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 Post subject: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 3:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:02 am
Posts: 2
Hi all,

First post, although I've been lurking for a little bit on and off. I couldn't find a "Rules" post in the stickies, so forgive me if this type of post is frowned upon, I'd imagine the "A compared to B" posts can get old kind of quick. Mods: If this is considered taboo please delete it, sorry for the work.

I'm a rather new kiter, been for a couple week long kite trips but seem to chase the wind away more often than not (skunk bait). Have gone out a few times in Hatteras, Dominican Republic, and now will be based out of Grosseto Italy for the summer. At this point in my learning progression, I've started to reliably make it upwind then get to do a mini downwinder to my launch point at the end of a session, very rarely dropping the kite in the water unless I'm trying something new. After my last outing at Hatteras I've completely caught the kite-bug, and figured it's probably time to set up a quiver of my own and get out on the water more often.

I've been looking at what gear to buy, and seem to have kind of closed in on the Core Riot XR3, or the Airush Lithium line of kites. Seeing as I haven't really gotten too wild yet I'm not exactly sure of my future kite style, although I can say that watching older videos seems to peak my interest more than the modern "wake style" stuff (I'm generally not much of a buck wild freestyle individual). Has anyone ridden both and have any thoughts on the comparison, strengths and weaknesses, advice, or even other kites that you think I should consider instead? Being an engineer-head I seem to be attracted to the German-designed Cores, but please do tell me if I'm headed in the wrong direction.

I've been demoing different kites (new slingshot RPMs, a Naish sigma thing, a FOne delta, a RRD Obsession years back), but run into the problem that I still become a better rider every time I go out, so obviously my favorite kite is the last one I rode.

While I'm at it I should probably ask about sizing as well. I'm 65kg, 145 lbs, and 5'6 or so. I'm based out of Boston normally, but Castiglione della Pescaia/Grosseto Italy for the summer and will probably be moving here within the next few years (for a hopeful automotive engineer Italy certainly has its perks :naughty:). I've asked around at the local kite beach and they claim a 20 knot thermal, with sometimes higher winds, but since I've been here I've witnessed one day like that and mostly 10-16(ish, hard to estimate without a gauge) knot thermal days. I was trying to get away with 2 kites if I could, so was thinking an 8 and an 11 or a 9 and a 12? Probably the former?

Lastly, again in the interest of post consolidation, board recommendations would be very appreciated. I'm building a plywood lightwind board so maybe something a little smaller than my planned 140x40?

Sorry for the long post, thanks for reading if you made it through! Have fun and hope to see you on the water!

Alex


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 6:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 44
Tried Airush Lithium 18 m2, Blade Fat Mamma 17 and Core XRLW Riot2 last Friday, in less than 10 knots. With my Spleene X19 and Spleene Monster Door I was more than powered (1-2 meters jumps, upwind without problem). I weight 85 kgs.
The Lithium 18 has A LOT of bar pressure. In 8 knots went only downwind, at 11knots more lively (upwind). At 13knots with the Door already hard to keep the edge (overpower almost). Where is the fine tune of the power-depower?
The Fat Mamma 17 is more maneuverable, but from 9-10 knots. Small throw depower....better upwind.
The Core 19 is more versatile, goes upwind from 9 knots and is good up to 15-18 knots ;) But pricey!
Since the XR3 should be better than the XR2, and the Lithium is a no-go (at least for me), hope this helps!

Better, go for a Spleene X19 or a Flysurfer S4 21 and close the story!


