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I've been riding a sliding spreader bar for 6 years, a stainless one made by a buddy in Santa Cruz who no longer makes them. It had a ronstan pulley welded to a shackle that I clipped into my CL. My stuff was stolen a month ago and I am using a regular spreader bar now.
I am hating life without my sliding bar.
I never before realized that the sliding bar actually makes the kite turn faster, especially when you hit the lip of the wave and redirect. Just by pushing the bar a little, the pivot point slides all the way over, which makes the kite (well, SS Rally anyway) instanteously initiate a turn in the air. It also makes the kite move faster during jibes without losing any power.
I am hating life without my sliding bar.
My old bar did not have a "divot" in the center or a bungee, but I never had a problem with the kite centering on the harness when I was riding normally. I really don't see what the point is unless you are riding only freestyle, in which case you probably would switch out your spreader bar.
I just got my Ride Engine harness last week, haven't tried it out yet. Engine has a super cool sliding spreader that I didn't order (because I still had my old one at the time and was going to use it on the new harness). I just ordered one and hope to get it by the next time I am riding the waves; I will do a little review of the harness and the bar.
It says 10M, but it's really a 9.
While waiting for the new Dynabar v8 single mold design to come out, I created my own home made sliding bar.
Created this one two weeks ago, took it out in Alameda a few times these past days where it was windy. Seem to work okay. I'll probably take it out to try it on the waves once I fully trust it.
1. Spreader bar came from a 10" Dakine bar.
2. Ronstan 55 ball bearing roller, 1000 lb. working load.
3. 6mm dyneema rope, 16 inches long. I will switch to 8 or even 10 mm (maximum width for the roller).
4. 1000 lb. working load carabiner clip with hose lock to protect from other lines accidentally going in the clip.
I've been using the dakine Maniac bar, $70 and it works surprisingly well.
http://www.kite-line.com/2014-dakine-ma ... pping_kite
I use a similar setup to rowboat's. I don't have the metal loop - I just clip the shackle into the slider rope. I also have a bar with a huge amount of throw - I have maybe 3ft of travel. For this reason, I got rid of the chicken loop on my bar. Simpler and it lets me use all that extra throw more effectively. I definitely agree that the sliding setup helps make the kite turn faster. I really didn't expect that. The extended throw is really a great thing too. I now have a lot more control over kite power in bottom turns and can really totally kill power if I want. Extended throw has somehow also made the kite feel more free. I can't describe it better than that, yet. But I highly recommend the extended throw bar setup. So far that has been a bigger benefit than the slider. Anyway, both are pretty easy to build into your bar, with the added benefit of being able to strip off a whole load of rubbish.
And my vote for the Dynabar v7 base version (Dyneema version, no metal rods).
Got it from Chris at http://www.kitenaked.com/ as well, only place I've found selling bar w/o rods and for the best price on da internet, and... it is local shop! :)
I'm using it with boardshorts and it works great!
The only downside, yesterday one douchebag (drunk?) stopped me while I was on my way to the beach from the launch at Sherman screaming that my hook and CL is almost off
Good-bye... and hello... as always!
Has anybody used a DIY setup like the pic that reyrivera posted? Does the extra distance from the harness to the control bar negatively affect performance?
Looks like one would have to set it up that way to still be able to punch out.
Clipping the loop into the pulley will put the bar further away from you. When making a powered bottom turn, if you can't sheet out enough, you can get pulled further down the wave than you want.
One of the reasons I switched to a sliding setup was to increase the available bar throw. As it turns out, I find the extra throw way more useful than the sliding attachment. I now have close to 3ft of throw. I adapted pretty much right away to riding using 2ft of that. It's really fun and opens up some interesting possibilities. An interesting side effect of this has been that I have so much throw that I hardly ever bother to depower.
Regarding punch out, I cannot punch out with a push away release system. I release with a loop attached to the release pin of the shackle. There are two downsides to this. First is that I hear the shackle type I use can be difficult to release under tension. Second is that the release system is not in a fixed place when you want to pull it (same problem with reyrivera's system). I'm planning to fix this by making a new safety system that releases the slider rope from a fixed point.
I'll try to post a photo of my setup.
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