We met up with Mireia Serradesanferm on the Niviuk stand, who filled us in with the latest Niviuk news whilst kindly filling us up with some tasty Spanish cured hams, cheeses and nibbles. Thanks Mireia!
Niviuk have been making extra strides on the harness front of late, with a new team dedicated to this part of the business. The Niviuk R&D department, including Swiss designer Luc Hentsch (fully dedicated to harnesses development) with direct input from Olivier Nef (Niviuk Chief Designer, founder, test pilot) and a team of three other engineers based at Niviuk HQ in Spain have developed the new Niviuk harness range.
Luc has a solid background in the paragliding sector being a pilot since 1994, professional tandem pilot since 1998 as well as having a tight cooperation with Olivier in the development and testing of the gliders since Niviuk was born. The spirit behind the harnesses design is more related to passion than qualification. Luc is a passionate and extreme alpinist with great focus on the technical details and comfort of all the mountaineering equipment. He is also a professional photographer, handy for shooting publicity material
This extreme focus and the research for the best quality materials has lead the team through the development of the new Niviuk harnesses range with a great result.
Roamer 2 - First up then, we can announce the new Roamer 2 reversible harness. Perfect for Hike and Fly weighing in at only 1425g in Medium and 1537g in Large. Lighter and more compact, with an ergonomic design, it incorporates a new load distribution system which adapts to the pilot, improving comfort and feeling at all times.
The rucksack has been improved too. A more modern look, easier carrying and an ergonomic design. With a pack volume of 37L / 45L, perfectly sized to take a lightweight wing.
Niviuk say: "Maximum level of versatility and comfort. Lovers of mountain flights and speedflying are in luck. The features of the new version of the reversible Niviuk harness have been improved to the max. (Removable AirBag. Not included)"
The Roamer 2 is available to order now, delivered with Ronstan pulleys with ball bearings for the speed system, (light/P) Speed-Bar (32g) and Helmet Net (34g) included. A self-inflating airbag system (257g / 277g) is also available to order as an optional extra. Niviuk also have a new front reserve container (see below).
Roamer P - Not just a lightweight version of the Roamer 2, the Roamer P, weighing just 173g / 197g for sizes M / L respectively, is a minimalist mountain harness which fits in your pocket! It's principally designed for Niviuk's superb Skin 2 and Skin 2 P single-surface Hike & Fly wings.
The Roamer P can be used independently or combined and connected to the Kargo P rucksack (see below). The first delivery is due to arrive soon, available to order now.
Niviuk say: "With a minimalist, ergonomic and ultralight design, the Roamer P is so easy to carry that it fits into an iPad case. The perfect tool for your Hike & Fly adventures."
In stock anytime soon.
Options for Roamer 2 / Roamer P - To give pilots the choice of how to attach the harness to the wing, the Roamer 2 and Roamer P are delivered without karabiners/connectors. They are both compatible with suitable maillons and carabiners, or Niviuk's lightweight connection for harnesses and risers, IKS3000. If you want to fly with a reserve parachute then they can accept a suitable front-mount reserve container e.g. Niviuk's new Front Rescue Container (see below).
Konvers 2 - A redesign of the Konvers reversible harness-rucksack, due out in Spring 2018. Few details, and no images, as yet.
Niviuk say: "Reversible, with AirBag and a parachute compartment underneath. The Konvers 2 is a harness designed for everyone and for any situation. No matter how high you fly or how far you go, comfort and manoeuvrability are guaranteed at all times."
We expect it to be available March 2018 - More details to follow.
Watch this space…
Arrow - Lastly from the Harnesses team, a new lightweight pod for everyday use, also due out in Spring. Sounds exciting!
Niviuk say: "If you are thinking of flying for many hours at a time, you are thinking of the new Niviuk Arrow. Designed with the idea of complete comfort, this pod harness will delight all Cross-Country pilots."
More to come.
The wing designers at Niviuk haven't been putting their feet up much either, with 7 new wings on the cards replacing or joining the existing stable of 22 different designs:
Artik 5 & Artik 5 P - The acclaimed and popular Artik 4 is gaining an upgrade for the beginning of next season, due out in Spring 2018. We're told that it will be an all new wing, completely redesigned apart from the aspect ratio which will remain the same at 6.1. We're very intrigued where it will sit in the C class with that conservative starting point, given the high standard set by the 4 however we expect it should be well on the pace.
Niviuk say: "Kilometres, kilometres and more kilometres. Niviuk's Grand Touring wing combines comfort, stability and control to offer you more advantages than ever during your Cross-Country adventures."
Expected delivery March 2018.
Takoo 4 - Tagged as 'the pleasure of sharing', Niviuk's new tandem paraglider is coming out for November in 3 sizes covering all-up flying weights of 110 to 235 kg. With an aspect ratio of 5.5, the Takoo 4 has significantly more performance than it's predecessor (which was already no slouch!) while sharing the same comfort and safety.
