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Found 21 results

  1. .Joel

    Flysurfer Speed5 12M

    It’s rare you fly a newer generation of a kite and find that the changes after years of evolution can still be so significant. The Flysurfer Speed 5 returns to its original DNA, it is the kite that should of been released after the Speed 3. When the Speed was originally released over a decade ago it was an evolutionary step, does anyone still remember that goofy video with Armin pushing a team rider off the boat to water launch? ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2PCJsKf3Jo ). The Speed was at the forefront of development, then came the Speed2 and it maintained that DNA of light wind and large float. The Speed3 then came along, and it was the largest evolutionary step that the Speed had taken, it had all the low wind ability however with the Triple Depower the kite nearly doubled its usable wind range and made the top-end all the more usable resulting in a huge boosting and highly floaty kite. Then the Speed4 released, and for the first time I felt that they had mixed far too much of the DNA from the old Psycho IV in there, it was an amazingly versatile kite but it didn’t feel the same as the old Speed series. They went back towards the Speed’s original DNA with the Lotus, however even then there was still room to move. After a session on the Speed5, you can just feel that the pure DNA of the Flysurfer Speed series is back. The kite performs at the bottom end, remains versatile and usable for such a high-aspect kite at the top end, and feels completely refined all over. Most of all the kite brings back the feeling of fun to flying as it’s incredibly forgiving. Laying the kite out on the beach pre-flight I was amazed at the vibrancy of the colour of the 12M even though it was a completely overcast day at the start. The kite looked incredible, I always thought the Speed3 Deluxe colour scheme was nice however the purple of the 12M and the slightly more detailed and intricate graphics look brilliant. The demo I was flying came with the Flysurfer Airstyle Infinity 3.0 bar, which is the green and black series bar. The bar has had again some small refinements to it regarding the chicken loop, however apart from colour scheme for the most part it’s very similar to the Infinity 2.0 bar. Pre-Inflating and launching the kite was a breeze, sanded one wingtip and slowly pulled the opposing edge up off the sand as it pre-inflated. Eventually with enough air inside it slipped out from the sand and took off. Once in the sky again it looked increidble, however it also looked higher aspect than the Speed3 whilst still seeming to retain a somewhat similar overall canopy shape. One thing that is clearly evident is that there’s no more crinkling across the front of the canopy, and whilst it’s slightly thicker between the top and bottom skins compared to a Sonic-FR it certainly has been reduced in thickness compared to the previous Flysurfer Speed kites making it feel like a faster wing flying forwards. The wind was fairly light, starting off on about 9 to 12 knots and I took off with the kite in the GT-Race Rapide++ buggy. All I could say is WOW, the kite felt solid from the start even in the light wind however it didn’t feel like a truck. Once in the buggy and moving the power the kite was producing just continued to increase until I scooted over 70km/h in incredibly light winds. The longer I held my line the more the kite continued to increase in speed. Dumping the power was incredibly easy, however I noticed when slowing down rapidly and really dropping the power out of the kite it remained incredibly stable and responsive. There were no surprises or shocks, it just behaved as I had the buggy slide sideways slowing the kite down preparing to turn. During this I noticed the vastly increased amount of depower on the kite compared to the previous versions I had flown. However the one point that I really noticed was the increase in turning speed, I was no longer going for the leader ends on a tight turn the bar was more than sufficient to get it to snap around 180 degrees when required. The depower range on the kite is far smoother on the bottom 3/4 of the bar throw, however release the bar to the very top 1/4 of the bar throw and you dump nearly all the power out of the kite. If you’re used to still having power there at the end of the bar throw it’s a quick fix, just use the stopped by sliding it down to your desired length on the bar. The bar pressure also felt a bit lighter than previous generations, I still don’t classify the Speed as a “light” bar pressure kite however I’m of the opinion less pressure the better allowing for longer kiting sessions and more aggressive handling in higher winds that typically increase the bar pressure. During flight in the buggy at speed the kite felt consistently solid, and for such a high aspect kite it continued to feel incredibly stable. One are the Speed 5 significantly excels over both previous models and kites such as the Sonic-FR is its stability, being slightly lower aspect and holding a bit more air in the kite just brings on a completely new level of stability. After a short period of time you become so trusting of the kite you pay less and less attention to it and more to your surroundings and where you’re kiting. The kite not only points incredibly high upwind, however downwind compared to previous Speed models it’s again significantly improved. Going downwind didn’t feel anywhere near as challenging as on previous models, some where you would need to loop it back over your shoulder to keep it back in the window from time to time. This allowed me to surprisingly park and ride downwind. Everything you do with the kite, how it responds, how it feels through the bar, how it behave in flight, it all just feels incredibly well refined over previous versions. There’s literally no single feature of the kite that I can say is a complete standout improvement area as so many areas of the whole kite have been so well refined that it’s the sum of all these improvements that makes the Speed 5 in my opinion the greatest evolutionary update to the Flysurfer Speed series of kites since the Speed 3. If you’re currently flying older Speeds, get your hands on a demo, it’ll be that familiar feeling you’re used to, just that the more you fly it the more you’ll notice how much of a step forward in performance the kite is whilst being incredibly stable, fun and trusting. This kite was provided for demo by James at @specialist_kiteboarding for as long as required until I felt comfortable having flown it long enough to write a review. Overall both flying the kite and the process of arranging a demo from James was a great, pressure-free experience. If you’re interested in a Flysurfer Speed 5 get in contact with Specialist Kiteboarding.
  2. socommk233

    Pansh Aurora2 15M

    The Aurora 1 was a little hit and miss for pretty much all that tried one. With work they would fly. But that's not what a customer expects to do no matter how cheap they are. Pansh had then made the A15 and then gave the Aurora another go. Now I was given a prototype Aurora 2 15m to work on with Pansh. Fly it. Tweek it and send videos and feedback. I done this. And they responded with a v2 bridle set for the aurora 2. Yay I though. They are finally listening. Or were they? I flew it on the v1 bridle and found it worked great. It would launch. It would turn. It wod let you jump. And depower safely. However it seemed a bit sluggish. So I made some adjustments using the metal line end pieces they use. Each can shorten a line about 50mm approx and using these made it fast and temporary but safe to keep in the lines. I shortened the b line by 51mm and the brake lines by 102mm and tried again. The kite would launch and inflate faster. It would sit depowered but with a "ready for action" kind of stance rather than a previously floppy slow responce before. Brake line shortening made it turn all the better too. I flew it at the nobarriers event along side another that was on v2 bridles. V2 bridles would also fly but it looked awkward to launch. So when I had the chance I swapped mine over. I compared the bridles to see they had indeed shortened the lines I had, but not by the same measurements. And maybe some other lines too. On launch the tips would rise and fold over to the centre. A more positive power on launch was needed as was a lot of pressure inflation. Then as it flew it seemed even less responsive and more prone to collapsing in on itself in low winds. I very quickly put my modified v1 bridles back on. This gas made me wonder if Pansh are at all flying these kites themselves to see how they fly in the real world. Or relying on numbers given out by their design software. Anyway. Don't let this put you off. With very simple tweeks this kite is now a favourite of mine. It's great low wind machine. Upwind is very nice as is downwind. It turns fast enough but I'm finding it hard to keep off the ground in a rushed turn on 15m lines. 20m lines will be best. The lift and float is predictable and addictive. It's the only kite that I enjoy jumping with. Set up with the bar trim so it doesn't back stall in the wind speed and your good to go. The build quality is bloody brilliant. Not top if the line but your not paying top of the line either. Large zip for deflation makes packing up a breeze. Magnetic blow out actually works....I love it. They have even put mesh over the intakes to help hold shape and aerodynamics. However it is a rubberised material and tends to pick up wet sand then get blown into the kite. This kite is a push in the right direction. Pansh ARE listening to feedback (if not quite exact ) and the products are just getting better with each new kite. I can not wait to see what us next 😎
  3. .Joel

    Dakine Storm Harness

    The Dakine Storm seat harness is a comfortable, durable, value for money harness. I have been using the harness since Feb 2006 and have not had any problems with the harness. The harness has been used for buggying, landboarding however mostly kiteboarding. Comfort The harness is generally comfy being used for Kiteboarding or Landboarding. It offers relatively good lower back support, and doesn't twist or shift. If the leg straps are not fitted correctly, or the harness is slightly large it will ride up a bit and give you a wedgie. This also occurs if you spend a long time with the kite above you and the general force and pull of the kite slowly encourages the harness to ride up. This is not so much of an issue if you fit the harneess correctly. There are adjusters for the back support, tightness of the harness, tightness of the spreader bar and leg adjusters. Spreader Bar The spreader bar is good, and is also slightly longer then the equivelant Mystic style spreader bars, and has a good hook shape to it. Due to the shape it does require you to pull more towards you to unhook, opposed to some other style harnesses where you can nearly slip the chicken loop off with minimal effort. Get the Pad! When you purchase this harness make sure you get the spreader bar pad with it, the harness becomes a lot more comfier. Without it and you will most likely end up with a number of bruises from the force of the spreader bar against your body. When choosing the Dakine Spreader Bar Pad check that you are getting the correct size pad for the bar. The spreader bars come in different sizes, and so do the pads that go with them. You need to pull the hoops of the pad through the spreader bar, then connect the pad's rings to your harness. See the photos of the Spreader Bar and Pad together to understand better. Strapping In / Out Getting in and out of the harness is quite easy. The harness has a hook style quick release, that allows you to clip the spreader bar on and off very easily, and has a screw to ensure that one side of the bar is always connected so you don't loose it. Durability The harnesses are an excellent general purpose harness, and do everything well. The harnesses higher up in the Dakine range are built a bit tougher, and are more durable. However the Dakine Storm has lasted me two years already. Overall Since purchasing my harness over two years ago the price of the Dakine Storm has dropped considerably, and therefor remains still as one of the best value for money harnesses available. If you are pushing the limits, and very hard on your gear it may be wise to look up a model or two. If you are just starting out like I was when I purchased it for the water, then it is a fantastic choice to go with. Remember to go in and try it on before you buy one!
  4. jolli

