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improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 12:38 pm
by slowboat
If I am using a low aspect strutless kite and a fat surf wing, will a different wing allow better upwind angles or am I still limited by my kite?

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 1:16 pm
by freotilo
would u mind sharing ur exact setup?

id say it always depends on a lot of factors like conditions, skills and line length .. any chance for u to demo or try someone elses wing in ur area ..?

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:21 pm
by tomtom
Recently Horst, state that he is able to go steepest upwind on very big surf wing. Peter Frank thinks wing that aspect ratio of HF has big role on angle. I dont see any reason to be like that. IMO sheer ammount of Lift is lateral force in this vector equation so imo it is possible to go very steep on big surf wing. VMG is completely different game though.

Maybe Horst will correct me if i misunderstand him.

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:23 pm
by jumptheshark
Hiking over to use the wing itself to lift you upwind gains you a lot of ground (as apposed to riding with the foil really upright and using the mast for most of your lateral resistance). If your on a shorter mast, your ability to do that is limited to an extent. With less than high aspect kites, the upwind angle starts out really poor when at the very bottom end of a kites range, but as soon as you are marginally powered up it improves pretty easily. Once overpowered you can creep upwind at ridiculous angles, your just going at a snail pace with the kite carrying most of your weight. Cant scream upwind like the race guys with a set up like you describe, but that's not really what that set up is geared toward. They still get you upwind pretty easy.

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:48 pm
by Pemba
I don't have a foil, nor a kite foil. However it appears to me that the direction of pull of the kite is the direction the lines have. So the answer to your question is yes, you will be limited by your kite, a kite that flies closer to the edge of the window (a foil for instance), can improve - to some degree - your upwind angle. I think...

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:15 pm
by Regis-de-giens
In my experience AR of the foil wings helps clearly. But to me one important factor for upwind angle (Of you accept to forget about speed and VMG) is to be able to ride as slow as possible since apparent wind of your own speed will degrade the traction angle. Hence :
- kite as big as possible , applicable even if not a good L/D ratio like strutt less
- wing as big as possible. High AR will help unless it is too.instablecat low low speed (medium AR is more stable at liwer wind).

With my medium AR kite and big foilwing, I had similar if not better extreme upwind angle than a race competitor on race kite with similar size kite . Hard to believe but true. Bit was riding far slower than him

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:41 pm
by AndersP
Big tilted wing, kite high and as far forward in the window you can get is probably the best you can get without changing gear.

Horst is getting high 😎 with minimising drag and having a big wing.

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:42 pm
by BWD
Highest wind angle I ever got I think was with a big c kite and a long alaia (6’9”). Easily better than 30 deg to wind. Problem was edging a little more made the kite fall. And speed was like 4-5 knots. Very efficient in a limited way but very limited angles and only fun for a couple of minutes.
Best vmg by far though has been with a foil, 9m kite, medium fast speed. Much more fun.
I am sure with foil size just as board size you can push bigness to levels where fun suffers despite any limited benefit...

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 5:04 pm
by Mossy 757
Just to nitpick your original post, you didn't specify "for what."

So like some have said, if it's just to trace the narrowest angle to the wind regardless of speed, there's probably an equation that optimizes kite traction to the lifting forces of the foil that someone on here will attempt to calculate...yawn.

If you want to use your freeride gear to be competitive on a race course just for fun, you can get a great angle by going a bit slower but much higher than the racers and see if you can win a race by never missing a tack or gybe. There are PLENTY of guys at the regattas I've been to on less than racing gear who beat people on high end racing gear just by being slow and steady. I think there's a story about that involving a tortoise...

You might also try shorter lines on your kite (wind range permitting) as that can have a positive impact in upwind angle as well. This is much more prevalent on foil kites than inflatables.

If you are thinking more along the lines of getting back upwind after cruising downwind on some righteous swell, then this sort of turns more into a conversation about mast length not wing size. The shorter the mast, the less you can lean over and really power the foil upwind; if you're into surf foiling, select a mast that optimizes upwind hiking angle to get back to the top of the downwinder relative to a short mast that gives you more control and carving. That right there is probably the single greatest variable to consider once you've got a wing that is enjoyable to ride.

Re: improving upwind angle

Posted: Fri Nov 30, 2018 5:07 pm
by windmaker
slowboat wrote:
Fri Nov 30, 2018 12:38 pm
If I am using a low aspect strutless kite and a fat surf wing, will a different wing allow better upwind angles or am I still limited by my kite?
To make things clear and all things being equal:

1) A higher aspect wing will improve your vmg but not the upwind angle.

2) Strutless (and 1 strut) kites are the worst out there for going upwind (they have other advantages) because they have a smaller window of flight.

You can't go higher upwind than what your kite will take you therefore a thinner profile/higher aspect shape which has a wider window of flight will make a difference in upwind angle and vmg.