Size 42 is certified EN/LTF B (120-220 kg). Sizes 39 and 44 in process.
Niviuk say: "The ultimate tandem experience. The Takoo 4 meets the most stringent demands of tandem pilots and is one step above the rest thanks to greater performance in all aspects of the flight."
Due out November 2017.
Find out more: Niviuk Takoo 4
Koyot 3 P - Lightweight version of the Koyot 3. Aspect ratio 4.95. 5 sizes, covering 45-135 kg. EN/LTF A certification in process. Due out in December.
Niviuk say: "First flights could not be more relaxed, but lighter. Feel free to take off and enjoy the sky with an accessible and exciting wing created for extraordinary adventures."
Find out more: Niviuk Koyot 3 P
So, it's very intriguing news that they are adding another acro glider to their range in the form of the E-Gravity, and this time it's for beginners.
(In case you were wondering: E for easy-gravity, F for free-gravity and N for no-gravity at all ;))
For one who has yet to pull off his first SAT (yes, it's me I confess!) this is a mouth watering prospect - visions of impressing all and sundry with a perfectly executed helico performed at my local site come to mind. Quickly back to reality, but at the very least I reckon some solid and safe wagga fun in Bordeaux beckons...
Niviuk say: "The perfect wing to enter the world of acro and freestyle. With the E-Gravity, control will always be in your hands to free the possibilities in your mind. Display all your creativity with a wing ready to accept any challenge."
Sizes 21 and 23 of the E-Gravity are certified EN/LTF B. Size 19 is in process.
Expected March 2018
Link 2 - Entry level paramotor wing. Aspect ratio 5.1, certified EN/LTF B / DGAC. Four sizes covering 65-180kg.
Niviuk say: "The Link 2’s easy take-off and a perfect performance in the air will give free rein to all your excitement."
Expected May 2018
Qubik - Bridging the gap between the Link and Kougar 2 paramotor wings comes the Qubik. Paramotor pilots are also going to be very well catered for by Niviuk in 2018. Aspect ratio 5.5, certified EN/LTF B / DGAC. Five sizes covering 60-190kg.
Niviuk say: "New horizons await. Speed and performance come together in the new Niviuk PPG wing, which offers top performance without compromising on ease of use and comfort."
Expected May 2018.
The rest of the Niviuk glider range - Koyot 3, Hook 4, Ikuma, Peak 4, Skin 2, Roller, Skate 2, R-Bus, Kougar 2, Dobermann 2, F-Gravity 2, N-Gravity 4, Skin 2 P, Hook 4 P, Ikuma P, Bi Skin 2 P and Klimber P - stay the same for 2018.
Octagon 2 - The Octagon square reserve is being redesigned for lighter weight and with packing loops. Specs are yet to be announced, but it's another piece of kit to help fuel those cross Alp dreams.
Niviuk say: "Improve the Octagon? It seemed impossible but we like challenges. The second edition offers greater stability in roll and a lower descent rate, so that your contact with the ground is even more gentle and smooth."
Expected March 2018.
Kargo rucksacks - New sizes, new design, new colours!
Niviuk say: "Versatile and comfortable rucksacks that will be your loyal companion during your adventures. The Kargo range has been redesigned with different sizes for all types of adventurers. What rucksack could be better for you?"
The Kargo 45 has been designed for Niviuk's the Skin 1/2, Skin 1/2 P, Roller, Skate 2 and Bi Skin 2 P.
The Kargo P is the new Niviuk running bag, designed for the Skin 2 P wing and Roamer P harness.
All in stock now.
(Another interesting point to note: when ordering any glider you can choose between all Niviuk rucksacks: Kargo P, 45, 85, 140, 175, 220 and Koli Bag.)
Koli Pro - new fast packing bag designed to fit tandem equipment. Also ideal for larger solo kit, and for those who want a more generous bag to make packing faster and easier.
Niviuk say: "Quick packing all your gear in one bag is possible. Conceived for tandem professionals, the Koli Pro elevates ultra-fast packing to the highest level."
Front Rescue Container - new light, compact front reserve container that's quick to attach and easy to use. Available now in sizes S (238g) and M (244g). Size L to follow.
Niviuk say: "Maximum safety in its lightest and most compact format. Its small size and fast, safe attachment points make it the ideal accessory to incorporate a parachute into your flying equipment."
Bi-Skin 2 P Spreaders!
We also have available in stock light Dyneema spreaders for the Bi-Skin 2 P.
Lastly, and nothing to do with the Coupe Icare, here is a link to a press release from Niviuk which tells the story of a team pilot Bianca Heinrichs' trip across the Alps from Chamonix in France, to Tolmin in Slovenia, linking two of my favourite places in the world, (not to mention where I first learned to fly), in a 700km expedition by Paraglider.
There is also a really good blog, guaranteed to whet the appetite for future adventuring...
I too shall do it one day 🙂