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Foil kite hot launch

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keegster17
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Foil kite hot launch

Postby keegster17 » Mon Mar 29, 2021 2:56 am

On a foil kite hot self launch, should we be fully powered or fully depowered. I always fully depower. I have heard mixed opinions.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby jakemoore » Mon Mar 29, 2021 3:20 am

Fully powered preferably with a little back stall on the bar.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby Adventure Logs » Mon Mar 29, 2021 5:00 am

Fully powered so you can fill the kite quickly. Of course if the wind is really blowing, you never want to hot launch.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby Herman » Mon Mar 29, 2021 8:29 am

The only fixed rule imho is don’t hot launch if the wind is too strong. Then it is oversheeting keeps the kite on the ground giving more time to inflate; then you reduce the AoA to get it to fly. This reduction in AoA can even be to the extent of pulling on the front lines in light wind to get the kite up. How you manage the AoA transition is an important skill to develop imho. Not sure I have explained it well but this approach works for me.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby joriws » Mon Mar 29, 2021 8:45 am

Some of my local beaches hot launching is the only option due to trees close to water line and lake weeds preventing drift launch as no wind on surface. I just hot launch, do not let kite to fill to early nor do not pre-inflate too much. This way kite does not shoot forward and throw you around like on jumping and to trees in my spot. Then I walk waist to chest deep water upwind with board and after that start filling the kite by pulling power and try to get immediately out from tree/forest wind buffer. This option is under-powered launch kite ears flapping.

You can also backstall control kite's forward flying speed to zenith so don't let it fly fast semi powered to zenith. The slower the forward speed the less pull. The explosive "send-it" steering & speeds are the things you want to avoid in hot launch. So this method is "over-full-powered".
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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby Herman » Mon Mar 29, 2021 9:06 am

Joriws post has helped me figure out why I felt I had not fully explained my own mindset above. The skill I referred to as managing the AOA transition is also directly connected to the skill of managing the inflation. The two go hand in hand.

PS I often launch holding the floaters with the kite trimmed in. That allows me to access major backstall and a low AoA to keep the kite where I want it as it inflates.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby edt » Mon Mar 29, 2021 11:36 am

I'm not sure it matters. Until the kite fills up it won't even pull.

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby Pemba » Mon Mar 29, 2021 1:38 pm

Slightly off topic but I've started using a foilkite (Kitech FRS) recently, only used it a few times, but I'm surprised how casual people are about self landing by backstalling. In anything but very little wind, it's not that easy and I would say, is quite risky unless you don't mind backstalling it so hard it slams into the beach. Is this a quickly acquired skill or am I doing something wrong ? How does one self land if there isn't a lot of beach available ?

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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby Herman » Mon Mar 29, 2021 2:38 pm

Pemba.

Imho it is worth developing asymmetric braking skills so that you can land from the edge of the window rather than from Z. It can be done by asymmetric use of a brake handle but imho it is much easier to do with the leaders. You can be progressive with the braking in order to keep the kite in shape and have a less violent change in pull. Build your experience slowly, if possible, gradually using stronger wind, to see how much power you can confidently control before resorting to flagging. If you just brake hard with a handle you get the unpleasant experience you describe.

Try practicing by putting the kite at the edge of the window, work out how you want to transfer your hands to the leaders and then practice 60° rotations to start with. As the kite rotates down it will drift downwind so start in light wind so you are not overpowered when you recover the kite back to normal flying. You may be surprised how little brake you need. It is also easier to get your hands on the leaders if you trim in. Also the kite will be at lower AOA, possibly less powered, if you let go of the leaders but remember that you will have to pull in more brake as the trimmed in kite will be keener to fly.

Having said the above I mostly use my foils for landboarding and so rarely push the upper limits on them. If I felt overpowered I would seek an assisted landing if possible or flag out.

If I get it spot on the kite rotates backwards to more or less TE parallel to the ground, then I try to keep the kite in shape by not overbraking as it swings to dead downwind just off the deck where I apply more brake to make it sit. Obviously in strong wind you have to commit because you can’t just let go of the leaders with the kite dead downwind!
Last edited by Herman on Mon Mar 29, 2021 3:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Foil kite hot launch

Postby edt » Mon Mar 29, 2021 3:42 pm

I hate landing my foil kites and if at all possible get an assisted landing. Launching them is easy. At some launches there is a wind shadow that you can reverse land them at easily but still would rather get someone to catch it.


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