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New info on the KiteRelease?

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dpca10
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New info on the KiteRelease?

Postby dpca10 » Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:58 am

Anyone have any new info on the KiteRelease. I know there was a big debate about it's utility a while back. I haven't heard anything since before the expo, when several people were planning to test it according to the previous posts. If anyone has some new experiences positive or negative with the bar to share, I (and i'm sure others) would like to hear them.

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Postby marina » Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:32 pm

I believe production got delayed a bit so the product has not been sent out for testing yet. As I understand from Mike, he will be gettting them shortly and sending them out for feedback and reviews. I forwarded this thread to him for an update. He's a commercial airline pilot so he may be out of the country for a few days....

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Postby purdyd » Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:50 pm

i had a chance to look and test it but not fly a kite with it

phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=2328325&highlight=

it works and is very well made, i have little doubt it will function properly

the only doubt on my mind, is will it release prematurely? That is, during the normal course of launching and landing does the load exceed your weight? I don't know! (not talking pros going for hang time contests here but it can be locked)

The inventor Mike says he has not had an early release. Hopefully, when this gets in the hands of a few more people this will be verified.

David

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Postby B1B » Mon Jun 12, 2006 9:34 pm

I asked Mike a few questions via email. I hope he does not mind me sharing his responses here:
1. http://www.KiteFlightSports .com is a new online store that will be online by
the 21st of June. I know we originally posted June 1, and I do apologize for
being late, but unforeseen delays have pushed us back about 3 weeks. I'm new
at the running your own business thing, and I'm learning a lot as I go about
international business. :) We are also in discussions with several large
distributors, so hopefully the KiteRelease will be widely available at
kiteboarding stores by midsummer...

2. MSRP is US $199. KiteFlight Sports will almost certainly have discounts
available for multiple purchases, however as soon as the distributors pick
up the contract those discounts will probably disappear.

3. Samples will be sent out for independent review just as soon as we have
production models in stock, hopefully June 21st.

4. I don't know much about landboarding unfortunately. As soon as we're up
to speed on production and distribution I plan on looking into that. I've
spoken to a few people who do landboard and they seemed to think it would be
great for that. As far as snowkiting, I have bench tested the KiteRelease at
0 degrees Fahrenheit and it works just fine. I do plan on doing snowkite
testing next Winter... I can't see why it wouldn't work great for that, but
I haven't tested it in actual snow conditions yet. As far as considerations,
my untested guess is that you could go with lower release tensions, thereby
decreasing risk.

Again, I apologize for the delays in production. Hopefully this answers your
questions!

Good Winds!
Mike Kirnak
Sports Safety Designs
Hi there,
> A couple of questions for you:
> 1) Where can the Kiterelease be purchased?
> 2) How much? (Any discounts for getting multiples?)
> 3) Have the suggested reviewers from kiteforum.com such as Ricki had a
> chance to review the product and what are their results?
> 4) A question was asked on the forums about the products suitability for
> kiteboarding on land. Will it work for that and on snow? What issues would
> I need to take into consideration?
>
> Thanks,
> Rob

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Postby Nak » Tue Jun 13, 2006 5:59 am

Hi Everybody!

Thanks again for all of the interest, especially Toby, RickI, David, and Marina whose input has been especially helpful. I had done a fair amount of testing launching and landing kites with the KiteRelease, but David's questions made me realize I needed to do more. I've spent quite a bit of time at the Oregon coast lately learning as much as I could about tension and the KiteRelease during launching and landing. I'll put up a very short video highlighting the basics on KiteForum.TV shortly, but for now, this is what I've learned.

The following data relates to dragging in sand with no grade up or down. Dragging down a slope results in lower percentages, while dragging up a slope has slightly higher percentages. With a purely horizontal pull, in either wet or dry sand, you start to drag at about 80% of body weight. In wet sand if you really dig in hard you can hold up to about 90% of your bodyweight while dragging. In dry sand, after you start to drag you can really dig in--if you don't fall over--and hold about 105% of your bodyweight while dragging. The above weights assume a steady slow pull under ideal circumstances. Sudden force, such as a sudden gust, has a higher chance of pulling you over, preventing you from reaching the higher percentages. Once prone, 80% of your bodyweight is sufficient to keep you dragging. Also, as speed increases, tension increases.

Nuisance releases:
KiteRelease calibrated to 100% bodyweight.
After hours spent on the beach doing nothing but trying to get a nuisance release I did not get one nuisance release. Every release occurred while I was doing something that should have had negative consequences. I think most kiteboarders would be happy with this setting.

KiteRelease calibrated to 90% bodyweight.
Again, after hours spent on the beach doing nothing but trying to get a nuisance release I did get one nuisance release. I consider it nuisance because I could have handled the drag; at least I believe I could have. I don't think a beginner would have considered it a nuisance release. Intermediates and the more safety conscious kiteboarders would probably settle on this calibration.

KiteRelease calibrated to 80% bodyweight.
At this setting anything sketchy at all resulted in a release. I think most kiteboarders would be unhappy with this calibration, on the other hand I think beginners should consider this setting.


Bodydragging.
Bodydragging worked well at all three calibrations.

Waterstarts.
KiteRelease calibrated to 100% bodyweight.
Conservative waterstarts and riding accomplished easily.

KiteRelease calibrated to 90% bodyweight.
Very conservative waterstarts and riding accomplished with some care.

KiteRelease calibrated to 80% bodyweight.
Waterstarts very difficult to accomplish. Very conservative riding possible.

All of the testing was done with a “Câ€

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Postby mattyoaks » Tue Jun 13, 2006 1:29 pm

heres a thought, you are on the beach and you have the thing set on launch mode, then you take your hand off the one side of the bar to grab your board, and a gust comes thru and the thing releases while you only have one hand on the bar, cuasing the kite to start to start looping, if you have a kite leash to your 5th line, it will be fine, you can just let go, but some kites dont have leshes (cabrinha nitro) then what happens. Because we all know that dropping your kite with no leash is pretty bad for any toddlers walking down wind etc etc :idea:

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Postby purdyd » Tue Jun 13, 2006 1:55 pm

mattyoaks wrote:heres a thought, you are on the beach and you have the thing set on launch mode, then you take your hand off the one side of the bar to grab your board, and a gust comes thru and the thing releases while you only have one hand on the bar, cuasing the kite to start to start looping, if you have a kite leash to your 5th line, it will be fine, you can just let go, but some kites dont have leshes (cabrinha nitro) then what happens. Because we all know that dropping your kite with no leash is pretty bad for any toddlers walking down wind etc etc :idea:
have you ever unhooked and done a jump? i aint gods gift to unhooking but there is quite a bit of pull, i don't imagine you would keep your one hand on the bar very long

also from talking to Mike, a lighter grip on the bar is useful

also for the kite release to work safely, you need to have a leash, or more precisely, a method other than the chicken loop to depower, i thought that was obvious myself, but maybe not

you can see by Mike's response that he has put a lot of thought into this and is gathering up information that is truly useful, like how much force is required to slide on sand?

really what is lacking for Mike is a good understanding of the magnitude of forces involved in kitesurfing but it is an industry wide problem

Mike is finding out the answer, one point at a time with his kite release testing.

He is also a pretty big guy so you can be sure it is well built :)

David


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