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 Post subject: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 10:11 am 
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Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 12:51 pm
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I'm new to foiling, I've bought the Liquid Force Foil Fish, after 4 sessions or so I'm starting to string runs of 100m or so up on the foil on my natural stance. Switch is not so good.

The most successful days have been in lighter conditions and a large Flysurfer - ie 10-12 knots and a Speed 4 15m.

Today the wind was a little stronger, say 14-16 knots and I thought I'd use my 8m BWS wave kite as was too strong for the Flysurfer. I felt like I'd gone backwards big time, kept crashing to windward, stalling the kite, just a real mess. Just could not get going with any consistency. As I was about to call it quits, a guy on the beach offered me a fly of his 2015 North Rebel - 10m.

Suddenly I was back up and foiling again, stringing runs together, happy days.

My question is was it the size of the kite, or style of the kite that made the difference. I'm surprised how much difference 2m made, but it was dramatic. Should a wave kite work on a hydrofoil, or do they depower too much at the edge of the window to be effective ?

Any input would be much appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2002 1:00 am
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Location: Denmark
Jzh_perth wrote:
I'm new to foiling, I've bought the Liquid Force Foil Fish, after 4 sessions or so I'm starting to string runs of 100m or so up on the foil on my natural stance. Switch is not so good.

The most successful days have been in lighter conditions and a large Flysurfer - ie 10-12 knots and a Speed 4 15m.

Today the wind was a little stronger, say 14-16 knots and I thought I'd use my 8m BWS wave kite as was too strong for the Flysurfer. I felt like I'd gone backwards big time, kept crashing to windward, stalling the kite, just a real mess. Just could not get going with any consistency. As I was about to call it quits, a guy on the beach offered me a fly of his 2015 North Rebel - 10m.

Suddenly I was back up and foiling again, stringing runs together, happy days.

My question is was it the size of the kite, or style of the kite that made the difference. I'm surprised how much difference 2m made, but it was dramatic. Should a wave kite work on a hydrofoil, or do they depower too much at the edge of the window to be effective ?

Any input would be much appreciated.


Your experiences are just as I think all of us have experienced.

Firstly, a depower wave kite works IMO better on a hydrofoil, when learning - everything is easier.
For going upwind or downwind racing, and as soon as you got some consistency in your riding, you can use ANY kite, and some will prefer kites that does not sit as deep :thumb:

When learning, you want some pull in the lines, to support you :naughty:
This is why you choose a big kite the first times.

This is also why you can not ride downwind, as you have no pull to lean against - so a really difficult balance, especially when new and in waves :cry:

When you get more experience, you will find that you can ride with a really really small kite - smaller than you want or need, but no problem.
This is great for lulls, or if the wind dies you can still ride home.

But I know the exact feeling you describe - taking a small kite out in more wind, and as such it has sufficient pull to get you foiling, but EVERYTHING is way more difficult - you will fall because you dont have anything to lean against, and you will stall the kite trying to support yourself from falling.


So kitechoice is even more important when learning, NOT too small, better too big initially.

When you get the hang of it later, you will probably be able to ride with both too big and too small a kite (I prefer the latter, but i am mostly into carving and turning/waves, and not racing).

Generally, for all kite sizes: Depower the kite a bit !
The sweetspot where they work and feel right, compared to a TT or Waveboard, is somewhat more depowered than usually.

If you try to ride with the same trim as on your other boards, you will find the kites backstalling and being a PITA all the time, slowing down, not mowing, not pulling as you choke them, especially when jibing or riding against the kite :-?

This also means you wont backstall the kite as easily.

So try to use the right kitesize when learning, and IF out with a too small kite - resist the urge to get it to pull by pulling the bar :naughty:
Better to balance the board, and fly the kite a bit depowered up and down if an extreme lull.

It wont take long till you find out yourself, and can ride easy with a (too) small kite :rollgrin:

8) PF


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 1:16 pm 
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Posts: 6
thanks Peter_Frank,

What you have written makes perfect sense - I had little pull in the lines, found myself sheeted in hard against the chicken loop fighting to stay upright, had little to no trim on the depower strap - basically doing all the things I know not to do when riding my regular boards !

Thanks for the quick & informative reply, you've given me lots of valuable information to consider for next time.


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2014 2:27 am
Posts: 159
Hey man. Im right there with you... I have only used three different brand/models. Ozone reo, LF envy and solo. I find the the Solo is hands down the best choice for me at 86kg/190lbs. I also ride the Foil Fish.

