The sad demise of Thruster

Joan Walsh
 

It's funny to think that the Thruster T600 was a real winner when it first came out. The increase in weight limit to 450kg allowed 912s to be used in what used to be called SLAs but, as Simon pointed out on the "show us" thread it really was a step too far for the fuse tube designs with the high thrust line and could only really be used on aircraft with the engine near the centre of drag. The C42 design solved that by dropping the fuse tube down to come through the centre of the  cockpit with a space frame built around it to carry the wings and undercarriage. They then added a curvacious plastic skin to the fuselage.
I remember talking to Mac at Popham and him saying words to the effectthat though he and his instructors preferred the Thrusters, nearly all the customers wanted to fly the C42. That was replicated across the microlight training industry and Thrusters  were relegated to the one man band schools.
I think the beginning of the end came when Gordon's health let him down and he sold the type to One Sky at Wickenby - though they launched at the Flying Show (or whatever it was called that year) with great tarantara and gathering masses of feedback from loyal Thruster fans, they dellivered nothing of value to the marque: I may be wrong but I think they only sold one new one.

I think the 390kg-rule  Thrusters are starting to develop a new life as 'classics' with costs being kept down in many cases by modifying them to meet the SSDR rules.

Other thoughts anybody?

Join Thrusterclub@groups.io to automatically receive all group messages.