Flown for you: Lightfex from Finsterwalder
22-Lightfex-kilograms: walk-over on the ground as well as in the air
In the age of mobility, the Finsterwalder does not mean runal is also used by other been stored „long“ (5,3
short-pack gliders from four metres - the Lightfex manufacturers. metres). Rigging down to a
Finsterwalder remain firm frame can be taken apart to The sail is pulled onto the length of 3,5 metres follows
favourites. They almost a length of 1,85 metres. frame over the nose plate, it by separating the leading
qualify as hand-luggage Due to several newly de- is noticeable how much care edge tubes and is just as
when traveling. As regards veloped fittings, the additio- and attention has been given simple as with any other
nal work time required to rig to detail especially regarding single surface glider.
packing volume and
the glider, amounts to the hardware. There are no The Lightfex’ crossbar
transport philosophy, they approx. ten minutes, even sharp edges or corners that swims freely over a roller and
come closer to paragliders though the sail has to be could damage the dacron is secured in addition with a
than hanggliders. Lightfex- removed each time. cloth. Even the heads of the steel cable. The buckle on
clients are light weight to Damage to the frame can be stainless-steel screws have the strap that holds the top
middle weight beginner immediately inspected. To rounded edges. sail the correct distance from
pilots put the puzzle together The rigging wires should be the keel tube gives the
amounts to child’s play. The rolled up particularly when impression of being stronger
W hile in the past it was
eers who chose the
short-pack gliders, mean-
tubes are clearly marked and
are simply pushed into one
The light-weight, thin walled,
rigging the glider down short
- this avoids any confusion
when re-rigging. The rigging
wires can be mounted one-
The longest of the perunal
sail battens are telescopic -
these would otherwise be too
while many others have yet high strength perunal handed and without the use long to fit in the 1,85 metres
come to value the advan- tubing has been mechanical- of tools (as with all other short glider cover. To mount
tages, especially when the ly polished. This method is connections) thanks to the the last sprung loaded batten
glider has to be transported more expensive than anodi- new detent buttons. onto the burl of the leading
in a cable-car or is to be sing, however, recognising The king-post hang in must edge tube, it is best to reach
taken on holiday in an aero- faults in the material be mounted, and the sail into the sail pocket. The two
plane. There is even room becomes easier. attached at the nose and at other sail battens on each
for such a handy package in Finsterwalder took a pio- the ends of both leading side are supported by the
a smallish car, where the neering role in the use of edge tubes. free standing wash-out rods.
glider is protected from theft perunal (relatively expensive All of the steps mentioned The nose cone gives this
and bad weather. in comparison to other up to this point are single surface glider a
Short pack in the case of alloys) - in the meantime pe- unnecessary if the glider has professional appearance.
Flown for you: Lightfex from Finsterwalder
Launch sive up to the maximum
The Aerosafe A-frame is a speed of 73 km/h.
pleasant size even for smaller
The 22 kilograms sit With decreased speed,
comfortably and well tracking becomes very good,
balanced on the upper arms imparting safety when
- this and the tight-lower- landing.
rigging wires mean that the Apart from the typical
wind on the glider surface is features for this class of
felt directly. glider, such as minimum
Angle of attack correct, run, ground effect and a wide
launch: the Lightfex leaves flare window, it is also
the ground the way a be- noticeable that the top of the
ginner’s glider should. A-frame is fairly far back on
the keel, providing for plenty
Flight characteristics of leverage when flaring,
Right from the word go, I which is especially helpful for
had a remarkably good smaller pilots with shorter
feeling, that the Lightfex arms.
would do exactly what I
wanted, the steering cha- Summary
racteristics are direct and The Lightfex is a forgiving
smooth, however, it must be glider suitable for novice
said that my hang-in weight pilots weighing 70 kg and
was at the top end of certified less.
range. This short-pack glider offers
The handling for lighter satisfying performance for
pilots is certainly a little more pleasure pilots with handling
sluggish, and therefore that inspires confidence.
should not overtax novices. The Lightfex costs 2690,-
The Lightfex guarantees Euro which makes it one of
pleasant thermaling due to the more expensive gliders
good roll stability, the wing for this class.
displays no tendency to side Given the high quality raw
slip. materials, the many
When shallow turning or elaborate fittings, the addi-
flying near stall speed, it is tional short-pack measure-
easy to feel the glider wanting ment of 1,85 metres and top
to straighten up. finishing, the price is
The result is that the certainly commensurate.
Lightfex has very little
tendency to yaw below a
speed of 55 km/h, and when Martin Jung
stalled, will only slip to one
side when provoked to do so
by the pilot.
The stall which occurs at The cross-bar fixation consists of two connecting
approx. 23 km/h demands elements and a redirectional roller: the Lightfex
barely any roll control. When crossbar floats on a flexible cord ensuring flexibility
thermalling at low speed when turning.
ranges, the performance is Due to the positioning of the A-frame apex fairly far
very respectable, however, it back on the keel tube, the glider rests neutrally on the
soon becomes clear at shoulders; besides, the pilot has plenty of leverage
speeds of over 50 km/h that when flaring (above). Main pitch line with
the Lightfex is no high per- compensating roller at the to of the king-post
formance glider. (middle). The sail is attached to the leading edge tubes
The sink rate increases by the use of pegs: this connection remains rotatable,
dramatically yet yaw is still favourable for handling.
Loops for the fingers ease insertion (below left). 1,85
m short-pack dimensions faciliate independence. Rig-
Bar pressure is very progres- ging up is child’s play thanks to the special fittings.