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Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

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Pana
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Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Pana » Mon May 31, 2021 2:36 am

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There has been a few reviews on the Roam 10m, they are good but done either for foiling or on a surf board. Have not seen anything on the 12 and 14 m sizes. For the Flite 14.5 there are a few reviews and they are also good, some done on TT’s. Of these 2 kites which one is the better all arounder for those who exclusively use twintip boards. For me, an advanced (non expert) rider of 200 pounds (91kg) I choose the Roam, read on to see if it’s also the case for you.

Have flown both kites at least in 3 sessions each in light to gusty wind in the 11 to 18 knots range, here are a few details.

Both kites have in common the lightness of the Aluula construction and rigidity and the lower swing weight/inertia greatly benefits the handling and responsiveness. These kites remarkably generate power on the upstroke and feel very efficient. Both fly in less wind that you be tempted to go out and have a large wind range, more on that below.

The feel of the kites is however quite different and are very in line with the announced objectives of their design. In essence the Flite is categorized as a light wind weapon and the Roam a maneuver tool. Wich one is less specific ? See the pictures for some of the differences in strut size & outline.

The Flite feels like a powerfull kite and is best at getting you going on the marginal side of the wind range. The power sensation carries over trough to top speed and delivers awesome hang time. In the gusts although the generous throw allows to compensate I had to adjust the trim more often to remain confortable. Use of a click bar would be beneficial.

At first feel the Roam is quite less powerfull but offers all thats needed to get my 200 pounds going with ease. The Roam is more manoeuvrable & faster flying and will easily generate all the pull you need. Once at speed the kite profile just feels efficient and very comfortable. I am convinced you can ride longer sessions with the Roam, it’s less demanding. It handles gusts and a higher wind range with more comfort.

The Flite handles like an exeptional 14 m kite, the Roam in comparison feels (almost) like a toy compared to other kites, easily 2m smaller in size. Because of the sweet handling & comfort I felt the Roam could jump as high as the Flite but the hang time is much better with the Flite. The Roam down loops (& loops) so nicely (fast and foreseeable) it allows you to keep your speed through transitions which is a critical point at 14m wind speeds.

In conclusion I felt the Flite to be an efficient but more specialised early planing and extended hang time kite. The Roam felt like a verry fun & sweet crossover. It’s a balanced kite kite that will fill all the needs for performance freeriding TT riders.

In all honesty I was charmed by the Roam’s broad performance it’s just so so sweet, but then again I prefer good handling to marginal wind lawn mowing. Guaranteed the 14m Roam will make you reconsider the experience of riding that kite size in + 12 knots. It did for me who had essentially given up using my 14m Enduro v1. This would be even more the case for liter weight riders.

A big thank’s to the 30 Noeud shop in Montreal for lending me a kite to do the comparison. By the way the 12m Roam is also an outstanding all around kite for free-ride twintipping. I would gladly dare try it for some light wind wave ridding in side to side-on conditions.

Good winds,
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These users thanked the author Pana for the post (total 7):
Greenturtle (Mon May 31, 2021 4:50 am) • GregK (Mon May 31, 2021 5:24 am) • Kitehume (Mon May 31, 2021 9:58 am) • Gestalt (Mon May 31, 2021 2:47 pm) • Regis-de-giens (Mon May 31, 2021 2:48 pm) • alkiter (Sun Jun 06, 2021 12:26 pm) • Digdawg (Fri Jun 18, 2021 5:36 am)
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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Greenturtle » Mon May 31, 2021 4:50 am

Wow the LE diameter on the aluula roam looks substantially thinner than on the flite. The opposite of what I would have guessed. Interesting.
Great post, thanks.

Pana
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Favorite Beaches: Cabarete, Silver Sands, Paracuru
Style: Smooth, old school, wave carver
Gear: Ozone Enduro V1&2; 6-7-8-9-10
Ocean Rodeo Aluula Roam 12 & 14m
Nomad wave TT 138x38/ 140x40/ 143X42.5/ 153 X 43
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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Pana » Sun Jun 06, 2021 3:19 am

Anybody else has compared the Roam and Flite and could acknowledge the comparison ?
Cheers !

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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby SolarSet » Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:08 am

Looking at kite tips you can figure out these finding without riding. Roam has all round shape where Flite has high aspect ratio meaning better hand time and higher jumps.

I’m not convinced that Aluula light weight let 91kg to be rinding in 11kts on regular TT.
I can’t really understand how lighter kite contributes to providing more power than regular LEI kite for TT but I’m happy to be enlightened?

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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby leeuwen » Sun Jun 06, 2021 8:43 am

SolarSet wrote:
Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:08 am
I can’t really understand how lighter kite contributes to providing more power than regular LEI kite for TT but I’m happy to be enlightened?
Lighter kite + smaller diameter tube = faster kite.
Faster kite = more power generation
This is especially noticeable with a water start where a normal kite pretty much loses all power after the dive into the up stroke.
My 10M roam just keeps generating power, difference between kite going up or down is minimal.

