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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 3:10 am 
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There are regular kite rigging mistakes such as crossed lines, front to back and side to side that send the kite flying at high speed out of control at launch. There are lots of accidents and a few in the KSI including some very serious ones. Proper preflighting will almost always avoid these problems but we are humans and humans make mistakes. So what to do? Make it harder to make rigging mistakes. Dwight described a line "polarity" system of sorts that is used on North kites.

Tonight, I put together and photographed one possible system. The example shown uses a Wipika Airblast but a similar system could be adapted to most four line inflatable kites. The key is to restrict the ways in which the kite can be rigged up to ideally one way, the correct way. Color coded line systems have been out for a long time unfortunately if a rider is in a hurry or distracted color coding won't work if it isn't noticed or checked properly. The system shown below has never been tested and it should be. Then again the components are in use frequently. So, give it a try, improve on the concept and share your ideas with us.

The leading edge connections are both the same but use heavier line as a memory que to attach "heavier line to heavier line." If the rider detaches the adaptor lines and loops accidently, the whole polarity effort flys into the trash. Going to sleaved and sewn adaptor lines and loops, that in effect would be permanently attached would be more fail safe.

Photo 1:
The two leading edge attachments are identical. The reason for this is that it doesn't matter if you mix the two leading edge lines up with one another. It is important to use heavier line, I used 1/8 " nylon to help avoid rigging errors. The rule is to rig heavy line with heavy line. You leave the short section of nylon line permanently attached to your kite line when in storage.
Image

Photo 2:
Here are the components of this leading edge connections. They are very simplistic as shown. The loop is secured with a simple overhand knot although a figure eight knot could be a better choice.
Image

Photo 3:
The is a view of the left trailing edge assembled. The red pigtail extension is provided with Airblast kites. As Peter noted while I was writing this, these type pigtails may be prone to early failure. I have had some fail myself within 6 months and figured I was tardy with changing all this stuff out not less frequently than every 3 months. An obvious solution is to just fabricate your own out of 1/8 " line or Q Line as described in the next sentence and shown in the last photograph. Thanks Peter! A duplicate could be easily fabricated from a section of line making a loop with a figure eight knot and stopper knots tied at regular intervals. Many kites benefit from having longer trailing edge lines than leading edge lines. You need to understand which approach is better for your kite and prepare your "fixed kite line polarity adaptors" accordingly. Airblasts come standard with the trailing edge pulley. The system shown ignores the presence of the pulleys and the lines could just as easily be attached to the white nylon strap to which the pulley is connected.
Image

Photo 4:
Here are the components of the left trailing edge. To aid in making this system more fool proof this approach relies on using substantially different line diameters for leading to trailing edge lines. In this case thinner, Q line is used. Again as Peter noted, Q line can be a bit hard on softer connecting lines, particularly small diameter ones. So you would be well served to make your own pigtail extension as described above.
Image

Photo 5:
A view of the left trailing edge line setup.
Image

Photo 6:
A view of the components of the trailing edge, left side.
Image

Photo 7:
The is a view of two homemade trailing edge pigtail extensions and two factory supplied ones. They are quite easy to make.
Image

So this is one suggested setup. There has to be dozens of other ones possible and many no doubt better. So have at it, make your own and tell us how it works out. One thing is for sure, the longer all of us continue to use the existing color coded systems the more avoidable, serious incidents, accidents and injuries will result. We all still need to carefully preflight out gear. The fixed line polarity concept is only a simplifying aid.

FKA, Inc.

transcribed by:
Rick Iossi




<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: RickI on 2002-11-21 19:40 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: RickI on 2002-11-26 04:24 ]</font>


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 3:27 am 
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Hey Rick,

don't use qpower larks headed to that pink stuff! The q-power will cut right through it after a few sessions with high load crashes etc. I (and others up here) have learned that lesson more than once. In fact, don't use that pink stuff (from wipika or takoon) at all. it is too weak and wears too quickly for pigtails. The thick stuff that naish uses seems fine or Q-power straight to the webbing works well. Don't mean to sound preachy but i've learned this lesson the hard way!

