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After months of waiting, it was time to collect my new Wills Wing U2. The collection point was Sennen Cove in Cornwall where'd I'd planned to meet Graham Phipps of Cloud9 Hang Gliding, Paragliding and Paramotoring. Despite the epic 300 mile drive I was very excited but due to a ligament strain, I wasn't going to fly.
I'd never been to Sennen Cove before, but I have to say what a beautiful site - even though it was almost as far West as you could drive (Land's End was just around the corner!), it was worth the drive just for the view!
I first spotted Phippsy above all the holiday makers soaring his paraglider. He must have spotted me as he floated down and top landed ready to greet me. After saying hello to Graham and his wife (both making me feel exceptionally welcome), my glider was removed from the roof of Phippsy's car ready to be rigged. Upon opening the glider bag we discovered it was a new Sport 2 (for another customer), so it was back to the car to recover the correct glider.
Phippsy showed me how to rig the glider, demonstrating the best way of putting in the curved tip wands and recommending that I mark the left and right ones so I consistently use the same tip wands on the same side. Apparently they develop small stress cracks over a period of time and provided you insert the same tip wand on the same side and stress it in the same direction, they don't break. A bit of green and red insulation tape will be needed!
Once the glider was rigged I checked it over then Graham and I moved it to the front of the hill where I let it float above my head. Wow, this glider felt good and I must admit I was very tempted to go for it, but there was no top landing available (currently full of cars) and the bottom landing (the beach), was rammed full of holiday makers! I guess I'd have to wait a couple of weeks before my first flight!
After that moment of excitement, it was back to the shelter of a bush where Graham showed me how to de-rig the glider on the A-frame. After stowing it back in the bag, I placed it on my car roof ready for the long drive home. The U2 160 is significantly shorter than my Sting 3:168 and fitted on the roof of my car with very little overhang at the front and back.
After settling up with Graham, it was time to head back. After a slight detour via Graham's abode to collect the U2 manual and a few additional bits, most notably a Wills Wing cap (don't know why, but I was well chuffed with that), I hit the road and returned to West Sussex.
|Date||23 Aug 2014|
|Comments||A long trip to Sennen Cove to meet Graham Phipps and to collect my new U2 160!|