I had an offer to try new Mac’s two liner (EN-D) in a small competition, so here are my impressions from 2 tasks from our small but famous hill Raná (150 m usable altitude)
The conditions were both days similar. Weak and broken thermals, moderate to strong wind. The air was generally lively, but thermals were weak (spikes max 5 ms (usually 2 ms), averaged 0,5-2 ms (max 3,6 ms). Both tasks were set mostly with the tailwind, because of poor conditions. I still fly in my Lightness 2 at around 92 kg (of 99 kg). First task was 63 km (I did 42, going from cloudbase to ground without hitting anything), second task was 35 km (I arrived with the first gaggle including actually the most famous czech pilot Standa Mayer). Both tasks were Elapsed time type but with doubled leading points based on new FAI rules it was always better flying with first gaggle.
The quality of sewing for demo glider was flawless. I like short wooden(?) sticks on B risers. Compared to Meru they are smaller and seems less ergonomic, but these does not catch lines during the take off so often. On the opposite, the design of risers around brakes is little bit complicated, which is not easy for first launches in wind. The design of Magus is that with brakes you pull also Bs a little. The result is the same angle of attack, with less drag, I assume 🙂
The feeling is very different compared to my UP Meru. Magus is very hard in the middle 50%, and very soft at ears (25+25%). For me, it was different feeling but quickly I got used to it. Some disadvantage is that ears has tendency to collapse easily, advantage is that doing “big ears” are much easier than on Meru. The speed system is the same length and resistance.
For handling, brakes are longer, and it takes some pulling until they start to react sharply. I would shorten them for sure as I used half wraps all the time. The Bs has higher resistance, but for me it was matter of few minutes to get to used to it. I got a feeling that Bs handling react faster/more intense than on Meru.
The raising ability I am not sure, as these conditions were really technical and each glider likes to be handled in a little different way. At beginning I felt I am slow, however second day when I used little bit of outside brake, it seemed more effective. Sometimes I was the fastest, however it could be just little bit more luck for stronger bubble. More comparison is needed to be sure with conclusion.
Trim speed is pretty high. I was faster than all other gliders when soaring nearby (Gurus, Merus, unfortunately no Booms or Enzos for that short soaring time). I liked half bar speed as it felt still on very nice glide and speed. On full bar the sink increased little more, a 3 step speedbar would be great as I felt around 70% as most effective against the moderate wind. A glide to goal I did with Enzo 3 on full bar and he was not obviously faster, but I would be reluctant to say anything about glide ratios, despite I did not see any differences. After the race when trying to fly back to start against the strong wind with Guru, I also did not feel any disadvantage, this feeling was confirmed also by Guru’s pilot, and after the retrieve by Enzo’s pilot too. After the race, several pilots talked to me that they were impressed by Mac’s glider performance, but also one who felt its glide was almost the same as his EN-C. Maybe it was that time I returned 300 m when missed first small turnpoint (my stupidity) when being too focused to a thermal after it, and he did not notice, who knows.
For safety notice, I got only a few collapses, around 40% or less. All non events. Few times I reacted with Bs, especially for “overshoots” but glider has no tendency to bite aggressively so it was only for glide optimization. The ears seemed usable and half spiral nicely controllable with good sink, but it was really only one short try to both. I would need to spend more time to assess these maneuvers more precisely.
MAC Para concertina was big and obviously durable, with padded top, still well packable to my harness, but I did not like it much. Especially because there is no protection for catching lines to zipper, which caused me a headache before second day start. Later I packed it by opposite side, it helps and is recommended on their video. Also the holding lines I prefer to be shorter and not in middle, which are difficult to find under the glider when packing.
In summary, I really like Magus. Handling little less than my actual glider but especially speed of the glider seems fantastic. However fast trim speed can cause you headaches when soaring crowded sites, maybe also when landing in nil wind.
Task 1 tracklog (booms, guru, zeno close): https://www.xcontest.org/world/en/flights/detail:petr.kozisek/12.6.2020/10:57
Task 2 tracklog (Enzo 3,
pumaBoom 11, Guru close):