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Best kite for long expeditions?

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skydive
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Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby skydive » Thu Feb 09, 2012 6:04 pm

Hi,

Me and my friend are planing a Kite expedition over Greenland and have som questions about foilkites. Total distance 2500km. I usually use 10 and 12m Caution kites and weigh about 95kg.

- How many kites do you need?
- Whitch kites are best suited for snowkiting considered Durability, speed, Launch/relaunch and least clutter?
- I´ve read that some expeditions used a "kitesail" (I´ve never heard about it before)
Does anyone have anything to say about that?
- What kind of sled is best suited for this purpose?

Thank you in advance!

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The Captain
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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby The Captain » Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:08 pm

That's so been done...

Just kidding....that would be awesome!!! Good luck!
Foils for sure....flysurfers here.


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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby Hardwater Kiter » Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:13 am

Open cell foils are your best bet. Easy to deal with, easily stored etc. I'd lean towards either HQ Apexs or Ozone Access. Both are touring style kites and have broad wind ranges and deal with punchy wind well. Also they have minimal lift which I think would be good when it comes to trying to tow a polk. Sizing? Depends on what wind ranges you are willing to deal with and how broad a wind range the kite (and you) can handle. If you went with Apexs for the full 3,5,7.5,10 would handle a huge range of winds and it would be just 4 wings 3 packed. You would only need one bar unless you want to carry a BU.

My guess is your best bet is to get some input from others that have done it as well as input from people that live there. If there is weather data on file I would research the trends and get an idea of what the wind is doing on average for the given time of year you plan to do this.

Whatever you settle on, get as much time on the wings as you can before you go.

As far as a polk there's no lack of info on them on the web. Designs or off the shelf. My 2cents.

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby plummet » Fri Feb 10, 2012 7:27 am

yeah open cel all the way. heaps easier to setup/back up. but a monster flysurfer wouldn't go amiss for super light days.

perfect quiver 15 fs speed 3, 9m frenzy, 7 frenzy, 4 access.

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby edt » Fri Feb 10, 2012 7:36 am

Sky the best kite is whoever you can get to sponsor you.

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby WndRdr » Fri Feb 10, 2012 10:32 am

I agree with the others that open cell foil is the safe bet. Flysurfer's closed cell foils are the next.

The sizes and the number of the kites depends on how much weight you can take on top of the must have equipment and food. Another thing is if you plan to use mainly kites or if you plan to ski some parts of the travel.

There have been expeditions with mainly kites and they have had up to five different sizes. Others have had one or two sizes and if the weather was not suitable for those they have skied those days.

You also need backup bars and lines. The more you rely only to kites the more important the number of backup is. One important thing is to have different length of lines so that way you can tune the kites more and use double or longer lines on low winds. If you break bigger kite you can get close to that with smaller with longer lines or other way around with shorter lines.

At least one team I know used HIT Ultima Thule -sled. That is designed to be strong but light weight for this purpose.

You really should try to find people who have made similar expedition and have a chat with them about equipment and challenges there are. Personally I know a team in Finland but there are many teams around the world.

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby skydive » Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:25 am

WndRdr wrote:I agree with the others that open cell foil is the safe bet. Flysurfer's closed cell foils are the next.

The sizes and the number of the kites depends on how much weight you can take on top of the must have equipment and food. Another thing is if you plan to use mainly kites or if you plan to ski some parts of the travel.

There have been expeditions with mainly kites and they have had up to five different sizes. Others have had one or two sizes and if the weather was not suitable for those they have skied those days.

You also need backup bars and lines. The more you rely only to kites the more important the number of backup is. One important thing is to have different length of lines so that way you can tune the kites more and use double or longer lines on low winds. If you break bigger kite you can get close to that with smaller with longer lines or other way around with shorter lines.

At least one team I know used HIT Ultima Thule -sled. That is designed to be strong but light weight for this purpose.

You really should try to find people who have made similar expedition and have a chat with them about equipment and challenges there are. Personally I know a team in Finland but there are many teams around the world.



