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Jason

2019 Kite Construction Guide

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On 10/16/2018 at 3:54 PM, Jason said:

Get the low down on why some kites are just built better than others. Check out our latest article-

https://www.briskites.com.au/news/2019-kitesurf-kite-buyers-guide/?fbclid=IwAR0LLPWhG2uIQbKytKetZxuU8TxRBZ0-D9Omw0BeGBo2kbzjnl0FNoSb6zg

Great write-up Jason, reminds me of your great talk about how depowers work when you visited one of the Sandy Point events. By the way, where you mentioned permeable, I think you meant impermeable ;) .

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Question (nice write up by the way), GONG kites as you know have a single strut by way of a flattened flex-pole, that the kiter simply slides into a "middle pocket" and this keeps the kite more rigid and reduces flutter. No need to pump a strut bladder. I think they have other models with the same concept but with more re-inforcing :struts" along the canopy of the kite. The only inflatable part is the leading edge. No valves too of course which is great.

It was a common feature in older C kites (slingshot, naish). There must be a reason why the modern bladder solution took over, and it's not weight. I've weighed these flex-struts for want of a better term, and they are lighted than a similar sized bladder inflated. I would have thought a strut with diameters as much as 4 inches in some kites, would generate wind resistance and create an obtrusion to the flow of wind underneath the canopy. So why not have embraced a more simpler design like the GONG kites?

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On 8/21/2019 at 2:53 PM, Northern Kites Australia said:

There must be a reason why the modern bladder solution took over, and it's not weight. I've weighed these flex-struts for want of a better term, and they are lighted than a similar sized bladder inflated.

A few reasons but mostly the same reason there has never been a fully rigid kitesurf kite. Most users not only want a fun kite to use, they also want it to be practical and portable. Secondly (and I have seen this a lot over the years) Kite cloth just doesn't play well when attached to solid objects, they always find a way to damage the cloth eventually.

 

I would have thought a strut with diameters as much as 4 inches in some kites, would generate wind resistance and create an obtrusion to the flow of wind underneath the canopy. So why not have embraced a more simpler design like the GONG kites?

Basically because it has all been tried before. From memory it was Gaastra who tried it many years ago and the results weren't good. As for the drag of a strut on the lower airfoil, airflow is a strangely complex beast and the struts have no frontal drag (the LE is in the way) friction drag from the sides is negligible due to the length and low airspeeds.

I think it's also easy to forget the safety aspect with regards to no strut kites also. If you lose air in the LE, your kite now has no positive buoyancy. 

 

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