Always funny that debate on sub 8 knots wind kiting. I have friends with 10 years of kiting in the body and a great technic : it's impressive what they can do with a Flysurfer 21m and a raceboard. But this is a lot of commitment (read a lot of money) to ride in 5 knots and this is not my thing.
One thing is sure, this is not the Fat Lady spirit (sub 8 knots wind). Though, last year in OBX I've been riding in 6-7 knots with Cabrinha Plasma board + 5 meters line extensions. Let's say 7 knots, just to make sure not to start a debate
The same day the wind picked-up to 8 knots and it was time to switch to a smaller board (F-One Trax 2008 135x39). See pictures bellow.
Before riding the Fat Lady I have to admit I was not a light wind adict. But last year I've made most of my freestyle progression on this kite. Once I nail down a new trick on the Fat Lady, than I try it in my 12m and then on my 9m with more horizontal POP. This kite is very fast, this is true. I've made a lot of progressions with loops : backroll+kiteloop, frontroll+downloop, hand plant, F-16...
I don't want to highjack the 2013 thread but here is my appreciation of the 2012 wind range (I'm 175 pounds) :
6 knots (okay maybe 7
) : glide with a big board, barely go upwind
8 knots : glide with a small board, go upwind with my Trax
10 knots : very good POP to try new tricks, go upwind without a problem
8-14 knots : sweet spot to progress in freestyle or to enjoy freeride
14-22 knots : time for big airs
At 22 knots, make sure to have 1 mile free downwind. If your a beginner, don't recommand to try this : 15 knots is probably your limit.
What I like on Fat Lady V1 :
- Low end
- Amazing POP
- Very fast turning for it's size
- Very light construction (3 small struts + very small leading edge) but not flapping
- Easy relaunch (easier than my 12m, no problem in 6 knots)
- Very stable, even in 20 knots
I've been riding the V1 with 5m line extensions and on the ''less power'' setting :
- 5 m line extensions gives the right balance between low end (greatly improved) and kite speed (slightly slower)
- ''less power'' setup is better : on the ''more power'' setup you probaly gain 1/2 knots on the low end but you loose 2-3 knots on the high end, and the kite sits deeper in the wind window (and you loose upwind ability)
What I'd like to see on V2 (2013 Fat Lady wish list) :
- Slightly less bar preasure
- Slightly better upwind ability
- Without affecting POP and turning speed too much
- Longer bar throw to improve high end (I'm sure this kite can remain very stable even more depowered)
From what I've read so far I think I will place the order! Please, I'd like to have more feedback on my Fat Lady 2013 wish list.
. By the way, is there adjustments on rear lines and briddle attatchment?
I'm from Montreal and during summer time we ride in light wind conditions. I'm glad to see that the past 3 years kite companies have started to invest in that market segment. Everytime a new kite is developed the bar is raised (most of the time). This is all good for kitesurfers. Samething for the boards, a lot of new light wind boards with great POP (ex. Crazyfly Cruiser Pro, Nobile XTR) have been developped.
P.S. I've just booked one week in OBX, soundfront and I will have the chance to try back to back the following kites : Core 19m, Ozone Zephyr 17m, Ozone Edge 17m, Fat Lady 17m V1 and Fat Lady 2013 (if I have my bonus). I will post a review light wind kite review.