    Hq Montana5 12.5M

    Hi all, It’s been a while between reviews so thought since I have a new Montana 5 (12.5 m) this was a good time to belt out another one out. let’s set the sense, I have been testing the new kite for about 4 weeks now and have had it out in everything from 5 to 18 knots, I have also had a chance to compare it to some other popular brands in a similar size range. Let’s get the boring stuff out of the way first: The Bag: Same as most of the bags out there nice big and functional, it can hold heaps of stuff including a second kite. One minor grip I have is the zips have been changed from the 04 model and quite frankly don’t work very well. So take care with the opening and closing of the bag the zips get stuck every now and them. Overall build quality is as expected, Great, it’s up there with anything else on the market and the new color scheme is bright and astatically pleasing. Bar and lines: The bar has come a long way in a very short time since the Montana 4 and now is at a level befitting this kite . What needs to be done now is for HQ to continue to refine the design. As I mentioned the bar is almost there but still needs a little more work particularly in the Chicken Loop area. The new chicken loop can be a little fiddly to reload, this is due in part to the size of the chicken loop eyelet and how it connects to the body of the assembly. I think if HQ increased the size of the eyelet a little it would make it less of a fiddly job to reload. Overall not really much more on the bar / lines, they are a real step up from the previous model. First Flight: I was lucky enough to pick up the kite at the (Extreme kites) Labor day weekend fly at Sandy point, thanks Jason (Briskites). Winds on the day were sub 5 knots for the most part. This is light wind in anyone’s language and I wasn’t really expecting a great deal of action. A few tug’s on the front lines and the kite climbed to the zenith without issue, wing tips didn’t tuck in and kite took shape nicely. I had a quick static fly to see if there was enough to go for a buggy and found i had good pull even in the light winds. This enabled me to buggy up and down the beach on hard packed sand slowly but surely. As the day progressed the wind varied from 5 to 10 knots which provided a good test of both rider and kite. On the day I had the opportunity to do some quick comparisons with other kites in the air just to see how the Montana stacked up. Good news all around, the kite performed roughly on par with similar sized kites. Brands represented on the day included the speed 3 deluxe 12 m, Ozone frenzy 2010- 13 m, PL –Vapor 7 m and the Speed 3 12 m standard. It’s good to know that you are able to play with kites of this caliber and not be left behind. Now down to some real verifiable facts, a comparison between the Montana 4 and the Montana 5. Firstly the Montana 4 was and still is a great kite, but the “5” is some much better. In general light wind performance has been improved across the board. The kite has loads of low down get up and go (Grunt for the technically minded) in the lighter end of the spectrum. Turning speed has been improved massively which really bring the kite to life. I would go so far as to say HQ have doubled the turn speed of the kite from last year’s model. Finally the overall de-power range of the kite has also been improved and enabled me to take the kite out in 15 + knots and still feel comfortable. In summary the 2010 Montana 5 12.5 m has better light wind performance, faster turning speeds, better De-power and a much nicer bar setup. So if you are looking for a reasonably priced low wind De-power kite you could do a lot worse than a Montana 5 12.5 m. I would encourage you to go out and try one and see for yourself.
  5. .Joel

    Extreme Kites Reviews

    A brilliant new Extreme Kites Reviews section is now live! We've put together a stunning view of the reviews homepage that works across Desktop, Tablet and Mobile so you can enjoy the latest content on whatever device you're using. For years people have contributed reviews throughout a Discussion Forum or as a Reply to a Topic. That information has been helpful, however revisiting that information later on when you need it again has been difficult and the longer time went on the harder revisiting that information becomes. With the new Extreme Kites Reviews to which anyone can contribute we hope as a community to build an incredibly useful resource that's as relevant in years to come as it is today for people searching information and experiences with kites and related gear. We hope you enjoy the new Extreme Kites Reviews and look forward to your own opinions and experiences shared through your own reviews. Please submit any issues via the Bug Tracker, feel free to discuss improvements etc in the comments below. Visit our new Reviews here: http://www.extremekites.com.au/reviews/
  6. .Joel

    Hq Beamer Iv 4M

    The short version of a long review could be simply "The perfect beginners to Intermediate kite." HQ have made a package that for the price is hardly believable, it is built better than some kites twice its price, and offers more as a whole package then some kites three times its price. # The Package HQ have really included the lot once again, the package comes standard with: HQ Beamer IV Kite HQ Quad Line Handles HQ Coloured Line Set HQ Ground Stake HQ Kite Killers HQ Backpack HQ Instructional DVD HQ Setup Manual # HQ Handles HQ handles are colour coded and clearly marked Left and Right with a large L and R on them. They are comfy and very strong, I am yet to experience a pair breaking after using one pair for over a year on various kites. They have a good width and feel to them, not to narrow so you don't get sore hands. I have large hands and have found some handles that are to narrow leave your hands feeling like you just carried the shopping in with the plastic bags cutting in to your fingers. You don't get this with the HQ handles, they feel comfortable. # HQ Lines The lines from HQ keep stepping up and are very "Euro" style on the Beamer IV. Nice strong colour coded power lines that will last, and a slightly thinner set of brake lines to reduce the drag on the brakes of the kite at speed instead of 4 equal weighted lines. # HQ Backpack Still featuring their trademark over-size zipper on the front of the bag since the first version, the new bag is very similar to the Beamer III bag with a new colour scheme. Pockets on the inside and outside, enough room for the kite and a few extras comfortably. # HQ Kite Killers These are comfortable and don't pinch your wrists when you tighten them up. They're strong so in a good wind you won't find they break when you release to them, they're also stitched and built very well. # HQ Ground Stake A nice strong and sturdy ground stake made from metal with a large comfortable plastic top to make pushing it in and pulling it out easy. It's also quite a large top surface so if the ground is hard you can use your foot to lever more weight on to it. # HQ Beamer IV Kite The construction of the kite is one of the best on the market, which is amazing considering the price of the kite. It matches up against the $600 to $900 kites easily and still offers more for the money. The stitching and reinforcing around the kite is excellent, clean stitches without bits hanging off. The cell walls are stitched all the way down except the last inch, where there is no cell wall for the last inch of the canopy. This is perfect for those hard crashes where you slam the kite by accident leading edge down, typically a kite will blow the back cells open. On the HQ Beamer IV this allows the air to be distributed throughout the kite, and not trapped in an individual cell causing it to burst the back of the kite open like a plastic bag being popped. The reinforcing on the leading and trailing edge is excellent, it's strong and stitched well so you won't rip the kite or have it come open. There are nice big velcro dirt outs on each corner so you can empty any sand in the kite, these work even better now with the last inch not sewn you can slide all the dirt and sand to one edge for it to all come out. The bridles on the kite are top notch, this has been an area some manufacturers have been reducing the bridle or sleeving to save money over the past year. HQ instead have gone the other way and made it even more robust with excellent reinforcing on all tabs on the kite sail connected to the bridle, and a fully sleeved bridle so you don't risk damaging the inner core of the bridle. They have also changed some of the attachment point locations to suit the new canopy design which is very different from the previous model, still using ample bridle points to ensure that the force is distributed to the right areas of the kite to produce power and stability. The graphics on the HQ Beamer IV is also a nice change, with some nice designs and graphics on the kite. # Flight Characteristics The HQ Beamer IV has had some real improvements made to the kite and really takes this kite from a perfect beginner kite to an excellent intermediate kite. If you lay the kite out flat on the ground it has a very unique shape, with both the leading edge and trailing edge tapering right off to the wingtips. In the air you can't see this as much, as the kite has a generous curve to it in the wingtips. This has given the kite incredible stability for a fixed bridle kite, and has also rapidly increased the turning speed of the kite when using brake input. The HQ Beamer IV produces more power per size than the previous model, it also is considerably more stable in the gusts. It happily flys and sits at the edges of the window, and produces a significant amount more power when you get the kite moving compared to the previous model. There's no question that a small 2m, 3m or 4m of these will have you going from beginner to attaining some serious speed. What I also liked with the kite is that you could fly it heavy on the brakes and increase the power of the kite when moving, or fly it loose on the brakes. Either way the kite was stable and behaved and showed its versatility. The beginner flyer will want the brakes looser, making the kite slightly less responsive and more forgiving, an intermediate kiter can then tune it with tighter brakes and bring more responsiveness, power and performance from the kite. # Overall The package as a whole is excellent, well built and performs exceptionally well. I have avoided the term "value for money" as the kite at any price would be an excellent choice, its a bonus that they are so well priced. The package is not lacking in any areas and offers more than most other available options twice its price which is positive to see. The kite could easily suit a beginner or intermediate flyer and outlast a number of other kites due to its excellent construction. If you are a beginner or intermediate kiter looking for a new kite then get a demo of one of these and try it for yourself and form your own opinion! HQ Beamer IV Kite Gallery
  7. socommk233

