Hang Glider

Hi, my name is Sam and I'm with Exploration Works (an innovative, hands-on museum of science and culture, opening in the summer of 2007, located in Montana).
One of our opening exhibits is going to be a Hang Glider Simulator. A person actually gets to hang in a harness and shift their weight to control the glider. This is hooked up to Microsoft Flight Simulator. This allows the participant to experience what hang gliding is like.

We have made a couple of prototypes and set them up at some fundraisers for the museum, and people seem to really enjoy it. However, the Flight Sim hang glider that we have been using in the prototypes is not very realistic in the handling aspects. I have searched and search for another that might be more suited for use with the simulator, but I have yet to find one. This is why I’m writing to you today. I’m looking for a hang glider for Microsoft Flight Simulator that can handle realistically and look good at the same time. Is there one out there? If not, would fsdeveloper be willing to develop one, if so, how much would it cost? If not, does fsdeveloper know of someone ells that I may contact?

Sorry if this is the wrong place to be asking this. If it is, is there an e-mail address I could send this to?


Sam Thompson

Exploration Works

Hello Sam!

I think I may be able to help you out a bit. I also live in MT (albeit a bit to the north and west) and would like to contribute to your efforts. If my quick ideas here aren't quite what you are looking for, I also develop some stuff for FlightSim, and may be able to help you out with some modifications to existing add-ons, or develop a completely new add-on exclusively for your application.

First, a couple of quick questions:

1.) What version of Flight Simulator are you running?

2.) What Hang Glider add-on are you currently using?

If you are using FS2002/FS2004, I found what looks to be a pretty good Hang Glider at Surclaro.com (you'll need to register in order to download). The file name is sport2.zip and is a Wills Wing Sport 2 Hang Glider. The comments all say it's really nice (I haven't tried it, so I can't vouch for it). So you can give that one a shot and then let me know if you like it or not.

If, for some reason, it doesn't quite fly right, but looks good, I can help you tweak the flight dynamics to suit your tastes (I think, I've never flown or developed a Hang Glider before, so you'll have to flight test it and specifically tell me what characteristics need to be changed).

Futhermore, If you need a repaint, I can help you with that also (like if you want to put the ExplorationWorks logo on the wing or something like that).

If you require a model developed and built, I can do that also (perhaps we can negotiate and come up with a deal that makes us both happy).

Well, I'll start there. Let me know which direction you are moving and I'll help as much as I can. :D

Good Luck!
-Spider M. Mann
Praxis Aerospace
We've tried the Wills Wing Sport 2 in FSX and it works. It is a nice glider, and has a good model, but I'm not so sure about the flight dynamics. It seems as though it may be a little pitch sensitive, and doesn't seem to turn correctly. For example, we will bank the wings to 30 degrees, however it will barely be turning. I also have another hang glider that was made for FS2002, but the model is not very good, and the model does not work in FSX. But, the flight dynamics on this glider seem to be more of what we are looking for.

I am going to talk to some people I know that hang glide, and see if I can get any handling characteristics for real hang gliders.
I've managed to figure out how to put the Exploration Works logo on the wing on the glider that we have been testing with.

I'll get back to you real soon when I get some more information.

Sam Thompson

Exploration Works

Hi Sam,

Good to hear from you. You could try to use the model from the Sport 2 and tweak the flight dynamics more in accordance with the other glider (maybe try swapping the .air files and copy out the relevant info from the 2002 .cfg file into the Sport 2). If you need to change flight dynamics that don't appear in the .cfg file, you can use a program called AirEd to change parameters in the .air file.

You'll probably need to play around with it a bit to get it to do what you need, but I'm confident you can do it.

I see you are using FSX, I haven't gotten around to installing that yet, so I'm not entirely familiar with some of the new parameters in the .cfg and .air files, but I think you should be OK trying this method.

Also, don't forget that you can install your own custom thermals into the scenery, too. That will give you a bit more lift in areas that may not have any in the default install.

Drop in when you have more info.

-Spider M. Mann
Praxis Aerospace