Contact   Imprint   Advertising   Guidelines

North 5th Element Review

Find reviews of kites, boards and accessories

Frequent Poster
Posts: 287
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2003 9:49 pm
Kiting since: 0
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: uk sw

North 5th Element Review

Postby -wAVe- » Wed Jul 28, 2004 9:12 pm

Richard Gowers from Weymouth/Underground (01305 789822) has lent me a demo North 5th Element bar and lines to connect to my Vegas kites. I’ve used it three times, once on the 14m North Vegas and twice on the 18m North Vegas. Set up – no more difficult than standard. In flight – kite seemed to fly even better (if that is possible for the Vegas!). The leash works well for loops (well back loops anyway, which is all I can do). I suspect there is a limit to the number of times you can spin before affecting the leash – say 30 times – hopefully you will have a few spins in the other direction before meeting this limit. I thought the lines worked great in stonger wind with the 14m. I like the spinning capability, the micro hook and the ability to change bar length on the scepter bar. Not so sure about the 5th line in very light winds yet. I did manage to get in a twist when the wind droped with the 18m. I think I was unlucky as normally I wouldn’t have been trying to fly a kite in 5 knots! The water relaunch was really good – jut pull on the 5th line and the kite falls onto its back – pull on the bar and it moves to the edge of the window and takes off. Even with the 18m in deep water, relaunch was a piece of cake. No dragging involved as the 5th line depowers the kite until you fully release it. You can even take off straight through the power zone by keeping a good grip on the 5th line. I released the chicken loop safety a couple of times and the kite was very easy to recover – no tangles!.

Overall the 5th element is much better than a front line, so called re-ride system. You can release the bar and still recover the kite rather than have to swim in! The system also provides a spinning leash – how much you can spin before affecting the leash I have still to find out. You can also use the 5th line to depower the kite if the wind increases to unmanageable levels and you can use your saftey more readily without worrying about having to swim in due to tangles. Downside is that you have one more line to get in a tangle with. Only time will tell if this is a problem. Will I buy one? Probably but £199 - ouch! Thoughts turn to the Paracademy club discount…

User avatar
Very Frequent Poster
Posts: 1209
Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2002 1:00 am
Kiting since: 2001
Local Beach: Walchensee - the bavarian caribbean ;-)
Favorite Beaches: Navene & Campagnola / Lake Garda
Paracuru / Brazil
Le Mourne / Mauritius
Lake Reschen / Italy
Style: RED
Gear: Groove Skate
Moses Onda & Fluente
F-One Trax
North Mono & Neos
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: Garmisch-Pa./Bavaria

Postby Foxi » Thu Jul 29, 2004 9:46 am

Hi Wave,

can you describe how you fed the 5th line during relaunch of e.g. 18m Vegas. Thats roughly 2m lines to control in one hand after having flipped the kite in its back and crucial not to let it go too early as trailing edge would grab and roll over the kite.

User avatar
Very Frequent Poster
Posts: 2440
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2003 9:21 pm
Kiting since: 0
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: Portugal - Guincho; Rebel2012 5m, 9m & 2011 7m; Amundson 5'9&6'

Postby Wawando » Thu Jul 29, 2004 11:17 pm


I have been thinking and I am not sure i will go for a R05 because of the 5thE... kite tumbles and a flip is always possible unless you ride with care and that will limit the liberty and relax that riding must have...
This problem could be solved it the 5th e had a QR: if the kite rolls you would release the 5thE QR and use a secondary security in one of the back lines...
Does the 5thE kit have this option?


Medium Poster
Posts: 195
Joined: Mon May 05, 2003 6:59 pm
Kiting since: 0
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: San Francisco

Postby 5score » Mon Aug 16, 2004 7:49 pm

Wawando wrote:kite tumbles and a flip is always possible unless you ride with care and that will limit the liberty and relax that riding must have...
I thought that this was the whole purpose of the stoppers on 5th line systems in general: keep the kite from doing a tumble in the lines.

I was told by a North rep (but have not tried) that the best way to relaunch with a 5th line is to not pull the kite onto its back at all. Instead, tension on the 5th line and one back line will supposedly move the kite to the side of the window and re-launch.

joe f
Rare Poster
Posts: 26
Joined: Tue Apr 01, 2003 7:49 pm


Postby joe f » Sat Aug 21, 2004 9:26 am

Can anyone give an idiots' guide to relaunch technique with the 5th element. So far, I have found it harder than normal 4 lines, so either I have it set up wrong (hope not as it is the stock bar and lines) or I am being stupid (more likely).

Assuming the kite comes down directly downwind, I just can't get it to move out to one side as all the line tension is on the central line (once it has flipped onto its back). The problem, as I see it, is that you can't pull on one side of the front lines as it pulls both sides in together (due to the fact that the Y split is too far away from you to pull in on one side).

The only way to pull in one side is to pull one of the rears a LONG way in but so far that has made the kite roll EVERY time I have tried it. Luckily, this has only happened once 'for real' as I spent some time playing around with it in shallow water, but last night it meant a swim in which was not encouraging.

What I find frustrating is that this is supposed to help take off. So far, my impression is that it was easier with a standard 4 line set up as the Vegas was very easy to take off.

Any thoughts extremely welcome!


Postby Guest » Mon Sep 06, 2004 11:47 pm

I will try and explain the relaunch with the 5th E. It really is pretty easy. You just need to get a feel for it.

With the kite LE down straight downwind of you, pull in on the red 5th E line. It is hard to explain how much to pull in. It is about 2 pulls. You want the tips to some up off the water but you do not want the kite to flip on it's back.

One way to get the feel for how much to pull in is to start pulling on the 5th E line. Also pull on one side of the bar (pulling on the back lines). As you are pulling in the 5th E line the kite will start to want to move to one side pretty easily. This is the right amount to pull in. You just have to get a feel for the right amount to pull in.

The kite will start to move to one side and as it gets to the edge you can let off the 5th E line and relaunch the kite as normal.

It took me a little bit to get the feel but it is not hard. Good luck.

User avatar
Very Frequent Poster
Posts: 2440
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2003 9:21 pm
Kiting since: 0
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: Portugal - Guincho; Rebel2012 5m, 9m & 2011 7m; Amundson 5'9&6'

Postby Wawando » Tue Sep 07, 2004 11:24 am

I am over the "5thE tumble symdrome" now :D (I am with the "5thE price syndrome" now)
So: this year bar wore out the depower line too quick. As the 5th E line passes through the hole i imagine it won't last two sessions! Can you guys that are using it give some feedback?

User avatar
Blowing in the Wind
Frequent Poster
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2003 8:06 pm
Kiting since: 0
Brand Affiliation: None
Location: Wilmington, NC

Postby Blowing in the Wind » Thu Sep 09, 2004 3:01 am

Many people waxed the depower line to get it to last longer. I did not. I used the same depower line with a 5th E from April to July. The 5th E line was not wearing. The only reason it needed changing is the knot that tied it to the depower strap was getting cut form the bar hitting it. A little foam stopped that. 3-4 months on one line was not bad though.

I thought about if it would wear but it did not for me. You can replace just the lower section of the 5th E if needed. It would be very easy to do.

Return to “Reviews”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests