Ocean Rodeo Pilot Bar
I don’t do a lot of reviews, but when I find something I’m really happy with and I think is worth sharing, I put it out there. I have owned the Ocean Rodeo Freestyle and Control bars. I have also had bars from several other companies; Epic, Slingshot and Ozone. I am very happy with the Ocean Rodeo Pilot bar! Before owning it I was always thinking, “I wish this bar just had….”
The Chicken loop on the Pilot bar is very clean with several nice features. When you press the release cuff to punch out it locks open, so resetting it is very intuitive and practical. You simply push the end of the chicken loop into the opening and it clicks closed. If the release cuff doesn’t lock open, simply hold it with the cuff oriented up while pushing the cuff up. This is required because the chicken loop locking pin uses gravity to set it in position to lock the cuff open. This is easy to observe, as the cuff is made of a see through plastic. Just practice it a few times before you have to do it on the water.
The lock in tube (chicken stick) is nice. I’ve seen a few people have false hooks and their kite ejected when they were launching. I've never had the problem myself, but I've seen a video produced by Ocean Rodeo with a simple fix to eliminate the potential for it to happen. The problem is the video is very hard to find. I saw a link to it, but cannot find the video anymore.? It’s a simple fix, just tightening the chicken loop and chicken stick.
Below the bar swivel works well.
When you get to the center lines is when things start to really shine. All the lines are inside the center tube, where on the older Control bar the flagging line ran outside the center and sometimes would go around the center tube a couple times, even when the front lines were untwisted. Never had a problem with kite not flagging when punched out on Control Bar, but I didn’t like the look of the flagging line around the center tube. The new setup eliminates this concern.
The pulley works well, but what I really appreciate is the velcro on the cleat to secure the trim line. The previous versions had an elastic core that would shorten the line a bit when trimmed in, but it didn’t take long for the elastic core to fail and the line would flop around and be very annoying. Small thing, but it’s something I was always hoping they would address. While the previous bar was very good, it’s the small things that make the Pilot Bar excellent.
Nice bar Ocean Rodeo!! Very happy with mine and would definitely recommend it.