Sloggi Hot Air Balloon
From initial conception through to execution the quality of the manufacturing process is essential in ensuring the balloon looks right and performs well - especially in competition ballooning!
The Sloggi balloon is no exception. Lindstrand, the manufacturers of the Sloggi balloon pride themselves on being able to create bespoke balloon envelopes of all colours, shapes and sizes from standard balloons to giant flying dogs!
For Sloggi the balloon of choice for competition flying had to be the new Lindstrand X69 model for its speed and stability at top speeds.
The Sloggi balloon envelope design has been adapted from Sloggi's recent advertising campaigns entitled 'It's stringtime'. The adverts feature four 'string clad' women in different scenarios. The high profile campaigns have been featured in national magazine advertising as well as outdoor billboards.
Unlike most balloons where artwork is applied to the envelope fabric in the form of sticky backed fabric or as paintwork, the Sloggi design was printed directly onto the fabric. The fabric was sent out to a specialist printer and arrived back at Lindstrand as a number of rolls of printed panels.
Next came the cutting out, lining up and sewing together of all of the panels. The entire envelope manufacturing process is the responsibility of highly skilled seamstresses.
Burners are made in accordance with strict CAA regulations and testing procedures. They are often made of high quality stainless steel.
Once completed the Sloggi balloon had to undergo a test inflation to check for any faults or problems followed by a test flight before it could be certified to fly.
Photo Copyright © TZ Aviation
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Facts & Figures
- You could make 36,624 strings out of the balloon!
- Each stringtime girl featured on the balloon is around 40 feet tall.
- That means that each girl's waistline is approximately 17 feet wide.
- There are four girls in all featured on the balloon.
- The X type manufactured by Lindstrand is a new type of balloon, designed especially for competitions.
- It is 18.83 m tall, 14.5 m in diameter with a surface area of 8210 feet.
- Shaped like a rugby ball, the balloon has load straps on the inside instead of the outside and it's made from special new silicone coated fabric called Xtel
- The design and fabric are both essential in enabling the balloon to reach top speeds of ascent and descent without distorting.
- It can ascend and descend three times faster than an average balloon - up to 1800 feet a minute compared with the usual 600 feet a minute.
- If you turned the X69 type upside down you could fit 69,000 basketballs in the space.
- This is one of the only balloons to have been printed all over.
- The mouth of the balloon is made from nomex® - the same material as Formula One drivers' suits which is flame resistant and very expensive.