Early Weight Shifts
Eipper Formance was in the business of making high performance kites, hang gliders if you will and had a rather impressive array of craft from beginner to well advanced, state-of-the-art models. The hang gliders of the day were rather simple craft usually designed after the Rogallo wing developed for space vehicle retrieval. The high arch of the rear of the sail was very effective in stability. The drag was high and the craft easily folded along the outer and the central tube into a small diameter, long bundle.
Hang gliders developed but retained the easy folding design allowing a fast fold-up and return to the top of the hill.
introduced a model and offerred plans. This was the Quicksilver B Model.
It looked similar to the later models but with a tapered wing tip and
a reduced wing chord. This model was a considerable step from the Rogallo
type wings. It had a long wing, a rudder operated from the pilot's movement
side to side and a horizontal stabilizer. Pitch control was effected
by moving forward and back. This weight shift came to be the common
term associated with this early plane.
Motors were installed near the trailing edge of the wing, usually with a direct drive propellor. While the power was rather meager by todays standards, total weight was often around 100 or so pounds. This allowed foot launched take-offs for those who could run, steer, carry the craft while it developed lift, steer, etc, etc.
Many of the early pioneers who bought and modified the Model C are still in the ulralight business. Wayne Richter called his variation using the Quicksilver airframe, a Hi-Nuski, Wayne now manufactures the Sea Ray line of craft.
Bill Adaska called
his basic planes, Rotec Rallyes, the last of which was built in the
I also bought, modified, and sold the Quicksilver Model C with landing gear and a power unit. This picture is one of the many units I sold locally.