Skorpion "LET THE AIR BURN"...
I decided to buy a Skorpion right after the Viking Race 2006 because I was very impressed by the flying performances, during the whole race, and with different pilots at the sticks. Then, I had to be very patient before to receive my first Skorpion (F3B DSL version with flat tips), only 2 weeks before La Madeleine international Open then La Muela 2007. I just had the time to build it, but unfortunately not to fly it. Since that date, I received the second Skorpion (F3F DSL version). Both boxes were packed very nicely with lots of bubble wrap and reinforcement.
Designed initially for F3F competition, the Skorpion is also a very good all-round sailplane. The model is built in CAD/CAM moulds and uses the wing section AF8 - AF7 designed by Thuro himself. The Skorpion features a strong but however light two piece carbon skinned, bottom hinged, top driven control surfaces wings with hollow carbon joiner. It also proposes a very interesting and simple 2 piece plug in V-tail for positive "pull" action (good for DS) and which makes the transportation easier.
The kit includes machined brass ballast, as well as the pre-installed V-tail linkage and clevises, and all the necessary hardware making an easy build (control horns, wing incidence pins, graupner wing connectors, servos cover).
The F3B version comes from a new wing mould with flat tips, no servos boxes and top surface finish. The lay-up is also normally different but, as my version is a DSL one, I imagine that it is probably very similar to the F3F version. The wing is absolutely wonderful, shiny, very stiff but not heavy: A panel is only 560 g and it's a DSL version!!!
Overall moulding quality and pre-assembly level is just excellent with plenty of nice details: Snazzy pre-soldered to the right length snakes, free ailerons and flaps hinges, and perfect fitting joiner, well ... absolutely nothing to complain about! Pictures tell often more than words, so please have a look below to see some details of the assembly that went well and very smoothly.
The radio equipment I choose is the following:
To install the servos in the wing, I used servos mounts I bought from Servorahmen.de in Germany.
In flight, the Skorpion is a real surprise, something I didn't feel for a long time with a plane. I remember the first flight where, just after the launch and a very short gain of altitude I immediately started to fly F3F laps, and felt comfortable. The settings provided by Thuro are just perfect. The Skorpion flies naturally fast, even without ballast, and turn quick short, very short! With the right settings, the plane even sometimes accelerates during turns. The Skorpion like also crosswind which is often a nightmare for F3F pilots, thanks to its raw speed. In brief, this is a very competitive plane that will satisfy all top F3F pilots who want results! The only point you have to be aware of is that the planform and section is such optimised that the Skorpion will flick if you push it to the limit... As we say in French: “You cannot have the butter and the money of the butter”!
To finish, and just to summarize how good I felt with the Skorpion from the beginning, after the 3 first flights I decided to use it at La Muela International F3F Open (66 pilots from 6 countries) and finished 2nd, at only 3 points of the winner. More important, don't forget that in January 2007, Tim Bigley flew a F3F run at Parker Mountain in 27.79 s!!
The only drawback I found is that, after a hard landing with a 20+ m/s wind, I broke one tail plane joiner. I think this joiner is using a too small diameter (5 mm carbon). On another hand, maybe it saved the tail plane, who knows…
In conclusion, the Skorpion is for sure the best ratio performances/quality/price on the mouldies market at the moment. It's a real top glider and winner that will bring you lot's of joy and pleasure for sport flying, DS, and obviously in F3F competition! I know that the waiting list is long, but believe me, it’s worth to wait!!!
More information on Thuro's website.
Evaluation: Notes are over 5
© 1998 - 2007 Planet-Soaring.com
No commercial use or publication (e.g. on other www or ftp sites, print media) without the written consent from the author(s)