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A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

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azoele
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A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby azoele » Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:04 pm

Can I tap the collective wisdom on hydrofoil tacks? :oops:

I am getting about 2 out of 10 successful foiling tacks (without foot switch, thus heelside-to-toeside).
I fail the others 99% of the time because I do not have enough pull from the kite after I have changed direction: no pull and the foil stalls.

My question is: how (and if) do you loop the kite during tacks?
If I try to loop the kite, I end up usually doing a foiling 360° (sometimes they succeed and they are cool), but I wonder if there is a technique to use a loop to maintain steady pull during the tack, or at least to have prompt power as soon as I need it.

I even though of doing a front loop as soon as I have my body turned and in toeside position... never tried though! :roll: :D

Thanks all!

P.s.
Funny, I just saw a thread about the 100 tacks challenge... guess I need more than learning to loop to get as proficient as some seem to be! :D

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby tkaraszewski » Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:33 pm

You don't need to loop the kite to tack, though it can make it easier sometimes on small kites. If you are coming out low on power, just turn the kite faster. If you let the kite stall overhead while you work out what you're doing with your body and board, you'll come out of the tack with the kite too high and not moving fast enough to keep you moving. The kite should continue to move smoothly across the top of the wind window as you tack, if anything, accelerating downward as you finish the tack. You also may want to lean back into your lines and point harder upwind as you come out of the tack to keep tension on your lines and pull in your kite.


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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby FLandOBX » Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:50 pm

I'm also learning tacks and can usually get through them on my strong side, but not consistently without a touch-down. So others will be able to speak from more experience.

I use a loop for my tacks just like for a 360. So I pull the loop with my original back hand and just continue pulling the kite across to the new toeside direction. I find that the loop provides the power I need to complete the tack. I also find that, with the loop, I often end up with the board oriented a bit downwind (like a 270), which allows me time to adjust my balance to toeside and carve back up to the new direction. I assume that, as I get more efficient, I'll come out of the tack immediately beating close-hauled on toeside. Learning 360's with kite loops first seems to have helped me with learning tacks.

It's easier for me to tack without touch-downs using a foil kite (FS Soul) than a LEI, because the foil kite provides more lift as I pull in the bar through the maneuver and then loop it. If you're always on LEI's, it helps to be powered with a larger kite, as opposed to riding the smallest kite possible for the wind condition.

Have fun with it. :thumb:

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby Jyoder » Fri Jul 02, 2021 1:34 am

When I don’t kite in a while I start failing tacks and this is what helps me get back to 100%:

When normally powered, you need to turn the bar harder than you’re used to as kite is overhead so the kite dives back into the power zone. If you sheet in too much to get this turn authority, you slow the kite down and so it lags overhead and you come off foil as you try to ride out.

1. Turn the bar harder (kite may even need to do a kind of “S” shape flight path to get enough juice from power zone, kind of like when you crank it late in a gybe and have to send it back and around like an “S”.

2. Don’t sheet in too much. (This is counter intuitive as you want lift to help with foot switch and this muscle memory is hard to fight).

Also, if you don’t turn the board around far enough, or you turn it too tight, you will lose speed and energy to complete the tack. Find the happy medium. Helps to look under your armpit or over your shoulder to the direction you want to ride out.

3. Turn far enough to new direction, but not too tight a turn.

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby Herman » Fri Jul 02, 2021 10:21 pm

I had exactly the same feel of no power to ride out on the new tack learning this move on wheels. I think it was because you sheet out to carve through the wind and to get the kite to fly quickly over the zenith; then as others have said the kite ends up at the edge of the window which is ok if you are going to loop the kite back into the window for a 360 but not if you are going to just dive the kite. The solution for me was to give the old back hand a good pull as soon as the kite crossed Z and I use this moment to twist the wrist and shoulders while transferring weight to the new rail. To find out how hard to pull, just keep increasing the pull until you get a whoooah moment when you find out there is real power available after all.

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby robclaisse » Sat Jul 03, 2021 2:21 pm

Kite wise, often exiting with a lack of power is due to creeping the kite down the new side of the window too early. People do this because they want some pull from the kite during the middle of the carve so get over eager and start flying the kite in the new direction but they need to get further around the carve first. So the question is how to get round the carve, with the kite overhead and not feel like you will fall in backwards though lack of kite power? Well I have made a video that might help with that aspect:


The H2T tack is so much about body position and balance on the board and foil, gliding the board/foil around the carve and not depending on the kite to pull you around. Only when you are ready to exit do you pull hard and if the kite is still around 12, it can drop deep into the powerzone and give you all the power you need in a direction you can handle.

I really recommend getting a GoPro on your lines and then see what your body position looks like at various point and ensure you are getting your weight into the correct position.
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azoele
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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby azoele » Sat Jul 03, 2021 8:55 pm

Funnily enough, I learned the 360 before the tack: I was traying to figure out how to cross the wind, kept my back hand on the bar, kite looped, and I just followed it.
There it was my first foiling 360 :D

So you loop with the back hand (which gets the front hand after the tack).
Practically it is like doing a "front" loop in toeside. :thumb:
I thought it a possibility, because a couple of times I looped by mistake but did not close the 360, and closed the tack instead, so thought this could be a real technique, but I never invested in it.
Not too intuitive, but honestly: nothing in the tack is intuitive :D
I have a sense of awe for those that can complete nice tack at their leisure!

