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Author: Subject: Lofted. Now what?
ScottAvery




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[*] posted on 4-28-2021 at 09:52 AM
Lofted. Now what?


Looking for advice in advance of something like this happening:



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_MeCaTz-xY

At first it looks pretty cool, but I'm flying on land, and that is a LONG way down...

I found this advice on avoidance, which is sound, but the author even admits that it is only a matter of time before you get an unwanted ride.
http://www.kitestop.com/tutorials-how-to-try-to-avoid-loftin...

So, how do you survive getting yanked skyward? I am interested in how to handle the bar/handles, not what safety gear to be wearing.
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pbc




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[*] posted on 4-28-2021 at 10:49 AM


I have no idea what to do up there because I have never gone there.

I've been kite buggying since 1992 and have never been lofted so I am not sure that I would agree with the "...only a matter of time..." assertion. That sounds like a water-kiter's world view or a kite jumper's world view. Not being either of those, I can do my thing with much less kite. My rules for loft prevention, OBE prevention, and general risk reduction are 1) fly the smallest possible kite that allows you to do what you want to do, 2) fly on a long-throw depower bar, and 3) trim your kite so that your bar position is in the middle of the throw-range at full speed.

All the usual safety guidance about weather conditions, flying location, gear, and training apply, but I find it is the 3 above that are least appreciated. They are my 3 ounces of prevention.




I fly: Charger II 6.5m * Charger II 8m * Charger II 10m * Scorpion 10 (for sale) * Phantom II 12m * F-Arc 1200 * Venom 13m

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kteguru




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[*] posted on 4-28-2021 at 01:11 PM


The short simple answer is to never let the kite get behind you. Longer answer is below.

The clip you posted is a good example. Kiter traveling across the screen from right to left. From kiters perspective kite is roughly around 9 o'clock. At the 4 second mark kiter sends the kite from 9 o'clock to 1 o'clock ('behind' the kiter relative to direction of travel) and achieves lift off. If you like getting big air, that is the basics of how it is done. If you want to stay on the ground simply don't do that. Now of course it's important to use some common sense here also. If your in bad weather conditions don't park the kite overhead at 12 oclock while you talk with friends or eat your sandwich. You could be lifted if weather conditions suddenly change. Same thing goes if your flying location usually has turbulent wind. Of course as you become more experienced and fly more heavily powered the risk of getting hurt increases since we all sometimes make mistakes. Flying a smaller kite for that days wind conditions can help minimize risk but also minimizes speed and excitement. Part of learning is finding the right balance for you. Achieving kiting nirvana will soon follow :cool:. Take it easy, start slow, and work your way up. :thumbup:
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[*] posted on 4-28-2021 at 05:18 PM


What kteguru wrote is the real deal here. In a buggy, generally the higher the winds the smaller the kites, and the faster those kites are moving in the sky. Once winds get particularly high a lot of our storm kites become the proverbial "wasp on a string" darting madly all over the place in the sky if you don't calm your ass down and make small deliberate movements. Honestly, I think the chances of an OBE go up as the wind goes up, mainly because of this wasp on a string issue, or maybe that's just me.

One thing you can do to guard against OBEs (or at least try to control things) is to develop and install an Automatic Quick Release. Various people have made various AQRs and they are generally DIY projects; no big company sells them. There are a lot of ways to make AQRs and likely as many opinions about optimal designs as there are AQRs. I certainly lay no claim to having the best ideas in this department, anything but that.

Here is a link to a PKF string where a few of us discuss AQRs: http://www.powerkiteforum.com/viewthread.php?tid=36433&g...

Popeye the Welder is someone in the buggy world that really knows what he is talking about and he has a section of his website where he discusses AQRs here: https://popeyethewelder.com/informational/automatic-quick-re...

I'm with ktguru; keep kites in front of you and low in the sky.




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Snake




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[*] posted on 4-28-2021 at 05:45 PM


That clip is deceptive, he has an an updraft caused by the mountains in the background that keeps him up much longer. He also knows exactly what he is doing to get maximum airtime, jump to kite loop to a ton of heli loops.

