After all the hype on the new M3 Manta, I knew I had to try it and give it a go to see what all the fuss is about. I thought there must be some huge changes, as it’s copped a lot of criticism in the past with the Manta 2 in the last couple of years.
After flying the Frenzy’s for a while it was time to try out and up grade to the Manta M3 so I ordered the 8M and 10M.
I prefer to ride on Kite skates, but I also ride a buggy, land board and also kite surf. Oh ye, I don’t like to admit it and don’t want too many people to know, but I also static fly Rev stunt kites when there’s not enough wind to do anything else. So I reckon that I know something about kites.
The Bag itself is brilliant. The shape and padding on the straps, makes it feel comfortable on the back. And the porous material they’ve used and the way its split into separate sections to allow air flow though your back to prevent sweating is a fantastic idea.
The bag itself is a perfect size, not to small but big enough to fit my 13m Frenzy FYX, the 10m M3 and the 8m M3 all tightly rolled up, so as you can see it’s a good size to carry your entire kite quiver with you.
That evening I lay the kite out on the floor at home to see what the shape, colours and size look like, I could see the material, lines, and pulleys were still of the highest quality Ozone always uses, and as with Ozone they leave the bar and lines not connected to the kite, so I lay down the bar and connected all the lines, and I know this sounds corny but connecting the lines myself gives me a sense of connecting with the kite.
The great idea of having the x lines to prevent the kite from inverting is so clever, and again just like the Frenzy with the back line ajustments on the bar is a huge benefit for extra grunt if that what you like.
The following day, down at my local park, I pulled out the wind metre with the reading showing a gusty 18 to 21 knts and some times up to 24 knts, I was wondering if I should pull out the 8m M3 instead of the 10m, but thought it would be a good indication on what type of wind the 10m can handle.
At first I laid out the 10m. I attached the kite to my harness and again how easy, with the simple system Ozone uses with their chicken loop. No silly fiddly little strings to deal with. No awkward straps to fumble with.
The only issue I have with the chicken loop is the direction that you need to pull to activate it. I believe that it needs to be a pushing action, away from the person rather than a pulling action, towards the person, because when the kite lines are not tight, its hard to pull the safety release towards you when its floppy.
With the kite set up and ready, I let go of the brake lines and up it went easily without needing to launch the kite side ways into the wind to lessen the chance of a superman type of launch.
The kite slowly inflated itself from the middle, and slowly out to the tips, with not a hint of trying to drag me down the park. With other brands, when I’ve tried this type of launch, I’ve been hauled across the park trying to stay upright by running down wind as it fully inflates too quickly and catches all the wind, way before it reaches the zenith.
As the kite sat above my head, there was no lift in the kite even in 18 to 24 knots of wind, it just sat there, neutral with no power or lift or any hint of trying to drag me around, just an occasional little tug when a gust or two would come through, but still sat there waiting for my input.
I jumped in the buggy and for the first hour I was just taking it easy, just to familiarize myself with the kite because it does fly totally different to the low down grunt of the Frenzy’s that I was used to.
The M3 is a performance kite that you need to work to get the power happening to start with but when it gets going you can just park and ride, where the frenzy is a park and go sideways ride, right from the word go.
In the second hour I was into the small redirecting and little bunny hops, and the up on to wheels thing easily, there were a few by standers so I was just showing of with my new kite. But in the third hour, it was time for the big test and I got right into it with some inverting jumps, table tops, and I was ready for the big jumps to see how high I could go. All I had to do was build up speed, a slight redirect, pull the bar half way and up up and away we go with what felt like a 2m high jumps, (I’m not sure I want to go any higher in a buggy, but you can if you want to just go harder). I let go of the bar and a glide off for about 10m with ease, then pull the bar down again for a soft landing.
Now the best part of this kite for me is its ability to kite loop and not get yanked and pulled uncontrollably down the park like some of the other kites I’ve tried. This kite loves to be looped, it’s made to be looped, and it’s a loopy kite. Did I mention the loops with this kite are awesome? And boy can it loop as fast or as slow as you like, you’re in control.
On the Kite skates, it’s brilliant with how much faster I can go. This kite just goes fast there’s hardly any side ways pull its all forward motion and when it gets going it just keeps going, faster and faster with the apparent wind it creates.
It has also given me much more time in the air to do more tricks, grabs spins and airs.
My jumping height used to be 2 to 3m now is at a controlled 3 to 4m.
The other thing I’ve noticed about this kite is the massive wind range. I had this 10m out at 25 to 28 knts and mind you I only weigh 78kg and there was no problem with keeping this kite with some control but, if you are a beginner don’t try to fly a 10m in these sorts of winds. The purpose for me trying it was to find out the kites wind range and limits. I did try it once before, with a 10m Manta 2, at one of our club meets and that was only around 21 to 23 knts - I was fighting to keep the kite under control, and trying to stay on the ground. This M3 is something else.
It has the same power as the 11m FYX Frenzy, but it does fly faster, goes up wind better because there’s no side ways pull, its all forward motion and turns heaps faster.
In summary this is the gliding machine that I was looking for and that you’ll love. With a large awesome wind range that, in my opinion, is a safety benefit. It has a tight, quick turning circle and excellent looping ability. It’s a kite that will take you to the next level. You will never out grow it.
The Manta M3 is definitely the most exiting kite I’ve flown.
So if you’re thinking of getting your self an M3 do it, You’ll Love It!.... ......