>>How any performance chasing glider pilot can willingly accept a turbulent >>airflow over the entire length of the fuselage will ever remain a mystery to >>me.
Yes. However there are many pilots who are not just chasing performance at the expense of other factors. There are people who put other factors above performance in the shopping list, such as convenience and safety, long term maintenance and re-sale value. And considering many of the performance claims of manufacturers and their agents in the gliding world, a buyer could be forgiven for making up his or her own mind about these factors. A number of people on this list have expressed their desire to have no more out landings. If this is top of the list, then an FES may be a good way to go… on balance. For me, I would rather stay with petrol in spite of the disadvantages, because for me, well up on the list is the fact that battery technology is changing much faster than 2 strokes and given the recent posting on Schempp-Hirth spares, I would not be prepared to bank on something which might be obsolete in 5 years. Incidentally, the DG-400 has a system which elevates the propellor and engine which relies (if that's the right word) on a small electric motor which was originally a Bosch windscreen wiper motor. It runs with a planetary gearbox so there are only light loads on the motor so in a sense, the motor is adequate for the job. The problem is that you cannot rely on something like a windscreen wiper motor being manufactured for ever and the part was in time made obsolete. Far be it from me to relate this to DG's wicked policy of making users pay for maintenance manuals etc, but only a few years ago, they certified a different, modern electric motor for fitting to DG-400s. It's expensive but what would you rather have? DG also certified a different coolant pump for early 800s which I believe are also inside the paid maintenance contract area. I guess this could have been fitted to a Ventus with a Solo engine too. Long term availability of spares is a serious issue with powered gliders and with my limited experience of electronics, I'll take old petrol tech over power electronics and batteries for a while yet. D _______________________________________________ Aus-soaring mailing list Ausemail@example.com http://lists.base64.com.au/listinfo/aus-soaring