Thursday, October 6, 2016

SKYWALK Poison X-Alps XS !



SKYWALK Poison X-Alps XS (65-90)
The Poison X-Alps is SKYWALK light EN-D wing. This glider is the fruit of the wing used in the last X-alps race, trimmed and tuned to meet the requirements of the D pilots.
The Poison X-alps is a 7 aspect ratio glider with three risers and a shark nose. A small piece of wood attached on the C riser, is connected to act also on the B riser for a possibility to control the glider pitch when accelerated. All lines are unsheathed.

Launching the 7 aspect ratio Poison is an easy task with the light cloth. Quickly overhead, a slight damp on the brakes to keep it overhead and the take off is immediate.
I must state that different sizes behaves very differently. For instance when the Ozone LM6 size S has a slight pitch forward, The LM6 size SM has a neutral pitch, The normal M6 size SM has a slight pitch back ! I was flying the Poison X-Alps size XS from 84 to 90 all up. The M size could have other feel under it ... i just have the XS size.

I found after some hours flying the XS size, that 5 kilos below top is optimum as the balance of climb and speed is great ! I didn’t notice an increase or decrease in trim speed flying it from 85 to 90...But the climb at 85 all up is superb !
Also flying it 5 kg below top, decreases slightly its dynamism and smoothen up the movements in active air. Much like the Cayenne 5. No need to fly it at top weight.
I flew that glider in some turbulent air alternating flights with the LM6 SM. The Poison X-alps has a more dynamic feel under it. The roll movements are more pronounced over the LM6 with a lovely slight pitch forward that pulls you into the thermal.

All that is coupled with a precise, linear, short, direct brake response which i adore on board this beautiful machine !
The Poison X-Alps feels more taught in the air than the LM6 ( it feels like a solid, dynamic, compact piece) The information given by the Poison X-alps XS is spectacular ! A good pilot will feel everything in the brakes and also in the harness with the possibility to place it exactly
where he wants inside any turbulent thermal ! It needs more piloting than the LM6 in turbulent air and feels slightly more dynamic.

The LM6 is for sure a superb machine. But if i’m going to explain the difference between them and especially in ‘feel’ without talking about performance yet, i would say that, If the LM6 SM loaded at top feels like a Porsche. The Poison X-Alps XS at 85, feel like a Porsche GT2. Everything is fine tuned for slightly more precision, slightly more dynamism, slightly more race feel, slightly more steering pleasure !

Going on some glide on the Poison X-Alps XS at 85 all up with an LM6 S at top weight and an LM6 SM also at top weight showed me that the Poison X-Alps XS has a +1 km/h faster trim speed. At top speed, the Poison X-Alps XS has +16 km/h over it’s trim taken at 800m ASL.
As for the glide angle at trim and accelerated i would say that they pretty close. My 'personal' feel is a slight efficiency in head wind glides for the Poison X-Alps especially above trim,+ 47 km/h.

The Poison X-Alps XS at 85 all up is a very good climber in weak conditions. And for sure when the thermal streghten, it will shoot upward without any delay ! Overall it’s an efficient climber.
The speed system has a moderate pressure .The glide is superb ! Bumps are felt when accelerating in turbulent air and the pitch is controlled by pulling on the C riser which is slightly on the heavy side and could control quite some moderate turbulence. But not as much as a 2 liner does. For example, the Peak 4 'B steering' is much softer and more efficient. But of course its a 2 liner ! I felt that controlling the pitch with the C riser on the Poison X-Alps has to be firm and at the same time sensitive and precise in order to keep the glider levelled above.
360’s are super easy and feels quite nice with a very clean exit. Big ears are stable and doable with at the external B riser kit.

Conclusion: Test flying the Poison X-alps XS for "my personal taste” was an exceptional experience for a D glider yet ! The handling and the way it turns, feels and cut through the air, is superb !
It’s a slightly dynamic and talkative wing for sure in turbulence, but very well pressurised and has a homogenous feel for a 7 AR, top performer D glider ! The brake authority and responsiveness is among it’s
strongest points !
I loved the way it pulls into the thermal ! It sniffs and go through with a positive vario.
The authority on the brakes, usability and feel are exceptional on this XS size ! I’m sure that many keen pilots wouldn’t be indifferent after a test flight !  :-)





3 comments:

  1. .great Ziad!
    Comparing it with the King, what can you tell? What differences etc

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    Replies
    1. Hi,
      The King is more comfortable to fly. The climb of the Xalps is better. .the glide of the King is close but more usable at top speed.
      Cheers
      Ziad

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