The Supair EVO LITE is an entry-level harness that puts you in an upright position (legs free) in the standard version, but with the optional leg fairing you can easily convert it to a (semi-reclined) pod harness. Despite being durable and complete, it is remarkably light.
Supair EVO LITE: Construction
It feels good in the hand, with a slightly slippery fabric that has a sturdy cross-weave design. The styling is pleasing to the eye, in two tones of green. In a world full of black harness trim, the narrow grey webbing gives it a unique aesthetic. Quick-clip leg and chest buckles provide easy access.
It has a deep back protector that offers adequate cushioning and a large coverage area. A thinner foam pad extends up the back, although most of that area will be protected by your folded backpack as well. Foam inserts covering the hips help to improve the impact safety beyond the EN test minimum. Despite this it compresses well when packing away.
The seat area is large and rigid, but comfortable. There’s a decent sized side pocket, and larger-than-most rear pocket.
The reserve handle is nicely secured and in a good position. I’ve seen so many variations of reserve closure systems and not all are foolproof in the field, but this one seems as if it will hold on and not surprise you with an accidental deployment.
The straps are easy to adjust in flight, and provide the standard range of movement.
Supair EVO LITE: In the air
Because I am used to flying in the ‘get up’ system used in many pod harnesses (where the legstraps are loose) I struggled to settle into the harness at first. After some consulting with the experts at Flybubble (thanks Carlo) I discovered that the harness requires you tighten the legstraps (tight!) to prevent the seat slipping up during launch. Once I did this, it was easy to get in and out, and comfortable to run around on the slope in. (Internally, there is a restraining strap that prevents the seatplate from tilting too far, but a future version could benefit from some improved entry-exit balancing to make it easier for pilots who are not completely thorough with their pre-flight.)
In flight it is comfortable. In punchy seabreeze convergence conditions, I felt a good amount of support from the harness, and it stayed close to my body during weight-shift transitions, and when accelerated on speedbar. Although an (optional extra) stirrup provides the optimal setup for long flights, during thermaling it felt best with my legs free so I could place one leg over the other and get an agile weight-shift turn.
I did not test the pod accessory which would be my preferred setup for cross country and cold weather. Unfortunately this is only available in one version (compatible with the EVO XC 3) which weighs over 1.1kg. Supair is planning a lighter version of the pod, using Delight 2 pod fabric and an improved integrated cockpit, but only for release at the end of 2018.
Supair EVO LITE: Who’s it for?
It’s a comfortable harness that is easy to adjust and holds the pilot well. It offers a good feeling of security without being restrictive. It has a reasonably balanced feeling. The Supair EVO LITE is a good choice for your first harness, allowing you to have your legs free but when you want to you can add the pod and step up to full cross country mode. It’s a great all-round harness: affordable, light, nicely finished and well-made, with good impact protection.