Thank you for your help :thumb:
FLandOBX wrote:
Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:50 pm
I'm also learning tacks and can usually get through them on my strong side, but not consistently without a touch-down. So others will be able to speak from more experience.

I use a loop for my tacks just like for a 360. So I pull the loop with my original back hand and just continue pulling the kite across to the new toeside direction. I find that the loop provides the power I need to complete the tack. I also find that, with the loop, I often end up with the board oriented a bit downwind (like a 270), which allows me time to adjust my balance to toeside and carve back up to the new direction. I assume that, as I get more efficient, I'll come out of the tack immediately beating close-hauled on toeside. Learning 360's with kite loops first seems to have helped me with learning tacks.

It's easier for me to tack without touch-downs using a foil kite (FS Soul) than a LEI, because the foil kite provides more lift as I pull in the bar through the maneuver and then loop it. If you're always on LEI's, it helps to be powered with a larger kite, as opposed to riding the smallest kite possible for the wind condition.

Have fun with it. :thumb:

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby azoele » Sat Jul 03, 2021 8:59 pm

Thanks Jyoder.

I know I don't pull the kite with the back hand hard enough.
And I know that I have trouble managing lift and timing (at times, the kite lifts me enough to lose control of the foil; others, the kite is getting power on the new side while I am late turning my body; other yet, and the most common that I lamented here, my body is ready, but the kite lags!)

Look under my armpit, which I understood the reason recently; looking under the armpit forces a torsion of the torso, which is essential in the tack.
At first, I merely glanced under my armpit, and I would not turn at all! :roll: :D

I understand your point: kite timing is essential.
But I jibe with loops all the time, and am sure if loops can be done in tacks, they must be helpful in very light winds, hence my questioning.
Also, I only use foil kites between 5-10 knots. From there on I have 10/8/5m LEI kites, which provide a fraction of the lift of my large foil kite, so a loop may be helpful.

Thanks!
Jyoder wrote:
Fri Jul 02, 2021 1:34 am
When I don’t kite in a while I start failing tacks and this is what helps me get back to 100%:

When normally powered, you need to turn the bar harder than you’re used to as kite is overhead so the kite dives back into the power zone. If you sheet in too much to get this turn authority, you slow the kite down and so it lags overhead and you come off foil as you try to ride out.

1. Turn the bar harder (kite may even need to do a kind of “S” shape flight path to get enough juice from power zone, kind of like when you crank it late in a gybe and have to send it back and around like an “S”.

2. Don’t sheet in too much. (This is counter intuitive as you want lift to help with foot switch and this muscle memory is hard to fight).

Also, if you don’t turn the board around far enough, or you turn it too tight, you will lose speed and energy to complete the tack. Find the happy medium. Helps to look under your armpit or over your shoulder to the direction you want to ride out.

3. Turn far enough to new direction, but not too tight a turn.

azoele
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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby azoele » Sat Jul 03, 2021 9:04 pm

I think mostly we all hit similar bumps on our road to tacks.
My "whoa" moment came yesterday, when I secured one tack (in the entire session!!!) in ultra light wind.

I realized two things:
1) I turn my body too much, even though "it feels" like I'm not turning enough. Turning too much sends me straight under the lines, while I need to keep tension to ride away.
So I force myself to think "don't turn, just hint at a turn". If I turn, I exaggerate. If I "hint" at a turn... I mostly come out right :D

2) same goes with my back hand.
With my right hand on the back, I have trouble pulling it hard enough. Right is my main side, so the hand there has fine control, and it responds to my fears rather than to my needs.
Tacking with my left hand back is much easier: as much as I want to be cautious, the left answers with very little finesse, so the kite zips to the other side of the window. Then, I either tack, or I get ripped from the foil :D

Still, you are right: learning to force the backhand to make the kite move quick is essential.

Thanks.
Herman wrote:
Fri Jul 02, 2021 10:21 pm
I had exactly the same feel of no power to ride out on the new tack learning this move on wheels. I think it was because you sheet out to carve through the wind and to get the kite to fly quickly over the zenith; then as others have said the kite ends up at the edge of the window which is ok if you are going to loop the kite back into the window for a 360 but not if you are going to just dive the kite. The solution for me was to give the old back hand a good pull as soon as the kite crossed Z and I use this moment to twist the wrist and shoulders while transferring weight to the new rail. To find out how hard to pull, just keep increasing the pull until you get a whoooah moment when you find out there is real power available after all.

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Re: A bit of help to hammer those tacks!

Postby airsail » Sat Jul 03, 2021 9:44 pm

Kite size is important to, try to go out on a bigger kite than you would normally use. In this way the kite provides much more lift as it crosses overhead, any screw ups on the board will be supported by the kite and you can often avoid falling in.
Being larger and slower also means the kite won’t shoot upwind as far coming out of the tack and your less likely to require a loop.
Small kites with little lift are really hard to tack such as Peaks and Clouds.


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