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Questions tagged [ultralight]

Questions regarding very lightweight powered aircraft.

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33 votes
4 answers
10k views

What is it exactly about flying a Flyboard across the English channel that made Zapata's thighs burn?

CNN's French inventor makes 'beautiful' flight across Channel on hoverboard reports that: "French inventor Franky Zapata has successfully crossed the Channel on a jet-powered hoverboard for the ...
uhoh's user avatar
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29 votes
3 answers
9k views

What is this object in the cockpit of an ultralight?

This is a tool (probably) in on an ultralight airplane. Initially I guessed that it is a tilting meter (to level between right and left), but seems it is not as it just a vertical tube filled up with ...
AirCraft Lover's user avatar
19 votes
5 answers
7k views

What control inputs to make if a wing falls off?

If a wing is severed due to structural damage or from a mid-air collision, what is the best control input to make? I would think opposite aileron and rudder, i.e. if right wing falls off, input full ...
Cloud's user avatar
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19 votes
2 answers
6k views

Could I use a powered parachute to fly around New York City?

NYC traffic is so horrendous that it would be pretty convenient to be able to take off with a powered parachute (PPC) from the top of a building or from a park and be able to fly above all the traffic ...
Murey Tasroc's user avatar
  • 1,172
18 votes
3 answers
6k views

What is the rationale behind "One engine - Two propellers" configuration?

I stumbled upon a very unusual Russian amateur built ultralight: One engine, two propellers configuration My first impression is that it adds another useless ...
menjaraz's user avatar
  • 2,435
17 votes
7 answers
8k views

What is wrong with a high-speed landing for an ultralight or GA aircraft?

Is it okay to land an ultralight or a general aviation plane at a speed higher than the recommended landing speed for such plane? Will there be any damage if the descent rate is very low?
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
16 votes
4 answers
4k views

What callsign should an ultralight use?

I plan to operate an ultralight aircraft domestically (in Oregon, USA) in uncontrolled airspace and will not venture out of the country nor will I come near the Canadian or Mexican borders. I have ...
Will B's user avatar
  • 263
16 votes
5 answers
17k views

What is meant by a "congested area of a city/town/settlement" in FAR 103?

FAR 103.15 states: No person may operate an ultralight vehicle over any congested area of a city, town, or settlement, or over any open air assembly of persons. I'm wondering what is meant by "...
Jae Carr's user avatar
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16 votes
3 answers
2k views

Does the weight of the battery count as "fuel" in a battery powered ultralight?

14 CFR 103 compliant powered aircraft should be less than 254 pounds (excluding fuel). Do the batteries account for fuel in case of electric engine?
menjaraz's user avatar
  • 2,435
14 votes
3 answers
2k views

What is a biplane propeller and how efficient is it?

Lazair ultralight series II used biplane props to absorb more power from the engine....so my question is what really is a biplane propeller and are they efficient in comparison to a four bladed prop?
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
12 votes
1 answer
5k views

Why does Canada recommend a minimum rate of climb for ultralights of 300 ft/min?

What is a safe minimum rate of climb for ultralights? I understand most ultralights climb at least 300-800 ft/min and in fact the Canadian ultralight specs recommend a minimum rate of climb of 300 ft/...
Fred's user avatar
  • 1,507
12 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why do tail dragging seaplanes not exist?

I am in the process of starting to build an ultralight that will be a tail dragger with floats, and in my conversations with the fellows I'm building it with, we've realized we've never seen a plane ...
Sezess's user avatar
  • 121
12 votes
1 answer
896 views

In the United States, are ultralights legally considered aircraft?

I sometimes hear it stated that in the United States, ultralight vehicles are not legally considered to be aircraft. For example, Wikipedia used to state: In the United States ultralights are ...
Tanner Swett's user avatar
  • 5,781
12 votes
5 answers
13k views

Which parts of class E airspace can an ultralight (part 103) fly in without prior ATC authorization?

I'd like to clarify a very specific statement from 14 CFR Part 103: 103.17 OPERATIONS IN CERTAIN AIRSPACE No Person may operate an ultralight vehicle within Class A, Class B, Class C, or Class D ...
rmaddy's user avatar
  • 313
11 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is there anything important to know about flying at ~9000ft for the first time?

When I did my NPPL training, there was a module on flying at minimum altitude, but nothing around high altitude flying, in fact, I've never flown over 3,500ft. This weekend, I intend to fly up to ...
Cloud's user avatar
  • 13.5k
11 votes
3 answers
4k views

Can you do your PPL solo time in an ultralight?

