Introduction to Ultralight Aviation

Database Of Ultralight, Homebuilt, and Experimental Aircraft

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The Icarus is a hang glider built by the Californian enthusiast Taras Kiceniuk, Jr. There are several modifications: Icarus I, Icarus II, and Icarus V (III and IV were abandoned). We don't normally include hang gliders here, but this one is really popular. Some characteristics:

  • Icarus is unpowered hang glider. Icarus I and Icarus II used a biplane wing, while Icarus V uses a monoplane wing.
  • The maximum speed is Over 40 mph.
  • The empty weight is only 65 lb (29 kg)

A good video showing some photos of Icarus V built by a fan in 1978 is available here. Icarus does not have an official site but if you are looking for more detailed information, Wikipedia has it here.

UFM Easy Riser

The UFM Easy Riser is a biplane hang-glider powered in USA in 1975. This makes it the first ultralight aircraft. The Easy Riser is not currently produced as aircraft but only as unpowered hang glider.

The most important specifications of the powered version are:

  • Cruise speed of 22mph
  • Maximum speed of 40 mph
  • Empty weight of 120lb
  • Single-seater (pilot only)

The Easy Riser kit can currently be purchased from Pioneer Flyer here. Note the "How to Order" and "Order Form" links at right. The price is $3,600 and shipping costs add to this. Note this is the unpowered hang-glider kit, not an ultralight aircraft.

An interesting story with this hang glider is available on this site.