I've never been unintentionally lifted more than a few feet off the ground with a depower kite. I have however had jumps go way higher than expected due to gust/luck. I used to go out in high wind where I was very light on my feet with with the bar out, bar in would cause me to get t-bagged. I pulled the safety release a lot when it would get out of hand. My tips are

1. Keep the kite at the edge of the window in high winds, preferably off to one side. This stops the tendency for the kite to accelerate, and speed = power.

2. When in doubt, flag it out. If the kite luffs and you know it will reinflate and surge, pull the release. You can replace the kite if it gets damaged, but you can't replace your bones. If you fall down, flag it out. My venom is on its 3rd set of spars because of how many times I've flagged it.

3. If you get lofted, and don't know what it going on, do not turn the bar. Kite loops are way, WAY worse than having a kite overhead. A lot of the times I was pulled out of the buggy I was disoriented and most of my attempts to steer the kite made things worse.

4. If you do know what is going on, try to keep the kite overhead. You hopefully won't get lifted to high. The kite acts like a giant pendulum and if you get lifted it will try to fly up wind of you. This will cause you to come down really fast.

5. This one a lot harder to learn. If you just keep the kite overhead, you will get pulled down wind and the kite will set you down rather hard. If you zig zag the kite overhead, you will have much more lift and be able to land softly. You just repeat the "redirect" part of the jump over and over untill you land. You definitely shouldn't try that if you don't know how to jump because you may end up making it worse.

6. Fly aggressively in low winds. You can feel what powers the kite up powers and what powers it down. Also learn to do small jumps, so you know what to expect.




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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 04:24 AM


its not lofting if it was intentional
but try to do what he did...it seemed to have worked out
dream it at night repeatedly till its second nature and
by all means don't panic:thumbup:




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kteguru




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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 06:05 AM


It's nice to see a bit of chit chat. The forum is usually so quiet now a days. Where's B-roc when you need him:D
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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 11:02 AM


Quote: Originally posted by kteguru  
It's nice to see a bit of chit chat. The forum is usually so quiet now a days. Where's B-roc when you need him:D


Here I am and I agree with everyone else. I've been kiting since 2005 and have never been "lofted". I was almost drowned by some guy in a buggy once :o but that's a different story :rolleyes::lol:

That being said, I have boosted by surprise when I either poorly misdirected my kite too quickly, or I've left it parked over head in strong winds while talking to people or taking a break. As others said, if the kite isn't redirected behind you, or left flying above you in strong winds... the likelihood of accidental loftings go way down. Accidental drownings are associated with the company you keep :P

@Dean... you been to Nahant at all recently? I really want to go but haven't been motivated to drive and deal with the extra dog and beach walkers that COVID has spawned.




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ScottAvery




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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 02:29 PM


Thank you all for chiming in. Snake was closest to what I was looking for. What to do when if/when it does happen so you don't have to ever explain to your spouse how close you came to death... I also take the points of this intentional jump not being a reasonable example of lofting since he was trying hard to get high and stay up with kite movement.

I'm new to depower and harness in general. I am confident in brake control with my fixed bridle kites but am worried about losing control with the depower kite. I had a fall the other day and luckily the kite was flying down at the time because I did not think to let go or pull the release and if it had been heading to zenith I am sure I would not have done anything useful until after it was too late.
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kteguru




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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 02:53 PM


Haven't been to Nahant recently Broc. Since they're charging an arm and two legs to get in kind of ruined it. I'm building on 2 acres near lake Sunapee so that may be my go to location. You're welcome to stop by whenever you kite sunapee :wee:
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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 04:13 PM


My foot still hurts when the weather changes... just sayin...



I'm going to take a nap now
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Snake




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[*] posted on 4-29-2021 at 10:00 PM


Glad I could help. My biggest take away is learn to pull the release/let go of you lose control! As others have mentioned, it is pretty rare to just get lifted with a static kite above your head. Most of the time the pilot let's the kite fly overhead and does an accidental jump.

