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Beginner question

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Re: Beginner question

Postby tomato » Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:26 am

yeah, your instructor sucks...

if you want to understand launch- i would suggest to do tethered launch, check on youtube for instructions, but with person holding your kite when you find best position. It is clearly visible where in upwind/downwind you must be during launch.

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Re: Beginner question

Postby cdbxyz » Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:51 am

Have you had any lessons? This is pretty basic stuff but easy to get it badly wrong...

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Re: Beginner question

Postby Exal » Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:55 am

You should also be careful about where you are launching. Is the wind coming steady from the same direction and you are on an open beach or are there trees or other things around that might cause turbulence? Is it really gusty? All those things can mess with the launch. Took me a while to get the hang of launching the kite properly, definitely didn't master it during my lesson.

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Re: Beginner question

Postby Herman » Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:30 am

There is some good advice above but I would add another point. USE YOUR EYES!!

With the kite at 90° to the wind and bar sheeted out the trailing edge of the kite will be flapping. Leaving the bar sheeted out but having and MAINTAINING tension in the front lines walk slowly upwind. You will reach a point where the trailing edge stops flapping and becomes taught. Just a tad further upwind is the ideal launch position for a beginner to launch.

A tether launch is similar, you start with the kite at ~90° and walk it back until the TE stops flapping. Do this to understand what's going on with somebody who knows what they are doing. Personally if I were to instruct this would be one of my early lessons so the newbie could see what is actually happening with the kite. You would see the trailing edge stop flapping then as you walk further into the window you would feel the kite start to push forward after couple of steps.

PS. I put MAINTAIN front line tension in capitals to stop you making a classic newbie mistake. "Newbie sees kite is too far upwind let's line go slack, walks too far upwind retentions lines and pushes assistant along the beach!"

(Once you develop the skills there is often no need to touch the bar launching, you can just raise the kite off the deck with a tug of the top leader and there is no need to scud down the beach. The fundamentals of this are basic but to fully understand all the subtle points and have the most control possible is far from basic and needs a full understanding of kite control imho)

Regards Herman
Last edited by Herman on Tue Sep 01, 2020 10:34 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Beginner question

Postby Kiteaddicted » Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:50 am

Check out YouTube clips on beach launching. Will help you see what the kite should look like and where you should be positioned relative to launcher.

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Re: Beginner question

Postby Hugh2 » Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:53 pm

And don't go to the other extreme. I cannot believe how many otherwise seemingly competent kiters will bowl their launcher over by being too much upwind when they tighten the lines, all too often a girlfriend or wife who doesn't understand what is going on and hence does not compensate by first walking upwind with the kite on its back.

Even worse are the clueless people I've encountered who seem determined to kill themselves or others nearby by hot launching a 12m kite while everyone around them is on 10 or less. Happened most recently at Sherman Island near Charleston in South Carolina. Guy was even pissed off that another kiter and I intervened to save his butt.

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