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Power and Kite Size

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OzBungy
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Power and Kite Size

Postby OzBungy » Tue Mar 19, 2019 12:41 am

I have been experimenting over the past few months, deliberately going out with the "wrong" kite size. Riding with 4-5m kites in the mid teens and 10-12-15m kites in up to 25 knots. All kites have been 3 strut surf-style LEI kites on 24m lines.

It appears you can put up any kite you want and make it work. Obviously the "right" size kite is more fun for the conditions, and smaller kites are always a joy.

The limiting factor of small kites seems to be the ability to water start reasonably comfortably. If you can get going with a couple of swoops then you can ride ok. If the kite is too small then you're fine as long as you can keep up and riding. The apparent wind is ample for riding but you might not have enough power to get up on the board. The biggest risks are getting stuck in the water in a lull, or stalling the kite, mainly during a transition.

With a large kite, if the wind is too light the kite can be too slow to get a decent water start. At the upper end, riding along is fine, apparent wind upwind is scary but manageable. Transitions can be a but dodgey. The downwind legs of a transition can be extended and it can take a while to slow down.

Jumping seems to be compromised (well it is for me). If the kite is too big I find it hard to hold the edge to get a good boost. Smaller kites with more wind seem to jump better. That could be me.

The conclusions I am being drawn to are:
- foils are so efficient that you get a heap more bottom end out of a kite.
- that increase in the bottom end doesn't translate into a proportional loss in top end. The same skills and abilities that apply to TT and surfboards apply just as well to a foil. The same ability to edge and apply body weight and position in the window and managing apparent wind work just fine. The loss in top end is relatively small.

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Peter_Frank
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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby Peter_Frank » Tue Mar 19, 2019 6:14 am

True - hydrofoils got an amazing wind range so to speak.

8) PF

tkaraszewski
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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby tkaraszewski » Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:38 pm

I’ve been thinking about this, too, though I’ve done more with riding small kites in low winds than big kites in high winds so far, but the race guys certainly manage.

I’ve been thinking of trying to pick a two-kite travel quiver, which might be 6m/10m or something very close to that.

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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby Jyoder » Wed Mar 20, 2019 4:46 pm

I have a 3 kite quiver due to being cheap, but works well for me. I foil only.
Cloud 5.5m
Liquid force solo 9m
Cloud 17m

I think learning to manage off-size kites makes you a better kiter/rider.

Cloud 17m in 15-18mph winds on 10m lines is possible, but a clencher for sure.

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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby naivhere » Mon Apr 08, 2019 2:37 pm

tkaraszewski wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:38 pm
I’ve been thinking about this, too, though I’ve done more with riding small kites in low winds than big kites in high winds so far, but the race guys certainly manage.

I’ve been thinking of trying to pick a two-kite travel quiver, which might be 6m/10m or something very close to that.
Hi! May I ask how much you weigh? And what kind of kites you are thinking of and what kind of wind range you think you could cover.

tkaraszewski
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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby tkaraszewski » Mon Apr 08, 2019 3:21 pm

naivhere wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 2:37 pm
tkaraszewski wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:38 pm
I’ve been thinking about this, too, though I’ve done more with riding small kites in low winds than big kites in high winds so far, but the race guys certainly manage.

I’ve been thinking of trying to pick a two-kite travel quiver, which might be 6m/10m or something very close to that.
Hi! May I ask how much you weigh? And what kind of kites you are thinking of and what kind of wind range you think you could cover.
I weigh about 180lbs/80kg.

I've been in La Ventana Mexico this past week, and riding my 7m and 9m F-one Bandits. I can ride the 9m from about 11 or 12 knots up to about 20. I had the 7m out yesterday in up to 25 knots. I can also ride the 7m down to about 13 knots.

I also brought a 12m Bandit with me, but it doesn't really add any low-end over the 9m, because the problem stops being lack of power from the kite, but just the ability to keep the kite flying through light spots at all.

I also have a 10m Flysurfer Soul, that I didn't bring on this trip, that I've been able to ride down to 10-11 knots.

I know some people on here talk about riding in 5-8 knots of wind, but I find it hard to believe. I've spent lots of days at beaches with lots of very good kiters at them (Cabarete, La Ventana, Tarifa) and on my 10m Soul I'd usually be among the first people on the water. Typically the only people out before me are are racers on 15m or 18m foil kites. So is it possible to kite in 7-8 knots? Probably, but I see a lot fewer people doing this is real life than claim to be able to do it on the internet.

Anyway, the 10m Soul has a range for me from about 10-20 knots. I think a 6m Soul would probably be usable to almost 30 knots, so that quiver would cover 10-30.

But on a light single-strut kite (maybe the new Ozone Alpha?) I'd guess you could have almost the exact same range in inflatable kites with a 6 and 10m.

My problem deciding is that I enjoy wave-style kites for certain riding and higher-aspect kites for different riding styles, so I might pick an inflatable smaller kite and foil larger kite. Or maybe I need to get the 6m Soul and try it in wavy conditions.
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TomW
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Re: Power and Kite Size

Postby TomW » Mon Apr 08, 2019 7:02 pm

Hyperlink v1 UL 9m works for me 10 knots and up to 18knots maxed out. 80kg dry ( add 5 kg in winter) moses 633 wing.
Sonic 2 13 m gets me going in 4ms (7,5 knots) and has power in reserve once up. Over 14knots it's a bit much.
Hyperlink v1 7m gets me going in 14-15 knots, had it out in gusts 20-22 and it was fine.


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