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Friday, July 6, 2012

U-Turn Blacklight SM

U-Turn Blacklight
In 2010 a successful manufacturer made an impressive EN-B wing that can out glide some higher rated gliders.
Since then, many manufacturers worked hardly on something to beat it…
Last month, I had a U-Turn Passion EN-C to test fly it. I was very impressed by the total package this glider offers, especially its capacity to absorb turbulence for its 6.85 ar to keep its passenger quite comfortable. I was eager to find out what U-Turn will bring to the market in the B segment especially that they claim for the new Blacklight a glide of 10 !

The test:
Like the Passion the Blacklight SM is quite light with its ± 4.5 kg! Plastic inserts at the leading edge and inside the glider are (a la mode) these days ;-) as with all the gliders. Each thin riser hold 7 lines + the brake line.

Launching is easy for the category wherever in light or in strong breeze.

In the air:
The first impression after the first turn is that the Blacklight has one of the best handling a B glider could have!
Describing the handling of the Blacklight is like eating my favorite ice cream with caramel, vanilla and chunks of delicious brownies. The excellent taste will let you sometimes tighten your eyebrows ;-) and that’s exactly how you will feel inside a thermal with the Blacklight .
Flying against the best B’s of the moment, the Blacklight showed an excellent climb especially in weak thermals even loaded at max!
Being targeted for the high end B pilot, the Blacklight is fairly comfortable in the air. It surely moves in turbulence but it is easily manageable inside the hot B category.

On long glides (more than 10 km) in relatively smooth conditions against a Mentor 2 S, the Blacklight showed similar glide may be 0.1 L/D better than M2 and same at full speed with may be less than 1 km top end speed for the BL .
The advantage of the Blacklight is when racing in lift lines by its ability to float better and climb easier as some higher rated gliders do.

The accelerator is smooth and light. Big ears are stable and reopen with a touch on the brakes.

With the Blacklight U-Turn has made a new serious challenger in the B category. It has marvelous handling, brilliant climb rate that will manage low saves easily, very good performances coupled with a fairly comfortable glider in the ‘hot B’ segment making the Blacklight a sure success.

Blacklight S size on video !  Even more beautiful ....!