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Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

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Jyoder
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Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby Jyoder » Sat Aug 08, 2020 10:53 pm

In normal winds I can tack and jibe with foot switch with near 100% success. When riding in very marginal winds, I can’t tack without coming off foil, and I have to loop the kite to ride out of it. It seems the kite moves too slowly overhead through to the other side of the window and I am stalling it by sheeting, but I have to sheet it to get enough turn authority. When looping for jibes, I also have to reach above the bar a lot to pull one steering line keeping bar sheeted out slightly to avoid stalling the opposite half of the kite and keep kite speed up.

I seem to have the most success going into tack with max speed and making upwind turn pretty wide at first but I still slow down too fast and come off foil as I’m trying to dive the kite. I can feel the difference where an extra knot or two of wind makes it suddenly work and when it’s not enough and the kite and foil speed falls below threshold that will keep me in foil.

Pocket board and Zeeko Bullet foil with Carver 710cm wing. Flysurfer Race 15m kite on 17m lines with 65cm bar. 65kg.

I’ve tried 30m lines but not long enough to get dialed in. I highly prefer short lines. Ex. 10m lines on my 11m. I don’t need the long lines for water start so didn’t keep them on.

If I can waterstart and jibe on foil, shouldn’t I be able to tack??

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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby windmaker » Sun Aug 09, 2020 6:45 am

To bo honest in 16 years of kite foiling I have never used a 15m kite...

My light wind set up is a 10m Halo foil kite on 17m lines with a 530cm2 front race wing, I weigh 66kg. If there is enough wind to waterstart without looping the kite I can do foiling tacks without touching the water and looping the kite on exit. In super light wind I adjust my technique by obviously concentrating even more on maintaining board speed but also edging the foil a tad longer before making the foot change and re-directing the kite even more aggresively. Maybe it will also work for you.

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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby Jyoder » Sun Aug 09, 2020 4:54 pm

Thanks for your reply, but like you on your 10m, I don’t have a problem on the low end of my 11m as the kite turns and moves through the window faster. But in lighter wind than the 11m will work, where I need the 15m to get up, the factors are different.

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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby StillLovinIt » Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:25 am

It seems like the good riders don't turn upwind at all until the kite is at least at 12 o'clock, they keep riding at full speed in the direction of the old tack while the kite is rising. Then they make a relatively sharp turn with foot switch while riding the foil high followed by pumping the foil. Checkout this video of Jannis Maus in marginal conditions that was already posted elsewhere:

Tacks at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLwbUZy ... tu.be&t=26
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLwbUZy ... tu.be&t=77

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davesails7
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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby davesails7 » Sat Aug 29, 2020 1:28 am

StillLovinIt wrote:
Mon Aug 10, 2020 6:25 am
It seems like the good riders don't turn upwind at all until the kite is at least at 12 o'clock, they keep riding at full speed in the direction of the old tack while the kite is rising. Then they make a relatively sharp turn with foot switch while riding the foil high followed by pumping the foil.
I agree, wait til kite is high then carve hard and fast to get the foil between you and the kite on the new tack. The faster you can get the foil loaded back up on the new tack, the faster you can start getting back up to speed.

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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby Regis-de-giens » Sat Aug 29, 2020 1:14 pm

Not an expert at all on this tack, but i can just witness that , Similarly, 360's or 180's upwind are far more difficult with 6 knots and kite >15m2. Long lines also make it harder.

So ... Less speed + less agility (size, wind) + wider windows (long lines) = difficult timing.

With my 18m2, i try to get as much speed as possible (even by sacrifying some upwind angle, then send earlier the kite to the opposite window with some "agressivity" to benefit from the line tension (speed) for better agility.

1200cm2 foil helps to keep planning in the end, but harder to accumulate more speed initially.

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Re: Marginal wind tacking and big kite handling

Postby Mossy 757 » Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:09 pm

Agree on line length as well; shorter lines are more responsive in maneuvers and gives you the ability to place the kite in the center of the wind window on the exit better than very long lines.


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