    F-One Diablo 11M

    Hey guys n gals. Here's a quick heads up on my latest purchase. I'd been saving for some time with the intent of buying a competitive kite for the kite buggy racing. I bought it in time for the last race weekend of the series to see how it and I would hold up to the rest if the racers. I was impressed to say the least. I'd already flown a 10m demo courtesy of ufo kite shop and I spent a whole day with it (got told off for kite hogging) then it spanked me good n proper, this was the "I have to have one" moment. On that weekend of the nobarriers event, I tried a few deposed kites. Aeros compi, pkd inferno, ozone chrono to name a few. The diablo just seemed to have the punch and acceleration out of turns that the others lacked. The kite helped me secure a 0 point win overall in the open class. A 5th 6th 6th and 7th I believe (may be wrong) overall in the last 4 races, so you know the performance is there. The quality is as you would expect...TOP OF THE LINE....and for the retail price you'd certainly hope so. Bridles are super thin low drag. Speed system is a little more complicated with its turbo ring, making down wind a little easier than other kites. And the kite itself is super precisely manufactured. Deflation is via one velcro sock type arrangement which can be difficult. In windy conditions the kite is folded in half and loosely rolled up. And when time and conditions allow (mostly at home indoors) I use a custom made concertina bag to store the kite in a way to protect the leading edge batons. If your even tempted to buy one....just do it. You will not be disappointed. However......... (isn't there always one) There appears to be a v2 on its way. No details but pics would suggest it's getting more cells, maybe lighter material and we know what that done to the r1v2 prices. Fingers crossed for some good price second hand v1 diablos I say
  8. .Joel

    Ozone Access2 6M

    Now i’ve spent the past month flying my Ozone Access2, waiting for a day with enough wind too really get a feel for the kite. One thing about reviewing kites is that too really feel the kite come into their own, you need too fly them towards the upper half of their wind range. So patience on my part has finally paid off Introduction Once again Ozone have cracked a walnut with this kite, it is an awesome kite that once flown pretty much sells itself. It is really really difficult too find anything bad too say about this kite, or too even find something “quirky.” Each and every kites has its flaws, and each and every kite seems to have its “quirks.” I am definitely surprised by the Ozone Access2 as it has no “quirks.” The kite has been out overseas for quite a while now, and all info flowing back has been great, so I decided it was time I purchased one too really find out for myself. If you fly on land, and you like depower, you will most likely love this kite. The original idea of the Ozone Access was too create a gust munching, low lift kite that was an affordable introduction into the Depower market. The Ozone Access 2 kites keep in line with that philosophy, starting at $837 for a 4m and go up too $1038 for a 10m. Add your 10% Extreme Kites Member discount onto that and you have yourself one quality depower kite without the premium price tag. Unpacking The first thing you notice about unpacking the kite is the bag it comes with. As this is an “affordable introduction too depower,” the bag too is light weight. It is very very similar to the Ozone Frenzy bag in terms of material, but opens from the front. Unfortunately the bag does not offer many areas too put anything else in apart from your kite. As it is designed first as a snowkiting kite, it would have been nice too have a few more compartments to throw keys, phones etc in. You will only fit one kite into this pack. Once you remove the kite from the back pack you can tell it is an Ozone kite without even unrolling it. The fabric Ozone uses is always top notch, and feels smooth and crispy all at the same time. Folding out the kite the four bridle points are attached to a piece of cardboard. They are all numbered, and the lines are numbered too. The bar comes with the lines already attached too it, so all you have too do is unwind them from the bar, and hook them onto the bridle. Both the lines, and the bridle attachment points are numbered so a child that can count to four should be able to attach these. Lines The lines as per usual are of excellent quality, and I say it in past reviews and i’ll say it again. Regardless of kite, or manufactuer of that kite, I will put Ozone lines on the kite. Why ? Simply because they are the best lines in the industry. It takes more then 25 sessions on a set of Ozone lines too make them look like a set of lines from 2 sessions from a number of other manufacturers. After already 8 sessions on the Ozone Access 2 i could package the bar up, and sell the lines as new. The lines that come on the Access2 are 25m RED dyneema lines, this is so they can be seen on snow. The lines too my knowledge and looking at them compared to other Ozone lines seem to be the 360kg lines all around, but Steve @ KP seems too think they are 300kg. So I will clarify this once we know, Ozone have not put the rating of the lines on their website or their packaging. One thing Ozone has started doing more and more is their “idiot proof” line setup. This should mean that your lines are never put on incorrectly by changing the attachment system at the bridle end of the lines. This prevents newbies from making simple little mistakes that can have a serious impact if the kite was setup in a strong wind incorrectly. Bar System The ozone bar system is nothing short of amazing. Both for its simplicity, and effectiveness. Now i’d like too add a third reason, ease of resetup. The bar has two safety releases, which is more then ideal. The first is the “mushroom release” as I like too call it. It’s the red knob that you pull towards you that instantly removes all power from the kite. In short it sends the middle lines 2m towards the kite, which leaves the rear lines still connected too your bar. This acts like putting the brakes on a normal foil kite and the kite lands infront of you. The beauty of this is that there is no screwing around with a mess after activating the safety. You simply walk 2m towards the kite, grab the middle line and click it back in too reset the kite. Then you are off and flying again. You can activate the quick release, watch the kite land, then resetup the kite all in under 1 minute! The 2007 Ozone Chicken Loop is a little different to past years. This year the loop opens when you pull the release. I am not sure if this is better or worse then previous years, but it makes it a piece of cake for those using the kite without a harness that has spreader bar and hook to lock into it. One pull of this release will open the whole loop and the whole thing will fly away. Overall the bar on the 6m is really pleasant as it is small, you can see that from the photos. That means it does not get in the way all the time similar to the larger bars. In a buggy this is also ideal. Bridle Alright, I am very critical of kite bridles. Why ? Simply because of the bridle is wrong, the kite won’t fly right, it is as simple as that. A poor quality bridle leads to stretching in the bridle very quickly, which ends up in a deformation of the canopy, which results in the kite inheriting characteristics in its flight that it was never designed with. Ozone once again have paid very good attention too the bridle, and as with their high-end depower kites such as the Ozone Manta, the Ozone Access2 bridle is of excellent standard and quality. There are sewn and re-enforced tabs. The pulleys are good quality, so overall whilst this is a cheaper introduction too depower, the bridle is of excellent standard. Compare it too a number of other well known kites, and it still comes out on top. General Construction The general construction of the kite is excellent. From the feel and touch of the fabric, to the detailed stitching of the tabs, and cell re-enforcement. Looking at the kite from tip to tip, I could not find a fault with the workmanship of the kite. The overall finish is always sewn and sleeved. Flight Characteristics The kite is amazing, not only for the price but how it handles. The first few flights it was at the very bottom end of its wind range, this meant consistent working of the kite. I was surprised at how much power the kite had at the very bottom end of its range, and this had me a little worried about the Ozone Access 2 6m top end of the kite, as I bought it primarily as a high wind kite where there is too my wind for my 5m Ozone HAKA. Finally I had it out in a session with 20 knots, and the kite was nothing short of beautiful. Over the numerous sessions I have flown the kite it is yet too invert on me, something the Frenzy did quite reguarly in gusty winds. The Ozone Access2 basically sits there asking for more. I was flying the kite in some fairly strong winds, a simple pull on the bar and you went sideways and shot off, let the bar out and you regained traction around the corners. I was hitting some corners at around 50km/h in a standard buggy, pulling in the bar and just sliding down wind towards the kite. Let the bar out and I would shoot off completing the u-turn around the marker and heading to where I wanted too go. This kite really installs a level of confidence into your buggying in high winds that you just don’t have with a small 2m fixed bridle. The kite for its lower aspect points into the wind fairly well. Not as well as an ARC or high aspect race kite, but with the depower, you can play with the level of power so if you feel you are being dragged sideways you just release the bar a little and keep pointing into the wind rolling. I noticed how effective this was the first time when I was at Sandy Point flying an Ozone Access 4.0m, and dukey was on a 2.5m race kite. I was able to tack into strong 45 - 50 knot winds alot better as I didn’t get that gush of power when gybing. If you want too learn new ground based tricks, then this kite will also help you excel. It is so stable and well behaved that you can park the kite at the top of the window, push the bar out away from you and do your rotation. When you finish pull the bar in for a bit of power and zoom off in the direction you wish. The kite is so predictable that I happily completed 4 reverse upwind turns without any consideration to being ejected or pulled in the incorrect direction. Lift, well this is an interesting one. The idea of the Ozone Access was too have a reduced amount of lift, this did not mean that there was no lift. The Ozone Access2 has an extra two cells in this years model, so this has increased the amount of lift along with the design. Alan (Appo) an Ozone team rider is able to happily pull an aerial 360 buggy jump on his Ozone Access2 6m kite. So too say the kite has no lift is no longer true. The Access2 has enough lift that I would feel comfortable using it as my buggy jumping engine in high wind days. The float out of the kite is excellent too, you just come down softly. Overall the only thing I would like too see improved on the kite is its turn speed, using the same size bar. I love the size of the bar as it is small, however I feel this impedes on how quick the kite turns a little. This is not a factor in higher winds where you don’t need too work the kite. However in lower winds it does present itself as you try to work the kite up and down to develop more speed, you sometimes find yourself waiting to turn it the other way. Conclusion Overall this is an outstanding kite that is extremely hard to find a fault with. For some it will be their first introduction too depower, for others this kite will convert them. I am an avid lover of my fixed bridles in sub 25 knots. However above this and the Ozone Access2 is an excellent kite of choice. At a price that is nearly half of an Ozone Manta, it is definitely a kite worth considering for those just heading into Depower. If you are after a hassle free, reliable, well priced depower kite that you can setup as quick as a fixed bridle and fly away for the day, then the Ozone Access2 is IMHO an excellent choice. If you are going to demo one, request either a 6m or 8m, a 4m you will need a tornado to get the feeling of what this kite really has too offer. This review was originally posted in our Community Forum, August 2007.
  9. gum-nuts

