2011 Parajet Volution 2 Macro Paramotor Review

Flown 02/01/2011, written 03/04/2011, Photos courtesy

Parajet has released another round of innovation with their newest models. Macro describes the middle cage size and Volution 2 describes their smaller, non-radial engine. Several improvements are big, namely removing nearly 14 pounds from the motor's weight. A throttle improvement is also surprisingly appreciated given that their previous version was comfortable. For safety's sake, they've added a tight mesh net feels like it would pass the hand test. Nice going!

I flew my 150 pounds of suited self on a 70°F day at an elevation of about 1000' using on my 18 meter Pluto 2. This was at Mo Sheldon's Flying Circus. This model had a 3-blade carbon-fiber prop.

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Weight: It felt as I would expect and was well-balanced. I didn't get a chance to weigh it which is too bad, I had big intentions of weighing machines but, between filming, talking, trying stuff out and being sick, it just didn't happen. Hopefully the manufacturers are being honest about weights and I encourage pilots who buy machines to weigh them without fuel but otherwise ready to fly and report your results.

The new lightweight engine is called the XT172.

Harness & Suspension: Comfy and sufficiently adjustable. We changed the hook-in point to be farther aft for my lighter weight.

Starting (-): My next machine will have electric start if it's available. And I LOVE the new throttle--more on that later. The stop button and start button are reachable with one hand. That seems like a small deal but, when you're doing a touch and go, it's nice. They've made the start button just hard enough to reach that it would not likely be hit accidentally, but still off the master switch when done flying.

Ground Handling & Kiting (-): Nothing noted—it's a low hook-in style so having the risers down low is a mixed blessing but, as long as you're used to it, you'll feel right at home.

Launch (-): Pretty typical. I hope I'm not getting insensitive to the minor differences between machines but it seems like behavior is getting pretty predictable as long as everything is adjusted properly. If you're being scooped off your feet early, check the harness adjustment.

Got into the seat easily enough with one hand pushing on the aft seatboard to get it fully under center.

Power forwards would be easy given the smooth cage rim.

Climbout (-): Good. Typical for the motor size.

Flight (-): There is some fore/aft tilt in response to thrust as you would expect from this style of low hook-in. It's much less once you're situated in the seat, enough that you would not likely notice it after a couple hours of flying.

I loved the throttle! It's among the most comfortable that I've used with great ergonomics and well placed buttons. One button, I can't remember which, could be angled a bit more to be easier to reach but it's still top notch.

Weight Shift (-) Excellent. At least 6 inches.

Torque (-): Well managed, especially for the thrust, but still noticeable. Being more erect helped, I'm sure.

Thrust (-): Very good—probably commensurate with the engine size. Without climb rate tests it wouldn't be fair to say any more. The belt slipped at first but, once it warmed up, that seemed to stop. I didn't check to see what's involved with belt tightening but it's usually pretty simple.

Endurance (-): The tank is huge. If you're willing to heft it, expect to have great endurance.

Vibration (-): From idle to just below cruise RPM there was more vibration (slightly blurred vision is the tell-tale sign of this) that settled down at cruise power and above.

Sound (-): Average. 

Safety (-): This cage, a departure from previous models, has very solid netting that I suspect would pass the hand test. Both options are available—the tube-only cage and this one with netting; I'd get this one. It still looks good but provides significantly improved protection.

Construction (-): Excellent fit and finish. It's all nicely done but special mention goes to the throttle which is milled out of solid aluminum. That's classy, to be sure, but tends to be heavier so they milled out unneeded aluminum in their bid to shave every possible ounce. It paid off given their significantly lower weight.

Reparability (-): You'll need a good aluminum welder if you bend something but, fortunately, the cage is more robust owing to its extra tubes.

Transport (-): The cage pieces come apart using pins and should be normal in the ability to transport.

Cost: Not reported.

Overall: Very nice machine that has benefited from an effective weight loss program by the designers. Other improvements make this a nice buy for those looking for a low hook-in weight-shift machine.

Photo courtesy

© 2016 Jeff Goin & Tim Kaiser   Remember: If there's air there, it should be flown in!