In the paragliding world, pilots used to ridicule other pilots for throwing their reserve parachutes be it meant that you didn't have the skills to fix the glider. That lead to a lot of pilots hitting the ground with the parachute still in the bag, never deployed. About 5 years ago there was a massive shift in thinking, and now pilots will ridicule pilots for not throwing the reserve, even if they fixed the glider and didn't have an incident. This shift in thinking has saved a lot of pilots. I'm not sure where the kite world stands on flagging the kite when things go south, but my opinion is to flag it out and ensure you are safe, rather than trying to save face by toughing it out.




Arcs - Charger I 8m, 10m, 12m, Venom I 13m - F-Arc 1200, 1600
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Windstruck


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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 04:23 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Snake  
I'm not sure where the kite world stands on flagging the kite when things go south, but my opinion is to flag it out and ensure you are safe, rather than trying to save face by toughing it out.


It would seem that someone (male or female) comfortable with their position in life would do what was reasonable and optimal to live to see another day. If that means "flagging out" then so be it. I for one have many higher priorities in life than playing he-man.




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ScottAvery




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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 09:15 AM


"Flagging out" is not in the glossary of kite terms. I assume you mean pull second release to completely let it go?
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Windstruck


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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 11:17 AM


Quote: Originally posted by ScottAvery  
"Flagging out" is not in the glossary of kite terms. I assume you mean pull second release to completely let it go?


It's not a term I typically use myself, but by "flagging out" it is meant that you pop your chicken loop. Depending on how your DP is strung things will go somewhat differently, but the end result is the same, viz., you're still attached to your kite but it is now essentially powerless.

If you have a traditional DP line set it is set up in what is at times called a 4.5 setup. You've got your four primary lines (two power and two "brake" lines) and you've got a 5th line that comes through your chicken loop and terminates in a SS ring. The other end of that 5th line is attached to one single power line part way up towards the kite. When you pop your chicken loop (and presuming you've got that SS ring attached to something affixed to you) three of the kite lines will develop a ton of slack but one single power line will stay under tension. The kite will "flag out" from that one power line.

Some newer DP kites have a true dedicated 5th line that goes from that SS ring all the way to the kite. Many of the newest kites have a "re-ride" system that pulls the kite inward to the center like an accordion in this situation making a kite ball of sorts.

Usually the cord that you attach the SS ring to has a sort of detaching mechanism too in case you need to completely free yourself from the kite. If you break a line or have something happen such that your kite starts to twist again and again you may not be able to flag it out when you pull the chicken loop and the kite will continue to act possessed and can be dangerous to you and folks around you. Then you need to free yourself completely.

The other main reason I can think of off the top of my head is needing to free yourself from what has become a sea anchor to keep from drowning.




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NasaStar-3 (custom 3.2m)

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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 11:19 AM


Altitude makes a huge difference in that decision. 5-10 foot off the ground and you will hopefully be fine. No damage to twisted ankle or similar. 30 foot off the ground and you may be doing unscheduled femur inspections.





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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 11:57 AM


Quote: Originally posted by riffclown  
Altitude makes a huge difference in that decision. 5-10 foot off the ground and you will hopefully be fine. No damage to twisted ankle or similar. 30 foot off the ground and you may be doing unscheduled femur inspections.



Individual results may vary. Just ask Spenser (soliver). :(




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NasaStar-3 (custom 3.2m)

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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 12:25 PM


Just to complete WindstrucS-P-A-M-L-I-N-K-s bar line up... There are 5 line and 4.5 which he described, but by far the most common these days are 4 line bars. Your bar shoots up one of the power lines on QR release, called single line safety. Almost all LEIs these days use a 4 line equal length bar. Flysurfer had been using 4.5 forever, but recently has settled on 4 for their foils/LEIs and 5 (re ride) for the Peaks.

Definitely practice small jumps to get a feeling for it, preferably over water if you can.




