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Push the limits

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njrider
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Push the limits

Postby njrider » Tue Nov 16, 2021 4:24 am

Hi. Well here is the good news, I got permission from management (my wife) to replace my beat up Naish boxers. The kite I use the most foiling is a 2017 9m. I really enjoy pushing the limits of riding and often go in 5-8knots of gusty nasty inland winds. Obviously sometimes this does not work out well. In any case, I'm looking for replacement kites and wanted suggestions. I think I'm stuck on LEI for the fact that water relaunches are more reliable. Thanks

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Re: Push the limts

Postby leeuwen » Tue Nov 16, 2021 1:27 pm

njrider wrote:
Tue Nov 16, 2021 4:24 am
I really enjoy pushing the limits of riding and often go in 5-8knots of gusty nasty inland winds. Obviously sometimes this does not work out well. In any case, I'm looking for replacement kites and wanted suggestions. I think I'm stuck on LEI for the fact that water relaunches are more reliable. Thanks
I would argue that in my, thankfully limited experience, the relaunch odds on a foil kite are actually better then a tube kite in extremely low winds.
Of course if the relaunch doesn't work you are screwed so you lose something there obviously.

Based on what I see on my local beach I would say that 7-8 knots is just about doable with a big 14M+ no-strut (like a Gong) but if you want to go lower a big foil kite is your only option.
My biggest kite is an 11m foil kite which outperforms the 14m no strut by a tiny margin and gets me to slightly closer to 7 knots.
Getting extra low end is really hard since a single knot has so much impact in the single digits. (4 to 8 knots is 4x power from the wind)
So you need to significantly larger kites and that means a horribly slow (and expensive) kite and XL sized bar.
Also note that foil kites can have issues with shifty/gusty winds and lakes can be crappy in that regard.

Do note that I am probably more realistic/pessimistic on what 5-8 knots actually is so your sense of 5-8 knots might be more like 8-10 knots in my book.
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njrider (Tue Nov 16, 2021 11:33 pm)
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jumptheshark
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Re: Push the limts

Postby jumptheshark » Tue Nov 16, 2021 2:30 pm

If you want to have a quiver of the same kites for foiling, there are going to be concessions at the low end limit. Takes a different animal to get the best performance down there and the style of riding is it's own thing enirely. Takes a specialist kite. 5-8 knots is a massive power range and could feasibly require three kites to "best" cover. 5-6 knots limits the riding to specific lines with planned and expertly executed transitions just to effectively mow the lawn. Most would agree this is high aspect double skin foil territory. 7-8 knots and you can get away with a strutless or single strut, but the riding style is still constrained to straight line soul sessions. 9 and up and you can actually get into a little bit more curvylinear style of hydrofoiling. with 360's and lines that deviate from a tight reach.

Assuming management is not down with doubling your current investment levels you gotta figure out what level of compromise your willing to put up with. I'm with Leeuwen. No way on earth a 9m boxer gets anyone but a Fred Hope style prodigy in size XS out and riding. 9m boxer..... you must be talking 8-10. Even that is impressive as the sweet spot for that kite (average weight rider on a moderate size surf foil) is more like 10-12 knots.

Either way, tube kites are not really in the running for truly pushing the limits, on either the low or top end. Sounds like your wanting to hear about the best bottom end among the current single and strutless crop.

I think the word on the street is that the 9m UFO is a decent kite, but the boxer is no slouch either.

Don't be afraid to think outside the tube. It's 2021 already and this is hydrofoiling. Proof of concept is more than well established. Single skin sound scary to the unfamiliar, but the reality is that you can end up swimming far less with a "non relaunchable" kite that a "relaunchable" one. Kites like the Peak4 wont push the limits of what is possible on the low end, but they can do wonders to lower the wind threshold for fun on the water. In 8-10, I would equate a 6m Peak to your 9m boxer with a much lower chance of it hitting the water, even in super lulls*.

*rider error not withstanding.
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Re: Push the limts

Postby drsurf » Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:52 pm

I'll second the Peak4 option.
Doesn't fall from the sky even in ridiculously light wind, lots more power per sq metre and fun & easy to fly. Inexpensive too.
Give one a go, you'll be surprised how good they are :o
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njrider (Tue Nov 16, 2021 11:33 pm)
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Re: Push the limts

Postby surfbird » Tue Nov 16, 2021 9:58 pm

njrider wrote:
Tue Nov 16, 2021 4:24 am
Hi. Well here is the good news, I got permission from management (my wife) to replace my beat up Naish boxers. The kite I use the most foiling is a 2017 9m. I really enjoy pushing the limits of riding and often go in 5-8knots of gusty nasty inland winds. Obviously sometimes this does not work out well. In any case, I'm looking for replacement kites and wanted suggestions. I think I'm stuck on LEI for the fact that water relaunches are more reliable. Thanks

BRM maybe.
I doubt you will find any LEI that works in 5knots.
I need 10knots with my brm 13.4
Small foil and heavy though :-) If you light you might get away with the brm 10.4, which I think is more easy to relaunch compared to the 13.4.

