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tested: Rhino6 18 + 20

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Toby
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tested: Rhino6 18 + 20

Postby Toby » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:20 am

in October I went down to Ras Sudr, Egypt, for the North European dealer meeting.
North had all sizes of R6 and all boards available for testing.
Winds were around 6 Bft (22 knots) daily. Therefore the most didn't test the big sizes.
I'm used to power and riding overpowered most of my times, loving big airs and long hang. That was the most amazing on the Rhino2, which is my favourite big kite since 2002.
So I can fairly compare both kites.

Unfortunatley we didn't have the chance to test the big R6 in lighter winds, so we can't say, if the R2 or R6 goes upwind earlier. But the feel is good, so the lowend will be good. But a further test would give us exact info, so if anyone can do this and review it for us, it would be great.
The lowend is big plus of the old R2, so this is an importing critieria for a big kite and to compare both kites.

The R2 is an amazing kite, since it has (for me) quiet a range, excellent lowend, big air and loooong hangtime. The downsides are quiet slow and pulls downwind, in strong winds you really have to push the board hard.

The new R6 18 and 20 have the same character, the 18 is just a bit faster in turning speed, but it would be good to know the comparison in the low end as well, to see if there really is a difference. Maybe 1-2 knots I assume, but if anyone can test, please review this here as well.

Turning Speed:
the new North 5th Element bar is a bit shorter than last year. And I fly my R2 with a 55cm bar. For me the R6 turned just a bit faster, but with a 55cm bar it should turn significantly faster. North will offer a longer 5th Element in spring 2006, specially for the bigger kites. But hey, it is still a 20sqm kite, so don't expect it to catch you on a kiteloop...

Lift:
It always amazed me, how easy you can jump high on the R2 20. Just steer the kite over the zenit a bit, pull the bar and edge...and you fly...(of course, a bit technique required).
But finally, after 3 years, I have the same feeling on the R6 again! It just goes high, like my R2.

Hangtime:
The R2 was the godfather of the hangtime. Really, like a wing. The new R6 has exact that hangtime, maybe slightly less, but this can't be really tested, since you never have the same conditions. But the hangtime is very nice, giving you lots of time to slowly spin or do old school tricks.

Downwind pull:
The R2 was a hard kite to ride, specially in stronger winds. Here is the biggest, noticable difference to the R6. The R6 rides way softer with less pull, making it easier to ride in stronger winds.

Upwind:
Maybe due to pulling downwind less, it mayb go upwind easier. This has to be tested one on one. But I assume you can go upwind earlier in light winds, due to less downwind pull.

Depower:
Since I can ride kites with lots of pressure, I get a big depower range out of every kite. Bt due to less downwind pull, I assume I can stay on the R6 longer than on my R2, so it should have a bigger range.

Conclusion:
North finally did it and made a big kite, that is worth the money. It performs IMO better than the R2, specially due to the less downwind pull and a bit faster turning.
Big guys in lighter wind can now have fun again.

Comparison R6 18 and 20:
Same type of kite and character. Just 2 sqm less, so a bit faster, the rest has to be tested. But for sure a good kite, like the 20.

Note:
A 20sqm kite is still 20sqm. So it is nothing for lightweights, only worth it for guys with around 85+ kgs who ride in lighter winds quiet often.
It is a great size and kite for learning tricks, since you just steer the kite slowly over the zenit, edge hard and pull the bar, then it sucks you up and stays up there, giving you lots of time to finish your trick. And due to being slower, you can't mis-steer it like small kite making you crash and hurt you.
IMO big kites are the best for learning tricks (old school). Try it one day and see for yourself!

Greets
Toby

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Toby
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Postby Toby » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:24 am

here I'm ripping on a R6 18 in winds of about 14-16 knots.
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Toby
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Postby Toby » Tue Oct 25, 2005 8:26 am

more:
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Phillipp
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Postby Phillipp » Tue Oct 25, 2005 9:53 am

Great review and very cool shots.

P

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Postby Hardcave1 » Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:08 am

So is the new R6 the old R2 modified with some of the new features like relex battens, 5th line and camber battens. You say the turning speed is almost the same but it has less downwind pull this sounds like the 5th line is doing this rather than a change in the design. One of the things that stoped my R2 20 from going in max winds were the tips collapsing when edging hard and fully sheeted, I guess just changing to the reflex tips will extend its range.
But the bottom end still needs to be worked out, if it's similar then all is well.
Does the kite ride faster than the old R2 or do you still have to control your board speed.

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STF
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Postby STF » Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:07 am

Toby stated,
A 20sqm kite is still 20sqm. So it is nothing for lightweights, only worth it for guys with around 85+ kgs who ride in lighter winds quiet often.



But Toby, i and some other people who are light, im about 140lbs, Fly 21m kites and 20m kites... we need them too.

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Postby windyboy » Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:58 am

I agree I'm 135 pounds and I fly a 24 in 10- 15 knots without a problem you just got to edge like crazy with a big kite that's all it takes. Also awsome shots toby. :thumb:

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Toby
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Postby Toby » Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:16 am

according to North they made the shape very similar to the R2 20.
Funny, they just did 2 protos for the R2 Ken Winner told me!

I use my R2 20 with 4 lines, never tried with 5 lines though....so I can comment on that, but it is a good question.

Not sure about the speed, IMO similar.

There are some kites with less downwind pull, so lighweights can hold it, no problem. But the R2 was too powerfull, according to what others with less weight told me. Give the R6 a try and compare it to your kites and let us know what you think, also the lowend. That will be interesting to know.

Greets
Toby

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Postby fat blokes can fly » Sun Oct 30, 2005 10:54 am

Hi Toby, I would be very interested to here the review of the R6 20m.
As you may well remember I have always been a fan of the 20m R2, even after riding different kites I have ended up buying another R2.
Still the daddy of lightwind kitesurfing we shall see???

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Postby fat blokes can fly » Sat Nov 05, 2005 5:50 pm

Has anyone tried the R6 20m yet?

I don't want to waste my money again! Or should I stick with my R2 20m?
:-?


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