    Soloshot 2

    POV cameras are great, I love my GoPro's and have tried various different mounts - from kite line, chase cam, the GoPro 3 way and of course the good old helmet mount. But in an attempt to get a different perspective in my videos I was always looking at alternatives, the ideal situation would be to have somebody film me using a camcorder and tripod - but attempts with this with my wife and daughter were never that successful, then somebody introduced me to Soloshot... The robot cameraman - Ergh! Maybe not - Soloshot 2 is a unit that attaches to a tripod and a camera (Camcorder, GoPro or DSLR) and will track a tag that is worn by the the rider and can follow them through 360 degree rotation (at 80 degress a second) and 150 degrees vertical tracking (at 35 degrees a second). The tag is also waterproof to 30m. With a range of 600m (2000 feet) and if you go out of range then it will pick you up when you come back into range - smart! The unit is supplied with the base, a tag and arm band, charging cable, tripod tool and instructions. The tag attaches onto the base for charging and transporting and both have extensive battery life the base for up to 8 hours and the tag 4 hours (the battery in the base can also be used to charge you camera - if you have a compatible camera, unfortunately I don't!). The other issue I had was the thread size on my tripod was different from that of the base of the Soloshot, I had to buy an adapter for about $2. Every time you use the Soloshot 2 or move it from one location to another (even after initial pairing) the base and tag have to be recalibrated and paired. The initial calibration takes 8-10 minutes and involves the tag warm up, attaching the tripod, base and camera, framing and centering the shot. Then there is the walkabout pairing, in which you have to walk at least 50 paces around in a random way ending up back at the base to pair the item. You then walk back to your centering object to calibrate the base and tag (I missed this part when I first tried the Ozone R1 and therefore it didn't track properly!). This sounds like a lot of trouble but is fairly simple once you get used to it and once the tag has warmed up (8 mins approx) is quick to do and I think the results are worth it... Kite buggy - Soloshot 2 from Mark Crook on Vimeo. There are various different settings on the Soloshot 2 depending on what sport you are involved in, wether you are on a level playing field, or will have altitude changes (getting some air) all designed to get the best out of the unit and these can easily be changed on the go. If you have a compatible camera then there is also an auto-zoom function and DSLR can also be set to take pictures at preset intervals. You can also pair one tag with multiple bases for lots of different perspectives or multiple tags to one base and switch between them by pressing a button on the tags while on the move. The base is quite heavy, but this isn't an issue once mounted on a tripod. It does feel solid and well made and does contain the battery, servos and electronics. The tag and arm band are also tough (I know I landed on them during an OBE! The downside - initially the pairing and calibration can feel a bit daunting, and the auto-zoom and charging only work with compatible cameras. Positives - no wingey wife or kids filming you, steady smooth tracking, long battery life, multiple functions.
  10. SoutherlyBuster

    Flysurfer Speed4 Lotus 18M

    It was a toss up between the Standard Speed III 19m and the Lotus Speed IV 18m. The Speed III is no longer in production so the die was cast and the Lotus Speed certainly did not disappoint. You can watch the video below. This review is written with the background experience of my other kites, FlySurfer Speed IV 8m, FlySurfer Psycho IV 10m and FlySurfer Speed III 12m (all standard cloth). There was a bit of a delay between when the kite arrived from Briskites and my first fly, having to wait for a light wind day. After unpacking the kite for the first time, was amazed how small the FlySurfer team managed to pack the kite down to. The kite certainly look a major portion of my hall way to unravel. The new Lotus cloth is very slippery and light. The kite bag has plenty of room to stow away the wing, especially when out in the field when you don't have the time to squeeze the very last bit of air out of the kite. First day was a landboard session at Truganina Park. Launching was a breeze as with all FlySurfer kites. Wind speed was some where around 5 knots to start off with. Steering was perfect, no dead spots if the bar was let out too much. Next session was at Altona in the early morning to get some very light wind action in before the wind picked up more -- wanted to take it easy at first to become familiar with the kite. The wind was cross shore with a massive 3.5 knots. With a few paces back the kite launched, I was amazed. Note quite enough to kite surf yet. The wind then picked up to 5 knots, time to give kite surfing a go with my uni-directional Underground Kipuna, one big swoop and away I went. Looping the kite on the tacks was the go to keep the power going. Lots of big grins. Not enough wind to tack upwind though with this board and wind speed. A few weeks later another morning light wind session, this time the wind was a bit stronger, 8 to 10 knots. I was a bit apprehensive as the wind predictions, were for 15 knots, but pushed ahead, keeping in mind, if I get lofted keep the kite above my head, ease out the bar slowly to land. Well the 18m kite turned out to be the gentle giant, plenty of depower, very smooth power control, no hint of being out of control when the gusts hit. Alternated between my uni-directional Kipuna and my bi-directional finless plank. Mind you my plank is a skinny long board usually reserved for 18 knot plus days, but excelled with the 18m Lotus Speed IV. Boosting with this kite is a dream, such a long hang time with excellent control while you are up there. I was impressed with the turning speed. This is my local kiting stomping ground so know it well, I was able to take upwind tacks much closer to the wind compared to my other FlySurfers especially with the plank. In the mean time my son Zachary was filming the action with either our handy cam or from the wing cam on his FPV R/C aeroplane. Shots from the Wingcam were when the wind was stronger when I flew with the 12m Speed, so the 18m action from the wing cam will have to wait for another day. My son Zac has a big grin as well, he gets to fly my 12m Speed on the light wind days when I fly the 18m. Landing the giant is just as easy as landing my 12m, but pack up time is a bit longer, takes a bit of time to push the air out as I roll it up, a small price to pay for the performance boost. The 18m allows you to go out on light wind days with super flat water conditions and stable winds, Elprimo time! FlySurfer said they want "every day to be a great kiting day", well they certainly achieved that goal for light wind days with the 18m Lotus Speed IV -- well done FlySurfer. A well engineered piece of kit. Enjoy the video.
  11. andy666

    Zebra Revolt 11M

    The Revolt is the new closed cell depower from Zebra Kites, the budget focused branch of Libre Kites. Don't worry though that being budget focused Zebra have cut corners in manufacturing quality, because the kite is extremely well built. In fact they have included a few little features that I think some of the big manufactures should take note of. How they have managed to keep the price down is by clever design and outsourcing. The kite was tested over several days (in a buggy), with winds ranging from 5 to 12 knots. Not ideal conditions, but usable. I also did a back to back comparison with my 12m Flysurfer Speed 3 and I'll use it as a yard stick for the review, since it is a kite that most people know. Kite Build and Features: The Revolt has almost no graphics, with the name being screen printed onto just one cell and only a single colour per cell being used to simplify manufacturing. The kite uses flexible reinforcement ribs in the leading edge, similar top the Speed 4, to help maintain the profile and aid light wind launching. They have also sewn a protective plastic tape to the leading edge to prevent the ribs wearing through the cloth, if the kite is dragged across the sand. The cloth is also very light weight compared to the standard cloth of my Flysurfer. In fact when weighing the kite and bridles, the 11m Revolt is 1.6kg lighter then the 12m Speed 3. The bridle and mixer on the Revolt is all made from thin un-sleeved dyneema, which helps to reduce the weight and drag on the kite. My only concern though with using unsleeved dyneema is where the line runs through the pulley. After several days of testing the line was already showing signs of wear and unlike on the Flysurfer, this is not a replaceable part. Bar and Lines: Instead of Zebra developing their own, the Revolt is supplied with a Peter Lynn Navigator bar and lines. Although it is the usual high quality you would expect from a big manufacturer like Peter Lynn, the bar and lines were the things I disliked. The chicken loop uses the outdated pull towards release, rather then the easier and safer jerk away release. (Even Ozone have stopped using this design ) Also I hate the Y front line design, as I find that when launching the steering lines often get caught on the ring where the line splits and can be difficult to shake loose. Functionally, the bar and lines work ok with the kite, and it may just be my personal preference, but I would replace them with something else (Flysurfer). In Flight: Initially the kite did not fly well, slow steering and back stalling. I immediately noticed though that the Z bridles where hanging loose when turning. When I checked the bridles I found that the Z bridle hadn't been put through the larks head when the flying lines were connected, instead it had simply been tied to the mixer with an overhand knot. Whether this was a mistake from the factory or by the previous person to demo the kite, when they connected the lines is unsure. Also the front and rear flying line lengths were not set correctly, with the fronts being about 6" longer then the rear. Once these two issues were corrected the kite flew and turned a LOT better. Being such a light weight kite it flies in almost no wind. 5 knots was enough to keep it in the air. Like the Speed 3 the kite thrives on apparent wind and as the kites speed builds so does the power. Back to back the 12m Speed 3 and the 11m Revolt have about the same speed through the air, both getting the buggy to about 40km/h in about 8 to 10 knots of wind. They also have about the same turning speed, which isn't the best, but then they ardent designed for doing unhooked kite loops. In such light wind it was difficult to compare the boosting ability of the Revolt, or even the Speed 3. The few times I was able to get off the ground it was only by building speed in the buggy and steering against the kite. Float was almost none existent in the light wind conditions, which wasn't surprising. Back to back I felt the 12m Speed 3 had a little bit more grunt and lift then then 11m Revolt. One area the Revolt out performed the Speed 3 was drift. When I steered the buggy directly at the Revolt it lost all power, but held its position in the window and simply drifted down wind until I steered away again. Conclusion: The 11m Zebra Revolt is a very well designed and constructed kite. It has a couple of little flaws and I would recommend replacing the Peter Lynn bar with another brand, but overall brilliant kite for the money. Is it as good as a 12m Flysurfer Speed 3?.... No.... But its close.
  12. andy666

