Ok gents heres a mini review. I happened to fly all these kites back to back the other day in 8-10 knots.
I was flying in a sand dune bowl which had about 10m elevation to climb. It required looping the kites to get up the hill and then zooming down the hill to gain apparent wind speed to jump.
Before i start i realize the 13m scorp was underpowered but these are the kites i rode and the impressions i had.
1 = best, 4 = worst
manta 1, pulse 2, zephur3, scorp 4,
manta 1, scorp2, pulse 3, zep 4
manta 1, zep 2, pulse 3, scorp4
zep 1, scorp2, pulse 3, manta 4
manta 1, zep 2, pulse 3, scorp 4
manta 1, pulse 2, zep3, scorp.
Bar out stability
scorp 1 pulse/manta 2nd equall, zep 4
The scorp was a pain in the arse to launch in the light wind in a slight wind shadow. it took 2 of us a couple of goes. once in the air it was sweet and had that familure arc feel. The scorp was underpowered but still managed to loop up the hill. i could ride around the bowl but not really jump.
The pulse felt nice to fly but very boring. It was a reasonable amount less powerfull than the 15m manta. It did everything well, build quality was excelent. just not very exciting.
Zephur was easiest to get around the bowl as the fast speed of the kite comined with the power. It had that familue lei fell about it. I could cut a high line down hill/upwind by letting the bar out with greater depower than the others. but let go of the bar with the kite parked and she's falling out of the sky in second. I reverse launched the zep and that worked sweet.
The manta is my kite and i'm very familure with it. So potentially this is an unfair test. Its slow as a train but all that is forgiven when it pulls you up the hill like a train. The manta build the most power with apparent wind and i was able to lay to decent sized jumps in the marginal wind rather than silly little ones.
For this reason the manta wins the dune bowl test. followed by the zep. easiest to get around the bowl but missing the glorious glide of the manta, Pusle 3rd OK at most things but not impressive at anything, Scorp is last mainly because of the pain in the arse launch process is a deal breaker for me. it was 5 years ago and it still is now. If the scorp had the launchability of the pulse it would have come third.