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Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 4:05 am
by Slyde
Now that the V3 is out there are quite a few R1V2s hitting the second hand market at prices that are acceptable to the average punter. I thought I would post a few tips I have found on keeping used R1V2s as good as possible. These are great kites, so easy to use, amazing range and speed. They have performance I will likely never be good enough to fully appreciate. But I like freerace style, and cheating god in light winds. Buying one second hand is a great option.
I have a 15m that is third hand. It was used by 2 previous owners with better skills than me and I'm guessing had done a couple of hundred hours by the time I got it. It had a few small pinholes that I patched. It rode well for a while but despite tuning it then developed instability issues and as I'm not so skilled it went in the water a few times and would get wet very fast. Despite all its use the canopy looks in great shape when inflated. Provided there are no blown cells I don't think it is canopy deterioration that is a problem with well used foil kites. At the advice of Ozone I purchased a new bridle. It took a few hours to replace but what a difference that made. I know there are some who wax on about restretching bridle lines but thats too complex and repetitive for me.The investment in a new bridle was worth it. Then I sprayed the canopy with a product called CRC Aqua Armour. The 15m took about 3 cans so cost about $75 to do the whole kite. It is not a total sealant but is a hydrophobic waterproofing spray. I found the kite inflated harder, and takes about 3 times as long to deflate, so I assume it is sealed better in general. If I put the tip in the water the water literally falls off and the kite does not get wet. I have had the kite in the water for 20mins at one stage and still managed to water relaunch it. After 6 months of use I think I need to respray the tips, but most of the canopy is still good. I do think it added 100-200 grams to the weight of the kite so probably extreme low end is not so good. But for someone like me who has a habit of sticking his foil kite in the water it has been a good thing to do. Only downside is that if you do put the kite in the drink and water gets inside the canopy tends to retain droplets inside itself so you need to fly the kite for a while to dry out the inside properly.
I also have an 11m with less hours but I managed to blow out about 5 cells. I think it happened by trying to lift the kite when full of water, rather than a hard kite crash. A friend told me how to do "open heart surgery" on the kite to repair the internal struts and it seems to have worked perfectly. You need to accept that the kite is basically stuffed as a race kite as it is so cutting it open is only a step forward. Basically you blow up the kite with a garden blower, identify the blown will be the internal struts between the two bulging cells. Cut a slit in one of the cells about 15-20 cm in the middle of a cell along its length, reach in and identify the torn material and stick it back together with lightweight spinnaker repair tape. Then patch the cut on the cell. Blow it up and bingo... You'll probably never on-sell it but once you have blown cells its game over on that front anyway. At least it flies properly again and you can use it till its dead.
Much as I would like a shiny new kite I find it hard to justify the cost of a new racefoil, so for the weekend freeracer like me this is a great option to get a cheaper high performance kite second hand and nurse a couple more seasons out of it.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:10 am
by jakemoore
Fixmykite has done great work for me on blown cells. Great value, perfect repair and totally worth $$ for the time.

I tend to be pretty DIY. I did do blown cells on an old Voodoo long ago. Sail tape to reinforce the damaged cloth helps. You can get to the inside by pulling theough a vent. The kite is inside out so you have to keep orientatiin carefully. But its the diffetence between a thoracotomy and a thorascopy. Minimally invasive is the way to go.

Im very interested in your coating results. Foilholio may have to add that to his thesis on kite recoating. Did you weigh the kite on advance perhaps? And have you considered the weight of water either consensing on the cloth or coming from a dunk? I bet the coating is less than water weight.

Before spending $$ on the bridle, I would consider replacing pulley lines and empirically extend Z.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:06 am
by Slyde
Yep, did all the pulley lines and z stuff, but the new bridle was the deal. Remember this kite had pretty high mileage. Unfortunately i didnt do a weight before and after but there is little doubt the kite retains moisture within itself with the coating so you need to dry it out much more thoroughly. Just leaving it to dry does not get the internal moisture out. It needs to "fly dry".
To do the endoscopic approach you would have to cut the inlet vents on a R1V2. Its not so easy to repair as the canopy. :)

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:06 pm
by foilholio
3 ways to get to a spot to repair.

