I chose the Rio 2 for my return to hang gliding after a 12-year gap. I could not be more pleased. Compared with my previous competition glider the Rio 2 is slower (of course), but also lighter (28 kg compared with 34 kg, weighed by me), more stable and much, much easier to land.
The glider is quite long in the bag, with rigid tips and tip struts that extend beyond the leading edges with the wing folded. However, it is easy and quick to rig, either flat or on the A-frame.
Takeoff is straightforward. The Rio 2 does not accelerate as quickly as sportier gliders, so I feel that it takes a bit more oomph to get moving; but, once the wing is flying, liftoff is easy and predictable.
In flight the controls are intuitive; neither quick and twitchy, nor heavy and unresponsive. The glider responds immediately to control inputs, but rolls into and out of turns in quite a stately fashion: not exactly racy, but very confidence inspiring. In thermals the glider does not wind in or out, and seems to climb pretty efficiently: at any rate, it was good enough to get me to cloudbase within 15 minutes of my very first takeoff at Wether Fell.
The VG is effective, although I find it hard to pull - partly because of an old injury which has left me with a rather weak right arm. The glider remains controllable (although heavier) with fully tight VG, but there is a noticeable slowing-down when the VG is released.
Landing behaviour is really excellent. The flare window seems very wide (I have not yet found its limits) and the stall speed pretty low. So far I seem to be flaring rather early, perhaps because my previous glider had a much higher stall speed, and so I tend to zoom upwards a bit; but holding the flare results in a gentle, level and controlled descent to the ground.
In summary, I am very pleased. In phase 1 of my hang gliding career I flew many different models, but I think the Rio 2 has better handling than any of them.
Flew my Rio2 twice today at Westbury. What can I say, she flies like a dream. I was surprised at how much more stable and planted it felt compared to the Rio1, it felt a bit less responsive in roll against the Rio1 at trim speed but I liked the way it felt - saying that the roll response increased quicker with increased speed than the 1. Both the landings went very well, the second one was the best landing I have done in 25 flights, like you said she lands beautifully.
All in all I'm really pleased with her, she was certainly getting much more attention on the hill than the 1.
I will be putting both flights on YouTube within the next few days under the channel name '2skydream' http://youtu.be/1UNnOLC7xOU if you are interested.
Thanks for building me a superb glider, looking forward to next summer even more now.
The holiday to Lanzarote went well, we flew nearly every day and the Rio2 flew beautifully. It felt like a really well oiled machine that didn't need me to do anything. Pulling in speed as I came in to land did give me a hint of PIO as I turned but nothing to worry about. All the parts of the glider fit together beautifully and lots of people have commented on how lovely the glider looks. Thanks for making me a great looking and great performing flying machine!"
I had my first flights on the RIO 2 yesterday, which was the first day of my CP with John down at south downs hanggliding.
I must say despite my very raw skills I found the RIO 2 really easy to fly and in particular the take off and and landing behavior was a dream. The Rio 2 was getting some really admiring looks from the other students so I'm sure you'll see some more orders before long.
As soon as I have my CP out of the way I'll get myself up to the peaks
for a fly with the Avian team.
Thanks & Regards Jim...
Had 4 flights Monday, 1 on Wednesday, had to land to pack up and go to work, I was pig sick as the guys who took off after me got to 2600 feet in nice smooth air and had to force there wings down,I could only watch, and yesterday (Thursday) 1 flight, my longest flight of the year. so have not had much sleep this week and I am not looking forward to going back to flying the Gypsy. It takes off better, fly's better and lands better. have not had to use the spare upright and the wheels have not done anything more than keep the bottom bar off the ground. will call you soon.
attachment is vid some took of me taking off on Rio 2 at Llan, wind was strong. Plays best on window media player I believe. It automatically opened in that for me anyway.
I flew the glider today on Bradwell, I took off a little too fast, but flew nicely when relaxed. did top to bottom, not enough lift to keep up :(
Glider looks very nice :))