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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:38 pm 
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and while you're at it, make these new better valves bigger
not just the inflate/deflate valve(you should only need one if done right to decrease the failure points and expense)
all the one pump valves as well with larger diameter tubes for faster easier inflate/deflate

why are we still using cheap ass little valves on a $2000 kite?


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:43 pm 
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knotwindy wrote:
and while you're at it, make these new better valves bigger
not just the inflate/deflate valve(you should only need one if done right to decrease the failure points and expense)
all the one pump valves as well with larger diameter tubes for faster easier inflate/deflate

why are we still using cheap ass little valves on a $2000 kite?



preach it knot


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:38 pm 
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knotwindy wrote:
why are we still using cheap ass little valves on a $2000 kite?


So they aren't $2005 kites?.. :rollgrin:

Image

I give props to Liquid Force my GF rides Envys and every time I use their huge inflate valve I wonder why my kites don't have that feature.... :argue:


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:51 pm 
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Location: Hood River OR | Ft. Lauderdale FL | Rio de Janeiro
You guys have an interesting thread going. I tried to respond to some of the smart points brought out earlier.

edt wrote:
that's really interesting dan.

if what you say is true than the kite companies could fix these problems by doing a flash sear of the valves right before they go on the kites, what you can do is after the valves have been formed and plasticizer added, you heat sear them so that the outer micrometers of the valve lose their plasticizer . . .


Edt, that's a good idea, shows you're thinking. We thought that might work as well and have tested it. The issue is that the entire pvc valve has plasticizer that will eventually migrate out. Even if you are successful removing plastizer from the surface it will quickly return....so you're only delaying the inevitable.

edt wrote:
but maybe there is a production reason why a heat searing treatment won't work (maybe it would deform the valves.

or maybe instead of making the valves out of PVC with plasticizer added they could make the valves out of polyurethane (which is what the bladders are) and add hardener instead of softener


This has been done. A major company offered valves out of polyurethane in 2007 and another kite company did it in 2011 and the valves dry out and crack within the first year. Polyurethane valves usually have a cloudy yellow tint to them and the yellow becomes more noticeable as they age. Valves didn't fall off but they couldn't handle everyday life.

edt wrote:
In any case it looks like the basic problem is that kite manufacturers have no control over the actual valve production they are using valves meant for beach balls, inflatable mattresses and rafts, and adapting them to their own use instead of developing a specific research and development project to produce a better valve.


Think of plasticizer wicking like water wicks. When you weld pvc to pvc there is very little migration as both parts have plasticizer and there is no draw from one to the other. For this reason your $3 beach ball doesn't lose the valve.

In kite applications, the plasticizer is drawn out of the pvc valve by the pressure sensitive adhesive (think our 'peel and stick' valves) or polyurethane (think your standard OEM bladder). Why can't we do pvc bladders then? Well, that was done in 2010 by a Chinese factory without giving any notice to several kite brands. The pvc bladders would quickly develop micro tears all over them and as soon as you patched one hole it developed another. Lot's of free bladder sets have been sent out to a handful of 2010 kites that had the vinyl bladders.

edt wrote:
there's absolutely no question this is a problem that could be solved if you hire a engineer and throw some money at it.


I won't disagree with you because I think anything is possible if you spend enough time (and that equals money) trying to figure something out.

We have spent the last 2.5 years developing and testing a new approach that has finally materialized into a working product. We appreciate this discussion and we'd like to send some free samples to anyone who's posted before us on this thread if they private message me (not you Dan...you're getting a 6 pack and a nice button up shirt with an AIRTIME logo because you said such pretty things about us). We'll send to a US address only.

Let me introduce the Valve Trap. The Valve Trap sandwiches a valve between two 4” diameter foam discs with a highly specialized adhesive that can tolerate plasticizers. The foam is soft enough to conform to any irregularities in the valve (think the ridges on the top of the valve base from the RF die) so it seals nicely. Also the valve has contact on double the surface area (top of valve base and bottom valve base). The Valve Trap then provides a 4” diameter base with a 'peel and stick' adhesive that will adhere to any bladder.

Why are we going with a 'peel and stick' and not a weld? As we all know, as soon as one air channel develops the valve starts to leak and there is no way to get it to re-seal. With our new adhesive it's always tacky (even after being assaulted by plasticizers) so it can maintain a seal.**

We've been testing in a lab oven since 2010 to find the best setup available. We had one round of samples go into an assortment of kites one year ago in Puerto Rico. Using the combined information we finalized the product and have just recently send out real world samples to a handful of our customers in the worst locations possible.

Here are the instructions from the packaging:

Image

Here is a link to our facebook video introducing it: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=460819870619200

Hope I answered some questions for you.

Casey

**Our assembled bladders using OEM spec polyurethane also use the same system with a white "donut" over the valve.


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 12:32 am 
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wow airtime, thanks for the analysis.

Sounds like it is just a matter of time before we get tech for the valves.


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:09 pm 
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airtimekite wrote:
Let me introduce the Valve Trap. The Valve Trap sandwiches a valve between two 4” diameter foam discs with a highly specialized adhesive that can tolerate plasticizers. The foam is soft enough to conform to any irregularities in the valve (think the ridges on the top of the valve base from the RF die) so it seals nicely. Also the valve has contact on double the surface area (top of valve base and bottom valve base). The Valve Trap then provides a 4” diameter base with a 'peel and stick' adhesive that will adhere to any bladder.



I did read your entire post and from what I read the Valve Trap is a replacement valve and doesn't address the problem with the original valve coming off. Did I miss something or have I miss understood the point of this thread?

I'm not being critical... just a pure and simple quest for info :)


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:06 pm 
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frankm what I suspect is that if airtime is successful in solving this problem eventually kite manufacturers will adopt the same tech . . . . just a matter of time


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:58 pm 
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edt wrote:
frankm what I suspect is that if airtime is successful in solving this problem eventually kite manufacturers will adopt the same tech . . . . just a matter of time


Ahh ok. But then wouldn't they have to be installed by hand thereby running up the costs? or maybe thats how the valves are installed at the factory now?... I have no idea.

One thing I was thinking about... while industry focuses on a better valve... at same time focus on designing a kite which is easier to repair... that is ... easier to remove/insert the bladder for one... make it so that its not so difficult and time consuming to get that thing out and fix a hole... like a big zipper all the way along the leading edge lol...likely already tried but something/anything that would make it so bladder leaks aren't such a big deal. Fixing a bike tube isn't that bad...
I'd buy a kite like that... don't care if it flies like a tractor... not that fussy... just wanna play.


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 Post subject: Re: Which kites have heavy duty bladder valves?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:24 am 
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Go to GK kites website and speak to Matt Pendle the inventor.
Their kites have super durable bladders and valves.
The valves are welded on so you don't have those bladder issues in the past where they keep coming off.
Matt Pendle makes custom logo kites now. He made the GK Trixes and GK Sonics. If he still has his 2012's left he is closing them out dirt cheap! His 2012 Kites are so durable. He has his bladders done in a factory in China of course and like I said they are welded kitebladders.


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