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Aug 18, 2018, 05:32 PM
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Kostugrlu's Avatar
New Product

MAIA from Braivo Composites


Hello everyone!

I was intrigued by this, not very well know DLG, so I've decided to buy it and test it. I have been flying DLGs since 2016 and I own two other, more mainstream DLGs of the latest generation, besides this one. I would describe myself as an intermediate level F3K enthusiast - my launches are around 50-55m and I have just started competing. I have not received this kit for free, and the following review is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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Maia is produced by Braivo Composites in Czech Republic.

First, let’s take a look at the specs:

Wingspan: 1498mm
Length: 1050mm
Wign Area: 20,9dm2
Airfoil: Synergy
Weight: 230(light) - 280(strong)
Design: Jano Belan

Larger wing area (>20dm2) was the main reason next to the airfoil why I have chosen this glider. Even though it has a relatively large AUW for the standard version 250-270 (mine came 270g since all of the weights of the components were on the top of the range) it has a very good wing loading of around 12 g/dm2.

Kit content:
Wing, horizontal stab, fuselage with pre-glued vertical stab and the bag of accessories..

screen shot software
Note that the ballast set doesn’t come with the standard kit but can be bought from Braivo Composites.



The only non-standard thing here is the fact that fuse and vertical stabs are pre/glued (in my opinion a big bonus, but more on that later)

Standard weights of the components:
Wing: 115-125g for the standard version
Fuselage with Stab: 50g
Horizontal Stab: horizontal stab: 6.5g
Peg: 2.5 g

Accessories



Content of the accessories bag: throwing T peg, servo frames, servo horns, stell wire for tail springs, 1,2mm wire for the top drive, servo covers, ballast tube (mine is 3d printed, Ivo has stated that the new kits will come with an improved composite tube) and string for pull-spring system.

Closer look of the T-peg


Maia comes with 3d printed PLA servo holders for KST x08 servos with horizontal mounting tabs.


This servo holder also comes with the ballast holder integrated. I really like how long this holder is, so you can really fine-tune your setup according to the current weather conditions.


Ballast set can be bought separately from Braivo composites. Weights are: 31, 46 and 62g.


The Wing


First of all, the quality of the build is outstanding - the wing is perfectly shiny and smooth and very, very strong. Ivo, producer of Maia was very open to accepting my color scheme proposal - so I got this beautiful wing.

It is a full core Rohacel wing.






The wing comes with gap seal already applied.

It comes with precut servo holes and precut slots for flaperon horns.

A neat feature is also a precut hole for the T peg!

The wing doesn't come with a pre-molded flaperon gap - that seems to be featured in the last generation of DLG-s, and is the only downside I can find..




Even the channel for the top drive is pre-drilled!




Pretty standard top drive arrangement. I wasn’t using 3d printed servo holders since I already had some KSTs without the lugs.

I will use those on my next build, MAIA light.


Servo wires are taken out of the wing and then guided into the fuselage. You have to connect it after the wing is assembled.



Fuselage and tail



The fuselage is quite spacious - It can accommodate 4in pod easily. I have decided to go for standard top-drive though.


Unlike the most of the designs on the market today, Maia’s wing is bolted to the fuselage using three M3 screws. Note the pre-cut wing servo wire hole!








The vertical tail comes factory glued and the hole for the horizontal tail horn is already drilled.







Horizontal and vertical stab both have the gap seal already applied.



Hinge gap is not pre-molded though.

Flying


I only have two flying sessions with MAIA.

One the first occasion there was a 3m/s wind and on the first high launch( that was done after two javelin launches to trim the plane) I made 2 minutes flight. I was really impressed by how easy it is to set up this plane and how smooth it flies. I only had 10 launches that evening because it was soon dark.

On the second occasion, the day after, the wind was 6-7 m/s and I flew it fully blasted. This time I was blown away by how well MAIA cuts through the air. Launches were straight, quiet and high and I didn't have a flight below 2 mins. Usually, I wouldn't consider this much wind as pleasant to fly DLG (my other 2 DLGs are 230ish grams AUW and I have max ballast of 65g) but with MAIA it was really fun to fly even in strong wind like this.





Taking a picture while flying in windy conditions is not easy

I am looking forward to having a proper no-wind day to optimize the flight modes and test it without the ballast.

Conclusion

Pros:

- Super awesome build quality - on par with the top manufacturers
- Spacious fuselage
- Synergy airfoil
- Readily available well-engineered ballast system
- Available wing bags
- Great level of precut/preassembled things - which means less work for a builder and less chance to make a mistake (like glueing the stab not perfectly vertical, etc) - this for me is the biggest pros of this kit - for an intermediate or beginner it is very easy to put together kit and all the critical things are already pre done in the factory ( vertical stab glued in, T blade hole precut) so there is actually no sanding of carbon required. This makes this a great “kitchen table” kit.. It is very clean to put it together! For me it is a big bonus if I don't have to deal with carbon dust in my apartment!
- Fast build! Put in the servos in the wing and fuse, glue in the control horns and tail springs, thread through the control strings, glue in the T-peg and you are ready to fly!
-Price! At 540 EUR this is a great bang for the buck IMHO!