I also tried my Roam on a twintip but I am not good at jumping with it (pretty sure its mostly my skill) also its relatively uncomfortable in gusty conditions.
At least compared to my XR kites so I will keep those for my twintip days.

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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby SolarSet » Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:32 pm

I understand that they are quicker because less inertia due to lighter weight but once you dive kite and it keep going often there isn’t just enough pull to go upwind so I don’t see how light her weight can make such a significant difference? We are not talking about condition when kite does hindenburg due to weight but you manage water start but can go upwind.

I’m really interested to see if for light wind any lightweight kite can meet LW performance of my Soul

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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Gestalt » Sun Jun 06, 2021 2:06 pm

SolarSet wrote:
Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:32 pm
I understand that they are quicker because less inertia due to lighter weight but once you dive kite and it keep going often there isn’t just enough pull to go upwind so I don’t see how light her weight can make such a significant difference? We are not talking about condition when kite does hindenburg due to weight but you manage water start but can go upwind.

I’m really interested to see if for light wind any lightweight kite can meet LW performance of my Soul
GregK pointed out elsewhere on the forum: "When you have a fast-moving kite, you can generate more apparent wind over the kite and lot more power than by sheeting in, as kite lift is proportional to the square of wind-speed over the wing whereas the lift is only linearly proportional to the angle-of-attack ( sheeting in ). Put another way, double the windspeed moving over your kite and you get 4 times the power, while sheeting in and doubling the angle of the kite to the wind over it will only double the power."

From personal experience in sub 10 knot winds I was faced with the decision of a fast 8m Aluula Roam or my old 15m Flysrufer Speed 3. The smaller faster kite easily outperforms the big foil kite for waterstart on a hydrofoil. Hydrofoil easily goes upwind so this wasn't an issue. The 15m foil kite may have more grunt, but if it's not enough to pull you up on plane and accelerate you, you lose all power by the end of the down stroke as the kite effectively stalls. On a smaller Aluula Roam you can continuously generate power even on the upstroke so you keep momentum/speed going.

I recently got a 17m Aluula Flite and Sonic 3 15m. I will test them out back to back in a few weeks on my next kitetrip to compare for twintip.

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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby SolarSet » Sun Jun 06, 2021 3:42 pm

That would be interesting comparison as I often ride my Soul 15m while other lighter rides are on 17m LEI and seems to have similar upwind but I can jump much higher than LEI riders

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Gestalt
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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Gestalt » Sun Jun 06, 2021 11:08 pm

SolarSet wrote:
Sun Jun 06, 2021 3:42 pm
That would be interesting comparison as I often ride my Soul 15m while other lighter rides are on 17m LEI and seems to have similar upwind but I can jump much higher than LEI riders
In 10-20 knots there is no question a foil kite will jump higher than an LEI. This is why I have a 15m and 11m Sonic3 in my quiver to cover that range.

In sub 10 knots though where jumping isn't really something you go for, I prefer the Aluula LEI, especially for foiling. It's hard to describe the feeling and sensation of having power on tap by being able to alter the speed of the kite so effectively. No other kite I have ever tried can do that in this way.

Elsewhere on the forum someone compared an 18m Soul to a 17m Aluula Flite. IIRC the person said the Soul has more grunt if you can get going in Light wind, however the Flite will stay in the sky longer before falling down. With the foil kite you rely on its high AR and "raw power", with Aluula LEI you get LW performance more from the ability generate apparent wind through speed. I think at the end of the day the performance is similar enough although achieved through slightly different mechanics.
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Re: Aluula Roam 14m vs Flite 14.5, the better all-arounder ?

Postby Windigo1 » Mon Jun 07, 2021 12:52 pm

Pana wrote:
Sun Jun 06, 2021 3:19 am
Anybody else has compared the Roam and Flite and could acknowledge the comparison ?
Cheers !
I have flown the 14.5 Flite and the 10M Roam but not the 14M, both Allula. I would say he's mostly right they are both great kites for what they are intended to do. The Flite is a ligth wind freeride kite and it excels at that. As soon as you start moving it builds power quickly and goes upwind well. It's fast a reactive for a big kite and jumping with it is great it brings you up smoothly and brings you back down smoothly. Really awesome kite if it wasn't crazy expensive I would get one but I foil in ligth wind so I can't justify that.

The Roam is a mellow wave kite and it's also bang on for it's intended use. It's not very powerful but it's quick enough to keep it moving to generate power. It's incredibly smooth in gusty and strong wind and drifts very well. Great kite for foiling too. Both kite are so ligth that they stay in the air in very little wind comparable to single strut kites. I still prefer my 9M Boxer over the 10M Roam for foiling but the Roam has the advantage of being a very rigid 3 struts with almost the same weight so if the wind goes up it can handle it much better. I have flown the Roam 10M in super nasty wind with gusts over 30 knots on the snow and I was amazed how smooth it was.


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