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Kitesurf Drift Launch

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Kitesurf Drift Launch

Postby Toby » Thu Aug 20, 2020 5:01 pm

This guide explains the drift launch in detail.

It starts with a simple drift launch and then shows another version that uses wrapped up lines (for locations where you are more likely to become tangled, such as water with seaweed near shore).

Creating a tangle (that could loop your kite) is a real possibility during a drift launch. Therefore, this video focuses on managing your lines and avoiding tangles. It also looks at some safety steps to reduce your risks. Even then, bare in mind that a drift launch is not suitable for beginners, as you will not yet have the safety reflexes or kite awareness required.

It is safest to practice your drift launch in very light wind. In light wind, things go wrong more slowly and you have a bit more time to assess, untangle and use safety systems.

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Re: Kitesurf Drift Launch

Postby Pana » Fri Aug 21, 2020 12:03 am

Well done video. For kites that do not have a center front bridal ( like in the vidéo) I find it very usefull to attach a piece of rope to make a 4 inch handle at the inflation attachement. That way you can hold the kite and the bar with the same hand and use the other to unwind the bar and manage your board (throw forward as you move upwind). If deep enough you can dunk the kite to get water on it. The handle is also usefull to attach your safety once the kite is landed Retrieved and flipped to allow rolling your lines in using both hands.

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Re: Kitesurf Drift Launch

Postby Hugh2 » Fri Aug 21, 2020 2:58 am

I do two things differently.

First, I no longer flip the kite over, but rather simply carry it overhead as it was on the beach. This removes almost any chance of having a line over a wingtip and resultant problems.

Second, I always either walk straight upwind from the released kite, or if necessary stand still and drift the kite into deep water. This makes for a more dynamic launch, but works well in decreasing the time from release of the kite to tightening of the lines, at least in the case of walking upwind. This is particularly important in strong winds with a small kite, which is more likely to get flipped as it drifts.

Finally, I even do this drift launch in the ocean if the waves are small. Most small kites when drifted like this will bounce over small broken waves, especially if pumped hard enough.

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Re: Kitesurf Drift Launch

Postby bay surfer » Fri Aug 21, 2020 8:18 pm

Put the kite behind your head unroll the lines as you walk back then let the kite drift no tangles.

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Re: Kitesurf Drift Launch

Postby Herman » Fri Aug 21, 2020 9:25 pm

Other alternatives to consider are roll the lines even and a little tighter to the kite. Then pass the bar over the middle of the canopy, walk round and hook in. Flip the kite and leash to the pump attachment. Done neatly you can carry without lines dragging and you will have both hands free to unwind and sort tangles before dunking the kite and transferring your leash back to the kite flagging line. Probably swings and roundabouts!!

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