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suggestions for training kite

PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 1:08 pm
by wjb
I am looking for a 4 line training kite. Does it make sense to go with a LEI like the Cabrinha recon as it should in theory fly the most like an actual full sized kiteboard kite. Or should I save my money and get the one from Kite Wind Surf. Any other suggestions? Thanks, Wade

PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 1:15 pm
by Pablito
There's not much reason to get a fourline trainer. Just get a two line and fly it alot. You can learn everything you need to on land with a 2M basic trainer. You don't need the depowerability until you are up and riding on a board. You'll figure it out soon enough once you get to that point.

PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 2:27 pm
by elli
Depends what you mean by "training kite".

If you plan to fly it only on land to get the basics, foil. Small one like two meters is OK for the basics.

If you want to use it in the water, get a tube kite. But I am not sure what is a trainer kite for the water, body dragging kite? Seems unnecessary. Don't get a tube kite for practicing on land, you will destroy it fairly quickly and it will probably be too powerful.

If you want to practice controlling a powerful kite, which I think is a very good idea, get a land kite. If you know how to deal with a powerful kite on land, you will know how to control the power in the water.

Kite skills are a big issue for beginners. The main reason IMO is that they use 1-2 meter trainer kites, and have no idea what is a real powerful kite. Then they go into the water and use a real kite, and don't know what to do with it.

Four lines is not that critical, but a four line kite will teach you the kite much more than a two liner. In four lines you have many options, PKD Buster is great, Ozone and Flexifoil make a bunch of nice kites, and HQ Beamer is a good budget option as well. All those will pull more than their "trainer kite" equivalents, size per size. Handles/Bar not that critical, switching from handles to a bar is almost automatic.

PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 10:12 pm
by wjb
So a kite like the Ozone Samurai 2 meter will pull harder than a cheaper 2 string kite of the same size?

What would be better the two meter Samurai or the three meter PKD Buster. The PKD is 215.00 while the Samurai is 312.00. The PKD seems like the better deal assuming the quality is equivelent.

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 1:02 am
by elli
Samurai, PDK and HQ Beamer are real power kites, so they will pull more than the trainer kites size per size, but its still a 2 meter so don't expect miracles. The main difference is that they fly much much better. More consistent pull, stability, wider window and so on. The PKD especially is remarkably stable and easy to fly.

PDK Buster and Ozone Samurai performance is very similar. The quality of the Ozone is better, especially the lines. Having said that, you can beat both to death and they will take it. I think its not likely that you will have durability problems with either, though the lines that come with the ozone are way nicer. The lines on the PDK I had to rebalance after jumping with it, but after that they settled.

I think you can get the Samurai with a bar. Itís a nice option, especially the integrated safety.

Whatever you buy, first time you take it out, try wind of around 10, maximum 15. When it gets close to 20 these kites can be a handful, even at 3 meters. With power kites the safety is sometimes "pilot skills", meaning you get to a bad situation the only thing that will save you is yourself. Take it out in Ocean Beach and ask the other kite fliers to help you and show you around.

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 6:43 am
by Pablito
Or... get a two line trainer and save your money for a real kite to use on the water. :roll:

Poll: How many kiters throwing handlepasses didn't learn to fly on a cheap trainer kite...

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 7:40 am
by wjb
Point taken Pablito. Thanks for your help guys. Wade

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 11:47 am
by Rascal

My experience has been somewhat different from the other folks posting above, so I mention it only as another viewpoint. Its also intended as a commentary to my fellow newbies on the board.

I started out with a 1.2m Naish Xeon. Having heard numerous recommendations about acquiring solid skills with a trainer kite prior to more advanced lessons I flew it for at least 20 hours.

My recent experience with learning with larger kites leads me to believe that while its sensible to start with a small trainer to understand basic wind dynamics you do reach diminishing returns pretty quickly (after 10 or so hours) after which I would recommend either going to lessons or getting a small four line kite.

The reason for this is that flying a trainer kite is useful for learning the basics it is not remotely like flying a proper kite. For the following reasons:

1>. Trainer kites donít teach you how to sheet the kite and cause the development of bad habits. When a trainer kite starts to stall in low wind, you pull the bar, and it fluffs the kite, and causes it to climb. The net result is that beginners get into the habit of pulling on the bar to fluff trainer kites to avoid stalls. When flying larger kites in low wind beginners stall them because they pull on the bar in the same way as they do with trainer kites and this causes the kite to over sheet and stall. Its counter intuitive, and pretty difficult to correct once learned. You can see this happening all the time at alameda as newbies oversheet with the result that the kite falls back in the window while launching.

2>. Trainer kites have lines to their leading edges which means there is never any slack in the steering lines, they much turn faster, and they are easier to control. Because four line kites have slack in the steering lines, particularly if the bar is too far up, they are harder to control and less responsive and feel sluggish. So newbies tend not to pull hard enough nor watch their lines and battle to control the larger kites.

3>. The par pressure and feeling of power is way different, with a trainer kite bar pressure is the same as the power the kite is exerting, while with a larger kite its completely different with the pull coming through the flying lines and into the harness. This takes a fair amount of getting used to. This feeling of power is really intimidating if all you are used to is a smaller training kite.

My recommendation is for newbies to start on small trainer kites, but then get small four line kites asap and fly these kites in as realistic scenario as possible which means with the harnesses and the bars they are going to use with larger kites. If they can, perhaps even wade 50 or so yards out in the water so the kites are not smashed up through repeated crashes. Itís good re-launching practice too.

All the best,

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 10:39 pm
by andyandmarlys
You can get a 2.2m Trainer kite that flies with 2 or 4 lines at kitewindsurf for $129... or $99 with a lesson... Go there and take a look... The 3.6 meter version is $219 and pulls pretty hard...