I have four Solos. 6.5-15.5m, and have not even had a chance to use the 15.5 yet. I am comfortable on the 12 in 10-15mph and the 9m in 12-17 and the 6.5 in 17-23mph range. I have no issues with back stall or any of that. The nice thing on the solo is the light weight/drift of the kite. I think its the perfect inflatable foiling kite (of the three i used)


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:05 pm
Posts: 205
hi Jzh: fellow BWS rider here as well as hydrofoil noob. I am pretty close to you on the foil learning curve, I can ride pretty comfortably regular foot, but haven't yet tackled switch foot, so I am riding only left foot forward, heelside/toeside.

As a newbie, I am not really qualified to answer your question, but I agree with the other posters: being more powered than less powered is useful while learning. I have not yet experienced this miraculous light wind performance of needing much smaller kites. But I have had a couple times where I got going pretty good and the apparent wind built and built until I crashed....expect controlling that build up is going to be the key to it, and that will come with practice.

The BWS kites seems to have worked fine with foil. I have not noticed any issues with back stalling or anything weird. Using them with with foil has not really seemed noticeably different than any other board.

I am also experimenting with light wind....I have a Cloud 17m and an Ocean Rodeo Flite 17m (trying to decide which to keep). I have been learning about high aspect vs low aspect kites -- the latest lesson being superior upwind performance for the high aspect kite. (and the trade off, I believe, will be drift performance once you get on the wave) Anyways, for the subject at hand: it will be interesting to experiment with both on the foil, because in light wind days with no surf, the foil will be the ride of choice. My problem has been not enough wind lately to properly experiment! So...I'll have to report back in April or May once our dependable thermals start to kick in again. Pray for wind!


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 6:25 pm 
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PS one note added about BWS kites and foiling: the easy above the bar depower on the BWS bar seems to be quite useful. On the rides when the apparent wind got me over powered, trimming to take a little heat off made a big improvement. Once up on the foil, I'd pull half the depower line in and be perfectly powered.

This is in contrast to my Ocean Rodeo below the bar depower....which can be quite challenging to work with on the fly, one handed, on a sliding bar harness, while 3' up on a foil. :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:37 am 
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Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 12:51 pm
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Juandesooka - riding toeside as a new foiler ? Wow impressed. I've had lots of experience riding surfboards and am very comfortable toeside, and I was hoping to to do what you describe and just ride my natural stance to learn the foil, but haven't worked out how to start off toeside. Any tips ?


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 Post subject: Re: Foil board and wave kite
PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 1:13 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:05 pm
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Jzh_perth wrote:
Juandesooka - riding toeside as a new foiler ? Wow impressed. I've had lots of experience riding surfboards and am very comfortable toeside, and I was hoping to to do what you describe and just ride my natural stance to learn the foil, but haven't worked out how to start off toeside. Any tips ?


ha! no need to be impressed, it is entirely based on the kookiness of not being able to ride it right foot forward (feels like starting all over again and I haven't been able to make myself tackle it yet...soon :-? )

the push to ride toeside happened quickly, as I was learning foiling by body dragging out far enough to get a ride toward the beach, then body dragging back out and doing it again, and then finally just said "screw it, I hate body dragging" and just tried the heelside to toeside. And I found it worked first time and was actually easy. In fact, in one of those weird kinda things, the balance and stance toeside was actually a little easier and more natural than heelside, I was able to stay on the foil for longer periods toeside than regular....bizarre! The other weird thing is that in the stage of learning to get up on the foil dependably, I found the speed of the turn combined with the sweep of the kite made it feel quite natural to come out of turn on the foil, was one of the most dependable ways to stay up there....and this has led to fun transition gybes.

I am not at all suggesting this is good way to learn....just explaining how it's worked out for me.

As for how to start out toeside, I still need to be pointing left foot forward heelside, then do a quick power sweep and turn in one motion. But that's the same for surfing for me, as I can't water start toeside on a surfboard either....if you are able to, it would be the same thing on foil.

One final thought...I have always found riding toeside that my kite flying is about 60-70% efficient. This means on marginal days, I may not be able to get upwind on my surfboard if I don't switch stance. The same thing applies to foil riding, but worse....I find it very hard to sine the kite while up on the foil, which means the toeside riding is quite inefficient. I am primarily using foils on marginal wind days (so far), so this pretty much negates all the great upwind benefit foils can offer. Upwind on heelside tack, downwind on toeside tack, just barely hold my ground. I have to bite the bullet and learn to ride right foot forward. I figure one day of pain, entire kite career of gain. But manana...always manana. 8)


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