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Author: Subject: Buggying with an LEI
cheezycheese


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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 08:30 AM
Buggying with an LEI


As speed has been the topic of late, I would like to bring up the topic of LEI kites for the buggy. I have noticed that in some of the insane speed videos both here and Europe the riders have used LEI kites.

Who here has used them as a buggy engine...?
Pros/Cons...?
What is comparison to open cell depower foils.. ? Closed cell depower foils...?

Discuss...




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jeffnyc




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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 09:42 AM


Only just started using an LEI recently on water*, I'm sure comments from cheddarhead or redsky will be more useful, but here's my thoughts... LEI on bug: launching and landing aren't as simple, and self launching while not impossible can definitely be more sketchy. Because the leading edge is rigid, LEI stays powered up in a lot of situations where a foil would collapse, and poop hits the fan pretty quickly. All just a matter of getting used to, but arcs + foils are waaaaay easier to manage single handedly. And a lot of us are riding alone.
I also think the wind range of most arcs + dp foils is greater than most LEIs (maybe not FB). Power up is more gradual on a lot of foils, whereas it's more beneficial for water to have a punchy start to get up and riding quickly. (lots of different kites, so that's not a universal observation)
LEI are heavier + there's the pumping... although the setup time for me is about the same as my phantom or charger. A holdover from hang gliding is a super thorough preflight.
There's a lot to be said for getting to the beach and having your kite in the air in a couple minutes and being able to switch kites quickly.
If you're coming to a bug from water though, nothing beats familiarity with your equipment.
Is the attraction for LEI on land for you guys the punchy power?


*These are just my observations from a few times flying LEI - so I'm sure my perception will change when I've had more time with them. I'm not anti-LEI at all - but my feeling right now are the merits of arcs/foils on land outweigh LEI.




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Randy


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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 09:58 AM


I have a couple small LEI for my kiteboat but I'd be worried that if I crashed it, my LEI would pop. Of course that could happen on the water, but water is softer.



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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 10:53 AM


I know some riders using tubekites in the buggy, but small sizes only for stormy weather, if the smallest depowerkites (6 or 7m2) are too big.
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Windstruck


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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 02:15 PM


Every year at IBX on Ivanpah there are a couple of LEIs flying at any given time. There are a couple of high skill pilots that come regularly all the way from Israel that seem to regularly run LEIs. They run pretty lit up.

One thing that would really concern me about flying LEIs on a harsh surface like a dried mud playa would be damaging the leading edge, bursting the bladders, etc. My SSs have stiffeners in their leading edges and my kites usually show wear points on the tips of the leading edge. I suspect LEIs would have the same problem and maybe even worse.

I've seen some LEIs used for snowkiting too but always suspected that water folks are just using the kites they already own because the pumping in the cold, snow, and ice just sucks.




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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 03:06 PM


While they are prone to damage on the lakebed, I think they might be a more prominent quiver item in the future. I have an HQ Ignition 5 m and I love the out of the home power it gives when coming out of a turn. Another huge advantage is you can light up the gps with loads of power and then at the end of the run, just let the bar out and make a gentl turn with no sliding tires or have confidence that it will retain its shape through a suicide jibe or upwind turn. My plan next year at IBX is to fly my Montana X 8m from 10-25mph and then switch over to the 5m in higher winds.

Oh Sal and Ofer from Israel fly vapors almost exclusively as I recall.




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Windstruck


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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 03:42 PM


Quote: Originally posted by BeamerBob  
Oh Sal and Ofer from Israel fly vapors almost exclusively as I recall.


Thanks for setting that straight Bob! There were some guys out there with LEIs, my bad on thinking it was our Israelite comrades. The kites I'm thinking about had fish on them and really cool art designs.




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Randy


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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 03:56 PM


Some guy named markite has used them.









