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By billpain
#405773
I have seen much discussed on supine and suprone flight vs prone flight. Personally I see significant advantages and disadvantages to both options. Having worked extensively on giving us the best of both worlds here is a video of a local pilot using my Cloud 9 Morph harness. I am most interested in any feedback on this idea. I do currently make these harnesses to order and have a website www.cloud9morph.com but I am interested to hear from the hanggliding community what your thoughts are and what kind of developments you would like to see.
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By SkippyBall
#405775
Its nice to have these kind of developments for hang gliding. For some it will be an outcome who would physically benefit from flying Supine.
But if I personally wanted to fly Supine, I would go for paragliding.

Best,
User avatar
By DMarley
#405783
I absolutely love flying prone. I like the view, I'm able to better see what the wind is doing in trees while scratching on a ridge, and I believe I have overall better view where it most matters.... above, below, and to the sides. But I do neck exercises as well to keep my neck flexible and strong.

Also, I don't agree with the arguments that supine/suprone is safer than prone. When on approach, one is usually in an upright position more or less, no matter the harness style, so all harnesses are pretty much equal in terms of safety, imo. Perhaps scratching could be considered slightly more dangerous while prone, but being prone offers less drag (yes, it's proven), therefore prone is likely safer if scratching in the same conservative fashion. I'm sure there are others that will vehemently disagree. I'm bettin' they don't XC.

Surely, having the supine/suprone options will enable older pilots to fly longer, which is a big plus.

One older, very good pilot that I know of is flying supine and he is a very strong proponent for it and argues rather strongly (quite irritating at times) about it's advantages..... but I still don't buy into it. I've never seen him do any XC flights.

Another old crow (an awesome pilot) with painful knees is considering changing to supine. Not sure why he believes it might be easier on his knees. Perhaps his neck hurts too. He continues to strongly advocate for it, but I don't see any advance from him in that direction.... he's always flying prone and kicking everyone's arse. I don't think he'll change until he absolutely has to because deep down inside, even though he denies it, he knows that he will have a lower L/D and higher sink rate. And he does a lot of XC flights.

What I know is that any extra drag absolutely sucks, unless you're perfectly happy boating about in ridge lift all the time.
Solution: Daily resistive neck exercises. This is a sport, so I train for it. Otherwise get yourself an upright harness.
:mosh:
User avatar
By billpain
#405784
Thanks for the feedback. I agree with just about all said there and certainly when concentrating on performance/XC there is no substitute. I see there are more aspects to flying hanggliders like just enjoying the pure joy of flight. I have given up high performance hang gliding but fly sailpanes for that. To be honest I find the conditions in inland Australia to frightening for hangies. The arguments you give about control etc are the very reasons I developed to Morph harness. I do plan to make an enclosed version next year.
User avatar
By rockjock729
#405806
I have been flying the morph over the last couple of weekends. When in flight, transitioning back and forth is not difficult. Relearning all the sensory queues took a few flights. When I was at cloud base, it was enjoyable sitting upright. I have yet to really get a sense for how it thermals (supine) since the conditions have not been there. I aerotow in Florida and launching is no different.

Landing is still "up in the air" on whether there is no difference. After several embarrassing landings over the few weekends, I finally did a picture perfect one last Saturday so I am beginning to get a feel for the harness when I am upright on approach. I am concerned that the bar that I am hanging from effects the transfer of the weight shift so as to diminish its effect when on approach and coming into ground effect. In the air I can turn fine, but I also did not try to spin on a dime in either position. While it does not feel as responsive when I am coming into ground affect, that may be my still learning it.

I have yet to do any XC so I cannot speak on it, but for boating around, the harness is very good. I will not be flying until January, so I expect to have a better assessment of it then.
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