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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

NOVA Factor 2


Launching this glider is very easy, in strong or in weak wind.
In the air the glider has very close handling as the Mentor 2 S, very nice to steer ,and i could place it easily wherever I want inside the core.
I felt that the factor 2 S has a tiny less trim speed than the Mentor 2 S. When the conditions were smooth and consistent I found that the factor 2 S at 95 has a very nice climb, a bit better than the Mentor 2 S at 95.
Flying the glider in relatively turbulent conditions, mixed with head wind and light to medium thermal activity <2m/s, I was hoping to get much better biting into wind versus the Mentor 2 S and that would enable the glider to climb headwind.

In those particular not homogenous thermals and conditions, my friend with the Mentor 2 M, loaded at 103 was able to climb away several times. It could be that I am not yet familiarized with the new wing, but it did happened many times that day.

When the thermals got stronger but “smoother” the Factor 2 will keep its path in the thermal and have a good climb.

On glides in smooth conditions I found a ± 0.3 L/D better than the Mentor S.
The glides did get better “in smooth conditions” at bar.

The factor 2 S could have a very good glide at bar, but it stays in the “top” EN-C category only.
Flying with a Mantra 4 M, in head wind glides with some thermal activity showed a better glide for the M4 which is of course, still the best in the EN-D category.

Big ears are relatively stable, sometimes one side will flap.

The Factor 2 S has a very flat polar, and landing in narrow places require a bit of training.

The pluses:
Handling (superb)
Ease of use

What I was hoping:
Better climb rate in turbulent conditions
Bigger step in efficiency in difficult conditions over the mentor 2 S, which still is a revelation…