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 6:52 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 02, 2013 2:45 pm
Posts: 120
Hey AlFreedy, I feel qualified to advise you since I've tried many Core kites, and considering the exact same things you are. I have gone from an 8gts, 11 xr2 and 17 xr2 quiver(all great kites and a nice combination), to 8 and 12 xr3s. The other thing I should mention is that once you really get the bug you would love being overpowered for old school tricks with big airtime. If I were you i would buy, just one higher wind kite, say xr3 10(rated 12-28knots) and one lightwind kite. I am considering the Ocean Rodeo Flite cause most other lightwind kites are 5 strut and heavier vs 3 for the flite. The board I would rather get 132x41-44 so you could hold more power when overpowered and go upwind better in lighter wind. This should cover all your bases so you could kite every day and progress faster. In 10-20knots with the Flite 17, at 20-30 with 10 xr3. And if you are new to Europe you should check out the you-love-it.eu store as Garret always has great deals. Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:13 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:04 pm
Posts: 302
I don't have a lot of experience with the core kites but I do have a lot with the airush kites.

You are light and gutting the right power band for your weight will be very important, as kites that will not sit forward for you under load will bring you problems with handling, upwind work and an extremely (or even non existent) sweet spot.

In the Airush Range, I would say that a Lithium in 12m would be a good kite, it's quick, quite efficient and sits forward under load, but when it's not there is quite a lot of power to it, and great forward turning helping you to get a really early start in the lightest of winds. It's also voted the easiest kite to relaunch in one of the US tests, so aside being a kite that many experts champion, it's also very smooth and easy to use.

For the smaller kites I'd say go for a 9 VX. The Lithiums in the smaller sizes are easy and have huge depower and stability, but in truth are best with medium to heavyweights who have the grip and drive to push the kite forwards in the window. By contrast the VX sits really far forward without load, and it's been a godsend for lightweights all through this year - big sweet spots for those under 75kg, really responsive handling, great upwind ability... It's a beautiful kite, one of my favourites in the sport so far...


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:17 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 6:43 pm
Posts: 672
Location: Sweden
Hej Al, i have been kiting since 2002. 80KG and old boy.
Have a Core XRlw 17 that is my favorite kite. And I get a decent amount of days good for a 12 or 9 kite. It has good low end, but excells at high end and smooth power. Its like a diesel motor with power/torque from low revs to high revs. Steers good when depowered. Many kites get " loose steering wheel " feeling when depowered. Not Core Xr2 17LW.
I will pick up a 12 Xr3 Saturday. Waited 3 months to get it.

At your weight and experience, and it seems you travel :P, I would get Core( or other) 12 and 8 m kite. Consider complimenting with 15lw when you are heavily hooked.

I have 17-12-9-7. But 7 never gets used. Too gusty and stormy here in that kind of wind.

For board, go for a mainstream 138x40 TT. Rounded outline is most forgiving and versatile.
If you are young and feel adventurous, go square outline.

Be safe, have fun, live long

T


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:02 am
Posts: 2
Thanks for the advice AV, MAC, Mike, and Tom! I appreciate everyone taking the time to write up in depth responses. The helpful community here seems to mirror what I've seen from kiteboarding in general.

In order to try to get out on the water this weekend, I bought my first set of kites this morning. I found a test XR3 12m and Sensor Bar at a kiteshop a few hours away and am having them ship them as well as a new XR3 9m to me. Probably a common newbie syndrome, but a bigger kite seems kind of intimidating to me, I'd prefer to try to fly the smaller one around attempting to make my own power. I took into account all the great advice, but happened upon what seemed like a fairly good deal and couldn't help but get over-stoked and pull the trigger. This way I can get kiting, advance my skills to a little bit of a plateau, then possibly sell my kites without such a massive resale hit if I demo something that feels like its worth swapping (really interested in trying a VX, I found that Italy only has two Airush dealers though).

Tom (also MAC, had I read your quiver more carefully), if I had held out and read your post before ordering I would have ordered an 8m rather than a 9m :duh:. Do you think it makes sense to try to send back and exchange it? In all honesty I could see myself getting carried away and ordering an additional 7m XR4 next June (to use for steady high wind days if I manage to not skunk the Hatteras wind again), but first things first... get out there and get better.