    Flysurfer Speed4 8M

    Picked up the new Flysurfer Speed 4 8m kite a week ago from Briskites. I went with the standard cloth rather then the delux cloth, because I figure if the wind is strong enough that I need an 8m kite, a light weight cloth really isn't needed Since getting the kite I haven't been able to test fly it, so this is just a write up of my initial impressions of the kites build quality and features. Hopefully this week I will get a chance for a test fly and will write up another review after that. Bag: Like most bags it has a zipper and buckles and the kite goes inside. The Flysurfer bag does this really well Control Bar: The Speed 4 comes with the newer infinity 2 control bar, which has already been talked about a lot, so I won't go into too much detail about it. The design of the bar is great. Large slots and thicker centre line should help maximise the life of the line, which was a problem with the Infinity 1 bar. The chicken loop has also been completely redesigned from the original Infinity 1 bar and should rotate a lot easier. One small complaint is that the finish on the bar doesn't look quite as good as the Infinity 1 bar, with excess glue and raggedy egdes on the foam. Small things I know. Kite Build and Features: The build quality, like all Flysurfer kite, is exceptional. I'm a big fan of the new colour scheme, with the generous use of black cloth and contrasting red, the kite looks great. One of the biggest improvements to the Speed 4 is the addition of ribs in the leading edge. The ribs feel to be made from a flexible plastic tubing and help the kite keep the shape of the leading edge. The ribs start at the bottom skin and run around the leading edge to about 10" along the top skin. The true benefits of these ribs probably won't be obvious on the smaller sized Speeds were inflation and maintaining internal pressure shouldn't be a problem because of the higher wind speeds. However on the larger sizes these ribs should really help the kites low end. The pictures below shows how the leading edge holds it's shape and the intake vents open even when the kite has zero internal pressure. Another new addition that should help with low wind inflation are the so called X bridles. These are bridle lines that run to the centre of the intake valves to help hold them open. It has been a long wait for the smaller sized speed kites. If they have anything like the outgoing speed 3's depower range and float they should be a fantastic kite ---- ---- ---- ---- TEST FLY ---- ---- ---- ---- Test flew the Flysurfer Speed 4 8m today for a few hours, riding a Peter Lynn buggy. I have been flying a 12m Speed 3 for a couple of years now and although it is hard to compare an 8m kite to a 12m, some comparisons can be made. Wind was cross onshore, starting at about 14knots (gust 19knots) picking up to 18knots (gust 22knots). On land, in the buggy, I felt that 17-18knots was about the mid range of the kite. Before the flight I had checked the mixer setting and line lengths, all were ok. The factory mixer setting has the B bridles at +1cm and according to an addition page in the manual, is the optimum setting for the 8m and 10m Speed 4's The steering lines are delivered slightly longer then the front lines to allow for shrinkage, but I adjusted these (according to manual recommendations) to get the lines back to optimal length for the first flight. General first impressions?........ Flysurfer FAIL! Launching: The kite launched ok from the centre of the window, with no pre-inflation (I never pre-inflate my speed 3 kites even the 15m in only 5knots). The 8m took longer then I expected to inflate and flaped around a bit until it did, but got there in the end with no big dramas. Landing: This is FAIL point of the 8m Speed 4. When back stalled down to the middle of the wind window the kite still had quite a bit of pull and unlike the Speed 3, folds in on itself the more the back lines are pulled, the Speed 4's trailing edge started to catch the wind and looked like it could invert. When the safety is pulled and the kite is flagged out to the FLS, the kite begins flapping around and spinning, never actually coming to rest on the ground. This is the case no matter where the kite is in the window when the safety is pulled. Even when the kite is already back stalled and sitting on the ground, the kite picks up and flaps around. This flapping and spinning creates a large tangle in the bridle, which can take 5-10 minutes to undo. The video doesn't show the worst landings I experienced, but they were the ones on recorded. Reverse Launch: This is one area where the Speed 4 was excellent. Simply pull on one of the steering lines and the kite flipped itself around and relaunched. Steering: In my opinion, this is the biggest FAIL for the Speed 4 and caused me nothing but frustration. The kite simply did NOT want to turn, unless the bar was pulled all the way in. Then turning speed was lightning fast and the kite can easily shoot the wrong way if you are not paying attention. For some this will be a benefit for unhooked kite loops, but that is not what I want and when jumping in the buggy the kite was hard to possition correctly. I tried moving the steering lines to the widest setting on the bar. Didn't help. I tried lengthening the front lines (which shortens the steering lines in comparison). Helped a little, but still not great. I then adjusted the mixer to the flat profile, rather then the factory setting of B +1cm, which helped a bit more. Pulling the stopper ball down about 4 inches and limiting the bar travel was the only way that I could bet a slightly acceptable bar out turning ability It's my opinion that the bar travel on the 8m is too long and needs to be shortened or limited to allow the kite to turn. Pop and Float: The 8m Speed 4 has loads of pop and can send you skywards very easily and quickly. However there is non of the easy floaty hang time of the Speed 3. Understandably an 8m kite will not have the ability of a 12m kite, but there simply wasn't even a hint of it. Every time I left the ground I came crashing down. Perhaps with time and getting used to the kites turning speeds I can produce smoother landing, but it is not the simple ease of the Speed 3. Power and Up Wind: The power delivery can be a bit brutal with the Speed 4. Going from zero to rip you sideways in an instant. Most of this is due to the speed that the kite flies and can enter the power zone. Also the fact that the bar needs to be pulled all the way in to get decent turning speed. The kites upwind ability is decent, not exceptional, which is suprising considering that the kite can easily fly completely out of the wind window on a redirect. Final Thoughts: I am not completely disappointed with the 8m Speed 4, but not far off. Perhaps with time to learn the kite and some adjustment to improve the steering it will improve. For anyone, like myself, who was hoping that the 8m Speed 4 was going to be exactly like a small Speed 3, based on my first flight I would not recommend it. And if the larger sizes turn out to have the same traits as the 8m I think that I will be holding on to my Speed 3's. This of cause was only my first flight of the 8m Speed 4 and hopefully with time it will improve and I can do a more positive review. ---- ---- ---- ---- TEST FLY 2 ---- ---- ---- ---- 2nd Flight Review (with extended front lines) I had the 8m Speed 4 out again today, in about 13 knots of wind. For using in the buggy, this is definatly the low end of the kites usable wind range, however during the gusts I was still able to do small jumps. The extended front lines (7 inchs) that I fitted have literally tranformed the kite and it is now flying and steering brilliantly. In fact every aspect of the kites behaviour has improved, so I thought that I should do a quick 2nd flight review. Launching, Landing and Reverse Launch: All of these areas are pretty much unchanged from the first review, with lanching and reverse launch being great. Landing on the safty is still a painful experience, but I am working on a possible solution to this Steering: This is the area that has improved the most from having the extended front lines. Before, the kite had almost zero steering control with the bar all the way out or at half way. Then when the bar was pulled in the kite would turn very quickly. There just seemed to be no middle ground. With the extended front lines, the kite now has far better steering control through the entire throw of the bar. Plus the steering is now more balanced, being able to easily moderate between slow lazy turns or quick kite loops. Pop and Float: It was hard to tell from todays light wind flight, but perhaps some of the kites "pop" has been reduced by having the longer front lines. However, the kite has definatly improved in the float department and didn't tend to drop me suddenly, like it did before. For me personally, this is what I want in a kite and it is a great improvement. Final Thoughts: By extending the front lines on the 8m Speed 4 I may have lost some of the kites top end depower ability, but in my opinion the benefits far outway the negative. At the end of my first flight review I said that I was almost completely disappointed with the kite and that I wouldn't recommend it. Well, that has completely changed. The 8m Speed 4 (with extended front lines) flys and feels more like a traditional Speed kite, floaty and grunty. A great kite, that I can recommend
  13. Chook

