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how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:19 pm
by edt
So I'm getting a bit better that this hydrofoil nosense, going out in lighter and lighter winds, 8 knots with my foil kite no problem. I have to kite pretty far out because of the wind shadows near shore and the seaweed. Yesterday I was able to keep my kite in the air when the wind died but sooner or later I will have a long swim. Any advice on how to swim I dunno a mile or so back to shore with a hydrofoil kite and a foil board? I know it's eventually going to happen and want to figure out the easiest way back. This is in zero wind, nothing at all, so no way to fly the kite or even keep it from sagging in the water. Do you keep the kite tail down in the water and pull it behind you, or do you sort of pack it up in some way that prevents the water from getting into the kite? What if you get a bow tie before the kite goes down? How do you keep the water out then? Thanks for any help.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:28 pm
by evan
I use this method from Ozone:


Just start the procedure as soon as you know relaunching is no option anymore and also wind a bit of the speed system on the bar to keep loose lines to a minimum. I also put the bar on the inside of the kite with the kite on its' back as opposed to the video and roll as tight as you can while putting all excess bridle in the kite, you don't want to get tangled in them.

if you do this right you get a nice small package with less than 1l water inside the kite you can put on your board or can hand it over to the resque boat/jetski. The can't resque you without damage to your kite until you rolled it up so tell them to wait until you are ready!

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 3:21 pm
by Mossy 757
Here's another good video from a first person perspective:
phpBB [video]

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 3:50 pm
by cglazier
I have more experience at this than I want to admit. The technique in the Chrono video works fine but I never end up with quite as neat a kite bundle as in the video.

You must get your kite bundle almost entirely on your board. If you have some dragging in the water then swimming will be very slow.

I always carry the strap (that comes with every Chrono) in my pocket when I am kiting. It can really help in cinching down the kite bundle and keeping it together.

I always unhook one side of my spreader bar so it dangles loose and I can lie flat on my kite bundle on top of my board. (I wear a shorts harness so I can't take it off)

If you can get a tow it is much quicker than you can swim. Another kiter, or a kayaker, can be a great help.

:wink: CG

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:08 pm
by edt
tks evan. tks cglzier. I'll give it a try near shore to get some practice in. That ozone video is great.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 5:42 pm
by davesails7
All good advice above.
edt wrote:
Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:19 pm
Do you keep the kite tail down in the water and pull it behind you, or do you sort of pack it up in some way that prevents the water from getting into the kite?
Oh my god do not try to swim in without rolling the lines!!! :lol: I thought I'd try that once. Only had about 200 yards to swim and dead calm conditions, so didn't take the time to roll up my 32m lines. I could not believe what a mess this made. It took me and a buddy over two hours working together to get that thing untangled. Definitely roll the lines all the way up as far as they will go including as much of the bridles as you can.

Also, grab your board and sit on it as soon as the kite goes down. Otherwise it will take off downwind way faster than you. It took some practice, but now I can sit on the board no problem while rolling up the lines.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:11 pm
by davesails7
One thing I need is a way to signal to bystanders that I'm OK. I've had several instances where I get to shore after drifting in about a 1/4 mile sitting upright on my board and then people on the beach say "are you OK? I called the fire department to come rescue you." I appreciate their concern, but someone sitting upright on a sunny day in mirror flat water, i camt figure out how to let them know im fine.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:23 pm
by edt
davesails7 wrote:
Wed Sep 27, 2017 5:42 pm

Also, grab your board and sit on it as soon as the kite goes down. Otherwise it will take off downwind way faster than you. It took some practice, but now I can sit on the board no problem while rolling up the lines.
Yeah sitting on the board is a great idea not just for self rescue but also for a simple relaunch. I learned about it and definitely worth remembering.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:26 pm
by edt
davesails7 wrote:
Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:11 pm
One thing I need is a way to signal to bystanders that I'm OK. I've had several instances where I get to shore after drifting in about a 1/4 mile sitting upright on my board and then people on the beach say "are you OK? I called the fire department to come rescue you." I appreciate their concern, but someone sitting upright on a sunny day in mirror flat water, i camt figure out how to let them know im fine.
I've had way too many self rescues on my tube kite so I know the feeling. I tell them to go fuck themselves when I get in. How is the fire department going to rescue me? Call the coast guard or sheriff you imbeciles. There is literally nothing you can do if you are kiting solo. The "Thumbs Up" signal is the universal signal that you are ok. Anything else and they think you are drowning, but when you are that far away they can't see the thumbs up. If they send a helicopter, the helicopter will get close enough to you and when they can see you, give them the "Thumbs Up" and they will go away. It is nice to know they care though. I've done some long mile+ swims before and boaters saw me and just went by. Maybe I look like I can take care of myself, or maybe they don't care if I drown lol, I dunno.

Re: how do I pack down my foil kite for a long swim

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 6:55 pm
by sflinux
When the winds are questionable and I venture far from shore, I like to carry a backpack. Inside I carry a couple dry sacks (with nozzle). I like to roll the foil up and place inside dry sack. If you can compress the foil, this minimizes water getting inside the foil, which will make it very heavy. :( With the dry sack nozzle you can inflate the sack with air to help aid floatation. If needed I attach a second empty dry sack and inflate that for more floatation.
Inside the backpack, I also have: cordage (for towing/securing), whistle, VHF radio, light/compact training swim fins. I used to carry water, but decided that was too much weight. I used to carry a light/strobe too. Dress warmly when you venture far from shore as hypothermia is deadly.