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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 6:56 pm 
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Greg,
I think you are generally right about smaller kite sizes for snow....but...its also possible to kite in lighter winds on snow than on water...so I see people using big kites on the snow all the time, e.g. 15m to 21m kites providing great fun in the ultra-light breeze and if the kite has good range you can carry it up to the 15+ winds.

I know guys currently using big (16m-20m) older (2006-2007) LEI kites on the snow with great success...but these kites are often actually light construction than newer kites. That's the key in my opinion - keep the big kites light and engineer some turning speed into them. They need to be able to stay aloft easily in light wind. Many kite companies stopped focusing on the big kites for a few years because they thought there was not a big enough market for them - and they are expensive to build and put on store shelves - and you know ow quickly kites become obsolete/last years kite, etc. Obviously they were going to sell a lot more 12m kites than 18m kites.

And then a few years ago there was wider/renewed interest in "Light Wind Kites" and some of the brands started working on it again. So with the right kite, light wind riding can be fun again, and people can get out on the water a lot more...which is god news for everyone!

I am sure we would all prefer being on a 9m or 11m, but with the right "big" kite you can still get good performance.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 4:46 pm 
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Very true... guys around me use Foil kites in the 16-18m range on light wind snow days.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 5:30 pm 
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@Roberto: How do you configure your 15m XRLW for the absolute bottom range? The site states 7kts is the bottom end of the 17m XR3. My experience when assessing a manufacturers bottom end is that you must put other factors into play to achieve that bottom end. Like...

- Attach line extensions (if provided with your kite)
- Use a LW/Larger board
- Set rear lines to first/furthest back knot
- etc

I know for my 11m switchblade, to squeeze out what Cab states for its low end (12kts or so) I need to set the configuration I noted above for my weight (165lbs). Do you find you need to do the same for the Core XRLW to squeeze out 8 kts or so?


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 6:37 pm 
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GregWoj wrote:
@Roberto: How do you configure your 15m XRLW for the absolute bottom range?


95% of the time I have my kite configured the same way: "fast" bridle settings and middle knot on the steering lines. The other 5% of the time I have the steering lines on the last knot/longest knot (when I am flying the kite at it's upper range and I could easily go to an 11m but don't have that luxury for some reason)

Flying any kite at the absolute bottom range takes a bit of finesse. I find that attaching the kite at the first knot (shortest) setting tends to choke the kite. Quite often when flying a kite at it's low end you need to sheet the bar out to get the correct AOA as the kite passes thru the power zone, and then when attaining some apparent wind the bar needs to be eased also to let the kite fly forward. So contrary to what a lot of beginners might think...pulling hard on the bar is not always the way to optimize kite trim.

An efficient board is critical, since the "work" a kite can make is highly dependent on the position of the pilot/rider. If the board cannot go forward fast enough it will undermine the capabilities of the kite. For me this also is a good argument for good tuning/waxing of skis/snowboard...and good board selection/condition for a kiteboard/surfboard.

Probably my fastest twintip (Spleene 139 Session) performs so well because it planes quickly and goes upwind really well..so it builds apparent wind almost instantly. My surfboards are pretty good, but since they have volume the lift is mostly dependent on the (surf) fins, which are not designed for optimized upwind riding. I would say that 9-11 kts is my low end with the 139 Spleene. With a race board I can probably go another knot (wind speed) lower with the 15m Core...?

Light wind kites can be different though...e,g, a Flysurfer 21 doesn't turn quickly to generate bursts of apparent wind like a 15-19m Core, but rather it seems to generate a constant pull by virtue of it's massive wingspan and working area of lift. In any case "lift to weight" ratio is critical in the performance of the kite in ultralight wind...and ability to "drift" in the lulls and the "off-the-wind" headings...but my personal preference in light wind is a light weight kite that turns quickly and has easy bar pressure so you can still whip it around and have a little fun with it.

Even though it's remarkable how much power a big Flysurfer can have it is just not the "feel" I am accustomed to. I am certainly not saying it's a bad thing to be able to ride in super light wind with a big foil. You just need to get used to that "feel".

