Microlights are ultralight aircraft that look like a small plane or like a hang glider with an undercarriage and propeller at the back.
Skills – Strength: 1, Balance: 4, Flexibility: 1, Agility: 1, Coordination: 6
Time needed: travelling time + 1 hour, Cost to try: £55
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, many people sought to be able to fly affordably. As a result, many aviation authorities set up definitions of lightweight, slow-flying aeroplanes that could be subject to minimum regulation. The resulting aeroplanes are commonly called ultralight or microlight, although the weight and speed limits differ from country to country.
Ultralight aircraft are generally called microlight aircraft in the UK and New Zealand, and ULMs in France and Italy. Some countries differentiate between weight shift and 3-axis aircraft, calling the former microlight and the latter ultralight.
The U.S. light-sport aircraft is similar to the UK and NZ Microlight in definition and licensing requirement, the U.S. ‘Ultralight’ being in a class of its own.
A Microlight aircraft is defined in Europe to weigh no more than 450 kilos including two people and fuel, and to have a stall speed not exceeding 35 knots when fully loaded. There are two types of Microlight, a Fixed wing and a Flexwing. The Fixed wing is a conventional looking aircraft with a stick and rudder to control it, the Flexwing looks like a Hang Glider wing with a tricycle undercarraige and engine under neath, and is controlled by weight shift.
The modern Microlights fly at 70 to 80 mph and use modern 4 stroke engines of 80 hp, they are capable of four hours in the air at 80 mph and are regularly flown all over Europe and UK.
You can start to learn to fly from an age where you can reach the controls,say from 14 years old, and go solo from your 16th birthday, you can then fly solo locally under your instructors supervision until your 17th birthday when you can take the test for your licence. The NPPL M licence enable you to fly anywhere in UK and Europe, there are lots of flying meetings throughout Europe and UK to enjoy.
The British Microlight team have won many awards over the last 15 years and the current World Champion in the flexwing category is British, with the British team often winning gold.
Microlight flying is grass roots flying with the costs kept to a minimum. There are over 100 Microlight schools throughout the UK all the instructors are qualified and have to go through a rigorous 4 week instructor course and then pass a test to qualify as an Assistant Flying Instructor, who has to be supervised for the next 10 months and complete 100 hours instruction, before taking another test to upgrade as a fully qualified instructor.
There is a training syllabus overseen by the British Microlight Aicraft Association (BMAA) and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) that all instructors have to follow to complete a students licence.
So you can see that Microlight aircraft are a lot of fun and enable lots of people from all walks of life to achieve their life long ambition of taking to the skies, you can Book a microlight flight with Red Letter Days for as little as £55.00 with a qualified instructor.