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I am thinking about getting a new surf kite for the upcoming spring. Specifically, I want to get a 5m as I already have a 7m Switch Method v1, and that kite is a bit too powerful once it starts to average 25 mph (I am 145 lbs). One thing which I dislike about the v1, is that it is pretty tricky for me to surf right hand waves at waddell. When I setup to turn in into the wave, the kite races to the side of the window and generates a lot of pull. However once it gets to the side of the window, it loses most of the power and it becomes very hard to control and initiate the transition to the other side so that I can slap the wave and start going the other way.
With my 2009 Cab cross bow I found that it was much easier to surf right handers. Even though the kite is slower and has a less direct feel, it was pretty easy to make controlled transitions: keep kite sort of high and transition from left to right and right to left at a medium pace.
So I suspect that with the method v1, the kite is moving too fast making me loose the edge and thus the lines develop slack, making it hard to initiate a new transition. Also, once the kite gets moving, sheeting out doesn't produce as much of an effect as on my older Cab, compounding the problem. So I am curious if method v2 is less brutal and is more controllable.
I seriously doubt v2 is going to be much of a difference. [v2 = less bar pressure] My impression of v2 is it doesn't like gusty conditions. It sounds to me, like you need a different style of kite to match your riding style. It sounds like you have too much kite so a smaller kite will help, but smaller kites are faster so your kite skills will need to match. But I would encourage you to ride smaller than 7M at 145# in 25 mph on the coast (as my favorite 5m works well for me @ 200#. If I were you, I'd demo some other kites. You should post your question on the switchkite forum as there only a handful a switch riders in the bay area.
I think you want low-aspect non-delta from the sound of what you're trying to do. The ideal candidate races across the window without generating much pull and pivots at each side of the window when you initiate hard direction changes... A lot of the modern wave-marketed kites should work - good luck!
I have not flown the v1s but have the 5 and 7m v2. Can't speak for v1-v2 difference being "less brutal more controllable". What I remember from the marketing release stuff was that the bar pressure was reduced and made a bit more stable on the edge of the window.
As mentioned they are really powerful and can be a handful. I kind of subscribe to the "if you need to trim you're on too large of a kite" and prefer to ride a little underpowered and work the kite rather than on the top end. Sounds like you would definitely benefit from the 5m if you wanted to stick with methods.
The kites like to fly forward and that seems to be one of your complaints about your 7m. Maybe you need to adjust your technique or maybe the style of kite just isn't suited to you. Keep the kite moving and ready to redirect rather than flying to the edge of the window.
As for not depowering well are you using the switch bar stock? I have one but don't like it much and don't use it very often. Normally I fly with a slingshot bar which has more throw. Last time I took it out I used the switch bar and didn't feel like it was dumping as much power when fully sheeted out. I think the controller can be adjusted to allow for more throw. Might be worth some experimentation. ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig91OwiLUDE )
I don't make it to Waddell too often but would be happy to let you give either a try if we cross paths.
I am actually using a en epic bar that I think has less throw compared to even the switch bar. I was planning to get the new switch bar along with the 5m kite, as my epic bar is pretty old by now. One thing that I might help me is to reduce the effective bar width to get finer control of the kite. I will also try to adjust my technique to redirect the kite before it reaches the edge of the window and loses all power. Also, where do you ride?
I have had both the Method V1s (7m) and the V2s (6M). They both fly forward in the window. The main difference between them to me is the bar pressure being about 20% lighter with the V2. The kites are fast so as you know, you will have to adjust your technique a bit. In addition, you can move the steering lines to the slow setting/bridle at the wingtip (V2) as well as narrowing up the bar. The switch bar has an adjustable cleat for the depower line so you can move it up the line thus increasing your depower with the throw of the bar. I have a medium reach and have played around with different positions and I prefer to have it about 3/4 of the way up. The V2s drift great so don't be afraid to fly at the kite. Push out the bar and head down the line. Start counting some turns, smacks, hacks etc.
Experiment when you get that 5m and the new bar for what works best for YOU. In the waves, the best and simplest advice I can give is:
1) Kite First follow with your board.
2) Don't break the Plane of the wave or don't put the kite behind the wave.
3) Have fun!
9 posts • Page 1 of 1
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