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Author: Subject: Question about blade vip

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[*] posted on 1-31-2015 at 11:12 PM
Question about blade vip

Hi guys, newbie-ish here,

Up till now I've happily flown my 3.5m hq rush pro 4 (bar) as a trainer to get the basic grips of powerkiting. A friend got hooked too & bought a 5m hq beamer (handles). I've flown both & would like to start getting some small air time now - (initially). Neither of our kites will do as they are too small.
I'm mostly concerned with a smooth landing rather than high airs, so I though - let's get a big one...was thinking on the 8.5 Blade Vip, but here's my question...

I've read lots on it & almost all suggest handles on the vip instead of the bar. Please pardon my ignorance here but uhm...why is that? Must admit I never flew anything larger than the 5m beamer but can easily put my rush anywhere i want within the window using my bar.

What's so mysterious or tricky of having any blade on a bar? Maybe a stupid question ...but one never learns unless one asks! Thanks.
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 04:57 AM

IMO...the kites you have aren't for jumping but they will give you the experience of unweightting and provide tons of power for scudding both of which you should good and comfortable with before trying to jump...fb kites don't reach their proformance potential on bars my 4.9 wouldn't truly fill proper or reach zenith till I got it on handles and then it seemed to generate more power or allowed me to....wear a helmet and fly that 5m more
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 06:12 AM

The bar does not give you the same control of your kite as handles do.

Depending on what you want to do this control can be quite important. Also, the more difficult the winds, the more this difference may be noted and important.

What are your goals with power kiting? ...just static fly and jumping...be pulled in a buggy..or on mountain board..or skis ...or...?

Understand your trainer kite, though it can have some strong pull in high winds, is designed to learn kite flying basics. Your Rush Pro kite is used most commonly by beginner kite surfers to learn to fly big kites on the water. After learning on this kite it basically becomes of no use and is sold or passed on to others starting out. Never mind just kite surfers, most buggying or boarding would not generally be using the Rush Pro either if after they learned on it.

Not all 3.5 m kites are equal in their power or handling- by difference in design. Understand beyond a training kite there are differences between traction/power kites(to be used for pulling on some transport mode)- with low, moderate and high aspect designs. These effect stability, turning, power, and upwind ability. Further...some kites have a low lift design, and some a higher lift. Just because a kite is 'low lift', it and any kite can lift you by purposeful maneuver or by accidental mishandling.

It's great that you can put the kite anywhere in the window. Now try a non-trainer traction kite(s) of similar size 3m or so(on handles) and make sure you can place that anywhere in power window also. Get more time on friend's 5m with handles(not in very high winds).

Jumping is an arena to be very cautious of and make sure you have many hours of flying in all kinds of condition, with different sized kites first. Jumping is safer and best in steady winds but still something to be careful and controlled at. Jumping in gusty winds is like playing Russian Roulette.

Going from 3.5m hq rush pro to a Bade VIP 8.5 is night and day. The Rush is a low aspect, low power trainer, the VIP is a high aspect monster of power.

Be concerned not just about smooth landing...but not being lofted into great heights and distances if you have strong shifty gusty wind or you mishandle a kite like an 8.5 VIP.
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 08:41 AM

You are basically flying a 2 line kite with safety / re-launch when flying a FB on a basic bar like your Rush. Adding brake input speeds up your turns and also gives you some lift when applied at the right time. Both will be valuable with a large Blade.

Try doing " brake turns ' on your buddies 5m Beamer and see how you can speedup a turn.

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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 09:26 AM

To echo Bladerunner

To maximise your jump you need to get the timings just right. A kite that reacts quickly is going to be more beneficial for pendulum jumping. The success of a pendulum jump relies on the kite having a reasonable rate of turn. Initial turn and redirection are important. A larger kite should produce better sustained glide and softer landings but the turn rate diminishes greatly the larger you go, so brake input is going to be even more crucial. Handles usually allow a greater increase in brake input, bars less so.

Ideally, clean steady winds produce the best and safest jumps. Wind conditions other than that can be disappointing and dangerous and personally I would avoid.

Avoid gusty wind altogether especially if they are strong.
Avoid wind shadows such as buildings and trees upwind of your position.
Avoid jumping if the wind is constantly changing direction.

Do not attempt to jump at the edge of a steep hill as sudden and unexpected updrafts can loft you then drop you.
Wear ankle high boots for support as twists are common.

Wear kite killers to retain the kite and control bar/ handles as they can ping forward at great speed should you let go, so allow yourself plenty of space, beware of obstacles and people downwind of you.

Ideally a surface that can dissipate your energy on landing, such as pebble beach is far better.

Know your limits and your kites limits. Buy a wind meter to help you better judge the situation. Even the cheapest ones usually display peak wind speed.

