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Wind meters?

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edt
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Re: Wind meters?

Postby edt » Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:35 pm

Hall Wind Meter. One drawback it won't register wind below 5mph. I find it more accurate than any digital meter I have ever used. You can also throw it in your kite bag without worrying about it getting rained on. Cheap too.

Image

Buy a wind meter. Every kiter has one! We just don't all use them. For my regular launches I would never use a wind meter, I have certain weeping willows I know to watch which branches are moving, the smoke stack at the power plant, what angle it is at, I know the wind gradient those sorts of things, but at a new beach new launch sometimes you have to get the wind meter out.

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abel
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Re: Wind meters?

Postby abel » Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:24 pm

I stopped using regularly a wind meter about ten years ago.

I'll focus on light wind (7 to 11 knots).
In this case the equipment can't vary too much, you have the hydrofoil and a light wind(and weight) kite 10/12 m2 (for freeride).
If you're skilled on the hydrofoil then you can push the lower limits with a 10, but the average Joe (i.e. me ) will do better with a 12m.
Should I use a wind-meter for the above case, I would seek for one that shows the lulls (lowest wind speed and duration!(couldn't find one yet)) instead of peak gust during a period
So the best solution I found to feel the lulls is to keep the kite at 12 for a couple of minutes and see how hard I have to work it to avoid stalling.
If the necessary working is for short periods (~ <5 sec), then I'll go out. Otherwise I'll spare my kite having another layer of sea salt :wink:

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby RagingGrandpa » Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:05 pm

Image

You can find these for $20 on ebay. They're rugged and actually they're non-electrical: it's just a magnet inside, the headphone jack is just a convenient physical mount. The app is nice because it's graphing the measured speed continuously, for as long as you choose to hold up the phone. The live graph shows peaks, lulls, gives you a visual sense of their duration, etc.

I tried the fancier direction-indicating model too but it didn't update very smoothly on my phone, and seemed more fragile.

But, knowing the surface wind at the beach is often meaningless for kitesurfing. I find it more meaningful snowkiting when I'm alone and on a large frozen lake... usually snowkiting means I'm actually riding in the same exact place where I launch.

Vaavud Mjolnir wind meter

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby Peter_Frank » Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:51 pm

abel wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:24 pm
I stopped using regularly a wind meter about ten years ago.

I'll focus on light wind (7 to 11 knots).
In this case the equipment can't vary too much, you have the hydrofoil and a light wind(and weight) kite 10/12 m2 (for freeride).
If you're skilled on the hydrofoil then you can push the lower limits with a 10, but the average Joe (i.e. me ) will do better with a 12m.
Should I use a wind-meter for the above case, I would seek for one that shows the lulls (lowest wind speed and duration!(couldn't find one yet)) instead of peak gust during a period
So the best solution I found to feel the lulls is to keep the kite at 12 for a couple of minutes and see how hard I have to work it to avoid stalling.
If the necessary working is for short periods (~ <5 sec), then I'll go out. Otherwise I'll spare my kite having another layer of sea salt :wink:

Here I disagree, it is of course very individual - but in this very wind the actual windspeed is the most important of all IMO.

Lulls does not matter really, as with a bit of experience you have no problems riding the lulls out, or keeping the kite in the air if down - BUT yes, I choose longer lines if longer lasting lulls, but not a different size.

If 5-6 knots I will take an 11 m2 foilkite and a bigger board and wing and shorter mast, if dead onshore.
If a bit from the side and 6 knots, I will take a medium mast and a smaller/faster wing, and definitely a medium board only.

If 7 knots I might rig down to a light balloon 11-12 m2 kite, and a medium to big wing, and probably longer lines.
Again, in the "lower" 7 knot it will be the bigger wing, in the "upper" 7 knots a faster and more fun wing, and eventually also normal linelength.

When 8 knots it will definitely be an 11 m2 LEI and normal lines, and maybe even a bigger wavewing instead, for more agility, and maybe a long mast.

Around 9 knots it will be on the verge to overpowered for me @78 kg with a 12 m2 so will take a smaller board now too, and a faster wing, but probably rig down to a 9.

As at 10 knots it is a 9 m2 LEI and a medium wing - so a huge difference from 9 to 10 knots actually.

