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Sigma 7

Review- Sigma 7

JBradley 26-Sep-2009 14:46 Report this Review!
Review:  website Click to visit Sigma 7 »
Your Flying Style: XC and recreational from New York City
Purchased From: -
Period of Use: 5 months
Flying Experience: 300 hrs +
Similar Products Tested: Nova Jamboo, Gin Gangster, Zoom, Boom Sport
Current Flying Setup
& Clipped in Weight:

Sigma 7, Genie 4, Gin One 42, Flytec 5030

Strengths:

Lots, feels right for me but take a little getting use to. Handling is very precise

Weaknesses:

-

Build/Quality: Very Good
Review:

Taken From Paragliding Forum with permission from James:

"It feels composed and (relatively) stable even in crazy air. It is subtle in communication compared to some gliders but if you are listening it's always talking and informative very informative. I really came to like it. It has a light feeling on the brakes yet a responsive and fun-to-fly turn. It has longer travel than a Gin Boom Sport or even a Zoom but shorter than many gliders."

"I did several tows over water this weekend on the Sigma 7. I yanked asymmetric collapses as large as 70%, with speedbar at zero and again at 1/3 and 3/4 bar. To do big collapses on lots of bar I have to bring a full pack of gum because I swallow it so often.

I clip the brake to the magnet on the side I'm about to yank to better simulate a big hit in turbulence. (Pulling down the brake as you yank the As softens the collapse.) I try to yank *hard* and quickly for the same reason, with success measured by gum consumption. I also try to act as I would if I were surprised by the collapse, i.e. my weight initially falls to the low side of the harness, the collapsed side, and I get off the bar if any, then I can react from there. This doesn't mean I react slowly. I'm sure my feigned surprise is less than perfect. Generally my disposition is that on more than half bar I need to be paying attention well enough that nothing is a surprise, but sometimes....

Typically on an accelerated hit I brake lightly on the open side after I glance up and see how big the collapse is. Above 50% I brake more lightly because the risk of stalling the flying side goes up a lot.

In accelerated hits the S7 is fairly dynamic, as you would expect from its ratings, but it behaves really well. It turns a lot as it dives. It doesn't reinflate quickly, often needing a few pumps. Sometimes the other wingtip goes. But not once in a number of tries did I have craziness.

I also did a number of big hits without bar, each with one of the following goals:

a) allow the natural turn (to reinflate most quickly when no obstacles are near)
b) maintain heading (as if the mountain were close on collapsed side)
c) accelerate the turn (as if the mountain were close on collapsed side but I was caught off guard and had allowed it to turn. In that case I want to bring it around as quickly as possible because that's the quickest way to miss the terrain. Finishing the turn will be quicker than stopping it and turning back away from the collapse.)

Again, starting with the brake clipped up, I tried valliantly to act as I would in a surprise collapse. (Roight.)

Case (a): Let it turn, center weight, brake gently, pump out the collapse. No issues.

Case (b): I would have at most a small heading change as I got some brake on and got weightshifted up to the high side of the harness. It was never a problem to fly straight and pump out the collapse. (It's worth noting that in a more than 70% collapse (might be less on your glider), (a) is a tough situation because you're at real risk of spinning the open side if you brake it enough for the glider not to turn. You could crash either way, from spinning it or from allowing the turn. I didn't test this, and I try pretty hard not to fly that close to terrain in strong conditions.)

Case (c): Weight shift toward the collapse, don't brake the open side, add brake to the collapsed side. This was signficiantly more dynamic but nothing I would call craziness.

As my self-reward for pulling big hits I like to do big asymmetric spirals. Super fun on the Sigma 7. The glider doesn't feel as high aspect ratio as it is. It seemed to like some alternation in the weight shift, not just back to center. Some outside brake on the way over and I never saw a tip flap. I'm not an expert but I found the glider to be suitably dynamic but without surprises. Linear.

I also did some wingovers, some big pitch oscillations alternating speedbar with brake, some small field spot landings. All good. I like this wing"

 

Rating: (out of 5) Rating of 5Rating of 5Rating of 5Rating of 5Rating of 5
Conclusion:

I find the Sigma 7 to be very polite in all situations, almost too polite, like a well-bred Brit.  It never yells at you. In light conditions it whispers and I have to listen differently than I have before, but I think the information is there. In strong conditions the glider stays calmer than I do. (I should add that I changed at the same time to a Gin Genie 4 harness, which is much more comfortable but also much more stable than my last primary harness. So I'm still getting used to a very big combined change.)

- The glider is stable. Not collapse-prone. Despite a few rowdy climbs as strong as 8+ m/s (1600+ fpm) I haven't had more than a tip wiggle.

- It responds well to the bar but sink rate does go up significantly on 3/4 or more. If you are confident of finding lift before you dirt, by all means hammer the bar. 

- It seems to prefer minimal brake when thermalling. Use dynamic weightshift to steer and respond to the air, with light inside brake and minimal outside brake.

- It has a very light touch on the brakes, and it prefers the same from you.

- It's a pleasure to launch, turn, and land.

- It likes to throw down and do tricks, the couple I know anyway.

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