I still use my brm when it's so gusty that even the peak4 is hard to fly. With a LEI you can just lay waiting for more wind :-) I'm thinking of these days when it gets completly still for a while.
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Re: Push the limts

Postby njrider » Tue Nov 16, 2021 11:32 pm

I can definitely accept that the winds might be 8-10 knots. But some times it drops to 0 for great lengths of time - say 1/2 hour. I just sit and wait patiently and enjoy being in the water. I worry that a foil kite or a single skin will not make that down time. That being said, I'm going to buy a peak for steady 10+ winds.
So I think I'm stuck with a LEI - and I just want to buy the best for those low end sessions. Everyone says to go bigger, but the truth is at these winds the problem is not having power when the kite is flying, it is getting the kite off the water. So I guess I'm looking for a light wind launcher and when in the air decent stability?
So far I have BRM, Boxer, UFO - any others?

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Re: Push the limts

Postby jumptheshark » Wed Nov 17, 2021 12:52 am

The sweet spot, or more likely the point of diminishing returns for relaunch in a single or strutless tube is around 10m (IMHO).

Bigger is slower to rotate and has more wetted fabric. For many foilers I'll venture to say that's also the max size many want to bother with for a tube kite. (average weight and wing implied)

I hope you do get a Peak and experience that. If and when you do, do a little reading here about wet reset/launch/relaunch.

If the wind were to die down to nadda for a half hour, I'd probably have swum in by the time it comes back, but if I think its coming back within a reasonable time, I'd roll up my lines and kite and just wait. Once its back to 10 knots, It's not hard to get the kite back flying once you have figured out the proceedure.

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Re: Push the limts

Postby SMJ » Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:16 am

njrider wrote:
Tue Nov 16, 2021 11:32 pm
I can definitely accept that the winds might be 8-10 knots. But some times it drops to 0 for great lengths of time - say 1/2 hour. I just sit and wait patiently and enjoy being in the water. I worry that a foil kite or a single skin will not make that down time. That being said, I'm going to buy a peak for steady 10+ winds.
So I think I'm stuck with a LEI - and I just want to buy the best for those low end sessions. Everyone says to go bigger, but the truth is at these winds the problem is not having power when the kite is flying, it is getting the kite off the water. So I guess I'm looking for a light wind launcher and when in the air decent stability?
So far I have BRM, Boxer, UFO - any others?
If LEI is your thing, take a look at these kites:

Strutless: Slingshot UFO, BRM Cloud (as previously mentioned)
One Strut: Core XLITE, Cabrinha Contra 1-strut

If your goal is to scrape the bottom of the barrel, then the UFO will stay in the air longer, but they can be tricky to re-launch. If you're concerned with light wind re-launch, then the XLITE is hard to beat. I've reverse-launched my XLITEs in ~4 knots.

From your description above, it sounds like re-launch is high on your priorities (as it was for me). Take a good look at the XLITE.

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Re: Push the limts

Postby vakiter » Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:08 am

Any thoughts on linelengths effects of this low end relaunch question ? I usually use 27m in low wind , but I feel like this makes relaunch worse . So maybe the op would benefit from 18m lines if relaunch is the limit . ?

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Re: Push the limts

Postby rnelias » Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:25 am

SMJ wrote:
Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:16 am
njrider wrote:
Tue Nov 16, 2021 11:32 pm
I can definitely accept that the winds might be 8-10 knots. But some times it drops to 0 for great lengths of time - say 1/2 hour. I just sit and wait patiently and enjoy being in the water. I worry that a foil kite or a single skin will not make that down time. That being said, I'm going to buy a peak for steady 10+ winds.
So I think I'm stuck with a LEI - and I just want to buy the best for those low end sessions. Everyone says to go bigger, but the truth is at these winds the problem is not having power when the kite is flying, it is getting the kite off the water. So I guess I'm looking for a light wind launcher and when in the air decent stability?
So far I have BRM, Boxer, UFO - any others?
If LEI is your thing, take a look at these kites:

Strutless: Slingshot UFO, BRM Cloud (as previously mentioned)
One Strut: Core XLITE, Cabrinha Contra 1-strut

If your goal is to scrape the bottom of the barrel, then the UFO will stay in the air longer, but they can be tricky to re-launch. If you're concerned with light wind re-launch, then the XLITE is hard to beat. I've reverse-launched my XLITEs in ~4 knots.

From your description above, it sounds like re-launch is high on your priorities (as it was for me). Take a good look at the XLITE.
I'd include the Ozone options. Catalyst v3, that's basically an Alpha v1 but cheaper than the Alpha v2. In 10m these kites weight just 2.3kg and have excellent low end, combined with a large front wing and a board with good volume would not leave in a bad situation when the wind dies.


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