At 11 knots I will take a smaller board and even faster wing as now heaps of power, and might also rig down to an 8 m2 depending on the EXACT wind :naughty:

From 12 knots and up it is easy, one can use almost every wing and board and mast and kitesize one likes, it all works - but in the region below 12 knots things change dramatically IMO, especially regarding which gear to choose for max fun.

8) PF

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abel
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Re: Wind meters?

Postby abel » Wed Aug 30, 2017 1:17 am

Peter_Frank wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:51 pm
abel wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:24 pm
I stopped using regularly a wind meter about ten years ago.

I'll focus on light wind (7 to 11 knots).
In this case the equipment can't vary too much, you have the hydrofoil and a light wind(and weight) kite 10/12 m2 (for freeride).
If you're skilled on the hydrofoil then you can push the lower limits with a 10, but the average Joe (i.e. me ) will do better with a 12m.
Should I use a wind-meter for the above case, I would seek for one that shows the lulls (lowest wind speed and duration!(couldn't find one yet)) instead of peak gust during a period
So the best solution I found to feel the lulls is to keep the kite at 12 for a couple of minutes and see how hard I have to work it to avoid stalling.
If the necessary working is for short periods (~ <5 sec), then I'll go out. Otherwise I'll spare my kite having another layer of sea salt :wink:

Here I disagree, it is of course very individual - but in this very wind the actual windspeed is the most important of all IMO.

Lulls does not matter really, as with a bit of experience you have no problems riding the lulls out, or keeping the kite in the air if down - BUT yes, I choose longer lines if longer lasting lulls, but not a different size.

If 5-6 knots I will take an 11 m2 foilkite and a bigger board and wing and shorter mast, if dead onshore.
If a bit from the side and 6 knots, I will take a medium mast and a smaller/faster wing, and definitely a medium board only.

If 7 knots I might rig down to a light balloon 11-12 m2 kite, and a medium to big wing, and probably longer lines.
Again, in the "lower" 7 knot it will be the bigger wing, in the "upper" 7 knots a faster and more fun wing, and eventually also normal linelength.

When 8 knots it will definitely be an 11 m2 LEI and normal lines, and maybe even a bigger wavewing instead, for more agility, and maybe a long mast.

Around 9 knots it will be on the verge to overpowered for me @78 kg with a 12 m2 so will take a smaller board now too, and a faster wing, but probably rig down to a 9.

As at 10 knots it is a 9 m2 LEI and a medium wing - so a huge difference from 9 to 10 knots actually.

At 11 knots I will take a smaller board and even faster wing as now heaps of power, and might also rig down to an 8 m2 depending on the EXACT wind :naughty:

From 12 knots and up it is easy, one can use almost every wing and board and mast and kitesize one likes, it all works - but in the region below 12 knots things change dramatically IMO, especially regarding which gear to choose for max fun.

8) PF
Hey Peter,
I think you are over shooting regarding the resolution of the kite size in light wind conditions.
I'm also surprised that you state that lulls don't matter. I would correct the sentence to: short lulls don't.
How would you choose a kite based on 1 Knot difference if its fluctuating from 7 to 11 knots? (avrg ~9k) .
From 7 to 11 knots there is almost a x3 force range, while the size of a kite from 10m2 to 12m2 gives only ~20% more force (having the same shape), right?
There is no EXACT wind so you take the most suitable size for the range. Generally bigger kites have a better L/D ratio, so for average Joes bigger is better.
They will hardly get overpowered in 11 knots with a 12m2 kite (as we stink anyhow on the jibes and tacks, where smaller kites give better control :) )

Anyhow, the thread was about wind meter and I focused on the case that if during a few minutes you feel a long lull, disregarding the kite size, you'll dip it in the drink.

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby juandesooka » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:03 am

In first couple years kiting I used mine lots. Now less so but still use it at new spots sometimes to verify if visual cues match actual wind speed. But where most useful is the light wind reality check. Like you really want to go out so you convince yourself that the 4-5kt seabreeze is 8-10kt. Wind meters save swims. ;-)

I have the red one above....Works great. No extra batteries to worry about. . Also have this one. Works well for light wind.

http://static.gemplers.com/images/items/R150-lrg.jpg

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby Peter_Frank » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:35 am

Abel, my answer was that it is individual and would simply put another view into it, as I assume this thread is covering both the average joes and the experienced (leaving the racers out though, but they got the same choices just between whether it is an 18 or a 15 to choose).