    Peter Lynn Skin 4.6M

    Hi I have just received my Peter Lynn “Skin” 4.6 m2 5 cell kite. It was ordered on the 15th of December and as I decided to go GREEN, there was a 7-10 day delay in delivery until it was made. @Goz has given me enough grief with my last pink one!!!!! 6 days later the email arrived that it was being posted. It turned up today which is outstanding, for a delivery to regional Western Australia. Cost was US$95. Plus the postage costs are $34. Lines and handles were included. This is where Peter has endorsed the supplier to build them. http://www.kaixuankite.cn/product/14416 ... _Lynn.html It was squashed into a very tight bundle that was wrapped in bubble wrap and put in a plastic express post packet. First thoughts were the stitching was all pretty neat and the bridal reinforcements were most unusual. Heavy stitching/overlocking, over a light dyneema cord,on one side of the material and a single seam the other. I placed a rock on the kite and ran out the lines off the “13 Revolution” style handles. The yellow dyneema was wrapped and every so often reversed wrapped onto the handles so when laid out there weren’t any tangles. (A first for me) The brake and power lines are connected with a short line each side just above the line attachment points. The lines are not set up to be removed from the kite easily. (No larks head connection) Pegged the brake lines at the handles and stood the kite up and it sat there beautifully. Very well mannered. I flew it for 40 mins or so and other than the leading edge tucking back under when not fully powered up, it flies well. It turns very tightly with brakes applied and powers up well. I took this while flying it so that's how well mannered it is in a tight area. It has a fair pull and I was in turbulent 10 – 12 knot wind at home, by my cricket nets, so I could sort out any trim. This trim, wasn’t required really. The only thing was the dyneema stretched more on one side than the other after this brief flying session. See the difference length below. I then attached the lines to my favourite post after flying and pulled hell out of them. They didn’t change any more. So I have now equalized all 4 ready for a beach run in the buggy. A new kite always equals off shore winds, so may be a while looking at our forecast before I can use it in the bug. My conclusion so far. It is nowhere near the pull of an equivalent size ram air for the same square meters, but I expected that. It’s just a good fun kite, with a very unusual build. It was my curiosity that made me purchase it. Would I buy this again? Probably not as the postage was pretty high. Great kite for a giggle though. It has the precision of a "Revolution 1" and can stand on a tip anywhere you put it.
  14. .Joel

    Pkd Brooza 3M

    Introduction The PKD Brooza is an "intermediate" kite that is a step up from the popular entry level PKD Buster. The Brooza is aimed as a stable buggy engine. Unpacking The package PKD supply, like a number of the popular european brands has been very simple. You get a stuff sack that contains your handles, lines and manual. No fancy backpacks etc, which can be quite a positive as a quiver of 5 kites can take up half the space due to no extra hanging bits. One thing I used to love about my PKD Buster was it was simply small enough to stuff under the seat of the car and pull it out when I wanted it. Lines PKD supply their kites on Climax Dyneema lines, the lines are excellent quality and are knotted at the ends. This means that you can adjust them over time as they stretch. All lines with enough load will stretch regardless of brand, having knots in them makes it as simple as pegging one side of the lines to your washing line, walking them back and working out which one has stretched. Untie the knot, move the knot and retie it. This saves you having to cut and modify your lines after a long time. Handles PKD Handles are light weight aluminium and comfortable. They have a cleat style system on the bottom that makes it easy to adjust the length of your brakes without having to loosen lines and move them up and down the leaders on the handles. Be aware that you need to ensure you have cleated the rope in properly, otherwise it will slip releasing the brake line and making it longer. Bridle The bridles are very bright and catch your attention easily. They are all colour coded which makes it easy to define which line runs from which row. Europeans are notorious for tweaking their kites, adjusting their bridles to get the best possible performance to suit their style of riding. Having bright and colour coded bridles makes it easier to identify which you are adjusting. I should note, that there is no need to make any changes, and only do so if you are well aware of what you are changing and why. The bridles are sleeved dyneema and are stitched at both ends. General Construction The construction of the kite is a number of noticable steps above the Buster. The finish of the bridle and sail is up there amongst the more expensive brands. There is no area of the PKD Brooza that is lacking in build, it is strong, well finished and durable. Flight Characteristics The PKD Brooza is an intermediate kite, and when flying the kite it is important to be aware of this. The kite is a buggy engine, it is not really made for standing around and static flying. Whilst you can static fly the kite, you must keep it moving. A number of people will comment on the kite luffing for them, then you read about their static fly of the kite in a park, it is not designed for this. Once you have the kite in a buggy and you are moving the kite is easily kept inflated, even with the few open cells on the front of the kite. At the top end of the kite's wind range having a large number of closed cells is no problem, at the bottom end of the kite's wind range you are going to need to keep it moving. The first time I flew a PKD Brooza was a very very strong wind and gusty day. I was handed a demo 3.0m Brooza and took off up the beach with the kite, on my first run up the beach in a standard buggy I hit 74.1km/h. This was my first run on the kite, in my hands for less then 10 minutes. The Brooza due to the closed cells on the leading edge handled the gusts very very well, and for a medium-low aspect ratio kite it pointed up wind considerably well. The kite was well behaved and stable, when a gust came through it translated to power immediately without the kite luffing or jumping around in the window. Conclusion If you are considering a larger PKD Buster I would definitely look at purchasing a Brooza. The kites turn quicker, fly further forward in the window and point up wind better then the buster. Whilst the Buster is great value for money, the extra few dollars spent on a Brooza makes it all the more worth it when looking at the overall improvement of the kite. The PKD Brooza will also give you a lot more room to grow in to the kite. Photos thanks to Dyonysosd France View the PKD Brooza Gallery:
  15. buggy1452

    Pansh First 5M

    Pansh 'First' 5M Prototype Introduction The First is a kite in development by Pansh Kites for buggy racing and is in prototype release. While this kite is in development for buggy racing it has many fine attributes to commend it to the experienced beach buggy flyer. Low lift, upwind performance and fine control come immediately to mind. The kite looks great in flight, is manufactured from first rate components and the manufacture quality is second to none. The livery is an exciting departure from that of the Sprint using an alternating pattern of black and white similiar to the checkered flag for Formula 1. This design adds a new level of complexity to the assembly of the kite calling for unprecedented precision in the manufacturing process. Power kites are very challenging in there assembly due to being made up of a large number of strips of fabric. This kite increases this challenge as the strips are made up of alternating black and white segments. I will fly the kite using the new coloured (red 220kg / blue 136kg) 20M, coated dyneema line set offered by Pansh. The kite will be reviewed in onshore winds for beach buggying and for static flight. The onshore winds experienced locally have a large thermal component and therefore vary in strength and direction. The strength varies typically as follows in knots 0-3, 3-6, 6-12, 10-15, 10 -20, 15-25, 18-30 Canopy Dimensions Area = 5 M sq Chord = 1.15 M Span = 5.32 M Fabric: Ripstop crisp fabric Cells There are 40 cells with the two center cells (20&21) closed and 9 open cells to left (11 to 19) and right (22 to 30) of centre cells with 10 cells closed on each wing tip. Open 18 Closed 22 Sandouts: Cell 2 & 39 - Velcro Bridle Material: White Coated Dyneema, sewn loops Configuration: A, B, C and D Power The power bridle is 2 teir with 27 primary connections cascading to 10 secondary at the leader for the powerline. Numbering from centre out PA(1-9) PB(1-9) PC(1-9). PA (1-2) – SA 1, PA (3-4) - SA 2, PA(5-6) – SA 3 PB (1-2) – SB 1, PB (3-4) - SB 2, PB(5-6) – SB 3 PC (1-2) – SC 1, PC (3-4) - SC 2, PC(5-6) – SC 3 There are 9 connect points on the outer three cells to support the wing tips. PA (7-8) 9, PB (7-8) 9, PC (7-8) 9 - S10 Brake D bridle with 9 connect points each side. This bridle configuration offers strong balanced support of the canopy giving predictable flight characteristics. The kite flies on its power bridles and can be responsively steered using the power lines only, with the brakes controlling speed, enhancing steerage and controlling landing. The brakes can be released without the kite overflying the wind window. In Flight Wind Range: Gusting to 20 knots, but will generate useful power from 6 Knts. Setup I attached the lines to the bridle at the longest setting offered on the bridle header leads and the kite flew as I wanted, the brakes are off in flight but with very responsive control, launching and landing. Launch The kite requires to be allowed to inflate before lift off then rolling onto one tip and flying away across the wind window. Landing Gentle even pressure on the brakes will back the kite onto the ground. Static Flying The kite launches easily – first inflate on the sand allowing wing tips to fill. A gentle tug on the power lines to lift kite into the wind window. Gentle pressure on brakes to steady kite pull on one power line to steer kite to vertical in centre of wind window then ease brakes to fly to edge of wind window. Above 6 knots the kite will sit stationary at edge of wind window if a gentle pressure is applied to the brakes. The kite responds well to control of both brake and power lines. Its speed across the wind window can be regulated by brake pressure on both lines. Figure eights both up and down turn, generated generous power in 3 to 6 knts for sand skudding.. The kite exhibits low lift when flown quickly to the zenith and responds evenly to brake pressure to land backwards. The kite can also be landed downwind by collapsing the lower wing tip onto the sand and releasing pressure on the upper power line allowing the kite to lay on its back. This technique is useful when landing alone in high winds. Beach Buggying The kite proved itself in the buggy being stable and controllable. I flew the kite on a strop on a seat harness. This allowed me to fly one handed steering on the power lines. It is essential that no pressure is exerted on the brake lines to prevent unwanted steerage and to allow the kite to respond to gusts by moving forward in the wind window and accelerating the buggy. In strong gusts there would be a surging forward of the kite and as the gust passed the kite would slide back in the window which gave the illusion of the buggy catching up to the kite. If the kite shifted due to updraft , wind shift or inadvert inputs I found it responsive to corrections and therefore not threatened if it drifted around the wind window. All up my buggy and I are relatively light at 120kg. The 5M First generates usable power from 5 knts and remained manageable to gusting 20knts with controllable loss of traction in gusts over 15/16knots. The first session with the kite lasted over 2 hours. Max speed was 59.5 km/h. I was on the beach with a Libre Vmax powered by a 10M Flysurfer Speed 1.5 and in wind speeds of 10/15knots I was able to pass the Vmax going full speed in the opposite direction turn to follow and round it up in about 2km and pull away. I flew it on long runs to windward that lasted for over 15 minutes at speeds around 40 km/h and found it much less tiring than say an ACE. The kite was so stable, predictable and low lift I could comfortably fly it 1M off the sand or quickly push it up to 80 deg in the window if necessary.
  16. SoutherlyBuster

