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Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:17 pm
by ronnie
It seemed that an anchor launch was a good idea and an anchor launch with the kite sitting on the water would be even better.

What I'm finding though is that there is one problem - seaweed.

I'm trying launches at various places at the estuary end of an inlet - usually near high tide and many times there has been a lot of seaweed drifting onto the lines. Often it goes on faster than you can get it off. With single front line flagging, it can be important to get every bit off the flagging front line.

I tried looking up the life cycle of seaweed to find out if it is seasonal and what weeks the seaweed drifts, but its not easy to find an answer on the internet.

So my question is, does anyone know if seaweed drifts at a particular time of year. My guess is that it does, to re-establish itself at a new location.

Re: Seaweed

Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:25 pm
by jats2k9
Same thing happens on my local spot at the beach. They show up at a certain time of the year. Personally I had a bad experience with this seaweed. It tangled on my lines, forced me to QR, and then I found myself on a sketchy situation since due to the seaweed tangled on the lines the kite didnt depower at all. I had to swim back to shore with the kite pulling me from the leash.

Re: Seaweed

Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:25 pm
by Slappysan
Seaweed sucks.

If you can get your kite in the air quickly then shake the bajesus out of the control bar for about 30 seconds and you'll get most of it off. The longer it stays on your lines the more wrapped around them and thus harder to get it off though.

Re: Seaweed

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:38 am
by ronnie
I spotted a tiny piece of seaweed on the single flagging front line.

The flagging front line had a 3m extension at the bottom of the line which cannot be moved to the top of the line, so I reckoned the seaweed would at least slide up 3m before it jammed the flag out. That's what happened and the kite looped with more power than it should when flagged until the seaweed got forced past the loop/loop connection on the line. Then the kite flagged out as it should before it hit the water. I was hoping that was what would happen.

It seems I may have to consider replacing the lines as it is best to have a single line with no connections to give the seaweed the best chance of sliding along the line and the flagging system still working.

Re: Seaweed

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:43 pm
by Don Monnot
I hate weeds. I'll drive an extra 30 miles to go to a spot with fewer weeds.

I kited at a spot where you have to drift launch, and the weeds gave me a serious scare. It was blowing about 25-30 mph, and weeds caught one of the steering lines just before the lines went taught. This launched the kite, but with about 20 pounds of weeds hanging from a steering line. Talk about a powered up death loop! At one point it launched me 15 feet into the air and slapped me back down pretty hard. Fortunately the force popped the weeds off the line, and I got things back under control just before being dragged into the rocks along shore. Glad I didn't have to release the kite. It would have gone into the trees along shore or a house, and probably would have trashed the kite and/or damaged some of the homeowner's "stuff". As a result, that lake is now off my list of kiting sites when the weeds are present (starting about this time of year).

At another lake at this time of year, the weeds are so bad that if you drop your kite in the water, you don't even bother trying to relaunch. You flag the kite, wrap up, and slog back to the launch site. Fortunately most of the lake is standing depth water. This lake is also off my list until late Fall when the weeds die back.

Fortunately, there are other spots for me to kite that don't have weeds issues. They're just a little farther to drive, but worth it.


Re: Seaweed

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 3:50 pm
by ronnie
Sometimes I have had kilos of weed catching on the line Don and I have had to just give up the launch too and pack up, but fortunately I was using an anchor launch.

I have even had a small piece of very fine green algae (which is very grippy on a line) jam a pulley on the bridle and make the kite uncontrollable.

I cant see any answer other than as you say Don - avoid areas with a lot of weed drifting.

It does seem to be a seasonal thing.

IT may be that there is a significant difference in the weed you encounter if you are launching after full tide as opposed to before full tide because the weed should be less after it has been deposited on the shore.