as the Skybolt being very strong and easy to build (helped by the fact you get a 2 hour step by step construction DVD with the plans) the frame is bolted together as opposed to being welded. This means that if (or more like when) the frame gets bent the damaged piece can simply be unbolted and a new section bolted in and you're ready to fly again, good ay!

So my mind was made up, and the Skybolt it is. So I ordered the plans and a week later they arrived from the US. I was very impressed with what I received, which was about 12 detailed drawings, x2 construction DVD'S and a copy of "Risk and Reward" all for $110.00 (£58.47) including shipping, I was well pleased and really eager to get going and build my very own flying machine. Before I start building the frame though I needed to decide on what engine I'm going to use, which I'll tell you about in my next post, until then bye for now :-)

Build cost so far £58.47

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