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Windstruck


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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 12:57 PM


Quote: Originally posted by jeffnyc  
Just to complete WindstrucS-P-A-M-L-I-N-K-s bar line up... There are 5 line and 4.5 which he described, but by far the most common these days are 4 line bars. Your bar shoots up one of the power lines on QR release, called single line safety. Almost all LEIs these days use a 4 line equal length bar. Flysurfer had been using 4.5 forever, but recently has settled on 4 for their foils/LEIs and 5 (re ride) for the Peaks.

Definitely practice small jumps to get a feeling for it, preferably over water if you can.


Thanks Jeff. I'm an inland land flyer and get zero exposure to LEIs and other water kites. Nice they've progresses to 4 lines as described. Less to tangle, lower parasitic drag and all that. :thumbup:




Born-Kites:
RaceStar+ (3.0m, 5.0m, 7.0m, 14.0m)
RaceStar (9.0m, 11.0m)
NasaStar-4 (2.5m, 4.0m, 5.5m, 7.0m)
NasaStar-3 (custom 3.2m)

Peter Lynn Kites:
Lynx V5 (4.0m, 6.0m)

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Peter Lynn BigFoot+ nose & tail; midsection VTT rail & seat kit; home-brewed AQR

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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 01:34 PM


The definition of "flagging out" seems to be more applicable to LEIs and Arcs than standard foils. My foils, 4 or 5 line, all have a safety release on the bar side that "flags" or "kills" the kite to either my leash (5 line) or my bar (4 line). So my chicken loop stays attached but I'm cutting the bar away or cutting the power lines away from the bar. You may be describing the same thing but my foils don't "flag" out the same way that Arcs flag out. Not arguing, just trying to add clarity for a new flier who could cut his whole system away if he doesn't understand the safety system and releases everything into the wind.



Depower Quiver: 14m Gin Eskimo, 10m Gin Eskimo III, 6m Gin Yeti, 4.5m Gin Yeti (custom bridle and mixer)
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[*] posted on 4-30-2021 at 06:00 PM


On a 4 line bar, you're releasing 2 steering lines and one power line, the bar slides up the other power line still attached to your chicken loop. That flags the kite, whether it is foil or LEI or SS. 4.5 bar runs up a line attached part way up one of the power lines (so similar effect), but releasing immediately flags that line from the moment you hit the QR and the .5 line gets tension. I think on your Gins, if you have them as 5 line (I removed the 5th line bridles on my Gins), fold from the specific 5th line bridles in the center. Definitely a solid system, but adds more complexity and extra bridles that most modern kites have moved away from. Newer foils (apart from the 5 line snow kites) all flag from 4 or 4.5.

And you're making miss my Eskimos :D

Oh, and Windstruck.... don't worry, even with standardization, companies still do everything they can to mess with things and make you buy their gear. High Y, Low V, different QR systems etc... I'm going back to my single line diamond kites and a Charlie Brown kite eating tree...




Foil: Speed5 18+12 | Speed3 15 | Sonic2 9m
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LEI: LF WOW 9m
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[*] posted on 5-1-2021 at 01:09 PM


Sometimes the trees aren't hungry.




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[*] posted on 5-2-2021 at 08:11 AM


There are times and places that call for using the safety as a landing technique as well as a safety. Snowkiting can have some difficult landing situations where the safety is the only way to land. The technique is to get the kite as near to landing
as possible before throwing the chicken loop. Better a balled up kite than an injury! We all want to be king kiter that never needs help, but even a destroyed kite is cheaper than a stay in the ICU.




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[*] posted on 5-2-2021 at 04:27 PM


Quote: Originally posted by TEDWESLEY  
There are times and places that call for using the safety as a landing technique as well as a safety. Snowkiting can have some difficult landing situations where the safety is the only way to land. The technique is to get the kite as near to landing
as possible before throwing the chicken loop. Better a balled up kite than an injury! We all want to be king kiter that never needs help, but even a destroyed kite is cheaper than a stay in the ICU.


Could not agree more. A incident you walk away from is far better than one you are carried away from..




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