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 Post subject: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 7:31 pm 
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I have a 2014 17m Contra. Last May I stretched out the bungee on the trim tab line that is on the over drive bar. I didn't get around to fixing it until September. It turned out to be more of a pain then I imagined but I think I did everything properly.

Since then I've only ridden it twice. Once in September in light wind and then I had it up yesterday in higher winds. I've noticed several differences that have me a little perplexed. First the depower seems to have drastically more throw. Second the control spring that pushes up against the stopper ball seems to fully compress much more frequently (a result of having more depower throw). Third the kite itself appears to back stall and look over sheeted regularly. The first time I rode in September I thought light flukey wind was culprit however after today in much stronger winds (18-20) I tend to think I may have not properly reassembled the bar setup after fixing the trim tab or have an issue with the lines. Back stalling led me to check the line lengths this afternoon. I found a knot on a center line just below where the stitching starts before forming a loop at the end of the line. I'll chalk that up to rushing when setting up but I doubt one knot would cause such a noticeable difference?

I followed the videos on youtube and it appears that my line lengths are not even and need work.(see photo 1). Is this much stretch in the lines common for less then two years of riding?

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I adjusted the figure eight stopper knots on the steering lines but did not get as much of a change as I was hoping for (see photo 2).

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It does not appear I have a lot of room to move the figure eight knots much further. Would I have to shorten the middle lines instead to compensate for not having more line on the steering lines?


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I've only been riding for a little over a year and half. The first 5 months were mostly on the Contra until I moved. Since then I have been riding a 12m and 9m bandit 3/4 of time. I'm a bit surprised/disappointed with my Cabrinha experience thus far. I could understand this happening if I was riding this kite 24/7, but that is not the case. Has anyone had similar issues or have any advice? What is the average life a set of Cabrinha lines? Thanks for the thoughts.


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 7:44 pm 
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Location: Southwestern Ontario
just remove all the knots and attach the pig tails loop to loop... if that is still not long enough make some new pigtails


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 7:48 pm 
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Your Cabrinha lines will last longer than a year, and that much stretch is not really possible with limited use in a year's time. If you think you may have re-assembled the lines incorrectly, I suspect that's a more logical explanation than line stretch.

In photo 1 (and 2), as you know, your line lengths are way off. Your bar should be pulled back against the chicken loop when all 4 lines are equally taut. If you can't figure out how the lines got to that point, it's probably better to lengthen your steering (outside/rear) lines than to shorten your center lines. Use pigtails at the kite end of the steering lines. Make sure that, when you check your line lengths, the 4 line-ends (at kite end) are secured and not sliding through a hook or clip.

Once your lines are the same length, make sure your safety systems are all operating properly. Take the kite to the water and flag it out to make sure it works as it should. If not, then try to find another Cabrinha bar to compare with yours (side-by-side) to help identify the problem. Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:09 pm 
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Instead of pulling the bar and CL separately pull the bar w/ the CL up against the bar and look at the sag along the length of the lines. That will make sure you have even length.

In pic 3 those are some really messed up looking connections, way too complicated for just putting 2 pieces of string together. There is likely something wrong in there.

Also, when you put them back together, don't use the dual loop-square knot setup like Laughing man posted. Put a larks head through a larks head. You'll have more contact surface area in the knot so it's potentially stronger and, more importantly, it's easy to get it loose after it's been kited in for a year.


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:23 pm 
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Bushflyr wrote:
.....Put a larks head through a larks head.....
All good advice from Bushflyr, but I think he means "put a [knotted end] through a larks head"..... :thumb:


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:27 pm 
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FLandOBX wrote:
Bushflyr wrote:
.....Put a larks head through a larks head.....
All good advice from Bushflyr, but I think he means "put a [knotted end] through a larks head"..... :thumb:


No I mean "put a larks head through a larks head." They should be symmetrical with the loop of one looped through the loop of the other. Easy to release after being kited on for years.

Like this: This line is WAY TOO BIG to use this knot, but it's ideal for small stuff like flying lines.


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:39 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2008 11:51 pm
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Location: Florida
Had exactly the same happen on my 2012 Cabrinha bar after about a year and a half. I had to untie all the knots in order to elongate the pigtails long enough to equal out all the lines.

My Cabrinha race bar trim pulley line is even worse. Brand new bar and the line wore through in about ten sessions, if that.


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:56 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2015 5:10 pm
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My cabrinha bar had that much over sheeting with a half season use which makes me wonder if it was ever right. New pigtails are the solution


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 3:50 am 
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And if, in fact, new pigtails are the solution, learn to splice your own. It's super easy, I use a bit of clothes hanger, and good spectra line is stupid cheap at your local sailing shop. :thumb:


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 Post subject: Re: Contra Line Tuning
PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 4:15 am 
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Thanks for all the input.

FLandOBX: I don't doubt that I could have messed up the reassembly. However I tested the releases after putting it back together. I also powered and depowered the kite several times. I thought that since the ratchet system was working correctly I probably had the assembly right. The one area I was sketchy about was cutting the stitching on the end of the black tubing. I had to do that to feed the line and get the U bolt off. I doubt that would cause a issue since the stopper is in place? Thanks for the feedback.

All, thanks for the photos and suggestions. Tomorrow I will take the knots out and attach them as laughingman suggested and see where that puts me.

This may be a very amateur question but I will throw it out there. When people talk about stretching lines does that usually just pertain to the pigtails? Am I right in assuming the thinner line that runs the majority of the length does not have room to stretch or has less of a tendency to stretch? If so I assume replacing pigtails is a common occurrence?


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