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Which ultralights will I actually fit in?


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Hi all,

Thinking about taking the plunge into aircraft ownership, but not sure how practical it would be given my size. I'm about 6'2" and 105kg, but could probably lose a bit of weight if I need to for the right aircraft.

Which ultralights could I realistically squeeze into? I've found an ad for Sapphire that looks great, but I worry I'll be too big. For reference, I went up in a Skyfox Gazelle the other day and my knees were jammed up against the panel, could still fly it but far too uncomfortable to actually do regularly. 

Would I fit in a Drifter or Thruster? 

Open to any and all suggestions for ultralights or RA aircraft generally that would be potential options. Flight mission is: cheap hour builder for CPL, doesn't have to be fast or fancy, just a decent useful load preferably. 

Cheers.

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On 7/2/2022 at 8:22 PM, FlyBoy1960 said:

You wont fit the Sapphire

Leave the lid off and 6’2” fits in the sapphire … but 105 is a tad high for them … 

 

a 95.10 sapphire legally can carry 105kg but you’ll need to ballast the tail and accept curve of the earth climb 😛

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Thanks for all the responses so far! Confirms what I suspected about the Sapphire, I think I'll cross it off the list. 

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I’m 70mm taller than you and have yet to find a Jabiru I can’t fit comfortably in. Fit into several European sport planes without problems, but Skyfox and Gazelle might be marginal.

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Yeah, I did my initial training in a Jab, plenty of room. I like flying them, but after an engine failure I've never really trusted them, so not too keen on buying one. 

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Jabiru  glides well and they are nice and solid in a crash. they bounce  , and deform, they dont crumple.. 

even better with a rotax installed....

Brumby is good. - heaps of room. very well balanced and well  behaved aircraft by many accounts.... disclaimer - I learned to fly in a Brumby. 

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You're not wrong. I was worried we'd go through the windscreen in our crash but the jab held up surprisingly well. Snapped the nosewheel clean off though. 

 

I'd love to get a Brumby but out of my price range unfortunately. 

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I would have no hesitation flying the jab at near stall right into a forest... (obviously only if I had to) (I dont aspire to it). The fibreglass is a great passenger cell. the seats are part of the fuselage and run from door to door, the glass thickness in the bottom around the mains is heavy, and the wing struts form a reasonable triangle.  You can pick LSA55s etc up for 15-30k in good flying condition.  Owner built 19 aircraft normally the owners have been careful with them. Buy Bruce's.  There are a few Brumbys 2nd hand on the market, the cheaper ones 40-50k have Jabiru engines in them and could have a rotax in them easy enough.  my instructor likes the Vixxen and foxbat .  There is a J230C with a 914 in it  for sale, and you also find some J430s up for sale with rotax 912 or  914 in them, also.  You might find a used Atec in the 60-80 range. 

 

 

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X-Air new about $35,000

 

Hanuman new with 912 is about $55,000 

 

Ninja new with 912 is about $70,000

 

There is also the Bushcat with 912 for around $75,000

 

Disclaimer:   Pricing is all from memory

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3 hours ago, FlyBoy1960 said:

What about an X-Air or X-Air Hanuman ?   More modern than the Drifter and Thruster. 

 

Also maybe the Ninja as well ?

I don't know much about the X-Air, but after doing a bit of digging it sounds like it ticks quite a few boxes. There's one for sale at the moment that I've got my eye on. Have you flown them? What do you think of them?

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One of our club members has several aircraft, but prefers to use his X-air. My only experience of them was needing to be a contortionist to get in and out. Has that problem been addressed in later models?.

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Later models of the X-air were made with a wide entry kit option. Getting in & out was just a matter of technique.

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4 hours ago, Old Koreelah said:

One of our club members has several aircraft, but prefers to use his X-air. My only experience of them was needing to be a contortionist to get in and out. Has that problem been addressed in later models?.

The one I'm looking at comes with the wide entry kit, but it's not installed. No idea how much of a palaver it is to switch over. 

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4 hours ago, phlegm said:

I don't know much about the X-Air, but after doing a bit of digging it sounds like it ticks quite a few boxes. There's one for sale at the moment that I've got my eye on. Have you flown them? What do you think of them?

I have a few hours in a mates X-Air both solo and dual a few years ago before he sold it, I enjoyed flying her.  If you get one you will enjoy your flights.

Edited by Blueadventures
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On 11/02/2022 at 7:49 PM, Lucky01 said:

Sorry mate, I didn't see this question was posed in a sub forum

What did you say originally? I don't mind recommendations/comments about LSAs, I'm not 100% on going the ultralight route yet. 

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On 07/02/2022 at 6:17 PM, phlegm said:

Hi all,

Thinking about taking the plunge into aircraft ownership, but not sure how practical it would be given my size. I'm about 6'2" and 105kg, but could probably lose a bit of weight if I need to for the right aircraft. Would I fit in a Drifter or Thruster? 


Cheers.

Hi phlegm, This is Ron Biondi! he`s probably a bit bigger than you and his aircraft was the 95-10 registered version of the Drifter... Ron began flying his Drifter around 1982 right up until retiring from flying a couple of years ago at 90 years of age.

 

Keep in mind that when thinking about the Drifter, there are several different versions.

 

Converted_file_43ca4f41.thumb.jpg.7bbfab4884b0eb8bc3ab6d36115d3304.jpg

Franco,

Ps, I took the photo! Ron would come to see me, land on the strip then Taxi up to the house.

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My son is over 6 ft and he says the SK Jab is too small but the 230 is ok.

The german gliders used to have a legal limit of 110kg seat weight, so this was your weight plus clothes plus chute.

I think this has been increased lately. 

I dunno what they consider airline passengers to weigh, but they don't make them stand on scales like they used to. I think the fat lady bleeding hearts have sabotaged the whole idea.

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