View Full Version : flash 2 wing ?

09-08-10, 01:24 AM
I have heard that the flash 2 wing, is a bit unstable ?, in what respect ?
Has any one experiance of this wing?

Bob T
09-08-10, 07:32 AM
I thought you have experience. If you are changing the screen, surly you have the aircraft.

12-08-10, 07:30 AM
I was trainned on a flash 2 years ago and I did nt think it had any issues, I did my GFT in a raven and yes that wing has some better qualities but times have changed and I was asking for peoples opinions.
As You have been following my posts, I am restoring a Mainair Gemini flash2, I got for a very good price....., no defects/crashes, but has not been used for 10 yrs, bolts are a bit rusty [ which will be replaced] but the screen is broken, therefore I was looking for a suitable replacement.
I wish that I was in the position to afford a Blade/quick but Im Not, I just wish to renew my liecence, and get back in to the air at reasonable costs....
I am presently tracking down all history of this aircraft as there is a 2nd log book missing.

02-01-11, 23:35 PM
Hi Peteridms
Not sure if you still have the Flash2, but this thread may answer some of your questions: http://forums.bmaa.org/default.aspx?f=15&m=17137
I learnt to fly trikes in a Flash2, 24 years ago, and they were a splendid aircraft then. Nothing has changed now, apart from the ingress of many even more splendid aircraft like Tanargs and Quiks. I now teach in a Quantum, and have students with Q's, Flash2A's and Flash 2's. The performance and handling varies between aircraft as you would expect.
The Flash2 wing is basically quite heavy in roll (very heavy in comparison, if you've flown Quantums etc) and light in pitch. You will need to learn a 4 or 5 second dynamic (thinking ahead distance) for the Flash2, rather than the 1 to 2 second dynamic for the Quantum. Rolls can therefore appear to continue of their own accord, and the lightness in pitch means that stalling is easy to do inadvertently. So - don't run out of speed on finals, don't do figure of 8 manouevres at more than 30' bank, don't fly line astern in formation at stupidly low altitude (think vortex), and never ever pull the bar hard backwards after a stall (look up 'tumbling' and 'microlight'). Find an instructor who has time on Flash2's and do at least an hour of stalls. Dogs only bite you if you pull their whiskers (or tweak their nuts or poke them in a nostril or whatever). Microlights only bite you if you fly outside your - and their - performance envelope, so it's not a bad plan to feel your way round the edges of the envelopes with an experienced lump in the back seat.
Good flying!
(first owner of G-MNXT, Flash2)

Sebastian Weetabix
04-01-11, 09:52 AM
Hi all
I have had my NPPL a while but not flown flex for about 3 years.
I am considering a cheap one for local bimbles this summer
The Flash2, Q, XL are all possibles but my ideal choice would be a 582 quasar or quantum.
just weighing up the costs and options for now.

04-01-11, 10:32 AM
Hi Sebastian
I would start from a budget, just to nail down down one of the variables... 2,500 will get you a fine Flash2 Alpha (the more refined 'son of' the Flash2) or a Q462, if you have a narrow bottom (I never quite got to enjoy the rear seat position). In a higher budget bracket, Quasars seem to be thin on the ground, but one or two Quantums have been up for sale recently in the 5000 to 7000 region.
If you want to fly solo bimbles, consider a single seat machine...
Good luck!

martin sanderson
04-01-11, 20:25 PM
i have a flash 2 alpha and it seams to fly just fine

04-01-11, 21:15 PM
Martin could you expand on how the flash flies as my instructor told me that when he flew them they were nick-named the widow maker :S !

I know that there were some fatals due to incorrect tuning on the wing by some owners - but I have also heard the stall is quite profound?

Thanks In advance....


martin sanderson
04-01-11, 22:32 PM
hi from what i understand about them is the first flash 2 was the one with the problems and they only made it for a year or 2 because of the problems but they solved the problems which was the flash 2 alpha ,,,, which is what most off the instructors used ,,, and from what i have read people started trying to make them go faster by altering the luff lines i think which is a no no ,,, but you can read up more about this on the bmma web site in the forum part hope this helps

04-01-11, 22:45 PM
Thanks Martin - I have read all the AAIB reports and the BMAA Forum - I think its when the inner most luff lines are tightened it caused the wing to be put under more stress. Also they seem to have a tendency to 'fold up' if striking anything (Quite a few have hit tree's and folded up)

How is the stall on the aircraft compared to say a Quantum / GT450?

Thanks Again;


martin sanderson
04-01-11, 22:59 PM
yes the problems came when they over tightened them if you have them set up to the manufacture settings then you should have a good stable aircraft

11-03-17, 10:17 AM
Does the above apply to the flash 2 alpha as well as the original flash 2?
I know the alpha is an improvement, but does it completely get rid of the original flash traits?

12-03-17, 13:13 PM
With Roger Pattrick's help (when he was at P&M) I compiled a Second Hand Secrets on the Flash 2, which was published in MF. You should be able to download it from the site where MF is archived.

There are extra placards for roll limits on the Flash 2 (not the Flash 2 Alpha) that do not apply to other Mainair wings any more.

If you want to fly a Flash 2 safely then you need to comply with all the SBs, and to resist the temptation to adjust the luff lines. There is a factory specified setting, and that's where you need to be.

It will be the most comfortable budget trike you ever fly solo if you have the Mainair trike and long legs, and you make the most of the adjustability of the seat.

It's light in pitch and fairly heavy in roll but for the engine it's equipped with it can easily be flown faster than a Q for longer periods of time.

The sail is very tight and the wing therefore has minimal washout. This leads to a sharper stall break, and the lighter the load, the less washed out the wing will be ergo the sharper the stall.

It's a great budget machine but will not put up with the same level of hamfistedness that a Q will. Placards are there for a reason. Stick to them.

12-03-17, 14:18 PM
And ensure the battens conform to the plan (apart from within limits adjustments). Sometimes the centre battens lose camber with time due to high sail tension. I think this results in a gradual increase in speed as the center of lift moves back. One of the issues with the F2 was that it could be tuned to make it very fast, with consequent compromise to stability. I've (test) flown quite a few and all were pleasant (even at 72kg solo and no ballast). Big plus is that the sails and stitching are tough and rarely fail Betts testing (lower Betts limit too).

13-03-17, 11:58 AM
Thanks for the extra info. Does any of this apply to the f2a though, or is that as safe/stable as any of the other flexwings? I would be looking at a f2a, just wanted to ensure all the above only related to the earlier versions.
The light pitch/easy stall /tumble in particular scares the he'll out of me.

13-03-17, 12:36 PM
The F2A was Mainair's answer to the (actually mostly unjustifiable) criticism of the F2. They also took the opportunity to make major changes to the trike. In particular adding suspension that may have contributed to the odd landing accident... Though they did close up the hole in the front of the pod that threw up cow pats from the front wheel into your face ;-)

As for your fears regarding stalls - that's what your training is for. And there have been a couple of fatalities from tumbles in 30 years, but I think they have been on F2As and were the result of deliberate pilot 'exuberance' (whipstalls - ask your instructor). Mainair re-placarded with reduced maximum flight limits, and introduced the luff line checks mentioned above. As far as I know, there have been no nasty incidents since.