Ozone Light Mantra 5 SM.
To review a glider that has won the X-Alps with three places at the top, is an embarrassing task, but this review will enable pilots all over the world to understand better what they would have to expect.
Today flying the Light Mantra 5 SM, with a X-Rated 6 harness to be at 92 all up.
The LM5 has 3.5 kg with normal risers, as it is built with very light cloth all over except the 25 cm on the leading edge that extend to the extremities, where presumably the pressure is at its max, it has a much more heavier cloths.
Launching this Piece of art needs just a single breeze.It inflates smoothly and rapidly above your head.In gusts, the glider must be controlled by the brakes to avoid rapid take over.
In the air :
Usually in summer the site in Harissa offers sometimes heavy turbulence as it is very humid and always under the inversion.
Flying the gliders there will immediately reveal their character.
Today was no exception.I flew the LM5 in those ‘spaguetti’ conditions with my two other friends on their Delta 2’s as they reported later some disgusting movements of their gliders.
What did i feel under the LM5 ?
Having flown the Peak 3 and the Delta 2 often in those conditions,i can easily comment on the behavior of the LM5 .
I will try to be more accurate in my description.
The steering controls are short precise (shorter than D2) and the movements of the glider is directly felt mainly by the brakes.
Flying the LM5 SM at 92 in homogeneous but strong conditions,i could place the glider with the brakes very efficiently as the LM5 tendency is to make flat circles .
The LM5 have a relatively dampened pitch movement, back or forth.
Where the P3 would pitch back the LM5 reacts more or less as the D2 and stayed more above the pilots head.
Flying in turbulent shaky air, the LM5 moves much more than a D2 but stays above the pilots head, as if it is locked and it feels like every time it surges into a strong core the LM5 stiffened and feel like a solid whole block, that sometimes it is difficult to steer it immediately into the core, like you can on a D2 because of that strong taught ‘lock feeling’.
Inside those small turbulent cores, i found that it is best to have that funny ± 5 cm pull and release brake pressure from each side that works like a charm to keep the LM5 circulating on its track ! Have to get used to it !
It surely requires much more pilot control than a D2 but less than some new D’s…
The LM5 handling is purely focused on flat turns, but that doesn’t mean it is not fun enough to fly.It just don’t dive in turns, which is a highly appreciated character on a D !
Flying next to my friends on their Delta 2 for all the flying hours, gave me a complete idea of its performances.
The LM5 SM @ 92 was gliding next to a Delta 2 M at 102 for several hours, and i felt that the LM5 has the edge in head wind conditions were it surfs the air slightly better at trim speed. At first bar the LM5 began to show its potential, and at the second the Delta 2 is completely out of the game.
Climbing ability :
I can also confirm that the climbing power and the ability to stay inside a thermal is on the LM5 side where i sensed it floats slightly better at my loadings.
The max speed of the LM5 and Delta 2 are identical.
The ears flap a bit, can get you a ± 2.5m/s but they do not destabilize the glider stability and no oscillations as the open part stays totally calm.
In the D category, the LM5 is a relatively comfortable and solid glider. It surely requires a much higher piloting level than the Delta 2. That glider in the hands of those well trained D pilots will be a wonderfully ‘light’ but solid XC machine.
I am waiting for that M6 as probably many of you are…
Just wishing it to be more maneuverable, much faster and of course ….more gliding poweeeeer… ;-)