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kteguru




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[*] posted on 5-19-2018 at 06:53 PM


I bought some tubes a couple years ago simply for the purpose of adding performance in ridiculous winds. Using a low aspect foil in high winds is fine but they simply won't yield any more speed at a certain point. In light winds (4-20 mph) I prefer to use a foil but in winds of 20 - 50 mph I prefer a tube now. Better performance and ridiculous range in big wind.

My first time out with my 7m tube was in 45mph wind, gusting to whatever, and to my amazement the tube handled it flawlessly. Perfectly reasonable when depowered and holy crap when you power it up. In those winds my go to foil used to be the 2.5m flexifoil rage and although the kite can handle those winds you could only get so much speed out of it. Not so with tubes it seems. Plenty of performance with some reasonable handling characteristics in big winds. Big winds with a small race kite never worked out well for me. Too gusty around here. I'm not a physicist but the mass of the tube kite seems to make it a bit more predictable. A 2m race kite can collapse and re-inflate going the other way in two ten-thousandths of a second. A tube won't turn that fast even if you want it to.

Sure you need to pump it up but there's no need to change kites since it has plenty of range. For light wind though there's nothing more fun than your favorite fixed bridle foil. :)
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[*] posted on 5-20-2018 at 06:38 AM


Lots of great input here. Bob and Dean, since you both have the experience in high winds, how do these kites behave when the safety is popped...?
Since they retain their shape, are they still bouncing around...?




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[*] posted on 5-20-2018 at 12:04 PM


The surprising answer is that I've never pulled the safety on it. It doesn't mess up or deflate or any of the other reasons we need safeties. I guess I have pulled the safety to land a few times and my HQ just goes to front lines and feathers in the wind with near zero pull. It won't fly on safety.

Let me say they are quite confidence inspiring. You look like a hero in high winds because you don't have to be afraid of the kite doing something unpredictable.




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[*] posted on 5-20-2018 at 12:13 PM


I appreciate the input Bob. But having never touched an LEI, if you wer going to select one for the purpose of buggy, are there any characteristcs to look for.. ? Example - shape or number of struts..? Or would none of that make a difference in the buggy..?

Redsky - where are you during this conversation..?




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[*] posted on 5-20-2018 at 03:39 PM


I have a 7m Bularoo I have used in high wind conditions many times. It's a great kite. Keeps its shape. Pulls like a truck. Very predictable. The Bularoo was designed as a land and water kite. The leading Edge has additional rubber padding protecting it from damage. I will say that it did take some time getting the ground work down. But once you get it figured out. It's not to bad and it's totally worth it. That kite is a lot of fun to fly. I use the ghost method. As long as you have a solid anchor it works very well.





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kteguru




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[*] posted on 5-20-2018 at 04:00 PM


When the safety is released mine flag to a single front line. No drama, kite just drops without power to the ground, LE roughly toward you so it just stays on the ground. I've tried mine numerous times just to become accustomed to it but like Bob I've never had the need to use it since they're so confidence inspiring. Depower range is huge with incredible stability. I just ghost launch/land since I'm usually alone and all is well. A modern tube is so rigid compared to a foil that the canopy doesn't misbehave at all in gusty wind.

As for what to look for I'd look for something with characteristics you prefer, just like a foil. I prefer something with a lot of drive thru the turn so I went with a more freestyle oriented kite. Wave style kites generally have more of a pivot style turn with less drive and drift better in the waves. If your just looking for a high wind performer I don't think you can really go wrong with any modern tube. They're all pretty well built. Something in the 5-7m range is great for when its nuclear,,,10m is a great when the wind is up but not crazy, and anything larger than a 10,,,, just use one of your foils. Hope that helps. Maybe I'll see you at Nahant this fall. :)
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[*] posted on 5-21-2018 at 01:44 AM


Good observations from everyone. I don't have too much to add. Obviously big winds = speed, but how to launch your kite in big winds ?

LEI's excel in this one key area, they give you access to truly big winds by allowing you to launch and land your kite with relative safety. This is due to their rigidity.

