Pearse here and I am new to your forum. Thanks for having me here. Long first post I know but I am being honest and complete.
I have been kiting for a while now, but am by no means a top dog. I kite to have fun and if I am smiling at the end of the day then I had a good session. If my friends are smiling too then it was a great day all around. I make only one claim to any one style, smile style.
Here is my honest input on the Nitros.
First Impression of the 10m Nitro:
This spring I was lucky enough to run into Felix and he hooked me up with a 10m Switch Nitro. I got to ride it in head high surf. The kite was a blast. It was fast and delivered smooth power thru the turns. The bar pressure is moderate, which was more than I was used to. I crashed a few times; the relaunch was easy and quick saving me from a few good poundings. The downwind drift was nice too. I didn’t have any issues out running the kite on the waves. A few jumps on the inside were big and smooth and I found the moderate bar pressure helpful with the redirection of the kite. Over all it was a really fun day and I was very happy with the kite.
Since then I have sold my 2008 kites and am riding 8, 10, and 12m Nitros. Here on the Olympic Peninsula we mainly ride flat water with an occasional trip to the coast for waves.
Ordering the kites was a breeze, I got them in 8 days with no issues, all the gear was packaged nicely and arrived as it should. I ordered on a Friday so maybe I could have gotten them quicker if I ordered them on any other day as they didn’t ship till Monday.
First Impression of the bar:
The bar pressure was moderate, which is more than I was used to. After two hours I could feel a little wear on the inside of my left elbow. The trim strap is above the bar and easy to use. The bar limiter/stopper ball was easy to adjust, designed nicely to push away easily. The bar seems like it could have cushier grip but I like the smaller diameter that my old bar. It is easy to adjust the bar length from 45 to 55cm. The CL release is a push to eject and worked effortlessly. The bar comes with 20m lines, 3m extensions, and a leash. The bar floats are bigger than I am used to but they do float the bar, my old bar sinks.
I have been riding the bar for a month now and no longer experience the sourness inside my elbows. I had one close call where an outside line got wrapped around the bar and sent my kite into a death spiral, the CL release was effortless and worked as it should depowering the kite almost completely and self rescue was a success. (Thanks Christian for having my back just in case)
First impression of the 12m nitro
(first posted on PSKite 5/26)
The kite looks great!
Build quality looks really good; materials feel strong and stitching looks top quality. The bridals seem on par. The transfer pulley is removable without unstitching, making replacement as easy as it should be. Leading edge bumper guards and reinforced wingtip and strut ends are appropriate. I could regurgitate all the details about glued and doubled stitched seams, internal reinforcement with Dacron and adhesive-backed Mark Cloth at stress points, extra heavy duty thread, two parallel seams on durable TPU bladders plus reinforced valve locations, or you can read about that in much more detail on the website. It is impressive.
The inflation points look really good; this has been a weak point on all of my previous kites. Nice to see Switch took the time to address this. Single point inflation/deflation, huge inflation valve allows the kite to be pumped up much faster, 50ish pumps for the 12m. The low profile angled strut valves means no valves bending over and splitting as has happened to most of my previous kites, though they look intimidating in the event of having to change the bladder. I am sure once you know how it is not so scary. A demo video or instruction sheet is a must. I don’t want to experiment on my own.
I got the 12m out yesterday evening 5/25 from 5 to 7 pm. Had the bar set up at 55 cm and steering lines set on 2nd knots at the bridle. I’m 185lbs and was on the 131 skywalker pro. I am estimating the wind to be 10 to 15kt. The water was a light chop with light whitecaps at times. A squall came true producing some solid 15kt gusts. Thru the gusts the kite jumped nicely 15 to 20 feet and redirected well. The rest of the time jumps were in the 5’ and under range. I down looped the kite a bunch on transitions as well as worked on slow backloops, working towards a tailslide, I’m not going to butter Tuna’s dark muffin. The Nitro powered smoothly into and out of the turns/loops. I was surprised at the quickness of the turns in such light wind. I did crash the kite twice of failed loops, relaunch was very quick, the kite was at the edge of the window when it hit the water, I had it back in the air with in a few seconds, and I was impressed at this in the light wind.
Since I have had a few light wind sessions on the 12m Nitro and the one word for it is smooth. The power and steering is really fluent. I am loving the moderate bar pressure, it lets me know what the kite is doing and has been really helpful in redirecting the kite while jumping and thru rotations. This kite has given me confidence and I am pushing my limits more and more with every session.
Have fun out there