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Old Nov 04, 2012, 02:24 PM
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U2Milo's Avatar
United States, CA, Rocklin
Joined Sep 2012
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Pike Perfect or Explorer 3.5 or Supra?

I'm a rookie who will start TD competitions next year. I've done a couple ALES contests with my Radian. I want to buy a full house TD plane.

Local club members have offered up a Pike Perfect, an Xplorer 3.5 (2010 model), and a Supra. The price: $1600, $1200, and $1100 respectively.

All are in top notch condition, great owners. Members have been magnanimous and say all three are good planes, plenty of room to grow, etc.

So, for fun, I thought I'd throw it out here and see which one YOU would recommend and why.

Thanks!

Mitch
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Old Nov 04, 2012, 03:13 PM
Sherpa
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La Quinta, Ca.
Joined Sep 2003
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As your club members have said... all 3 planes are very good at TD. I would recommend if they will let you is to fly each one and see which plane fits your style of flying. I have flown the Pike and Xplorer. Each flies very nice but each also has advantages and disadvantages over the others. So it really depends on which plane you like best after test flying them. This question will have many answers but it all comes down to your choice.

Good luck.
Sherpa
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Old Nov 04, 2012, 03:44 PM
Dragons, Windmills. All Same.
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United States, IN, Indianapolis
Joined May 2002
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Excellent points made by Sherpa.

Of your three presented choices, Supra. Easy to fly and preforms very well, plus it's the cheapest.
I still miss my Supra #38 or so, from time to time.

Jared
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Old Nov 04, 2012, 05:18 PM
Mark LSF # 3792
United States, TX, Garland
Joined Nov 2008
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+1 on all the recommendations for TD flying. My primary is a Supra Comp Pro Carbon Lite. I aquired a Perfect SL from a club member as a back up when I lost my Supra Classic this last summer. I've not flown an X-ploder, but they do appear to be a good airframe.They all have their advantages and their disadvantages.

The key is what fits your flying style and your local conditions. Here in Texas we have wind most of the time. Just ask the people at the last TNT! So, ballasting and ground speed can make a difference.

Flying the Perfect for a few months now (learning the airplane), I like the legs and the low pilot load. I.E. easier to fly when at altitude. But, I think my Supra can work low lift more easily than the Perfect. Still today I pulled off multiple low level "saves" with it fun flying. Again it depends on your flying style and your local conditions.
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Old Nov 05, 2012, 10:32 PM
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United States, TX, Weatherford
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I've flown all 3 but have only owned the 3.5 Xplorer... and it's still my favorite. My current X is a 3.7 which I special ordered. It's the best model I've ever flown... according to my flying style, anyway.
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Old Nov 06, 2012, 06:00 AM
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United States, KS, De Soto
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Flew a Perfect to 2 Masters fly offs and 2 TNT wins so Im pretty sure its a good plane.
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Old Nov 06, 2012, 06:08 AM
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Given those choices and prices, its got to be the Supra.
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Old Nov 07, 2012, 05:53 PM
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Which Supra fuselage? If it is older supra fuselage, then go with Xplorer. Unfortunately don't know what servos are installed in each. Nothing is wrong with any of them. Xplorer might be the easiest to manage for pilot new to full house sailplanes. If you have someone that can explain the proper use of the camber settings and mixes on a Supra, that may be the most you can learn about using all the mixing possible on a full house sailplane. It's not that a Supra isn't easy to fly, but it takes a little understanding to fully utilize all it's capabilities.
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Old Nov 08, 2012, 11:36 AM
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mlachow, Can you define "older supra fuselage"? Is there a name change or was there a certain year it changed?

Thanks . . .
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Old Nov 08, 2012, 01:05 PM
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First Supra fuselages were round cross section and a nose cone. Current ones are a little longer and have a canopy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by U2Milo View Post
mlachow, Can you define "older supra fuselage"? Is there a name change or was there a certain year it changed?

Thanks . . .
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Old Nov 08, 2012, 02:46 PM
Dragons, Windmills. All Same.
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Plus the newest Supra's, Supra Pro, have the dropped nose too. Perhaps better for contest that do not allow nose skegs.
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Old Nov 08, 2012, 10:37 PM
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United States, VA, Norfolk
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Mitch, do you know if the center panel on the supra is carbon or glass? If it is carbon, I would go for the supra no matter which fuse it is. Just my two cents.
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Old Nov 10, 2012, 10:03 PM
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burke757,
Owner says Supra is all "carbon skin wing."

But it has the older round nose cone'd fuselage.

Supra's getting a lot of points. Maybe not the best looking . . .
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 07:41 AM
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[QUOTE=U2Milo;23237769]burke757,
Owner says Supra is all "carbon skin wing."

But it has the older round nose cone'd fuselage.

Supra's getting a lot of points. Maybe not the best looking . . .[/QUOTE

Oh, I always thought supra's were very cool looking, even the older ones...but then again, I really liked the mantis!

How comfortable are you with flying the bigger ships? This a big step up from a radian. It is good you have been flying contests with her to get you acclimated to that environment. You are bound to have a couple mishaps from mid-airs and hard landings. I think that gives points to flying supras and X1's. The price has dropped on those ships significantly in the last year or so, while the perfects still seem to command a lot of money. It is always good to have a backup so if you damage your #1 ship, you can switch to the other plane or that you can mix match parts to keep flying. It sucks when you drive a long way to a contest and spend all that money and then have to quit early because of a hard landing, etc. So whichever design you go with, try to stick with it so that you can learn the plane's capabilities and benefit from spare parts. All three of those designs will remain very competitive into the future. Truth is they all have very similar capabilities in a contest environment and a good pilot can win with any of them while beating the newest designs. The new designs' advantages over the old ships are very small and a smart, well practiced pilot can easily make up the minute differences. You still see supra's, perfects, and X1's at the top of the leader board all the time.

I would say the supra (and probably the perfect from what I have seen in contests but no direct experience) penetrate better than the X1. I think the X1 (and probably the perfect again) has much less flex on launch than a glass supra. Be sure to check the length of the joiner boxes on the X1 if you go that route. They have a tendency to be too long and can create problems (relatively easy fix though).

As far as differences between the supra pro and the supra, the pro sticks better on landing. Just put a skeg on the old one. I have them both and that is the only difference I can tell between the two. They fly exactly the same. My old one is actually lighter than the new one.

What is the Auw on these birds? Let me guess...65 for the carbon supra... 75 for the X1 and 79 for the perfect?

Randy
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 07:46 AM
<>< AKA W4BPS
USA, TN, Tullahoma
Joined Dec 2001
2,428 Posts
pick one

I have had at least 3 of each of the models you mention. You can't go wrong with any of them if your a little green on your skill levels.. Getting one of them and flying/practicing/sticking with it for at least a yr will go a long way toward enhancing your soaring skills/fun. My 2 cents. Brian
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