-Peter


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 3:46 am 
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Hello Peter,

You are so right. I have had a few fail on me as well. Then again I have had lots of pigtails on a variety of kites fail within 6 months of use. Hence my trying to replace them within three months. I normally use heavier 1/8 inch nylon lines that may be more durable and seem to last a lot longer. Thanks for pointing this out!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 5:14 am 
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Location: Dunedin, New Zealand
<quoted>
The two leading edge attachments are identical. The reason for this is that it doesn't matter if you mix the two leading edge lines up with one another.
</quoted>

Not always true, I got a nasty scare on my 1510 Arc that has a sliding leash on both lines on one side.

I attached the leashed mainline to the wrong side. When I pulled the leash the kite stayed powered up. I had to let the leash go and chase down the kite.

But it's still a good idea this attachment business

Doof


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 12:22 pm 
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I have uploaded another image of various homemade Q Line and nylon pigtail extensions that could be easily put together. I meet quite a few kiteboarders with poorly performing four line inflatable kites that would benefit from putting a pair of these extension pigtails on their trailing edges. Of course not all four line inflatable kites benefit from tight leading edge lines and loose trailing edge lines.

It would be good if riders would experiment with these "fixed polarity" line rigging systems pending manufacturers supplying them as standard on future kite designs.

FKA, Inc.

transcribed by:
Rick Iossi


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 12:39 pm 
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Rick, nice brah. Is that thing the same as the new North setup? I have had lots of good experiences making sure that the people we teach here understand what the diferent ropes are for and where they go. Then no matter whose kite they get on they will know where the lines go. We have a sketchy launch site with a nasty fence and it has not gotten any of our students kites but guaranteed many visitors. This goes back to the instructors not really the riders. It would suck for someone to use your setup then go back to the old system and forget how it should go.Im my opinion there is only one fail-safe way to ensure correct kite setup. Good initial instructor supervision. Also for your crash reports...I saw a guy on a CAbrinna have a pretty close call. He had 3 safeties on his kite and a prolimit bar release. He gave his assistant the thumbs up on the launch. The guy let go of the kite and it just went mad. Spun really fast and started to go higher. The guy got whipped of his feet and lifted through a nasty sharp tree without getting impalled on the broken branches about 10 feet off the ground, then bounced off a car and stopped in a pile on his best friends new kite leaving it destroyed. His kite felt sorry for him and just before he was going to get dragged through car. I was sure I was watching someone die, right in front of his familly aswell. The power and speed that this happened with was unreal. He had no chance to grab anything or realease anything though after his first lofting the tree released his pro limit bar, sadly the carinnha kite still flew very well at the end of his safety leash. The only thing that saved him was his kite caught a tree. This was not at our spot here and the guy was an advanced rider. 20knot steady winds and a 11 or so cabrinna size kite. He had lots of scrapes and bruises and manged to give himself a pretty nice rope burn on his hand. Why? Because he put his lines on backwards, front to back back to front on a new kite.
See you later. R


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 1:36 pm 
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Hello Royce,

It was your account and at least a dozen other accidents that I have heard about in the past that compelled me to put this photo sequence together. Rigging mistakes are so easy to avoid but at the same time so easy to do. Being forced by a simple "line polarity" system to rig it right could save a fair amount of pain and problems for riders and the sport. Unfortunately, I have not seen the North system but have only heard about the intent of it. I am not sure if what is shown is similar or not. It would be possible to have more positive "one way to rig it only" attachments if fabricated linkages were to be used instead of knots. I leave that up to enterprising home tinkerers and the manufacturers. There definitely is a need for this sort of innovation.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 1:38 pm 
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Hello Royce,

On the accident, was the wind onshore, side onshore, etc.? Also what was the approx. horizontal distance of travel? Was the guy wearing a helmet or impact vest? Did he happen to say what he might do differently in the future?

Thanks for telling us about this.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 1:49 pm 
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I think attaching the lines wrong can happen to anyone and even if you always check your lines before launching everyone can make a mistake.
This is one of the best reasons I've got for launching unhooked.
If the shit hits the fan, let go


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2002 4:08 pm 
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Rick, "horror" zontal distance travelled approximatly 40 feet in about 4 seconds, Vertical height at least 10 feet. Sideshore winds, no helmet no impact.
Scary huh?
Oh yeah he had lots of ideas about what to do next time...the best one I thought was launching away from obstacles and the second best one was to shit himself before hiiting the tree instead of after.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Royce on 2002-11-20 15:25 ]</font>


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