I've got 5th lines rigged on all my bars now, but only as a relaunch aid. The main trigger in me fitting them was teaching my GF to kite, but I leave them on the bar when I fly too. It's nice to be able to roll the kite over in a second or so without having to swim. It's also nice to have a controllable way to depower and self-land the kite without having to toss it to the leash
My self-landing method now is:
1. Pull the 5th line until the kite stalls forward and falls down upside down.
2. Hold the 5th line in my teeth while I get my harness off etc.
3. Tie the 5th line to my board handle.
4. Put my harness on the board for a bit of extra weight.
5. Hand-over-hand up the 5th line and retrieve the kite.
I've been testing 5th lines fairly extensively. I used to think it was just a quick way to relaunch but now I'm convinced you get a bigger wind range higher jumps and longer hangtime. Flexifoil actually publish two wind ranges for their new Strikes one with 5th line attached and one without.
Most 2005 kites will come with the option but it's easy enough to rig.
see pics http://www.northtexaskitesports.com/bestswivelbar.html
Ride the 5th nice except when kite roll it wraps around the kite and you have to pack it up... Especially in waves, even small rollers. Of course after dropping kite... Not fun if you are don't try new moves trying to avoid dropping your kite, but it sure makes for a great taxi and launch to the windows edge...
You are right, if the kite fall down youÃ‚Â´ll pull the 5th line and it could be up in a second. But if it rolls the 5th line wrap and divide the kite in two...if the wind is strong i do not want to know what could happend with the extra line close to the rider tangled around arms, body, etc...
Just a question.
Keep it simple, swim a bit and not be around power lines.
So, true. It happened to me a few times... 2% of flying. Small white rollers and wind in same direction will make it roll easier... or a gust and kite rush to the edge then a lull... sometimes happened fast... Never cut kite yet but had no choice but to wind up one of my front lines to reduce the 5 pull from cutting kite. Could cut line or release line... but on the norths it's your only safety system. And you can't really have a loose line dangling... Just made for a mess on an otherwise great day. Had to go in an untangle and all... Like you said go simple... but when the water is cold and wind is gusty it can be a challenge to get it back up at times... fast... The fifth made for many nice taxis to the edge... fast... feet in board no swimming... Seems like it's good for chop and flat, but not waves... I suppose we'll here allot of new stories now that many companies are offering the 5th...
Nothing does it all... But I though I should mention that the fifth can be vaery safe when it's the first thing you hook into on the beach. You are hooked into the safety... if anything happens, your leash is hooked to the 5th and leading edge of kite... another nice thing is that when it's your safety and goes through the bar hole with the sheet line you can spin the bar nicely... feels like there is no leash... beyond the bar... Kind a get spoiled with that...
Looks like Windwing can do it all...1 hard line... 2 Jump start option...3 safe system. tips the kite just enough to taxi to edge... all with only 4 lines... roll the kite no problem...