Weight Shift (8): The geared weight shift is wonderful,
absolutely wonderful for those who like weight shift (which I do). This is
one of my favorite aspects of the machine and part of the reason why I own
A drawback is that it's gearing is fully enclosed in a welded-shut box so
lubrication is impossible and there is no way to replace worn-out gears or
other parts. You just have to get a new one although the supplier (Leon
Whacker) has made improvements and support has been wonderful. Mine has
gotten a bit stiff but still works better than most.
Torque (7): This is extremely well handled. The weight shift
allows the frame to twist so it looks terrible to the observer but the
thrust line stays put. The pilot feels minimal twist. I had
about 10 degrees during climbout and nothing noticed in cruise. I was
easily able to weight-shift turn against the torque turn direction.
Of course if the harness is setup wrong then it can riser twist
like any other, especially if the pilot is tilted too far back.
Thrust (7): The Black Devil gives great thrust. That's why I own this machine in the first place:
for high altitude flying and competition where push is precious. Plus I'm always thrilled with the
Endurance (4): The Black Devil is thirsty and, with my
1.8 gallon tank I only get about 1.6 hours even flying the efficient Spice
22 wing. At cruise power it probably burns about 1.2. gallons per hour.
The cage netting and support adds a lot of drag which doesn't help
matters. The Velcro area that holds the netting to the hoop probably adds
about 100 square inches of drag. So even at 20 mph, holding out a 10 x
10" plate will push with about 5 pounds of pressure, all of which
must be overcome by thrust.
Vibration (6): This machine has 8 motor mounts which makes it quite smooth. Other Black Devil
implementations that I've flown,
without the extra mounts, have more vibration, about a 4 on this scale.
Sound (5): About average here and an even combination of motor
Safety (4): The netting would not stop a human hand at many
points and prop clearance from the fuel tank is too small. However, on
later machines the tank clearance was improved to exceeds 4" which I
consider the minimum.
The curved frame bottom is wonderful for sliding in grass because it
won't catch on sharp ground protrusions.
Being tippy adds somewhat to the risk of the machine falling forward if
a pilot doesn't hold on to it well.
Construction (4): It is built to be lightweight. It uses chrome
molly welded steel tubing for the frame and aluminum for the radial arms.
Steel works great as long as you either disassemble it frequently or keep
the attach points lubed. Otherwise they rust together. My poor machine has
lived too long together with too little attention to this detail.
Reparability (7): Damage resistance is average but it should be
among the easiest to repair in the field and be very cheap. Having lots of straight parts helps.
The cage netting is replaced by merely velcroing on another one.
Since the frame is steel, it's much easier to find shops that can weld
it. Many hobbyists could weld it, too.
Transport (6): My machine has been together for too long but
I've watched others go through the process several times. It fits snugly
in the airline suitcase (not that you'd want to try taking it on an
airline!) which is great for shipping. Expect to take about an hour from
start to finish. Just taking the off cage is much faster, probably about 5
Overall: The machine would be a good purchase for anyone
looking for an all-around fun flyer. It's affordable to boot. For more
information visit www.Paratoys.com.