    Peter Lynn Charger 10M

    I had a chance to try out the new Peter Lynn Charger 10m^2 for both land boarding and kite boarding. I mostly fly my Peter Lynn Venom II 13m^2 and when the wind is high swap over to my Peter Lynn Synergy 8m^2, so I felt at home with the Charger and the updates were a pleasant surprise. My comments come straight from my kiting log book. 7 Feb 2010 Ride =============== Land boarding session in light winds, 8 to 10 knots, sea breeze. Kite construction: well made, they have addressed the weak points of the Synergy. The air inlets at the wing tips, the zippered ones, these keep open much better when left unattended versus the Venom II, they don't collapse and close up in light winds. Due to the smaller trailing edge internal rib gauze between the wing tip and wing tip zipper, I could not inflate the wing tip by opening the down wind zip as one can with the Venom II. This was not a problem though as even when not fully inflated in light winds the kite was still launchable. So the launchability has improved significantly since the Venom II's. Navigator bar: excellent design, such a big improvement on the previous release. I could easily flag out the kite by letting the bar run out, let the kite land, pull the flagging line to retrieve the bar and re launch the kite (without having to unstrap and going to the kite). The bar is smoother and not as rough on the hands. The chicken loop can not accidentally come out or unhook, is very easy to reset once released. The bar did feel heavier than the previous models. The safety leash is a big improvement, will not coil and twist up any more, disengagement is effective and quick if you need to release it, this was not possible on the previous release. The kite performance is a slight improvement on the Synergy but a big improvement on the Venom II. It turns very fast versus the Venom II even in light winds. Power delivery is smoother than the Synergy. Landing worked well, the land assist tabs work much better than on previous models. Kite bag is the same as the Synergy, is the usual dual bag of small if kite wing tip batons are removed from the kite or extendable if batons left in the kite. Wing tip batons have not changed and still have the poor end cap rubbers which can fail upon kite crashes, ie intersection of rubber cylindrical wall and top cap get torn/cut from the Aluminium tube. (I replace mine with Bunnings chair leg end caps, not a problem since.) The bar centre hole has improved by the addition of a stainless steel sheath but still requires improvement as there were some rough edges. 13 February 2010 Ride ===================== Kite boarding session on the water, medium wind strength, 15-16 knots onshore sea breeze. GPS readings: 10m^2 Charger: 35 km/hr, 13m^2 Venom II 39.2 km/hr. This indicates trialing a 12m^2 Charger would have been a better comparison to my Venom II 13m^2. Now for the comments of the Charger .... Very smooth power delivery of the Charger, in comparison to my 8m^2 Synergy which is more like a "terrier" (but I like it that way). Charger has a very fast turning speed, very much faster than the Venom II 13m^2, and a bit faster than the Synergy 8m^2. I was a bit under powered for the water action at 15 knots average wind speed, therefore would not consider the 10m^2 Charger as an all round kite size for land and water like the Venom II 13m^2. So I would be inclined to go for either the 12 or 16m^2 Charger as the all rounder kite and use the smaller Chargers for high wind days. The soft covering on the bar was comfortable and felt solid on the land when the bar was dry, but when wet it felt a bit too slippery. My hands did not slip off though, perhaps something to get used to. The Cleat Trim System: personally I don't like it, I prefer the older strap system. The cleat system felt fiddly and difficult to set when out on the water and riding at the same time. The kite performed well on all fronts for upwind, cross wind and down wind. Because of the fast turning capability, kite loops will be easier and have to watch out for accidental kite loops as did happen during that session. I did not test the water re launch capability, it just kept in the air so nicely, had no need for water re launch. The bar pressure was light. This is considered a major improvement versus the Venom II 13m^2 along with turning speed. That is both light for pulling in the bar and for turning. The bar floaties length has been shortened which makes for a neater system during packup/winding in the lines. Again noticed the heavier bar/leash system, but suspect most of the weight increase was due to the leash. The leash was substantially longer, so it could be easily placed on your harness side if you wish rather than right next to the chicken loop hook. As noted during the land session, the new leash was great, no more twisting of the leash around the floaties as on the Venom II. There are now more adjustments possible on the Charger versus the Venom II and Synergies. I only tried out the one setting. The setting I used was: * Internal straps: default middle setting. * Front line knots: middle. * Rear line knots: fully out. Tips on which setting to use were given in the manual, but as before you need to 'play' with the settings to get what you want. Final remarks: Best improvements versus the Venom II: Faster turning. Low bar pressure. Improved bar system. Regards, Norman.
  17. wolfie

    Hq Montana5 7M

    I had the Montana 5 7m2 depower kite from Jason at Briskites for a bit to try as i am looking at getting a depower to fit in between my 4m2 and 7m2 kites ,so Jas offered me the Montana and i said well I'd do a review so here goes. First thing is the bag it comes in a backpack nice and strong with no real gimik like zips or unwanted bits very usable so I thought. Next was the kite it self and when I opened the bag the quality looks good as like all new kites .When you get to open them for the first time it is quit fun . Getting to feel the crispness of the material and the stiffness of the lines once opened was great very easy even for a relative newby to depower to put together. The lines and bar are easy enough to sort out especially with WRONG SIDE on it (lol for us dummies) so it went well, and I like the new chicken loop on this kite ,as I have had a fly of the m IV and they have improved it from the IV Montana. The ground stake is good too hooked it all up then did another walkover to make sure I had got it all right using the instructions as best as I could , (then asked someone who knew ) and got the thumbs up . So the next thing was to launch her for a static fly first to get a feel, first time wind was a bit on the light side but felt good turned well for a big kite, so I thought and felt like it was building power through the window so did a few turns up and down to see if it and I worked well, The power did not feel to bad and I was quite surprised at how well it flew. In saying that it was about 10 to 12 knts which is at the bottom end of its range, so to even get going for a first timer was good one thing I did notice was if I pulled a bit of Depower it flew better . The wind only picked up slightly so was unable to get it going much better and ended up pulling the pin and going home. It was another week before I was able to get out again and the wind was a bit better, we had about 12 to 17 knts so the kite was a bit more agile and this helped launch and landing was easy as pulling on the strap on the break lines, and the kite just settled down, Relaunch was just as easy too and I had a lot of fun in the buggy it was a lot better and with some luck the wind did come up and help in this. In the buggy the kite felt very nice and the control was good bar pressure was light’ish (so I thought ) and I did not have any problems the bar is 50cm on the 7 so I did not find it a problem either all in all I found the kite to be very good and had a lot of fun with it. It does feel a little lifty which for those who like to jump will like this a lot for me i just liked the way it handled and kept in the right place was not a problem but take your eyes of her and put it in the wrong place and you could go sky ward. It was very stable in stronger winds that I had the next day and I was able to us the depower more as the wind had picked up to around 20 knts gusting to 23 so I had a better run and liked the kite a lot. The overall sideways pull was controlable and the feeling of sliding my bug with the kite was awesome the 7 did not tend to pull sideways as more over it translated into forward movement As an overall package it is a great kite and I am inclined to seriously look at a 9.5 V as this would fit where I would like the size to be and with where I fly ,I would still like to get my hands on a M5 9.5 for a try as I’ve flown the MIV to compare. Regards mike
  18. Spartan

    Ozone Manta3 10M

    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. Kite Bag 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. The Kite 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. Flying 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. Conclusion 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!.... ......
  19. koma