Tip: A bar will normally blunt the edge off a turn making the jump less aggressive and therefore IMO more desirable in the kites upper wind range.

Once you have completely mastered jumping, return here and I will share with you my ultimate foil jumping techniques!!
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 09:44 AM

A 6.5 Blade might be a better size for you since it's an incremental step above what you are used to and has a wider wind range than the 8.5. The VIP is going to get easily overpowered by a wind increase that the 6.5 would be able to let you keep flying. Things can go wrong worse with the larger kite. The 6.5 also turns faster.

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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 10:33 AM
What goes up..

Y'know...knowing how to land, fall, absorb are not things to be taken for granted... that all people know or might practice.

Those who will jump may benefit by such knowledge or practice. You may float back down like a feather or you may drop a little inconsistently or quickly..depending on how right or wrong it goes.

Outside of kiting........You can miss a step on stairs , drop off a sidewalk curb.... and by sudden unexpected gravity loss of less than a foot, twist an ankle or knee...It can take that little!

I have practiced jumping off 10 ft rocks (not for kiting) in past. ....just for...fun..?..to test absorption limits.

Knowing the timing, best positioning, muscle tension and relaxation combo, how to absorb or fall(roll) may help prevent an injury in normal or desperate(an unexpected loft-higher, faster, farther than expected) . May come natural, may not.

Beside vertical drop you have a horizontal component to your jump(think pendulum)

Those that have parachuted are trained for landing, how to fall...Those with Parkour experience, or gymnastics, have trained also for landing.... Such a background is helpful.

Simple strength training of legs and ankles won't hurt either I suppose.

Junping is to be carefully calculated, precise and physically prepared.

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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 10:59 AM

My fall absorption training was completed as a kid when jumping out of the swingset at the playground. I'm pretty sure I've mastered it.
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 11:19 AM

Thanks for all the welcomes..and answers,
From all posts I am picking up that:
1) handles = more control + using brakes to turn faster...which I can't do with a bar.
2)fast turns are a must for jumps.

Regarding my goals...well I have to say just static flying & jumps. I'm from Malta - which is a very small island in the Mediterranean...did I say small? make that miniscule...:D Land is scarce here. Open spaces are ...uhm ...not that open! - which basically rules out a buggy or board...unless one wants to change direction every 60 seconds. Skis are very tempting...when we get snow - last I remember a snowfall was uhm...never really!! :dunno:

The only thing left is kite surfing - and for that, being an island, we're surrounded by sea but unfortunately beaches are not that big either plus we have a hot climate & people flock to the sea before summer starts & keep on swimming well into autumn, so there's only a limited number of days when I can find a reasonable space on a beach for my own use...now divide these days by half, cos I'm at work & deduct about 15 days more or so for when it's raining, I'm sick or some more urgent apointment comes up...oh and no-wind days of course!...Gees... after all that I think I'm into the wrong sport...chess doesn't look so bad now...Just kidding!! :D

No man, seriously - I wanna jump. When I watch youtube clips of people getting air, my hair stands on end & I never tire of watching the same over & over. It's awesome! :thumbup:

Ok Ok I can feel I'm rushing it a bit. Just now I've returned from an hour or so with the rush. My handheld said it was 10 - 12kts. Scudded about a little when I threw caution to the wind (literally) & pulled a bit hard but nothing worthy of uploading.

What I don't really get is: I've watched guys getting huge airs with just a T-shirt & flip-flops using nothing more than padded wrist straps or FB's and on the other end of the scale, Pro's with all the expensive equipment using big depowerables also getting huge airs....both so different & so confusing!

I'll keep on practising then - & saving cash.....I'm hooked now..can't turn back...who knows...maybe I'll play it safer than the Blade & get me a 12m Frenzy!! Oh Boy!!

Oh sorry for the long post! Got carried away ! ;)
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[*] posted on 2-1-2015 at 07:26 PM

Good post. I like your enthusiasm. Keep us posted. :thumbup:
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[*] posted on 11-16-2015 at 04:10 PM

My spammy senses are tingling...

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[*] posted on 11-17-2015 at 06:01 PM


See how much repetition you see of the guys in flip flops on wrist straps. Any kite can loft you (even small ones) in the right winds. However even a poorly executed jump on a larger kite is more likely to result in a softer landing. You do things wrong on a small kite and well.... gravity will win.

Can you jump on inexpensive equipment? Yes. Is it wise? No. Will you likely be able to continue to do it for extended periods of time without injury? Possible but not as likely.

The pros have set themselves up with the best possible scenario, stacked the cards in their favor if you will, so even if they mess up the result is often less disastrous. I have a video that perfectly illustrates what happens on a smaller kite when things go wrong. I've posted it before, it is not me but i will post it again. The user of this kite completely misses a redirect, critical error.

He is using a 4m Blade

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