Sorry the ramble...but making a long story short - I usually ride my kites with the same settings and do not mess around a lot with line extensions either. Again, I just like the "feel" of the standard lines (25m?). There are times and places and circumstances when the wind gradient really makes a good argument for using line extensions (Core provides 3m extensions)...and you can get a little more power if you are willing to trade a little turning speed/responsiveness in exchange.

my 2 cents anyway


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:10 pm 
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I tried the line extentions on my Xr2 LW 17 and they did not add anything but sloppy steering. Absolutly not lower wind range. I set up same as Roberto.
Realistically i think if you have solid 10knots and some short 8 knot lulls you can go on this 17 on a surfboard and have fun. if your lulls to 8 knots are 50% of the time then you will spend all your time just trying to stay upwind, but you can ride.
8 knots and under- not fun- go skateboarding
Im riding a 5-8 strapless surfboard , 80kgs loaded, kiting 12 years so know how to fly a kite.
My spot is open ocean on small bay/inlet with onshore wind, and has some small current/rips that varies a lot depending where i am at my spot, so i am not sure how that is effecting everything.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 8:51 pm 
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@Tom @Roberto thanks for the info. Good stuff.

Ha, I reached out to Core and they told me their low range 7 kts tests were with pro riders, 161cm Carbon LW board, 31m lines. I know enough to add 2 kts onto whatever kite manufacturer states as their "low end".

Seems like you guys like the "Fast" bridle settings. Any experimenting with the "Super Fast" Wave set up? Seems like that would add some steering jolt. Any impact to low end range with that? Also... what about the Bar pressure setting... keep it in the middle?

@Tom so it seems like you and I are the same weight loaded up... Seems like your low end is 8-9 kts on a surfboard. What about a LW TT board? Say something in the 145-150 range with boxy shape and no rocker. Would you say the low range is the same for you with that type of board at 8-9kts or more like 10-11? And... (Robert also) What is your true "Sweet Spot" with your Core LWs? If my brain is reading this right... seems like you guys are happy at 12-14kts with the Core XRLWs.

Roberto maybe 13-14 with the 15m and Tom maybe 11-12 with the 17M

I know I know.. I just need to go out there and figure it out on my own, but good to get feedback from guys who have the same kites and are the same weight more or less.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 12:10 am 
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GregWoj wrote:
(Robert also) What is your true "Sweet Spot" with your Core LWs? If my brain is reading this right... seems like you guys are happy at 12-14kts with the Core XRLWs.

Roberto maybe 13-14 with the 15m and Tom maybe 11-12 with the 17M


I'd say that's about right...and can depend on several other things (type of wind, wind orientation, waves vs flat, the usual factors to consider)

As for fast vs slow steering/bar pressure settings - I think it depends on your style of riding, and what you like. Some people like a lot of bar pressure, but I don't because I ride and steer one handed a majority of the time, and I do not do wake style/unhooked riding. So I suggest you experiment and find your own preference with this.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 12:20 am 
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GregWoj wrote:
Ha, I reached out to Core and they told me their low range 7 kts tests were with pro riders, 161cm Carbon LW board, 31m lines. I know enough to add 2 kts onto whatever kite manufacturer states as their "low end".


Well, don't always believe that only a big board like that will work in light wind. I have 2 custom carbon/kevlar 120 cm boards that do very well in light wind. One is a "lunch tray" style board, fairly boxy with very flat rocker - not the best in chop but can do almost as well as a large "door". The other one is more tapered tips, very flexible, 2-stage rocker - a great high wind board but does remarkably well in light wind too.

Again, it all depends on what you are trying to do, what style you are trying to achieve, what conditions/sea state you are trying to match with. Some days I will ride 3 -4 different boards, just to feel something different and to keep things interesting, or to adjust to changing conditions.


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2014 11:39 pm 
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Yea Greg we are geeking out on this.
I tried some of those square flat TTs once 8 years ago and didnt like em. I do have a 150x44cm Mako rip-off that i made with 20mm concave. and i have tried it back to back with Core XR2 LW 17 on Surfboard on a really light day. 10 knots. Surfboard was giving me extra glide and float, but not any really better lowend.
Roberto is right about the variables.

Let me wrap up this geek out with this. I used to have a 14m kite ( 2008 Eclipse Thruster) that was magic. I could go out in 10-12 knots and stay upwind and do small tricks- on that big Mako ripoff.i would be out when guys were on bigger ( 2008) kites, or no one elses 14s worked. But i didnt have any big power or Juice. In same wind on the C XR2 LW 17 i have more of juice and and can do jumps and feel the power of the kite, really edge and power. not have to finesse the kite.

Like i said above at 8 -10 and 50% at 8 knots im going skateboarding, MTB with my boy, SUP with my boy downwind, or any of the dozens of things we should be doing instead of playing around.

Ciao


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 Post subject: Re: 2014 Cabrinha Contra vs Zephyr vs Core XR3LW
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:25 pm 
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TomW wrote:
Like i said above at 8 -10 and 50% at 8 knots im going skateboarding, MTB with my boy, SUP with my boy downwind, or any of the dozens of things we should be doing instead of playing around.

Ciao


nailed it Tom


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