If an Ocean Rodeo ambassador will compare both bars, I feel someone from North's side has to give his opinion too.
**Disclaimer** I am the original inventor of the click bar and worked hand in hand with the North design team to get it on the market.
I have tried a pre production version of the OR bar minus their stopper ball.
For me the difference in powering up and depowering is quite significant between both bars.
Powering up: I find it much easier on the Click bar. The leverage you get from the winder on the Click bar is much greater than turning the small knob on the stick shift bar.
Also the fact that the lines don't go around as many internal pins on the click bar means there is less friction inside and thus again, it is easier to power up.
I do not agree about the "elbow out" description that was given previously, it is just a movement to get used to and for sure the first session won't be the best in terms of confort but after two or three sessions, I guarantee that it is an extremely easy movement to do.
I actually find the position my hand ends up with the OR bar being a lot more awkward.
And again, the biggest problem for me is that you really have the completely remove the tension from the back lines to power back up the OR bar.
With the North bar you can actually do it with quite some tension on the lines, which is handy when you are in a situation when you are under powered so where you would rather not have to push the bar away.
Depowering: On paper you would think that the OR bar would probably be better at this since you can hit the knob.. In reality not so much.
I find pushing the button on the click bar a lot more "civilised" meaning it feels more controlled.
The knob on the OR bar turning rapidly next to your hand isn't as refined.
Saying that, the depowering mode is much better than the powering up mode, but I still like pressing on the button of the Click bar better.
Regarding the fact that the bar is opened so better to flush, people might not have realised yet that the Click bar actually doesn't have any problem even though it is closed.
There are over 5000 bars on the market for now almost 9 months and still not one, yes not one single customer I am aware of that had his bar stuck with sand or salt. Can we move on from this argument now? It is getting seriously old.. Plus no one ever mentions the two rubber plugs which the Click bar has on either sides for cleaning.. Should you get some sand in there, it is as easy as opening a plug with your finger and shaking your bar under the water..
The shape of the bar. The OR bar has a funny square shape and it is rather big, I guess you could get used to it but as mentioned previously, the Click bar feels much better in the hand according to me.
Features of both bars: The Click bar come with automatic untwist of the front lines, lines extensions, variable V hights to suit all kites on the market and the possibility to add a fifth line. The OR bar has none of these features.
The one feature that the OR bar has that the Click bar doesn't is the springs in the floats that allows the release of the lines without having to pull on them; so for example to depower your kite before launching, before you get tension on the lines.
This is a feature that I had tested myself on some very early prototypes and I never went along with it since the springs also add additional resistance while you are trying to power up.
I have thus deliberately chosen the trade-of of having to manually pull on the lines to depower when on the beach but have minimum resistance while on the water.
The reason for that is obvious: it doesn't matter if you have to take 15seconds on the beach to manually pull on your lines to depower, but it is much better than always having to fight against a spring every time you power your kite up on the water.. I tend to spend the majority on my time on the water and not on the beach, I don't know about you guys?
Price: They both retail for USD 690.
In summary, for me it is an obvious win for the Click bar. Please don't take my word for it, if you have a chance, take both bars for a test and judge for yourself.
POV of the Click bar in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYinfyS4MPs
Feel free to contact me if you have any specific questions about the Click bar.