In preparation of the upcoming flying season, I've been talking to lots of last year's students and helping them make decisions into getting their own gear to continue on with their flying. It's not an easy process and of course there are many routes to go and may opinions to consider. There is a healthy discussion going on right now on the OzReport that you should find interesting...it was initiated by a new hang gliding student trying to figure out their first glider to fly.
There are many interesting comments from some very respected individuals in our sport...a worthwhile read. The original poster came up with a great summary of some key articles posted form WillsWing....they are related to new glider selection and some other basic information about hang gliding. All of the articles can be found on WillsWing Articles page but below is a summary he provided of those links:
A Brief History Of Hang Gliding, Paragliding, and Wills Wing by Mike Meier
The history of hang gliding - which is the history of flight itself - from Lilienthal up to modern times. Includes the history of Wills Wing and recent developments in the sport, like paragliding.
Aerobatics in Hang Gliders: Understanding Operating Limitations by Mike Meier
A discussion of the concept of "operating limitations" as they apply to hang gliders, how such limitations are determined, how hang gliders are tested, and recommendations concerning performing aerobatic maneuvers with hang gliders.
Controlling Roll/Yaw Oscillations on Flex Wing Hang Gliders by Mike Meier
Discussion of causes and remedies for a common flying situation.
Hang Glider Design and Performance by Paul Dees
This article is available only as a PDF file.Originally presented and published at the 10th AIAA Aviation Technology, Integration, and Operations (ATIO) Conference, 13 - 15 September 2010, Fort Worth, Texas.
Hang Glider Placard Specifications by Wills Wing Support
Hook-in weight ranges, operating limitations, as listed on our hang glider placards, for both current and non-current Wills Wing hang gliders. (Imperial and Metric units)
How To Choose Your First Glider by Mike Meier
An Overview of the Decisions That Need to be Considered When Choosing One's First Glider
How To Get The Right Hang Height by Mike Meier
Discussion of hang height and hang angle with instructions for finding your desired hang height and properly specifying and ordering a custom hang loop. Notes on mains length with respect to WW Standard, DHV Standard, and Rotor harnesses.
Is This The Right Glider For Me? by Mike Meier
An overview of our hang glider line with short descriptions of each model and the types of pilots, flight parameters and conditions for which they are intended
Lessons Learned – Equipment Maintenance by Mike Meier
Short article stressing the importance of inspection and maintenance of aircraft, even something as simple and reliable as a Wills Wing hang glider. Makes particular reference to preflighting 1/8" and 3/32" cables
Parachute and Harness Care by Rob Kells
A comprehensive overview of hang glider and paraglider reserve parachute care and harness maintenance, based on Rob's outline for his popular seminars on the subject
Reflex Bridle Adjustment and Maintaining Pitch Stability by Mike Meier
Reflex Bridles (luff lines) are an integral part of the stability systems of kingposted hang gliders. These systems don't generally require tuning or maintenance, but over the long term the effects of age and UV exposure on the sail can render the bridles ineffective unless adjusted. This article describes the problem, which applies to virtually all kingposted gliders (at least those made by Wills wing), and tells how to inspect and adjust the reflex bridles so that they can perform the intended purpose if neededSee also:
Pitch Stability & Center of Mass Location by Mike Meier
This article appeared in the December 1997 issue of Hang Gliding magazine as a sidebar to the article above