Since it was first released, the Eden series achieved a high level of approval from free flight and PPG pilots, thanks to its ease of use, stability, and benevolent certification. The best-selling model of the Czech brand faces its fourth generation with unquestionable improvements in handling and glide, and better performance in accelerated flight. At Mac Para have made efforts to keep the main qualities of the Eden 3, but incorporating many design and performance features of the superior model in their range, the Envy. To achieve this they worked for almost a year and used 5 different prototypes that were tested intensively in free flight and paramotor. The result is a paraglider with 52 cells and aspect ratio of 5.23, with the same system of lines and brakes of the previous Eden, although tuned to be more direct and efficient. The docile and easy inflation characteristics of its predecessor are still present in the Eden 4, something that the less experienced paramotor pilots (and all the pilots in general) will especially appreciate. It is a well constructed glider with quality materials and design details that more and more manufacturers are incorporating, like the Velcro opening on the wingtips to clean inside, brake handles with swivels, and split A risers for big ears.
The inflation behavior is fine, the glider comes up with a slight pressure on the risers; it is not necessary to keep the pressure until the end as after the first third the Eden 4 continues rising continuously to the vertical, where it stops hardly without intervention from the pilot.
When we ground-handle it we notice that the brake line is long, of average pressure. The Eden 4 is a very stable wing on the ground and requires little corrections from the pilot; with just some brake input it will stay firmly above the pilot’s head.
In the air
The Eden is docile and forgiving in flight; a bit of pressure on the brakes is enough to stabilize the glider in rough air and avoid pitching. The brake travel is long and it is almost impossible to stall the wing without wrapping the brake line around your hand.
As for the turn, although it is progressive you must use quite a good amount of brake travel if you want to do it closed. On the other hand, the Eden 4 inspires confidence for its stability, climbs efficiently and, overall, it can keep the course of the turn without difficulties. In rough air, if you don’t want a thermal to push you out of the core, just make sure to keep enough speed and inertia.
Although in theory it does not offer the best numbers in its class (the manufacturer put the glide ratio at 8.5) the Eden 4 is an effective glider, capable of climbing like the bests, with a usable range of speeds from 23 km/h to 50 km/h, and in general, it has straightforward performance that allows it to be flown by almost any pilot.
I test-flew this glider during the regional Central League (Spain) in Cebreros, on the Gredos range. I took off late so I had to catch up with the rest of pilots, and I was surprised by the good performance of the Eden 4 that gave me the confidence to make long transitions or pass the highlands turning zeros as if I was in a comp glider. Well, I did not make it to goal (mea culpa) –at the end ‘greed’ lost me - but the glider behaved really well.
It really transmits a lot of it, being almost the most outstanding point of the Eden 4. The EN B certification (with few Bs) makes it suitable for most pilots after the school. It absorbs the turbulence well and has very little tendency to collapse. It is pitch and roll damped and even admits some degree of over control, making it suitable for heavy-handed pilots who want to progress, although the best of this glider comes out when you treat it finely.
The Eden 4 improved the turn behaviour compared to its predecessor, although the long brake travel is now more progressive
The takeoff is a game with this glider; inflation is uncomplicated and docile, and lift comes quickly.
Ground handling is pilot-friendly as the Eden 4 does not tend to sudden movements, which gives you time to understand what it is going on and react promptly - specially suitable for the less experienced pilots.
The Eden 4 offers a more direct handling; you can play with it and has a good response to body shifting although it doesn't go wild. It is quite difficult to over-control it (not impossible)
The Eden 4 has exceptionally good inflation and produces lift at low speed, which makes the takeoff a fairly easy task. Actually I was surprised on my first try, there was a slight breeze and just as the glider placed over my head I was off flying. I did this test using my Paratrike Airfer Bailey 4v200; this engine is not particularly powerful but I started off really fast and had to release gas to nearly half throttle. Level flight was almost a joke as I could cruise at a touch of gas, the only thing is that I was not going very fast and rather felt that I was floating peacefully, which is nothing bad for those who want to take up paramotoring.
The Eden series is, since some generations ago, the beginner’s paraglider for PPG in the Mac Para range and therefore they have not forgotten to strengthen the lines.
After leaving the school, the Eden 4 will last you a long time. Although it is an easy to fly wing with long controls, as you evolve as a pilot you will be able to hone your piloting skills and take more advantage of this glider.
Experienced and conservative pilots will also enjoy this balanced glider.
It is also an ideal choice for starting paramotoring thanks to its uncomplicated inflation and ease of use, comparable to the previous Eden.
Test done by Daniel Crespo,
Daniel is a long time paraglider & paramotor pilot and competitor.
Check out his blog (Spanish):
July 07, 2010
*Test & article by Ojovolador.com
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