Mike, you seem to back the Shinn boards from what I've seen in my internet perusing. I found a Gintronic 2012 39.5 that was overstock in a German kiteshop for a decent discount and went ahead and ordered it. I figure for a beginner-ish board they couldn't have advanced to the point of obsolescence in two years. Hopefully it's here by the weekend, but probably not. I'm sure to find a board to borrow or rent in the meantime though.

I'll report back with findings and how the first weekend riding under my own power goes. Fingers crossed. Thanks again everyone! See you on the water!

Al


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 6:44 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 05, 2013 8:51 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Southwestern Ontario hangtimekiteboarding.com
AlFreedy wrote:

Tom (also MAC, had I read your quiver more carefully), if I had held out and read your post before ordering I would have ordered an 8m rather than a 9m :duh:. Do you think it makes sense to try to send back and exchange it? In all honesty I could see myself getting carried away and ordering an additional 7m XR4 next June (to use for steady high wind days if I manage to not skunk the Hatteras wind again), but first things first... get out there and get better.


Al


I wouldn't sweat your decision on the 9m too much Al, I personally use 17-12-8 XR3 at about 80kg and yes it works well. But there are days also where I think I would like a four kite quiver of 17-12-9-7 but that's just the obsessive side of me wanting everything to be absolutely perfect. I'm just saying the gap between the 12 and 8 works perfectly fine at my weight, but it's always nicer to have closer spaced kites and more to choose from if you can afford or justify it to yourself...

If you do get light winds where you are located, don't be intimidated too much by the big kites if you decide to get one eventually. When used in the right conditions they are session savers and will become your favorite kite if you have long periods with barely any wind. Nothing to be scared of as long as you don't go out and get way overpowered, but the that can happen on smaller kites as well, just be aware of fast changing conditions and play safe.

Cheers.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2014 1:15 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 02, 2013 2:45 pm
Posts: 120
Congratulations on all of your choises AlFreedy! They seem like great safe choises. All core Xrs have a great low end but the xr3s are insanely fast, especially the 8, so it's great you went with the 9 cause it will be a bit slower and safer for learning. One thing about the big kites is that they are much safer to learn on as they are slower. I agree with TomW that a lot of days that people are one 12s you can be on 17 and have enough wind for tricks and to advance when they are strugling to go upwind. Much better for Newbies! And a lot of them are fast enough to do tricks, including the core. I learned everything i know on it and advanced it on the smaller sizes. The other thing about it is you ride big kites in really light wind, 10-18 mph, that is way safer than strong gusty winds, with crazy fast, unpredictable small kites. Not good for beginners!!! Why I wouldn't get the Core 17 though is that it has 5 struts which makes it heavier than the 3 strut Ocean Rodeo Flite, i.e not as good upwind. The other reason is all the the rave reviews on the Flite's speed, low end and upwind ability. All you need to learn!!! About the 9 and 12 keep the factory speed settings(middle speed), and about the bar pressure either keep them the middle or the lowest bar pressure as that'll make them more stable and harder to oversheet(typical rookie mistake with session ending consequences)! Great choise on the board. Good luck with all!


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie Quiver/Gear. Anyone ridden an XR3 and a Lithium?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 28, 2014 9:24 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 6:43 pm
Posts: 672
Location: Sweden
Yea, 9 is good. And you're smart to get kites and get out, not getting too wrapped up in shopping.
Beginners need tighter jump between kites anyway.

The Core I have (XR2 17lw) is exceptional at top end, so I expect the other sizes to be too. This is huge advantage as beginner. Also power on and off is linear, not on/ off. Again this is good for beginners. That said, these kites are not ones you will want to sell when you are better, other than perhaps curiosity to try other brands.

Agree the Core xr2 17 is not an upwind champion in 10 knts, but high end is. At your weight I would look for good Lw 15m kite. 15 kg lighter is significantly lighter. But it depends on your spot. If you are getting 10-12 solid breeze on a lot of days, a 17 will be the ticket to fun. My spots have tendency to be 10-17 knots variable, so wanted big kite to carry high end, plus I ride strapless surfboard. If I coulda got a Flight up here I might have considered it.


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