So I am a new rider, with a used 2007/8 Slingshot TD2 14m. I am just getting up on the board, and have had a problem twice now with the kite inverting.
Situation was that I started planeing, and was distracted or whatever, I am new so a lot of things going on at once learning in surf. Take a hop, lose my balance and start to fall, in the process kite starts to loop. I try to follow through with the loop, kite depowered all the way, rather than hammer it down into the surf. Leading edge collapses and the center portion of the kite inverts wrapping the trailing edge around the leading edge in a sort of W shape that is not easily undone while inflated even once back on land, let alone in the water. I then threw my chicken loop, wrapped up the lines and had to kick back to shore for maybe 20 minutes. Could not self rescue due to the type of inversion.
I am fairly sure the kite is well inflated. I have seen people mention over inflating these older bow kites to 10psi to help prevent this issue. I am getting a gauge, but I had it really stiff, pump getting hard to push.
This kite has a 2:1 bar and pulleys, I have read they cause this sort of problem to be more likely to happen when depowering a fast moving kite.
The line length seem good stretch wise, but I have not seen much about tuning 2:1 kites. I am using the center knots on all lines, and not trimming the depower at all, leaving it full length (I have long arms).
Should I have let the kite crash rather than try to loop it?
Anyway, looking for any and all advice. I may go back to an instructor that will work with me while I use my own equipment, but I would like to hear what you all have to say as well.
well if this is not an extreme type of loop the LE should hold. Maybe the bridle is just not that well designed? I think the only thing you can do now is to inflate the kite well, and maybe not depower it all the way? Some deforming might not be too bad, but if the kite deforms to the extent it inverts?? ...not sure how that would work, but then you have a problem
It's really easy to make that kite tilt too far and fast on the axis running tip to tip and it's instability is exacerbated by the 2:1 bar. You could convert it to 1:1, just detach the steering leaders where they tie back into the center lines and run them to the end of the steering lines doubled up.
I have a 14M T2 that does the same thing. It usually occurs with a rapid depower on the edge of the window. I think this is a common problem with a 2 to 1 rig. My friend has two cabrinas with a 2 to 1 bar and they do this as well.
We both were used to 2 to 1 bars and recently flew my Starkite S bow with a 1 to 1 bar. Even though the Starkite flies much worse than the Slingshot, we both noticed how much less the starkite got twisted up in the air in the gusty and variable winds.
I was told by a kiteshop not to fly my T2 1 to 1 because it doesnt fly well like that, but I have a 9M T3 that I am definitely going to start flying 1 to 1. The TD2 is newer, so it will probably work with a 1 to 1 bar.
As for flying 2 to 1, just do your best not to let it depower too rapidly (easier said than done when you are falling) and when it does get twisted up, sometimes it will resolve itself if you pull in a bunch of right (or left) trailing edge line causing the kite to flap sideways downwind. As soon as I see any air under the kite, I let it all go and it somehow magically re-inverts. It doesn't always work, but it is worth a try. Best of luck.