james wrote: ↑
Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:47 am
Just for the record then matty
You actually have zero, no, nada experience of wingsurfing but still want to tell those that have they are wrong.
james, I have stated before that my experience was with the KiteWing from back when I started into the wind sports. I actually owned a KiteWing Rage 55+ (purchased new), and used it extensively on land/snow. At the same time, I was experimenting with:
1. KiteWing on snow with skis and snowboard
2. KiteWing on land with MBS Comp95 and homemade landboards
3. Kitewing with ice runners (mounted to homemade landboard nd MBS Comp95) on frozen lakes
4. KiteWing with homemade longboard skateboards
5. Windsurfing sail on MBS Comp95 and homemade landboards
6. Windsurfing sail on snowboard
7. Windsurfing sail on sledge (2-4 skis mounted below a deck)
8. Windsurfing sail on ice runners (mounted to homemade landboard nd MBS Comp95) on frozen lakes
9. Windsurfing sail on homemade longboard skateboards
10. Non-depower traction kites, trainer kites, and a C-kite on land, water, and snow with all of the above boards except the sledge (only really usable with a windsurfing sail)
So I found out pretty early (about 10 years ago) the workings of at least a rigid wing. But you are correct in stating that I do not have experience with the new inflatable ones. And may I go out on a limb and make an assumption that without a bridle system or a rigid frame on the new inflatable type of wing, there will be some decrease in efficiency? Yes that is an assumption, but that assumption is soundly based in physics.
So, given my experience with the KiteWing, I came to understand the advantages and disadvantages of the concept of a hand held wing on many different medias with varying resistance (friction). And though I was nearly ready to purchase the new KiteWing made for water (had flotation and was larger at 7.5m?), my experience and understanding of the concept steered me away from that, and more towards kiteboarding. Personally, I have never seen nor do I know anyone that ever used the larger water version of the KiteWing made for the water. So it is very much apparent that the concept was a failure given the current offerings of longboards and SUP boards (no appreciable development of hydrofoils at the time).
And here are some of the reasons why:
A. The 5.5m sail size of the Kitewing gave it a good top end (up to 40knots for 100kg rider), but no low end for light winds or high resistance media such as deep snow or water.
B. Due to it's geometry, the kitewing does not transfer all of it's lift into horizontal motion like a windsurfing sail. While this allows slower speeds (depower) by putting the wing directly above you, it does not allow a low end power for things like water starting or initial movement while in grass (on a landboard). Both a windsurfing sail that is more vertical, and a kite that is more vertical when on normal length lines on the side of the window, has more sideways pull.
C. The geometry of the KiteWing not being attached to the board does not allow large sized sails due to the tips of the KiteWing hitting the media you are riding over. Read that as when the wing is put on the side of you for maximum pull sideways, the tip hits the water or the land/snow. As you increase in sail size, you increase this problem to where you would need to increase the dihedral shape of the entire wing. Increasing the dihedral to compensate, reduces the lower portion of the wings ability to generate forward motion while increasing it's sensitivity to over sheeting and thus too much upward pull and instability.
D. The height (and height vs weight) of the rider is also influential to the possible range of sizes that can be used with a hand held wing. This limit does not exist in kitesurfing and did not exist to any appreciable degree in windsurfing. In windsurfing, the sail being mounted to the board meant that the tip could never hit the media you are riding over. The line length of a kite allows the angle to the waters surface to be very small without the tip hitting the water - which brings up point E.
E. Obviously, a kite has access to winds higher aloft. But you have to really compare 2 pictures of a windsurfer vs a wingsurfer to see that the windsurfer has more sail higher off the water than a wingsurfer. So not only can a windsurfer utilize larger sized sails, those larger sized sails are further from the water, thus able to access higher winds aloft.
So that is a pretty much a comprehensive examination of the handheld wing concept from back when there were still some viable patents on the concept. It went nowhere back then. But many "more current" factors such as the development of hydrofoils, and kiteboarding bans, could allow this to become a slight bit more successful than the KiteWing concept from 10+ years ago.
And thank you james, for allowing me to clarify. I do feel as though I have stated the above before, in a shorter form. Maybe look through my past posts on this. Should this not be enough background in handheld wings for you to give me some credit to my predictions, then you don't have to.