Wing options for the Snake
Due to the extremely light weight of the Snake trike we can offer all of the wings listed below and still remain within the SPHG 70kg weight limit with full fuel. The Snake is the only trike available in the UK offering double-surface wings within the 70kg limit.
If you are planning to operate the Snake as an SSDR microlight there is an even greater range of wing options available; please contact us for details. These include competition-level soaring wings and high-speed touring options.
The 3DC is a 13.5m² double-surface nanolight wing. Double-surface wings offer improved efficiency compared to single-surface wings due to enclosing the cross-tubes within the wing. This efficiency translates to lower power requirements in the cruise and a better glide ratio.
The wing handling is wonderfully light and sporty at all speeds, and offers predictable behaviour for short field operation. The 3DC is recommended for pilots who want agile handling or the very best soaring performance out of their sub-70 nanolight.
The Eurofly Snake & Grif 3DC hold the World Record for distance flown without engine power. This was flown by Airplay director David Broom in June 2018 from Sandy in Bedfordshire. You can see the record here.
The 3DC is generally tuned for around a 35mph cruise speed, but the adjustable hang-point allows increasing this to approximately 40mph if desired. The stall speed is in the region of 17-20mph depending on weight and if the optional vortex generators are installed (which also have the effect of making the stall even more gentle and benign than standard).
The Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) with this wing is 190kg with a wing weight of around 29kg.
Grif’s lightest nanolight wing is the Zip, which carries just enough double-surface to enclose the cross-tubes. The Zip retains Grif’s trademark light and responsive handling, and has almost as much glide performance as the 3DC. It weighs around 27kg and yet still carries the 190kg (tested at +6G) MTOW of the Grif range. This light weight allows heavier options such as the 33Hp Black Bull engine to be fitted, yet still remain legal under the sub-70kg limit.
The Zip truly has delightful handling, and is simple and quick to rig. It is often our recommended wing for the majority of pilots who simply want to have the most fun possible with the least amount of hassle.
Grif have recently put the HX series of nanolight wings into production. Available in both 11 and 12m² versions, the stated design brief for the HX series was to produce the best touring performance possible in a sub-70 compliant wing. Carrying a much greater proportion of double surface material than either the 3DC or Zip, the HX wings achieve a very high level of efficiency, whilst retaining the light handling that Grif are famous for.
The stall speed has been tested at a calibrated 22mph with an 85kg pilot (just inside the 23mph sub-70 requirement). Heavier pilots would likely require the vortex generator option, which reduces the stall speed by around 2-3mph.
The smaller HX11 wing weighs in at 29kg with a 190kg MTOW.
Due to the higher performance available and slightly sharper stall characteristics, the HX wings are best suited to experienced pilots.
A PX20 trilaminate leading edge is available as an option, as are a range of undersurface colour combinations. Grif can also powder-coat the A-frame and kingpost any RAL colour in order to create your ideal colour scheme.
Another option is a LED strobe system built into streamlined fibreglass wingtip fairings. These are ideal for improving visibility in low-light conditions as well as improving the aesthetics further.
All Grif wings offer various ways to reduce the packaged length as standard (useful if storage space is at a premium, or for transporting the wing on airlines). The quick short-pack reduces the packed length of the 3DC from 5.32m to 3.57m. The process doesn’t require any tools and can be completed in minutes.
The Fox13T is a simple, low cost single-surface wing with excellent stability and docile handling- ideal for inexperienced pilots. It’s relatively light, at 25.5kg with the optional ODL Technora wing fabric.
A wing-fold kit can be incorporated into this kingposted wing if trailering the Snake is preferred. This can reduce the rigging time to around 5 minutes.
Hands-off cruise speeds are in the region of 35-40mph, with a 21mph extremely gentle mush stall. The wing is perfectly capable of extended engine-off soaring, although the sink rate increases dramatically at higher speeds. This characteristic makes the Fox13T an ideal choice for short-field operation, particularly as the light weight makes fitment of the 33Hp Black Bull engine possible under the 70kg SPHG limit. Maximum Take-Off Weight is 180kg.
Fly & Rio
Ideal for hang-glider pilots who desire one wing to both free-fly and operate with a nanotrike, the Avian Fly (single-surface) and Rio2 (double-surface) wings are now available with the Snake. A detachable hang-bracket allows the wing (available in both 15m² and 17m² versions) to be quickly converted from trike use to free-flight harness in supine configuration.
The handling and performance of the wing is little affected by the addition of the trike unit, and the takeoff and landing performance with the relatively low stall speed is truly spectacular!
Variable Geometry is now standard on all Fly/Rio wings, which allows in-flight adjustment of sail tension. Laminate sailcloth options are available for the Rio only.
The Fly 15 is the lightest wing available for a sub-70 trike at only a quoted 23kg, with a MTOW of 143kg. At the other end of the spectrum the Rio 17 weighs 30kg with an MTOW of 170kg.
New for 2020 is a trike version of the advanced intermediate Puma wing. Offering higher glide performance and more dynamic handling than either the Fly or Rio wings, the 13.6m² Puma weighs around 28-29kg dependent on options and has a maximum take-off weight of 149kg.