1 thru an existing hole like inflate or deflate.

2 thru the TE seam.

3 thru the Cell seam.

2 and 3 will need to be picked open. You can use 1 and 2 to sew shut 3. 1 needs no sewing shut. 1 is hardest to work thru, 2 a bit hard and 3 easy. You can get 3 right next to where you need to repair, but it is best to limit it to a simple straight section of the seam, no attachments or internal ribs. In that way sewing 3 shut is often much easier that sewing 2 shut. Your best combo for repairs are 1 and 3. For simple things just use 1, like pin holes or straps. You can even repair cells walls with 1.

Cutting the fabric to get inside is a bit silly and unnecessary. I say the same for replacing the bridles, unless maybe Ozone updated it? The R1V2 is not an old kite at all I am surprised it needs recoating. 2-300 hours is not much on foil kites, about one set of pulley lines on a FS. I have seen kites do 8 sets and still going.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:17 pm
by Slyde
agree to differ, there is no way to get to every cell through the inflate or deflate holes on a R1V2 and the cell seams are on the inside so you still need to cut the canopy to get in, and you cant sew the seams shut without another way in. The inflate holes have a mesh covering sewn over them and are hard to repair. Trailing edge is possible but quite a lot of work for the average punter without a good sewing machine and lots of time. Happy to be proven wrong but I dont see it. Recoating definitely helped. Maybe not absolutely necessary but it makes the kite better. A kite that is used for training by a pro kiter can clock up a lot of hours in a couple of years. This 15 is 2016 version. I guess a pro wouldnt sell it and get a new one if they didnt think it had lost some of its performance.
Anyway just posting what I hope is my useful experience.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:38 pm
by foilholio
You have a zip right? Do you have holes in the cell walls? If you do you can reach thru each cell to the next and then pull fabric thru to work on it. Otherwise you have the TE seam and you can open a Cell seam. You can unpick a cell seam from the outside but better you open the TE first so you can find which part is easiest to sew back up. Some cell seams are extremely easy to sew, like 1 or 2min for a long stretch.You only need to open the TE a little bit say 2-3inchs but bigger is easier. If the TE seam has a folded cover they are tricky to sew, which is why I wouldn't open it too much.

It is quite possible to do many foil repairs on a home sewing machine. You can do things like remove the side cover and lamp , and instead use a head torch to give you more visibility.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:06 pm
by kitexpert
Foilholio is right. Never cut any holes for repairs.

Undoing TE seam works always and it is just a simple folded seam, no need to open any other seams. To only tape damaged ribs is suspicious, they should be also sewn. Professionally repaired ribs are just as good as they were before damage, so no loss in value, neither resale nor use.

To replace whole bridle is one way to do it, though it is a bit same as to buy new wheels to a bike if there is a puncture. Knowing how difficult it is to work with Ozone bridles replacing is probably bigger work than to stretch original bridle back to specs.

Coating fabric helps to some extent and for some time, it is a reasonable thing to do. Added weight is insignificant.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 11:35 pm
by foilholio
Opening the cell seam is very useful. Because you can get nearer to the repair, it will make it much easier and faster to do. Also you can undo less of the TE which is significantly more difficult to sew than some of the cell seams. The Flysurfer TE has a cover that is folded multiple times. Quite difficult to work with, especially the more removed. I think there is a tool to help assemble seams like that.

Kitexpert I like your comparison of changing the wheel for a puncture.

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2019 6:08 am
by Slyde
unless your wheel has all its spokes out of whack LOL ;)

Re: Upcycling older R1V2s

Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2019 6:26 am
by downunder
You mean

CRC Aqua Armour ? There is no Selley's Aqua Armour on AU market, something else maybe...