I started with a CG at 102 mm after havind received a mail from Benajamin Rodax, one of the co-designers. First flight was with 300g of ballast. Later in the afternoon, I double the ballast to go to 600gr.
The flight went very well. I felt confortable with the plane immdiately and engaged few runs right away, without gaining altitude. The plane is extremely grippy in turn, so snapflap will have to have the right setup, in conjonction with elevator. Here is my current settings. CG appeared to be good, so I haven't changed it yet.
- CG at 102mm
- -1 to 2mm for Speed +4mm Thermal mode
- +/- 5mm on the elevator
- + 10mm on the snap flap
This is not the definitive settings, as I need to continue to test the plane and find the best compromise between elevator and snapflaps.
In flight, the Pike Precision feels light on the sticks, even with some ballast. Roll rate is pretty good, I was able to do 2 rolls at half stick, straight.
The slope is not suitable for Energy management turn, but I did some nice runs in EM. The diving speed is quite high and the plane accelerates very well. The Pike seems more stable at high speed than at low speed.
The thermal flaps work well, and the plane carries the ballast easily, confirming that it has been designed to use plenty of brass, up to 75g/dm2.
The day after, I enjoyed the Pike empty, thermalling at my local slope. The plane is very gentle and forgiving with my settings. Even empty, it is able to fly fast and keep its energy.
Good point, the 2.4 Ghz (Jeti) worked flawlessly even with the carbon fuselage, at least for F3F.
Very good first impression overall, need more flying time on it, to refine the settings and learn more about the plane.
I will explore next a more forward CG, given that Samba recommendation is between 97 and 100mm.
Finally, I captured the very first flight with my helmet GoPro: