Slopeflying.com's Slope Mania I DVD Review - RC Groups

Slopeflying.com's Slope Mania I DVD Review

George Voss takes a close look at this exciting new sloping video from Europe.

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Introduction


Venue:Europe
Media:High Quality DVR
Format:DVD from Digital and Analog Master
Packaging:Standard DVD Case w/ Color Artwork
Regions:All
Runtime:Approx. 45 minutes
Price:$22 + ship
Available From:Slopeflying.com

Every once and a while something new, exciting and unexpected comes our way. This is exactly how this review began. I was contacted by the manufacturer/distributor, Raphael Jegen, and was asked if I was interested in writing a review of his first commercial endeavor, Slope Mania 1. Needless to say I was honored and privileged to get the opportunity to review this cutting edge DVD.

One of the more exciting things about this DVD is that it doesn’t include any US flying sights. That’s right, all of the flying sights are in Europe, which gives those of us in the US a chance to see how other parts of the world enjoy slope soaring. Compared to other slope soaring videos I’ve reviewed, this DVD is more “hard edged”, with strong hip-hop and rock music tastefully laid over the excellent soaring footage. The opening score, “Let Me Entertain You” sets the pace for this exciting journey of hard-core slope soaring. Let’s get into it!

This DVD uses title changes instead of chapters to separate material. This is different than what is normally seen in a US-developed DVD, but it doesn’t affect how the material is presented. Title one contains the flying and video credits and the previously mentioned track, “Let Me Entertain You” and set’s the pace for this high-energy DVD.

DG800

  • Scale 1/3
  • Wingspan: 6 meter
  • Length: 2.21 meter
  • Weight: ~12kg
  • Full-Composite (Wings CFK, Fuselage GKF/AFK)
  • Distributor: www.thommys.com

Title two's highlights continue with the gorgeous 6M DG800 from both an onboard camera and land-based shots. The onboard footage shows some moiré, but overall the footage is excellent. If you have a tendency to get airsick, you might want to step away from the monitor at the 2 minute mark as the DG800 gets put through it’s paces with loops, rolls, high-speed dives and some thrilling soaring. The flyer, H.G. Stegenthaler, is very smooth and can really wring out a sailplane! Having the Swiss Alps as a background doesn’t hurt either.

"Elita"

  • F3F/Slope/DS-plane
  • Wingspan: 2.85 meter
  • Weight: ~2.3kg (empty) - 3.7kg (fully loaded)
  • Full-Composite CFK/AFK
  • Distributor: www.hangflug.ch / www.slopeflying.com

Title three is listed as Monte Lema 2003 and shows an assortment of sailplanes from scale gliders angelically roaming the sky to F3F machines ripping up the air, to DLG machines being launched into the mountain air at sunset. Mount Lema, 1624 meters (5413’) in altitude, is the most panoramic and majestic summit of Italian Switzerland. It’s natural green terrace overlooks the Southern valleys of Ticino, the Lake of Lugano, the Valleys of Luino and of Lake Maggiore. The featured ship in title three is the Elita. Spanning 2.85M (114”) and ship is standard, carbon-fiber/fiberglass construction. The closing minutes of this title include some quick cuts from shot to shot creating an interesting effect.

Title four features an on-board camera on an Elita F3F slope racer along with additional land-based shots. Again the soaring sites are drop-dead gorgeous. Some high-speed DS flying is included, but no speeds are given. The flying and the scenery are awe-inspiring.

Title five is Monte Lema 04. This is the first non-sunny day shown in the awesome Alpine mountains. Snow covers 80% of the ground and it just looks downright cold. This doesn’t stop a number of different pilots from tearing up the sky. The air appears softer than previous sections but that doesn't diminish the show by any means. The rock music track provides an edge not normally utilized in a slope soaring DVD.

Foamie-Canyoning is the next title, which features some flying wing foamies littering the sides of a mountain rest stop. The “Free Styler” sound track is an excellent pick for the flying shown. Raphael captures some foamies trying to knock a bottle, which is placed right on the edge of the slope, off by hitting it with the foamy. I’ve done something similar and it’s totally hilarious. Raphael matches DVD footage with the music creating an awesome audio-visual experience. It’s obvious the flyers are having a great time as the planes bounce off of each other and the rocks on the face of the cliff. This is some of the funniest footage on the DVD, a real head-turner!

Hahnenmoos 2002 follows, with some light slope lift combined with thermal flying. Scale planes graciously cruise the hills and valleys looking for rising air. Again, outstanding flying with incredible locations make for an awesome visual experience. Mixed in with the scale ships are F3F models working the lift, doing high-speed aerobatics and generally doing what they do best, turning and burning!

A Shark XL and Elton John’s “Circle of Life” are the high spots of chapter eight. The Shark XL is an oversize F3F slope racer. Due to it’s size, it doesn’t look like it’s going that fast, but it is. Watching this beautiful yellow sailplane against the azure blue skies is true eye-candy for the viewer. Wait until the last minute or so of this title to see the Shark performing some serious DS and then come slowly and gracefully in for a slow motion landing, incredible.

Europeans typically spend more money on their hobby than Americans do. They also seem to like larger scale planes. You’ll certainly get that impression watching title nine. Here, some of the largest and most beautiful scale planes take to the Hahnenmoos Pass skies. The rugged, rocky cliffs accented by giant scale soaring machines are a sight to see. Again, there are no slouches for pilots or sailplanes. These are truly some of the best looking and flying planes and pilots shown in this DVD.

Title 10 is pure F3F speed! High speed DS and front side flying fill the screen while pilots put these large, strong sailplanes through their paces! The flying footage is excellent and the video effects are outstanding.

Downloads

Conclusion

If this was Raphael's second, third or even tenth effort, it would be considered entertaining. But being a first effort, well, let's just say we have a new video master among us! Slope Mania 1 is an outstanding DVD and will make an excellent intro to a new DVD collection, or an excellent addition to an existing one. DVD's are available direct from http://www.slopeflying.com/ for $22 + shipping. Also available from Raphael are the Elita F3F and Espada F3B ships. These are cutting edge F3F and F3B designs.

Thread Tools
Jul 16, 2005, 09:27 AM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
Good job on the article, but it really needs a careful proofreading. Other than that, good job--it's a great video.

Steve
Jul 16, 2005, 10:26 AM
Registered User
gavoss's Avatar
I just re-read the text and I did find the "Italian Switzerland", which should obviously be the "Italian Alps". Thanks for the comments. gv
Nov 25, 2005, 11:48 AM
Retired Slope Racer
nwoods's Avatar
Okay...I gotta wonder, 240 mph in a 1000 meter dive with an Elita?
Mar 22, 2006, 05:04 PM
more kW, more problems
trashmanf's Avatar
who can I email about this - I ordered the DVD and paid for it over three MONTHS ago and haven't recieved the DVD, or gotten any word from the company on my many many emails to them, both through their online email software and their email address (mail@hangflug.ch).

I am going to pursue fraud charges through paypal if I am not contacted within a week! Has anyone else had problems trying to get this DVD?

Fletcher


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