Paramotor Review: 2010 Parajet
Flown 05/27/2010, Reviewed Nov 30, 2010, Photos by Jeff Goin
Sorry this review took so long, hopefully I'll
get another flight on the machine to update my impressions. I voice
recorded some notes after the flight but they're very limited.
Parajet continues to innovate with their newest rotary engine
machine, the Cyclone 160. The unit I flew at Beach blast had literally
just arrived from England and, sadly, was damaged in shipping.
But British competition pilot Dean Eldridge worked enough magic to mend
it. Good thing,
too, since I was thrilled to take it for a spin.
Parajet's sizes and names can be a bit confusing. There are three cage
sizes, Micro (small), Compact (medium) and Macro (large). There are two
engines, the single-cylinder 22 hp, 172 cc Volution, which is descended
from the DK, and the Rotron which comes as a 160 cc 25 hp or 294 cc 40
hp rotary. John Ericson of ParajetUSA, the machine's US importer, gave
me the details.
My flights were on an 80°F day with 12 mph worth of wind, making ground handling and launch a breeze. I was on my 22 meter Spice wing.
Weight: It's about like a Black Devil machine. I didn't have a scale but it
was quite manageable for my 145
Harness & Suspension: The harness was comfy and had sufficient
adjustments. It's a low hook-in style with riser offsets on both sides
to help reduce torque. It's quite tilted back in its normal
configuration but, by moving the hook-ins aft, you can reduce the lean
back from its 20 to 25 degrees to maybe 15.
Starting (-): Electric start. Gotta love the push of a button.
Ground Handling & Kiting (-): Similar to other low hook-in
machines. Tends to pull you back a bit as the wing lifts which is common on
ANY machine that is tilted back in flight (even high hook-in machines). Not
uncomfortable if done for short periods as you would expect for motor
Launch (-): Standard. Nothing noted.
Climbout (-): No problem getting into the seat.
Flight (-): Quite comfy.
Weight Shift (-) Very good as you would expect from a machine
with articulating arms but does have some fore/aft tilt with power
changes. Might be better, I suspect, if the frame hinge point was higher
and the arms more of a goose neck shape.
For the power it's well managed. They use two riser offsets to less then
affect of offset thrust. Climbout at full power was not a problem.
Thrust (-): Very good, probably equivalent to a strong Black Devil
172 with large diameter prop and a bit stronger than the normal black
devil. We'll have to weight for thrust tests.
I didn't get to test fuel burn.
VERY SMOOTH. This was among the top 2 smoothest machines I've flown to date, essentially tied with
a Pollini that I flew earlier. You'll LOVE this.
Sound (-): Average.
Safety (-): The cage is quite rigid but there are large openings
where it might be possible to get an errant hand or brake toggle
through. This would be more likely for a pilot getting into his seat or
if the machine was adjusted to be hanging more vertical.
Frame and cage strength is high, above average due to the welded
cage, and so there should be somewhat less likelihood of having the prop
hit the cage in a fall.
It's extremely well-built with a welded aluminum frame and cage. Nice
fit and finish--this is among the best looking machines out there. There
is no netting, instead, rigid tubes serve as the cage.
Reparability/Maintenance (-): You'll need an aluminum welder for repairs
but it should be straightforward. It is water cooled so there is always
the possibility of extra maintenance items but it's also possible that
the engine runs at cooler, more consistent temperatures, and has fewer
Transport (-): The cage comes apart easily leaving only the
center frame piece which is more compact than most. It should be pretty easy to ship that part with a
good-sized box. Depending on your chosen cage size it should be easy to
transport even in a minivan or car trunk.
Cost: Please visit
www.ParajetUSA.com for cost information.
Powerful, very smooth and comfortable -- good for an experienced flyer or someone who
doesn't mind learning on a low hook-in articulating arm machine.