I've been thinking of getting an ultralight as a low cost way to pursue flying. And I've been wondering, when my instructor finally signs me off for a solo flight, am I allowed to do that in an ...
Jae Carr's user avatar
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11 votes
3 answers
7k views

How can a hang glider take off from flat ground?

There are a number of different ways of taking off with a powerless hang glider, the most commonly used being either running down a hill or jumping off a cliff/platform. This is how I learned to hang ...
Gwen's user avatar
  • 213
10 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is careless or reckless operation of an ultralight illegal?

Is flying an ultralight in a careless or reckless manner illegal?
Someone's user avatar
  • 7,097
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

Why do gliders have bungee cords in the control systems and what do they do? Are they on all control surfaces? What about ultralights?

Why do gliders have bungee cords in the control systems and what do they do? Are they on all control surfaces? Why don't ultralights have them?
Fred's user avatar
  • 1,507
10 votes
2 answers
945 views

What is the primary reason that the non-towered airports ACV, TVL, SGU, BIH, and SIT/PASI have E4 extensions to E2 airspace?

NOTE-- this question is not about why it was desired to protect the airspace that ended up within the E4 "extensions". Rather, this question is about why that was done by designating that ...
quiet flyer's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
3k views

Did the twin engined Lazair ultralight have a throttle for each engine?

Did the twin engined Lazair ultralight have a throttle for each engine? I know larger aircraft have dual throttles. What about the smaller aircraft like ultralights? It would be so much easier just ...
Fred's user avatar
  • 1,507
9 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why do fabric skin constructions not show up much in larger single engine piston aircraft?

I noticed that many ultra-lights use fabric skin but are not seen much in GA aircraft, especially compared to carbon fiber? Many skin makers advertise that it can handle that sort of weight. Is this ...
David's user avatar
  • 1,349
9 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why is the tail group of virtually every airplane swept instead of straight?

Even low performance airplanes like ultralights have their tail group (vertical and horizontal stabilizer with rudder and elevator) swept backwards knowing fully well that a straight tail group will ...
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
9 votes
1 answer
545 views

What is the make and the model of this seaplane?

What is the model of this seaplane?
Charlez Kwan Tsz Shun's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
11k views

Is an ultralight aircraft allowed to fly near Class B airspace?

May an ultralight vehicle operating under FAR part 103 operate within Class G and E airspace while within the mode C veil surrounding a Class B airport? Quoting directly from Title 14 CFR 91.1 ...
JimE's user avatar
  • 91
8 votes
3 answers
2k views

How can filling a tube with foam help prevent buckling?

How can filling the empennage (aluminium tube) with Styrofoam stiffen it to avoid buckling as seen in Whingding ultralight?
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
8 votes
2 answers
8k views

What does "clear of clouds" mean in FAA FAR part 103?

In FAR part 103 when they are talking about visibility requirements for flying an ultralight, sometimes instead of giving exact distances, they will just say "clear of clouds". For example: ...
Jae Carr's user avatar
  • 24.2k
8 votes
1 answer
547 views

May a US citizen fly a US ultralight into Canada?

May a US citizen (no pilot license) fly a US ultralight into Canada or any other country? Due to a special exemption, Canadian pilots may fly a basic ultralight (registered but no certificate of ...
Fred's user avatar
  • 1,243
7 votes
4 answers
3k views

Is a VW Beetle engine a good choice for a light two-seat aircraft build? [duplicate]

What do you think of an air cooled Volkswagen engine for building a light two-seat airplane? This is probably the only engine I can get my hands on that needs no reduction gear and has enough HP. ...
Aerofanatic's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
3k views

How does the FAA define fuel capacity for ultralights?

Ultralights under FAR 103 are regulated to a capacity of 5 gallons. I'm wondering how exactly fuel capacity is defined, does it include fuel in the lines, and in the carburetor bowl or elsewhere or ...
Nile River's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
3k views

What are the disadvantages of having vortex generators?

I know the advantages of vortex generators (VGs): lower stall speed, lower landing and takeoff speed according to www.stolspeed.com. So what are the major reasons most GA planes and low speed ...
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
7 votes
3 answers
1k views

How do I obtain permission to fly in surface class E airspace under FAR-103?

I'm a paramotor pilot operating under FAR 103, and I'm trying to determine who I need to ask for permission to fly in class E airspace that extends to the surface and is designated for an airport. For ...
sndsgd's user avatar
  • 81
7 votes
1 answer
563 views

Is there a way for an ultralight or powered glider to smoothly enter a jet stream?

Once inside the jet stream altitude 7-15 km is it all that turbulent or is there a way to enter it smoothly for an ultralight plane or a powered glider? More info
user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
3k views

What are the disadvantages of using just rudder to roll an airplane?