So for those getting into it more and more, the typical kite setup for the average weights and a bit more (around here at least), end something like a big light race foilkite around 12-15 for marginal winds, a really light no or onestrut 11-12 m2 for a tad more wind, and then some use their normal kites or wavekites around 9-10 m2 and down so they can be used for TT or Waveriding, where others goes all the way and use the light "hydrofoil" kites in the smaller sizes too.

Meaning, the big kites are not prone to dropping if the wind does - a foilkite in the most marginal winds might indeed, but hey, you got no alternative than to NOT go out and have fun, so that is a no brainer - most try anyways, and with practice and avoiding doing mistakes, you can hold a foilkite up in ridicoulously low winds, less than you can ride eventually.

When a tad more wind and you use lighter LEI kites, it is much more pronounced, that these kites will hang easy in less wind than you can ride, and in way less wind than you can get out and up, if wind is onshore.
Once out you can ride in long lulls no problem, eventhough powered on the lighter side, and even if a really big lull, your kite will still hang - these light ones are amazing in this respect, and the reason why everybody choose such kites when over 10 m2.
When too powered they will all flap at some point though, that is one downside, and because as you said a bit higher aspect, they dont turn as fast as even a heavier 9 m2 - and those that do will still have somewhat more on/off feel when powered on the upper end instead of the sweetspot, where you seek a smooth power delivery for most fun.

So no, it is not the "size" in itself that is a game changer here, it is the fact that the typical marginal and light wind and normal wind kites are a lot different going 9 - 12 - 15 m2 (t.ex in 11 - 8 - 6 knots), and for me it is all about choosing the kite that is in its sweetspot as I dont like to ride lightly powered, nor on the upper end.
The lulls doesnt matter regarding which size to choose with these light kites, only difference is many use longer lines knowing there are long lulls, so it is easy to start after "blown" maneuvers, where you have to sit and wait for wind otherwise, or struggle pumping your board and looping your kite a lot, otherwise.
This is not present with the longer lines anymore and you can start again easy, but you dont get overpowered :-?

And this is only the kitechoice, the board and wing and mast makes a MUCH bigger difference than the kites IMO.

My long post was to tell about how some of us automatically make many choices without thinking, and even change on the fly at the beach if needed, in this really "interesting" windrange, used maybe the most as you can not ride anything else (non-hydrofoils), and the weather is brilliant at most spots in this end of the range :D

The average 10 min wind is almost the best indication, eventhough HUGE differences in the actual power in the wind can occur.

Hand held wind meters will give everyone an idea about the power to be expected on a given day out there, eventually with lots of years experience :rollgrin:

But of course, when you are there, you dont need these meters anymore, and in the learning process you use them to learn how much different the measured wind and the real kitepower is ha haa, a bit funny, maybe they ARE useless in fact :naughty:

Sometimes in the extreme ends though, marginal winds sometimes, and for sure at the upper end when 20-30 knots, they make a lot more sense.

8) PF

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby coffeeking » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:12 pm

windmaker wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:23 pm
GCKiter wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 3:22 pm
Haven't used wind meters in several years.I tend to look at local conditions i.e. Sea state,warning flags on beach, sand blowing on beach,beach umbrellas rolling across beach, shaded wind-line out in water etc., when the breeze starts dropping it becomes a little more difficult especially if your trying to foil at your bottom line wind speed ( for me 7.5 or less)
:thumb: 99% of windmeters are used by kooks or gadget lovers :D .
I know you're kidding, but that's just the kind of comment that makes new kiters shy of checking real wind speeds for fear of looking stupid, and gives rise to accidents.

It's sensible for people with less experience or rare kiters to check before putting something too large in the air.

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Re: Wind meters?

Postby K-Roy » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:43 pm

you don't "need" a wind meter to know what kite to rig, you need one to learn to "tell" the speed of the wind without it...


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