Thank you (ALL) for your comments!
Could someone explain why open cells are better then closed? It would be great if we could use same kites for training in water as in snow, mostly to cut costs... (pricey to have 2 sets of kites)
At the same time we don´t want to cut down at performance.

We are planing to finish the expedition as fast as possible, so skiing some parts "just for fun" will only happen if there is no wind at all.
How much weight we are planing to pack is yet to be determined, but our goal is to cut as much weight as possible
Does anyone have experience of sponsorship from Kite Producers regarding expeditions?

I´ll have a look at the HIT Ultima Thule-sled, thx!

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby Hardwater Kiter » Fri Feb 10, 2012 1:39 pm

The ability to double duty as a water kite and the abitilty to maintain from in gusty winds and resist luffing is the nice thing about closed cells. It also allows you to get more out of light winds as you don't have to have constant airflow going into the wing to maintain it's shape.

I fly Peter Lynn Arcs primarily for thier ability to handle gusty conditions, tons of depower and for the fast flying speed. But they take a little bit of practice to get a feel for them and fly them well. I fly on mountain lakes and we never have clean winds. In the last week I logged 340 miles and I can't imagine doing it on a bridled kite.

The down side to a closed cell is if you whip in and bursts a cell the kite may become unfliable. Slightly more than an open cell IMO. Fortunately Arcs rarely come down.

Open cells are very user friendly in that they set up and launch easier, can be packed up easier if you need to in an emergency ( like a major wind increase) and if need be , repaired easier.

For weight consideration Flysurfer SA models would be a good choice. The current Speed variant has great depower now and the SA fabric will save you some wieght. For lightwind, they are the top dog out there. But it's going to cost you some $$$$$$.

I don't know how to get a mnaufacturer to sponsor you on a venture like this. Do you have expirience doing these sort of things? They wonuld look at you past results closely to considere any level of sponsorship.

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby edt » Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:39 pm

skydive wrote:Could someone explain why open cells are better then closed?


Sky how much have you snow kited?

When you crash a kite with closed cells it is possible for the closed cell to burst on impact. If you have an open cell kite when you crash it on land, it is less likely to tear. On water, if you crash an open cell kite it will sink like a wet napkin, but you can relaunch a closed cell kite.

I've seen plenty of closed cell kites crashed on land, so it's not like the first time you smash your closed kite while doing a kiteloop on the snow it will rip, it's just the open cell kite is more durable. I really think if you kited much on the snow you would already know this.

I'm not saying lack of experience is any detriment, go for it! Just that if you have never done a long haul before, you might want to schedule a warmup, maybe do a 3 day trip back and forth across a frozen lake, putting up your tent, making camp all the good stuff, just to shake things out.

Whatever you do don't let your friends get married, wives are sure fire killer for these types of expeditions :-(

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Re: Best kite for long expeditions?

Postby skydive » Fri Feb 10, 2012 4:32 pm

edt wrote:
skydive wrote:Could someone explain why open cells are better then closed?


Sky how much have you snow kited?

When you crash a kite with closed cells it is possible for the closed cell to burst on impact. If you have an open cell kite when you crash it on land, it is less likely to tear. On water, if you crash an open cell kite it will sink like a wet napkin, but you can relaunch a closed cell kite.

I've seen plenty of closed cell kites crashed on land, so it's not like the first time you smash your closed kite while doing a kiteloop on the snow it will rip, it's just the open cell kite is more durable. I really think if you kited much on the snow you would already know this.

I'm not saying lack of experience is any detriment, go for it! Just that if you have never done a long haul before, you might want to schedule a warmup, maybe do a 3 day trip back and forth across a frozen lake, putting up your tent, making camp all the good stuff, just to shake things out.

Whatever you do don't let your friends get married, wives are sure fire killer for these types of expeditions :-(


Well, Both of us are beginnners. I "can" kite but when it comes to huge jumps and spinns I´m totally lost.
I haven´t put any effort in reading about Foils before as i already have my tubekites, so your knowledge is more then welcome!

Our plan is to make this trip next spring (depending weatherdata) so we will have "plenty" of time to train this and next winter. The only question is if we should buy new Foils asap so we can train with them on water this summer or wait for it until next winter. What would be your choice?

Thanks again!


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