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Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

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bnthere
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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby bnthere » Sun Sep 29, 2013 5:02 pm

Caesar wrote: I will tell you that the chance of bursting a bladder is reduced if you keep your struts open because if you smash your kite hard onto the water (while having the struts open), there is additional volume where the air can escape into.

Cheers
Caesar 8)



heard this a million times. i really dont think so.


also, 14 yrs or whatever without a one pump hose tearing or coming off, an inflate or deflate valve opening up, or busting a LE in a hard crash or a wave is pretty amazing.

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby geopeck » Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:39 pm

Yeah, we're getting a little off topic here but I think it's worth it to keep going for the point I want to make at the end of the post.

Peter Frank - I respect your time on the water and your experience but you have spent more time responding to this topic alone than it takes to close and open valves a dozen times. I know that each moment between pulling your kite out of the car and riding is precious and I work hard to minimize it, sometimes I cut corners and try to use judgement when doing so. Not closing valves doesn't seem like a good place to cut corners to save time. Advocating it on a forum is also kind of iffy IMHO but it's all for the sake of an ongoing discussion so that's fine. But, I'd say it sets kind of a bad example for the people around you on the beach and on the forum to say that it's just a personal preference.

Dimitri - while flying one of your kites I had it deflate so fast (during normal usage) that from the point I noticed a problem to the point I made it to the beach the LE had almost totally deflated. It was an 8 inch opening in one of the seams which hadn't been fully sealed at the factory.

Not a knock on Epic kites which I really like - as far as I know all the bladders are done in a few shops in China and Vietnam and I don't expect you or any Epic employee to stand by doing quality control. You just have to source from the vendor which has (presumably) good reputation first and good price second. And we all expect that even sourcing from the best vendor there will still be a rare problem - the problem is compounded for us because we are sometimes out in conditions where safety is a big issue.

Consider for a moment the worker who is making a kite or doing QC checks in China. They are making a few dollars a day at most for being worked to the bone. Dimitri or Pete or Shannon visits each year and emphasizes through a translator that what you are working on is not a toy and that QC is really important. Would you care if you were that person? I might, some of the time. Maybe less on a Friday afternoon. So maybe a zip tie doesn't get tightened all the way or a piece of tubing has a nick in it or you leave a bladder seam done "good enough".

That's what we are buying and flying, from all the brands. And that's before we use our own judgement about what kind of repairs or state of wear is acceptable, and before we borrow a friend or stranger's kite to check it out. It's on us to do all the simple steps that we are aware of to keep ourselves safe.

The point I want to make safety wise, which I teach and try to follow, is that no matter how much you kite it isn't possible to personally have each problem. There are just an impossible amount of variables in this sport. Engage in discussion and respect the consensus.

Both off-topic and long winded. I'm out.

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby Peter_Frank » Sun Sep 29, 2013 6:59 pm

I dont think it is understood fully ?

It is not the "time" itself that matters...

It is the "hazzle" :o

Just like multi-pump, which I simply HATE now, and thankfully I havent got any kites with multipump.

Of course it is only a matter of extra minutes or less, true.

But the very thought of it when not necessary, is what makes it REALLY annoying IMO.

Just like a car without a (typical remote) central lock.
It is not the time, as you could just open each door with the key - maybe less than a minute more if you got to open both sides and for your gear too at the side or backdoor.

But if you have ever tried not having your car central lock or remote, you will soon find out how aaaaargh it is, when used to having one :(

So because where I ride I have no gain from closed struts, I will of course leave them open.

As simple as that - and I am not advocating doing so, I just say it is my choice (a higher risk), just like some does not wear a helmet - personal choice :naughty:

8) Peter

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby SupaEZ » Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:31 pm

Peter_Frank wrote:I dont think it is understood fully ?

It is not the "time" itself that matters...

It is the "hazzle" :o

8) Peter


I know you meant to write "hassle" :thumb:

How do feel about a beverage inside a bottle or carton that says "shake well" on it :?:

Yeah shaking it for a few seconds is a real nuisance and hassle :wink:

Do you feel putting lines on and off a kite a hassle or a joy ?

Or do you really love the time it takes tinkering day in and day out when kiting a lot

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby Peter_Frank » Sun Sep 29, 2013 9:41 pm

Sorry, yes "hassle" and not "hazzle" :(

I dont know what "tinkering" means ???
Not a word I have learned, sorry...

I am not mr. Rockefeller, so I dont have 5-6 bars (one for each kite), and besides, I find it about the same hassle to wind the lines and bar extra carefully each time handling the kite delicately for this, at each different spot.

Others prefer to have their lines on always, and invest in many bars.

Again - personal preferences.

8) Peter

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby SupaEZ » Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:40 am

Peter_Frank wrote:I don't know what "tinkering" means ???
Not a word I have learned, sorry...


OK ..it means to fiddle with....fool with...often to no useful effect :cheers: ..to put lines on then take off

I closed the strut valves tonight on my 12 and my wife's 10...and i was thinking about you :thumb:
We had great wind NNE 30 degrees side-side-on + set waves 3-5ft :surf:
September is almost over for us....so far been out in surf 21 days...one session per day
Air temp at 84F and water 82F

I spent 10 seconds closing and 10 seconds opening my kite 5 strut valves each time

420 seconds......that's 7 minutes this month..and no hassle at all ...just part of being fully safe :wink:

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby alexrider » Mon Sep 30, 2013 6:35 am

SupaEZ wrote:
Peter_Frank wrote:I don't know what "tinkering" means ???
Not a word I have learned, sorry...

OK ..it means to fiddle with....fool with...often to no useful effect :cheers: ..to put lines on then take off
....

OK ..it means to fiddle with kiteforums posts...often to no useful effect :cheers:
Like some guy who is about to post his 5000th comment! :happybirthday: :cheers: :congrats:

Good job Peter; not all your posts are to no useful effect. :jump: :jump: :jump:

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby Windstoked » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:59 pm

Interesting thread.
The only time I've had valves blow open from a kite crash was with separate strut inflation systems. It makes sense that struts with open valves are a pressure relief for the main bladder and may adversely affect kite performance and may even decrease the likelihood of a main bladder rupture in a crash.
The struts aren't as compliant as the main bladder given their smaller diameter and their total volume is less than the main bladder, so they won't expand to absorb the transient pressure increase near as much as other parts of the main bladder if one portion of the main bladder is compressed (such as wing tip flex during boosting or kite loops).
I wonder if increasing strut pressure above main compartment pressure might be another way to increase wingtip support ( along the lines of earlier post suggesting pump to 10 psi, clamp the strut valves, then decrease main compartment to 8 psi or manufacturer recommended pressure). The struts will hold much higher pressure before bursting ( Laplace's Law: Force on Wall equals pressure times radius, so tube diameter doubling results in doubling the tension on the wall and thus higher risk of rupture unless the wall is made twice as strong). The struts will probably hold 12 psi or more without risk of rupture, and aren't susceptible to as much force in crashes.
Anecdotal stories of kite performance or rupture aren't necessarily reliable, and it would be nice to get some input from kite designers/testers on kite performance with and without strut valves open.

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby Faxie » Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:04 pm

The one pump hoses are too small a diameter to let enough air through to make a real difference during a crash...

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Re: Do Kites Fly Better with Strut Vavles Closed?

Postby Windstoked » Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:43 am

Faxie wrote:The one pump hoses are too small a diameter to let enough air through to make a real difference during a crash...

Great point, Faxie. When you open a valve that got shut off after your kite is fully pumped, it takes a few seconds for the strut to fill. The strut dampening factor is probably insignificant.


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