Gin gliders present us the 2nd version of the famous speedriding glider, the Fluid.
This new Fluid is still presented as a speedriding wing, but with a better glide and more abilities for foot launching (speedflying).
We’ve seen in this test, that if the Fluid 2 as indeed better abilities for speedflying, it has unfortunately lost a lot of his speedriding skills.
The Fluid 2 is available in 8.5 – 9.5 – 11m2
We’ve tested the 9.5 and the 11m2
The brake controls are still provided with a little grabbing ball, they are still ergonomic and very confortable.
They’re connected to the risers by the classic and well known magnet you’ll find on every Gin’s glider. This magnet is pretty efficient but with a rough handling, it can disconnect of itself.
The risers are still in narrow black straps but they are a bit shorter than the Fluid 1’s.
The trim comes back on the rear risers and they are now easier to manipulate during the flight. The trim’s straps are 20 cm long for 10 cm of efficiency because of the angle transmission, they have therefore a tendency to wind around the risers. It’s not a big deal but it can be annoying sometimes.
(Since the Nano 4 came out, the Fluid 2’s straps trim is now a loop as on the Mirage for example, and it as less tendencies to wind around the risers)
The lines are fully unsheathed and very thin for the highest part. They are easy to untangle but you’ll have to be careful not to cut it with your skis if you’re not foot launching.
The wing itself as more cells than the first one, so it has less “accordion” effect, which was good for damping turbulence but not for performance.
The profile is quite arched in comparison with other speed wings and the result, is a very manageable dive in turns.
The aspect ratio of 3.8 remain the same than the first Fluid and feels now more coherent for a speedflying wing.
The weight of this Fluid 2 is on the average if you compare it with most of the other speedflying wings but the rushes/stiffeners of the leading edge are pretty big and very hard so it’s quite difficult to pack it very small.
The general quality of this new Fluid is quite disappointing comparing to any speed wing even the first Fluid. Finishes are correct but the whole wing seems very fragile.
The inflation is rather classic. The best trim position to take off is at the neutral (black line),
the wing rise quite well and need only a gentle check with brakes or it will stall.
The feed back is not very obvious, neither at the brakes nor on the harness. It’s not very confortable on a tricky take off but once you know the wing it’s ok. You’ll just need to give a good speed then it take off very quick.
The glide of the Fluid 2 is very impressive, on this point, it’s really speedflying wing.
At neutral or full trim closed, you can still pull “a bit” on brakes or rear risers to glide a bit more, but be careful, because the stall point comes very fast then.
The dive is pretty good too, but trim closed or at the black line (neutral), the wing wants to fly. You’ll have to open the trim without shyness to really feel the dive.
Open trim, the wing is very reactive and nervous, you can use the bake controls or the rear risers to pilot but the rear risers are more precise and gentle while proximity flying.
When you get use to it, you almost forgot the brake controls and you can even land with the rear risers (take care of the stall point at the end of braking).
Brake controls are lot softer than the first Fluid, they get harder when you brake more but they are still a bit soft for this kind of wing. They are reactive but in a long travel so not super precise, but it’s even better because the wing itself has a ultra reactive behaviour.
The roll is very nervous, more than most of speed wings, and combine with the yaw axis, makes the Fluid 2 ultra reactive and totally inadequate for beginner.
The pitch surge is crazy ! As the roll, the Fluid 2 as more pitch surge than many wings and you really feel climbing to the sky when, open trim, you pull the rear risers.
The barrel roll is as powerful as the roll and the pitch surge. The wing turns very fast, at brakes as at rear risers.
The barrel roll is so amazing that you’ll have to keep it reasonable not to make one every time you get few meters from the ground.
In turbulences, the Fluid 2 is not the strongest, it’s moving a lot and even if we never had any problem, we didn’t feel very confident in rough conditions.
Landing the Fluid 2 is as Gin say, a swoop machine !
Even if land at neutral trim is ok (never land full trim closed), full trim open is much better and much more fun. You’ll need a very long landing zone because the swoop is just endless.
Even if Gin is still considering the Fluid 2 as a speedriding wing, it’s unfortunately not possible to win on every skills and this new Fluid is now a good speedflying wing, but not a good speedriding wing anymore. By upgrading the glide, the wing as lost his low speed tolerance and by improving the take off, it’s hard to keep contact on the snow when the slope get steeper and the speed increase.
Half trim, it’s still possible to enjoy speedriding with the Fluid 2 but only on smooth slopes for good but occasional pilots.
WE LIKE LESS
The Fluid 2 is really a speedflying wing and not a speedriding wing as the Fluid 1.
It is definitely a wing for expert pilots only, who wants a wing with character to push the limits.
It’s as never been so easy to make super fast barrel roll with rear risers on the pitch surge and crazy swoop, but keep your head on your shoulders and be careful with it, especially in turbulence.