A kite with fewer struts is a weight saving exercise for more light wind specific kites. The more struts you have, the stiffer the canopy ( stability ), ideal for big wind.

Regarding the activated safety systems in high wind. I've had to punch out during a hurricane force 12. :D
It was uneventful, so don't worry. Simply letting go of the bar in most situations however, is enough to kill the power and bring the kite down.

For me, LEI's changed everything. They turbocharged my enthusiasm for kite buggying at a time when it was waning.
I switched to LEI's in 2009 after a decade in the fixed bridled doldrums. Back then, each windy session offered up a new PB. Good times.


@Bob, you have in your possession and indeed in your mortal hands a 7m Genetrix Hydra. The flattest kite known to mankind with the biggest range on planet earth. It is designed for one purpose only. Speed! Use it bruv. :D

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[*] posted on 5-21-2018 at 04:36 AM


Yes it's packed away with lines attached. Ready to roll. I've flown it a handful of times but never in winds that approached its potential. It has very heavy bar pressure so it's tough to decide to take it out for a 3 hour session. I got it to 55 mph and it was only warming up so it will be mucho capable in 30+ winds.



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[*] posted on 5-24-2018 at 06:13 AM


Quote: Originally posted by BeamerBob  
Yes it's packed away with lines attached. Ready to roll. I've flown it a handful of times but never in winds that approached its potential. It has very heavy bar pressure so it's tough to decide to take it out for a 3 hour session. I got it to 55 mph and it was only warming up so it will be mucho capable in 30+ winds.


Ah okay.

In the pursuit of speed, and happiness, this kite is to be used in the sort of winds you'd rather not fly but need to. The bar pressure is very high but you only really need a half hour session to get the job done.
If the wind is not giving you a new PB, then go home and live for another day. There is no point carrying on. You'll soon tire if you take it on a 3hr cruise. The guys at Luderitz use it to cannonball down the speed course as fast as possible, that's it.

I can't last more than half an hour in those winds with that bar pressure. In my latest speed video I lasted about 20 minutes. After about 6 runs I knew I couldn't break 64mph so I quit early.

Its a workout for sure. There are better kites for cruising. :)
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[*] posted on 5-24-2018 at 10:47 AM


Very true. There is cruising to look for fast runs and then there is the "I'm going out to set a pb now" runs.



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[*] posted on 6-20-2018 at 02:44 PM



[img]http://[/img]I'm just gonna leave this here.




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[*] posted on 6-20-2018 at 04:17 PM


A seven, bar and pump for under 900.00. Temptation is strong . It will be winter again some time.

https://www.bestkiteboarding.com/en-us/ts-v7?gclid=EAIaIQobC...




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jeffnyc




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[*] posted on 6-20-2018 at 08:01 PM


You can get a Switch https://switchkites.com Element or Nitro 7m for less (and they're not going out of business unlike Best!). I have no experience with them, but lots of folks love them.



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[*] posted on 6-20-2018 at 09:08 PM


Quote: Originally posted by jeffnyc  
You can get a Switch https://switchkites.com Element or Nitro 7m for less (and they're not going out of business unlike Best!). I have no experience with them, but lots of folks love them.


Not sure the particular models, but I believe Kevin (Kamikuza) has some Switch kites in his stable. You might want to hit him up for some information.

ATB,
Sam




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[*] posted on 6-20-2018 at 10:45 PM


Quote: Originally posted by jeffnyc  
You can get a Switch https://switchkites.com Element or Nitro 7m for less (and they're not going out of business unlike Best!). I have no experience with them, but lots of folks love them.


I can't speak to the TS But the Waroo is a great kite. So is the Bularoo. There's a reason people love them.




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Best: Bularoo 7m, Waroo 9m, 12m
PKD: Inferno 9m, 12m, 16.5m, Century Soulfly II 12.5m
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