Ultralights with slight dihedral will roll and yaw on rudder input (e.g the Bloop 3, Maxair Hummer) so some don't have ailerons for the sake of simplicity. Is this kind of control input advisable, or ...
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
6 votes
4 answers
2k views

Why does the Ikarus C42 pitch down when stalled?

Apparently, the C42 nose pitches down shortly after stall, like in this video. I know part of the video might be pilot input to recover from the stall, but I've read on various flying forums that this ...
Cloud's user avatar
  • 13.5k
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is this extension/device on top of the wing of this ultralight?

This a shot of the Aero Synergie Papango ultralight, the succesor of the Aero Synergie J300 Joker. The wings are more elaborate compared to its predecessor's and include on their top two additional ...
menjaraz's user avatar
  • 2,435
6 votes
2 answers
4k views

What is the purpose of drag and anti drag wires?

What are drag and anti drag wires,and how important are they to the performance and strength of the wings of an airplane?
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
6 votes
3 answers
665 views

Would FAR 91.227, or any other regulation, forbid use of ADS-B-out in an unregistered ultralight?

In the US, would FAR 91.227, or any other regulation or law, forbid use of ADS-B-out in an unregistered ultralight? Could the N-number field simply be left blank, without violating any regulation or ...
quiet flyer's user avatar
  • 22.7k
6 votes
1 answer
2k views

How does stall risk in paramotors differ from that of conventional fixed-wing aircraft?

I happened to be walking past a small outdoor fair today, and saw someone flying a paramotor. The craft took off and started a steep ascending turn losing speed rapidly, seemed almost to come to a ...
dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is a flying fuselage aircraft (FFA)?

I'm fond of ultralight flying and stumbled over the SF-1 Archon site. Specifications for more details. I found it very appealing as an ultralight and feel like flying it even though i don't have any ...
menjaraz's user avatar
  • 2,435
6 votes
1 answer
282 views

What are these autonomous, shape-shifting indoor neutral-density craft I read about?

This may be on the edge of off-topic. I am trying to read more about a technology where generally autonomous (though could be sent commands), neutral-buoyancy craft were navigating indoors, in large ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 5,934
6 votes
1 answer
3k views

What accident or safety data is available for ultralight aircraft?

Is there any source of reliable accident or safety data available on ultralight vehicles (FAA Part 103 or similar)? I'm interested in comparing them to other aircraft types.
William's user avatar
  • 255
5 votes
2 answers
4k views

Do I need to use an airfield to take off or land a powered paraglider?

Most aircraft require a runway to take off and land, however powered paragliders simply attach to the pilot's back, requiring the pilot to run a few metres to take off. The landing distance is also ...
user60684's user avatar
  • 847
5 votes
2 answers
380 views

Is it safe to fly ultralights at 6-7 weeks pregnancy?

Are there regulations or official guidance regarding pregnant women flying ultralight aircraft at 6-7 weeks pregnancy (amenorrhea weeks)?
Kheldar's user avatar
  • 153
5 votes
3 answers
7k views

Can I use motorcycle engine in aircraft [duplicate]

I am trying to build an Aircraft, The weight of the Airplane will be around 40 Kg with engine and 8 liters of fuel and with me the total weight will be around 90 to 100 kg and I want to use a ...
Salman Sukhera's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
270 views

Positions of drag wires in a bay

Take a good look at the small dots • on the bays of this two spar wing. My question is: Are the drag and anti drag wire as seen in bay 1 supposed to connect to the root of the compression tube Or ...
David Teahay's user avatar
  • 2,885
5 votes
1 answer
583 views

What makes a weight-controlled microlight tumble, and can it recover?

As shown in this video, what causes a weight-controlled microlight to tumble, and is it possible to stop it from tumbling once it starts?
flyingfisch's user avatar
  • 14.6k
5 votes
1 answer
751 views

What classifies as an ultralight vehicle?

I am looking into the possibly of getting my pilots license and I noticed that it says you don't need a license for "ultralight vehicles". What are ultralight vehicles? I am located in the USA, ...
W.Richardson's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
188 views

Do UL aircraft complying with LTF-UL need to copy an existing design pattern?

With my current pipe dream being to get physically involved in aviation instead of only theoretically, I looked into the regulations for ultralight planes in Germany. On multiple occasions in the ...
GittingGud's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
3k views

How strong would a servo motor need to be to power the control surfaces of a fixed wing ultralight aircraft?

I'm looking to build an ultralight aircraft. The video above shows a good example of how one is controlled with wires or with metal fulcrums/levers, but I am ...
TrapAlcubierreDrive's user avatar