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Small, portable pump for downwinders

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Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby antwerp » Sun Sep 02, 2012 7:26 am

I'm wondering if anyone has found a good, small pump that would fit in a small hydration pack. There's at least one spot I kite where I hike in and then do a downwinder, so I'd like to take the pump along with me. I'm currently using the Curve Surf Waterman pack (which works great in the surf because of the way it snugly attaches to your back). It's about 12" high and 7" wide. I don't use the hydration sack, but I currently need to pack two small pumps. The first is an exercise ball pump which has OK volume, but stops working when the pressure in the kite gets too high. The second is a small bike pump which I use to finish pumping the kite (to get to 8-10psi). I'm guessing other people may have solved this problem before. I think the old kite pumps used to be similar to the black plastic one pictured, but the one I have doesn't seem to work past ~4psi. I also looked into the Volo kite pump (using a paintball canister with compressed air), but I think the canister I would need may be too large. Would appreciate any ideas, thanks.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby WildDuke » Sun Sep 02, 2012 11:38 am

Wow! That little hand pump would take you hours to fill a kite! I used one once to inflate my girlfriends balance ball and it took forever! On the plus side, it will develop other muscles that can be used for other things! Ha ha ha!

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby cglazier » Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:46 pm

In the early days of kiteboarding (1999) the "ketchup bottle" pump like shown in your first picture is all we had. These pumps are still commonly available inexpensively in camping stores for pumping air mattresses. They work fine but of course take longer.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby fdvj » Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:25 pm

Just buy an ordinary pump and bury or hide it at the start of your downwinder.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby Yeeeharrrr » Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:30 pm

I still have a little tiny red hand pump that came as standard with Wipika kites in early 2000, took it to Italy with my 14 mtr and in the heat of summer I found it easier to blow up the kite by mouth, yes by mouth, slowly as it make you go dizzy, then lie back on the grass for a breather,
gasp /phew ! Finaly finish it off with the little hand pump, crazy tiring,
tried to keep the struts inflated overnight due to the effort required to inflate it in the heat of the day,
There was a magazine article about one of the guys on Maui who always blew his kites up by mouth, some may remember that, as it made you think yer, right, bullshit. After doing it myself I have to agree that's it not recommended.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby flipper231 » Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:43 pm

Yeah, hide a regular pump at your starting point.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby antwerp » Mon Sep 03, 2012 12:13 am

Thanks for your help. I could try hiding a pump, but there are other beach users, so it might not stay put. It takes a little more than 10 minutes to pump up a 10m using the small hand pump. It's definitely no fun, but it works. I think the small, exercise ball pump I'm using just isn't very good (can't handle the pressure needed in a kite). I realize it's a strange request, but does anyone know where I could find one of those old Wipika pumps? I tried REI but couldn't find anything.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby plummet » Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:01 am

i've thought about this. but the problem with small pumps is the volume is too small... hmmm. i have also wondered about c02 cartridges. Mountainbikers used these to inflate mtb tyres. probably not practical. hmmm..

really i have no amaising ideas.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby Nico » Mon Sep 03, 2012 4:48 am

In the early days only the little 'w.......r' pump was available.
After using it a few times on the beach (as the only kiter around) I had to get rid of it because of all the silly jokes I would suffer (worst was the smiles from the girls).
For a couple of years I pumped it by mouth, which was good for my chest and caused me some nice headrushes. The end pressure was not good at all though, and I learnt to fly jelly fishing kites that were almost impossible to relaunch, until the 'normal' pump appeared.
Chalked this episode of to experience.

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Re: Small, portable pump for downwinders

Postby Westozzy » Mon Sep 03, 2012 5:44 am

yep I remember those! Damn nearly killed me. But, as a back up for a downwinder, they would be okay. But I'm assuming you are thinking of more than one day trip? No real answer for that really. Someone might though. Even a small foot pump used for air matresses would be better than that bloody thing.

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