Cons:

- Hinge gap is not pre-molded
- The fuselage is designed for 4-in-pod and if the topdrive is used than the servo wire is loose in the fuselage - this is not a big problem, it just means that the pilot has to plug the connector after the wing is attached

Overall I think it is a great kit that I would recommend even to a beginner due to a high level of pre-assembly done at Braivo Composites... It is a very easy, foolproof build!

Last but not least - it flies as good as it looks! I am not a good enough pilot to get all 1000s but Ivo, the producer has won some competitions with his MAIA..





more flight reports will follow Thanks for reading!

kostugrlu
Last edited by Kostugrlu; Aug 18, 2018 at 05:55 PM.
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Aug 18, 2018, 05:56 PM
Registered User
I have purchased two of Ivoís other ships-the Bravo about two years ago.

The quality of the build was beautiful- my Bravos were my favorite ships and I learned a lot flying them. Great ships !

I saw the Maia on his Facebook page - and he posted your plane with that really nice color scheme,

I would highly recommend any of his offerings - he builds a really neat clean ship and they fly awesome with a very reasonable price- dealing with him ( Iím in the USA ) was always a pleasure with no issues.

The Maia looks like a really nice ship and I see that Ivo has been doing really well with it.

Thanks for the flight report !

I may have to try one out!

Pictured below are my Bravoís from Ivo ( Braivo models)

Jack G.
Aug 18, 2018, 06:11 PM
G_T
G_T
Registered User
You might find with the Synergy foils the wing actually performs better without the gap being sealed. I wouldn't bother doing it.

Gerald
Aug 19, 2018, 02:53 AM
Registered User
Kostugrlu's Avatar
Hi G_T,

Thanks for the input, I will ask Ivo to send me Maia light without the gap seals so I can test the effect.

Btw, thanks for designing such a great airfoils!
Aug 19, 2018, 03:02 AM
Registered User
Kostugrlu's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackspt28
I have purchased two of Ivoís other ships-the Bravo about two years ago.

The quality of the build was beautiful- my Bravos were my favorite ships and I learned a lot flying them. Great ships !

I saw the Maia on his Facebook page - and he posted your plane with that really nice color scheme,

I would highly recommend any of his offerings - he builds a really neat clean ship and they fly awesome with a very reasonable price- dealing with him ( Iím in the USA ) was always a pleasure with no issues.

The Maia looks like a really nice ship and I see that Ivo has been doing really well with it.

Thanks for the flight report !

I may have to try one out!

Pictured below are my Bravoís from Ivo ( Braivo models)

Jack G.
Hi Jack,

I was looking to pick up one of the Bravos after I've seen Pierre's review.. when I told Ivo that I will mostly fly in 3+ m/s wind he advised me to try Maia instead because of the better penetration. It makes sense since Bravo has AG series and Maia has synergy..
Aug 19, 2018, 11:33 AM
G_T
G_T
Registered User
Generally Synergy can move very fast and flat if you lean on the elevator enough in speed mode. AG just dives in same situation.

I had a lot more typed but the browser ate it.

I should qualify my gap seal statement. If Synergy wings are solid core and the gap is not large - comparable to what would be made on a good bagged wing - then I'd not bother sealing it. If it is hollow molded and has a larger cavity there, then it would have to be tested. I have no solid data in that case. Usually hollow molded wings are better sealed as the cavity is too big otherwise. Solid core though it depends on the airfoil family. I have no solid feedback for Synergy hollow molded to predict which way that case should be set up. But IIRC the test models Tom made were hollow molded and I do not think we had gap seals on them and they worked well. But it has been a few years and I could be wrong about the seals. IIRC you didn't want to have a seal on only one wing though! If I recall from conversations it would roll on launch a bit. Tom's wings in general were usually sealed. Synergy is a bit of a special case as it was designed around the assumption of turbulators but not to require them. The hingeline is in about the right spot for the turbulator for much of the span so if it works as such, it essentially works as designed. The outer quarter of the wing should benefit from the turbulator sweeping forwards from the hingeline though not to as far forward as is usually done with turbulators by the time it gets to the tips. However testing by a few pilots indicates it probably doesn't make much difference. I haven't performed the tests myself and I'm a bit more sensitive on the sticks to that sort of thing than most. But heck I don't even have a flying field any more so no testing anything here.

Gerald
Aug 31, 2018, 01:10 AM
Registered User
Beautiful work of Braivo Composites! Thank you!

I agree with Gerald, Synergy can by very fast but higher elevator inputs are needed.

Just for clarification... there is Synergy1 used. But modified for smaller wing area in compare to Gerald's original design.


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