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Snapped a Chicken Loop!

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dracop
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Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby dracop » Mon Jul 04, 2022 9:13 pm

Incredibly enough I managed to snap a chicken loop (see pic) on my Click Bar while kiting in strong gusty winds between 20-40mph. Mind you I weigh 227lbs and was doing kiteloops at 40ft.

After looking it over I do not think its a manufacturer issue but at the same time I am now questioning how long it is reasonable for a CL to last?

Clearly this one needed replacing. The rope inside the plastic chicken loop looks thick and this specific bar/CL was about 2.5 years old, having served me in Cape Town, Hood River, and Maui while practicing big air in really strong winds.

How often (if ever) do you guys swap out your CL? Or do you just replace your whole bar (which usually means a new CL)?

Duotone makes it easy to just swap the CL but I need figure out some sort of replacement schedule where I replace the CLs.

I do not think there is any special maintenance you could do on the CL.

This did happen while I was looping at altitude but I hung on wakestyle mode which finished the loop quickly and let me land mildly. (I let the kite flag out once on the water surface) Did scare me to have it happen mid loop so high up.
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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby kiterocky » Mon Jul 04, 2022 9:25 pm

When plastic its broken...Sand go inside and break rope Easy....plastic broke than change loop. Easy

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby Sun » Mon Jul 04, 2022 9:35 pm

In aviation, we establish a maintenance and inspection interval based on the inherent strength of the materials, the expected service conditions, and the component criticality. Whether or not the inspection is easy or even possible is really a secondary consideration. If something is designed where it cannot be inspected, or if replacement is more economical than inspection, then you replace at the determined interval. At some stage there is enough in the whole assembly that needs attention that wholesale replacement is generally preferred.

The biggest variable here is really your risk exposure. I have gotten into the habit of replacing the bar and lines about every two years. Based on how much I kite and how hard I kite (My “expected service conditions”) two years seems to be the point at which the bar has seen some use but remains fully serviceable. I then sell the bar or gift it to a buddy that is holding on to liability equipment for a bit too long.

However, that does not stop me from continuing to seek for that “perfect” bar that is both great on the water while being super easy to service, inspect, and repair. The CL is usually one of the most bomber bits, behind leader lines and the clamcleats. However, generally they are hard to inspect and impossible to repair (Which is to say if something is worn it needs to the replaced). I love North Ironheart CLs, but they share the same flaw as all flexible CLs: the loop is a dyneema rope overmoulded in PU. You cannot see wear.

You are a big guy who goes big. Plus you ride a lot. Obviously you take risks by jumping TT vs causal foiling, but you can of course reduce your risk exposure by replacing parts you cannot easily inspect every year or maybe every other year.

Given the price of flight tickets alone, the cost of new bar when you consider resale of a year old example is pretty small for good peace of mind, at least in my book.

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby jyka » Mon Jul 04, 2022 9:50 pm

I have seen many complaining duotone bar line issues.. Makes me to worry, I have one too. I think there is no way to check the chicken loop wear inside of the plastic tubing?
The chicken loop line in your picture looks quite thin and without coating/sleeving. Duotone could have done it better

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby dracop » Mon Jul 04, 2022 11:15 pm

That line thickness should hold up over 2,000 lbs, I personally think sand got in and it was an abrasion issue. But there is no way to check that as the PU is molded over the line. That Cape Town sand would be most likely culprit / the sand there is super fine small particles.

As Sun said, maybe need to establish a replacement cycle where I just replace the CL on a given interval for my personal riding lines.

Once a year?


Duotone sells the CLs separately so ordering is not hard. I COULD rethread that same plastic using some Liros DC 701 I have (rated for 750 kg breaking strength) or even use some other heavy line material I have for pigtails. I do not even need the plastic PU - the metal bits can be worked directly with line material. Not sure if that approach is worthwhile though. If anyone has any thoughts for/against Id be curious your opinion.


I like my Click bars and they are holding up longer than 2-3 years. I use custom lines consisting of Liros DC 701/401 center/outside lines.

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby Toby » Mon Jul 04, 2022 11:30 pm

Yes, they break. If you ride with power, normal.

Once the plastic gets a hole, better change it, since as mentioned above, sand gets inside.

It's easy to change. Better buy a spare CL as well, so you don't need to wait of one breaks again or you change it before it breaks.

I just changed one yesterday, had holes already...now trustworthy again.

Specially guys who ride powered and do kiteloops, keep maintaining your gear!

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby Toby » Mon Jul 04, 2022 11:33 pm

PS: I don't think a special interval is needed, just keep checking your gear after each session of you see any holes in the plastic. And if lines etc are ok.

One tip: pay also attention to the lines that come from your bar ends and connect to the leader lines...they get quiet some load and can break too !

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby BillyGoatGruff » Tue Jul 05, 2022 7:58 am

I thought this would be a Duotone bar before opening the thread, seems to they put too thin a rope in their chicken loop, and don't seal them properly to external sand/dirt. I have never come across this on a Naish bar, which is very well sealed from sand etc. There is a also a number of posts on this forum about the dire quality of Duotone dyneema lines and people snapping their leader lines. I would start with ditching the Duotone bar.

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby Havre » Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:11 am

Never good with parts you cannot check for wear and tear.

Having worked for years making models to simulate failure modes for all kinds of mechanical, electrical etc equipment (including aviation equipment) it really isn't as easy as it may sound from Sun's post (not criticizing the post which is very much inline with the theoretical thinking in that industry - based on my experience - or the basics of it - just that it is slightly more complex). The biggest risk of failure is from new equipment or recently overhauled equipment. That might sound counter-intuitive, but "old" equipment that works has basically proven that there wasn't anything wrong (or at least very significant) in production (or during the overhaul). So you got to balance that against the wear you will get over time. So you got to hit the intervals fairly well to actually get out with fewer broken CLs by replacing them before they snap vs. just riding them until they do.

I don't have much of a view on CLs, but since you can't actually inspect the line I would tend to agree checking the plastic cover makes sense - and unless you know exactly when you have gotten a tear, hole or something in that cover you might be better off replacing it - if you gotten one. I cannot see some sand snapping a line right away, but with time it probably would.

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Re: Snapped a Chicken Loop!

Postby Herman » Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:15 am

I believe some French OEMs recommend changing the CL annually but I have also heard that this is influenced by something in their standards system. Nevertheless, if you are specialising in big air it seems not unreasonable to me especially if you are a big guy.

Obviously sand will increase wear rate but they will still break even if they stay sand free. Some can be disassembled to inspect and/or replace the dyneema but not all. Back in the day I used to use a lot of power on covered windsurf harness lines and would be pleased if they lasted a season but don’t know the spec of the inner line.

I think you have actually established the life cycle of this component for the work rate you give it? How big a variation in life is just a judgement call you have to make. An annual or 18mnth change? Every 2 years is starting to push your luck?

I to have considered using naked CL for ease of inspection and replacement but have not got round to it. Sorry I haven’t helped much but I doubt that comes as a surprise. From vague recollections I estimate that naked harness lines lasted around 60% of the time for covered.

PS some of the metal attachment parts of some CLs won’t take a 5 or 6mm line which would be what I want for naked line!
Last edited by Herman on Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:35 am, edited 1 time in total.


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