    Windwing Batwing 12M

    Rider: Koma (Jason) Weight: 78kg dry Experience: Intermediate'ish Board: '07 Underground FLX42 (with Cabrinha Sync bindings) & '06 Naish Sol 136 After checking the Windwing Batwing for the first time down at Rosebud on the Saturday i'd had a good look at it and was keen to see how it flew. Shame there wasn't even a light breeze let along the 15-25kn the forecast called for, so i checked out the detailing. This kite is built quite tough. The leading edge was neatly finished with solid scuff pads at regular intervals; nicely finished and not too heavy. Reinforcing along the trailing edge felt solid and possibly even overkill compared to other kites on the market. The one thing i noted in the main sail was that there was no joins across the material, just a single canopy piece from LE to tail except for where the Windwing logo was where the main sail (black) was cut out and a red logo piece was stitched in it's place. The bar and lines setup is much the same as many other setups on the market but with a few important differences. The clip for the safety leash is rigidly mounted to the chicken loop on the top of the chicken loop. The depower rope and it's clam cleat (assuming the leash mount is on the top) are on the bottom of the chicken loop and remain quite neat and out of the way. I found it slightly difficult to adjust the depower to begin with until i became familiar with the direction of the calmcleat as i'm used to being able to see the cleat. If you wanted to you could very easily have the depower rope and cleat on the top which i would recommend. The quick release on the chicken loop is a very neat little piece of design with a nice small locking pin folding away from you and being held in place by the QR plastic collar. It has a groove in the bottom of it to make sure it stays in place and takes a concious but not difficult action to release it. Reassembly is relatively easy but requires a tiny amount of fiddling. I wouldn't recommend attempting to re-rig this underwater but it's significantly easier than some others. Once launched and in the air the kite has quite a smooth and stable style of flight. It is most definitely not a fast kite and required a reasonable amount of bar and effort to get it turning quickly. When the bar is cranked it has a slight delay before the kite commits to the turn and then smoothly arcs through it's turn much like the majority of bows and SLE's. Attempting to get it to pivot on a tip with very aggressive flying didn't reward me with any faster turning speed, so i'd say the kite is quite accomodating of mistakes. With a bit of speed on the water and the bar held almost all the way in the kite makes smooth steady power sitting steadily forward in the window. Letting it ease back into the window by riding towards it rewarded me with a smooth increase in power giving me enough time to tension up the lines for a nice smooth load and pop. It took quite a firm edge to force it to the edge of the window. I only attempted to downloop the kite on transitions just to see how quickly i could get it to turn and from my tests i wouldn't recommend looping it. It's just not quite fast enough through it's turns to make it a looping kite. The forte of this kite for me was it's boosting and smooth glide back down. A bit of speed with the bar held half way in and an enthusiastic redirection followed by a quick yank on the bar lifted me gently off the water into what i can only describe as a wonderfully slow-motion style jump. Holding the bar in and gently flying the kite back forward gradually brought me back down to the water for a nice gently landing. I haven't had a chance to check out the beach mid-way through a jump for a while, and whilst not stratospheric it gertainly rewarded the enthusiastic bar movements i was giving it. One slight hiccup occured when i aggressively pulled the bar in and cranked it for a turn whilst the kite was easing back into the window. Much to my shock it caused the leading edge just for a brief moment to fold back under the kite. Quickly letting the bar out returned the leading edge of the kite back to it's intended shape but not before giving me a quick spook. I attempted to recreate this problem following the actions i described but it didn't do it again. Might put this one down to my over-enthusiastic flying clashing with the design intent of the kite. Overall a lovely beginner/intermediate kite with a smooth and friendly flight characteristic.
  20. .Joel

    Eolo Evo2 8M

    The new depower foil kite from Eolo for 2008 is the Evo2. The kite is the second generation of the Evo, however takes on a completely different design. The new Evo 2 is much higher aspect then the previous version, and the wing tips cut away. The kite is aimed at landboarding and snowkiting mainly, however it's perfectly at home in a buggy. Unpacking The first thing about the new Evo 2 series from Eolo is the huge bag that it is provided with. The bag is well made, and you could probably fit 3 of the kites in there comfortably! It opens up with a zip all the way down the front to make packing and unpacking easy. Lines The lines on the kite are heavy duty lines, and quite thick. After about 8 sessions on the kite they only showed minimal wear, so overall I was impressed with the durability of the lines showing that they would last quite a while. Due to the direction I was mainly flying the top right line stretched slightly over time. Bar & Safety The chicken loop comes with a donkey dick that is a little to flexible to keep it in place. The loop is also very very large and does not hold its shape, this makes it difficult if it slips out to hook back in. The bar itself is comfortable and a good thickness that makes it easy to hold on to without getting sore hands. However the inserts on the bar are plastic, and the line through the middle of the bar is nearly like rope. The friction of the two already started to create signs of wear on both the bar and the inserts after two sessions. The first safety is a mushroom top safety. The second is on the chicken loop and is a pin & loop style safety, this is quite easy to release pulling on the red trigger. Bridles The bridles on the kite seem perfect, all stitched and sleeved to protect from damage. They are all attached to sewn points on the kite, and run through Ronstan pulleys on the lines. Overall it is as well built as the larger brands. Kite Build The kite overall is very very well built, equally as good as the more expensive brands. The leading edge of the kites are sewn and reenforced, as is the trailing edge and the bridles are sleeved and sewn. Flight Characteristics The way the kite responds to imput is very positive and immediate. For its size the 8m flew like a much smaller kite in how it responded, turning responsively and responding to the sheeting of the bar. The power was very sudden and responsive to how far you pulled in on the bar while the kite was moving. The kite was also very lifty, due to the speed of the kite sending it through the upper half of the window and sheeting the bar in sent you skywards. The kite had a good amount of float, however you had to bring the kite back over, leaving it to any side of the window would see you drop fairly quickly. It definitely needs positive input when being flown, you can not just send it over you and forget about it. For its size the power generated was more then a number of other similar sized depower foils, however a bit more throw on the bar would be great so you could kill the power a bit more when there was to much. Conclusion The kite is a very nice kite to fly, generally well behaved. It did invert in extremely gusty winds, as would any kite. However it was generally very stable and responsive of the multiple times I flew the kite. If you are purchasing the kite you may want to look to replacing the depower cord through the middle of the bar, as it is corse and will wear out the plastic inserts very quickly. There is also a few inches of travel left up at the kite when the bar is sheeted in or out, you could extend your depower throw on the bar to make use of this and increase the depower range of the kite. Overall the kite represents excellent value for money, with attention and improvement needing to be paid to the bar setup.
  21. .Joel

    Ozone Pro Handles

    Ozone have done well with these handles, yet they are another company that could have nailed it if they paid a bit more attention to detail. Right now I find the Ozone Pro handles for me to be the best tool for the job, but they are not “perfect.” Being a MK1 design of the handles, i’m hoping they revise and improve them. Appearance The appearance of the handles from a distance looks great. Close up however you can spot a few cosmetic imperfections. Not a biggie, but it would be nice if they applied as much effort into finishing these handles off like they do their bars on their depower foils. Strop The strop that comes with them is the standard Ozone strop. I’ve been using them for a while, whilst you get a limited life span out of them in your pulley, they are a good length and I have never broken one to date. Leaders (Power Line and Brake Line) Alright, this is where they are “Pro” handles. This means they are designed to be setup with a minimum amount of adjustment at the handle end. This is to minimize knots and the potential of things catching. One thing that has driven me crazy in the past is having knots on the leader lines jam up, or catch on the lines from the other handle after looping the kite or flying single handed with a few twists in the lines. Ozone have done their best to minimize the effect of the knots at the handle end. The outcome of this however is that you now need to do your adjustment at the kite end of the lines. One you have your kite setup it’s a case of leave and forget. Now here is my main concern. I heard from an individual that his concern was the leader lines looked like they could wear on the carbon. At first I thought it was dolly’s wash, however as it turns out it is quite a reality. A couple of people have mentioned slight wear and “squeaking” of the knot inside the handles. My handles after 15 sessions are just starting to show some signs of wear, so I have no doubt that it is possible and it is something to keep your eye on just before you start the session. They won’t wear out overnight. Comfort This is an area that has mixed feelings. Ozone released them with the intention for you to wear gloves when using them. They also put heavy consideration in to the racing scene, where the top pilots do not fly with their fingers over the top line. Personally I don’t like that, and would rather they have the finger chafe protectors supplied with them or built into their next revision, as most freestylers fly with their fingers over the top line. Apart from the leader line on occasion chewing your finger, the handles are damn comfortable. They are fairly hard, with the foam padding giving you just that little bit of comfort. I like my handles hard instead of coated in really soft absorbent material, as it gives me a more direct feel to the kite. Instead of it being “spongy” you can feel everything instantly. Usability In the buggy they feel great. The feeling back from the handles is direct and not spongy, and the different sizing options let you match them well to your kite. One area would be nice, is if they made one of the handles all black, instead of the only difference being the red and black plugs at the top of the handles. This would make grabbing the correct handle after letting go a lot easier to accomplish without having to try to spot the colour on the top of the handle. Having the brake lines come straight out the bottom is also a nice change. Overall Conclusion My overall conclusion is that I find these to be the best tool for the job at the moment. However Ozone could have done better by including chafe protectors, ensuring the top leaders don’t wear, and general cosmetics on the finish. None of this will stop me using the handles, as this is a smaller price to pay then my handles snapping mid air above hard ground, where falling into water isn’t a luxury, and landing on hard ground is a check back to reality. Ozone have released a handle that has the potential to be perfect, it just needs a little refinement. This review was originally posted in our Community Forum, October 2007
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