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Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

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stephk
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby stephk » Thu May 28, 2015 6:23 pm

You can sometimes find it by keeping the bladder inside the kite and rubbing soapy water over the kite.
if the it is a pin hole, it may be difficult to find the leak that way.

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edt
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby edt » Thu May 28, 2015 7:08 pm

LetsFlyaKite wrote:Is there an easy way to find out where a kite is leaking? Should I go over it with soapy water while the bladder is still in the sleeve? Or take the whole thing out and try to find it that way?
always always always find the general location of the hole first. Never just take out the bladder to check.

There are a hundred different possibilities of what can go wrong. Maybe the valve you pump up with is leaking. then all you have to do to fix it is unzip the leading edge do a restick and you are done. Maybe one of your cable ties came loose and it's leaking at the seal. then you don't even have to take anything apart. Just get a new zip tie. Perhaps the hole is allll the way at the end. then you don't have to take the bladder out at all, just undo the end and pull out a few inches so you can reseal the end.

I know it seems like extra trouble because a lot of the times you have to dunk your kite twice, once to find the general location of the hole (or holes) and then a second time to pinpoint the exact location. but it saves a lot of trouble. Especially if there is more than one hole you get a general idea of the problems. Maybe there are two holes in the bladder one on the right one on the left. If you pump it up hard both holes show easily. But then when you pull out the bladder only one hole seems to show. Because you got the general idea of the placement of the holes you will keep trying to find that second hole instead of putting the bladder back in and having to take it out again.

Just my advice, I treat my kites like garbage, stick it in the trees constantly, so I am pretty expert at fixing these bladders by now.

Last week I put my kite in a blackberry bush three times. One time because I misjudged my kiteloop. the second time because the kite was deflated and didn't catch me, and the third time because I can't seem to learn my lesson. got 10 holes from that little episode.

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LetsFlyaKite
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby LetsFlyaKite » Thu May 28, 2015 11:46 pm

edt wrote:
LetsFlyaKite wrote:Is there an easy way to find out where a kite is leaking? Should I go over it with soapy water while the bladder is still in the sleeve? Or take the whole thing out and try to find it that way?
always always always find the general location of the hole first. Never just take out the bladder to check.

There are a hundred different possibilities of what can go wrong. Maybe the valve you pump up with is leaking. then all you have to do to fix it is unzip the leading edge do a restick and you are done. Maybe one of your cable ties came loose and it's leaking at the seal. then you don't even have to take anything apart. Just get a new zip tie. Perhaps the hole is allll the way at the end. then you don't have to take the bladder out at all, just undo the end and pull out a few inches so you can reseal the end.

I know it seems like extra trouble because a lot of the times you have to dunk your kite twice, once to find the general location of the hole (or holes) and then a second time to pinpoint the exact location. but it saves a lot of trouble. Especially if there is more than one hole you get a general idea of the problems. Maybe there are two holes in the bladder one on the right one on the left. If you pump it up hard both holes show easily. But then when you pull out the bladder only one hole seems to show. Because you got the general idea of the placement of the holes you will keep trying to find that second hole instead of putting the bladder back in and having to take it out again.

Just my advice, I treat my kites like garbage, stick it in the trees constantly, so I am pretty expert at fixing these bladders by now.

Last week I put my kite in a blackberry bush three times. One time because I misjudged my kiteloop. the second time because the kite was deflated and didn't catch me, and the third time because I can't seem to learn my lesson. got 10 holes from that little episode.
First of all, thank you for taking the time to explain that. I have a leak in my kite, and it sucks because I just finished taking my lessons and I'm ready to go out on my own.

But lets say we have a leak at one of the valve stems. Can I find out just by spraying soapy water on it? I live right by the bay, and I was thinking about just taking the whole kite and dunking it in water, maybe that's an option? Also, I just had an episode where the rubber seal that deflates the kite popped out. So without even thinking, I popped it back in and inflated the kite, maybe that's where the leak is?

stephk
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby stephk » Fri May 29, 2015 1:55 am

The first year I started kiting 10 years ago I had a leak in my kite during my first kite trip to Cape Cod, USA. My kite would not last more than 20 minutes inflated. That is when I found out that kites actually need maintenance sometimes :)
I figured out that if I dunked it in a pool of water I would be able to find the leak. Sure enough, when the tide lowered I found a small wading pool of water on the beach and dunked the kite underwater until I finally found the leak. I fixed it with crazy glue cause that is all I had on me. :-?

So YES, you can find a leak by dunking your kite under water and looking for bubbles.

Subsequently, after getting back from that trip my room mate and I founded http://www.KITEAID.com Repair Products... :D


Stephan
p.s. Don't use crazy glue! It is too hard and will crack :nono:

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edt
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby edt » Fri May 29, 2015 4:48 am

"But lets say we have a leak at one of the valve stems. Can I find out just by spraying soapy water on it?"

yes you can

" I live right by the bay, and I was thinking about just taking the whole kite and dunking it in water, maybe that's an option?"

that's a great way to find the general location of a leak

"Also, I just had an episode where the rubber seal that deflates the kite popped out. So without even thinking, I popped it back in and inflated the kite, maybe that's where the leak is?"

Sure that might be it.

go for it!

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LetsFlyaKite
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby LetsFlyaKite » Fri May 29, 2015 1:05 pm

Thank you so much man. You don't know what kind of a struggle it's been to get out there in the water and learn this stuff. It's the price we gotta pay to live the dream. Honestly, I feel like crying right now. This helps me out tremendous

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LetsFlyaKite
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby LetsFlyaKite » Mon Jun 01, 2015 12:36 am

Alright so I just did the dunking of the kite in the water method and found out it is leaking from the valve plug that lets air out. This makes a lot of sense because I accidently pulled the whole thing out, and stuffed it back in again thinking the pressure from the air would seal it. But I guess not.

How should I repair this? I was thinking about getting 3M 5200 and glueing around the valve plug and either putting weight on it so it dries flat, or filling the whole thing up with air so it keeps pressure on the valve plug. What do you guys think I should do?

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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby kiteaid » Mon Jun 01, 2015 12:52 am

Sometimes the valve stems expands so much that the plug becomes too small to block the air. I have fixed this a few times by finding a drill bit slightly bigger than the hole in the bottom of the plug. First heat the plug up using a hairdryer or by putting steam on it from a kettle for abouf 2 minutes. Press the drill bits blunt end into the valve plug hole. Let it cool in cold water before removing the drill bit. Now the valve plug should be bit bigger and make a better seal inside of the valve flange ☺

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LetsFlyaKite
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby LetsFlyaKite » Mon Jun 01, 2015 1:16 pm

You think that will do it? That's why the plug popped out in the first place? Honestly I'm scared to take a heat gun anywhere near the bladder

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JBZ
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Re: Tips and Tricks to Repair Kites - add your experience!

Postby JBZ » Mon Aug 17, 2015 4:35 pm

LetsFlyaKite wrote:Alright so I just did the dunking of the kite in the water method and found out it is leaking from the valve plug that lets air out. This makes a lot of sense because I accidently pulled the whole thing out, and stuffed it back in again thinking the pressure from the air would seal it. But I guess not.

How should I repair this? I was thinking about getting 3M 5200 and glueing around the valve plug and either putting weight on it so it dries flat, or filling the whole thing up with air so it keeps pressure on the valve plug. What do you guys think I should do?
I don't know if you will ever be able to get the valve opened after doing that. I just fixed 14 valves with 3m 5200...shit works great. and it is not coming off. kite held air for 24 hours with out a problem.


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