Hiway Hang Gliders Alien
Designed by Bill Pain for Hiway and Joe Binns helped with test flying. The 1st prototype was a 135, then the 145 which flew and handled really well. Then the 150 which never worked. It was originally just a research vehicle but Hiway pushed to have it developed.
Hiway cancelled the project. Binns brought prototypes.
Joe Binns did take the 3rd or 4th prototype to the 1982 XC Classic in Owens Valley. Owens had crashed and bent a leading edge without realising it so it did not perform well.
The 135 handling was a compromise between hi performance and handling, both of which demanded critical handling techniques. The carbon fibre tensioners on the wingtips were designed and rigged such that washout and trailing edge flexibility were minimal. Consequently, turning her into a strong thermal would demand huge effort and concentration. Max gliding to the next lift would require very precise attitude setting or performance would be seriously degraded. It proved to be a very sturdy machine and would wingover past 90deg without any nasty frighteners.
The larger version was very docile but had very little to offer in performance. The larger machine was more awkward to rig, having had a detachable 'A' frame, was infinitely more manageable in all conditions though struggled to make the most of available lift. It was less competitive than the 135. It only flew it a handfull of times.
Alan Monks bought the 'Yellow Budgie' from Paul Farley back in '84' for a hundred and fifty quid and considered it the best money ever spent at the time. It was exceptionally difficult to hook into a big thermal and could be a handful in turbulence. However she'd go up well once established in lift but the sink rate would let her down in the transit. In smooth air she handled like a dream and was very controllable and inherent stability in all axes was dead positive. The budgie faded into retirement in 89/90 and was stored under-cover for a number of years before released to the hang glider museum. The 135 model was donated to the hang glider museum based in Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, in 2000 or there abouts by Alan Monks.