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About this blog

My personal observations

Entries in this blog

 

01/04/2012 Blackheath

A late start, something after 11:00am on the heath, no clock change excuse and the fuel gauge light came on as we came out of the Blackwell Tunnel. Note to self, must fill up before setting off for Berck... And..., then there was very little wind. Zens occasionally grouped for figures but otherwise taking up a lot of space in 360s. A family group stopped 'downwind' and some of the kids followed my kite. Afterwards I explained that I did not really approve of such activity. There is a significan

Felix

Felix

 

14/07/2013 Blackheath

Blackheath was in full on summer mode today. The recently cut grass is brown but the plantain seed heads have carried on growing to provide plenty of snagging opportunities. The forecast suggested light winds and it was 0-6+ mph predominately from the NW but with big swings either side. It was another opportunity to test drive the Diamond spars but, while the spars are great, flying directly into the sun without sunglasses makes appreciation of the ‘top of the window’ capabilities a bit diffi

Felix

Felix

 

10/11/2013 Blackheath

It was a sunny November day, the NW breeze was reasonably consistent and the temperature may have reached 12c which was somewhat higher than expected. The occasional small cloud obscuring the sun introduced a clear chill but there were only a few… The sun was, of course, almost directly in our field of vision! No hiding place available so we were sometimes dazzled! Standard vented with green race worked today except for the odd lull where the mid-vented sail might have been more appropriate. (

Felix

Felix

 

12/08/2018 After Portsmouth

Travel to Portsmouth was a bit dramatic for some of the team with repeated torrential downpours. The event on Saturday was very well attended.  We set up close to the War Memorial as the 'other' end of the south side of the arena was dominated by ‘commercial operations’. Not Zens were used extensively early in the day but the JMH mid vents came into play later… Sunday was going to be wet but we had a narrow window in which to get prepared before the rain started.  It was a ‘one-ki

Felix

Felix

 

19/02/2012 Blackheath

The 'half term fair' was still in place today but the prospects on Blackheath were altogether brighter than last weekend with sunshine and a variable NW breeze. Full vented 1.5s with 4 wrap were occasionally struggling in lighter moments but Race Rods felt over stressed in the gusts. Six up today so it was entertaining to visit the 'sprockets' once again. This move demands a special level of concentration as even an experienced caller may get the sequence wrong at the critical moment. Properl

Felix

Felix

 

Handle holding orthodoxy

On Blackheath today it was 15mph plus, I guess, from the East with snow flurries blowing through and great cloudscapes. I have been trying to see how far the long arm technique can be extended into high wind situations. Rather than using the forward/brake control of the handles I have been trying to hit the balance point where the wing of the kite only moves forwards with a full pull of the arms. Instead of adding brake by adjusting line lengths I have been shifting my grip on the handles wa

Felix

Felix

 

15th March 2009

Light variable wind today with 180 degree shifts. The fluctuations in wind speed meant that, at times, the 4 wrap spars were taking the strain in the JMH Rev 1 sails. Lighter sparing would have been risky! The sail I picked up had not had the vertical bungees tightened but once adjusted all was well. Following with Jacob, Jade and ATM was not inspiring but some parallel work looked quite neat with some crisp 180/stops, up and down. I have identified one difficulty in 'long arm' technique wh

Felix

Felix

 

30/08/2010 Portsmouth

It was an excellent event at Portsmouth this year with 'slightly' demanding conditions on Sunday afternoon. <grins> Thanks to everyone who took up the challenge of the grid fly in the arena on both days and also for all those who took advantage of the dedicated Rev field on Saturday, Sunday and Monday as well. Having flown alongside Herman van den Broek in kite arenas in many countries over many years I was very touched to have been awarded the Portsmouth 2010 trophy by the event organis

Felix

Felix

 

20/03/2011 Blackheath

10:00am start and the first Spring weather fly with a light south westerly breeze and some warming high cloud broken sunshine. 1.5 full sails with race rods were only occasionally stressed or left without direction. The fliers were taking the lazy option as no one could be bothered to call so mostly random flying followed by some silent following. Some interesting close proximity moves may inspire 'designed' moves eventually but on the day it was great to simply share the sky. Four weeks now u

Felix

Felix

 

05/06/2011 Blackheath

A slight respite today, 1.5 Standard Vented 4 wrap was good for a late 11:00am start but thickening high cloud turned to rain early in the afternoon. The current forecast is for rain next Sunday as well, maybe making up for the drought, this Spring, in SE England. I will take the wet weather gear, just to be sure... Just before leaving Blackheath today we discussed some aspects of 'long arm' flying, using arms, shoulders and torso as well as moving on the ground to 'throw' the kite around the

Felix

Felix

 

19/09/2011 after Scheveningen

It was a very good weekend despite showers on Saturday and Sunday morning. 1.5 Vented sails were all we used, swapping from Race to 4 wrap on Saturday later in the afternoon. Race rods on Sunday! On Sunday afternoon the breeze which had been slightly offshore rather than along the beach gently swung through about 90 degrees to a steady onshore which lasted until the end of the event. This provided probably the best flying conditions we have experienced this year and Jacob called a great routine

Felix

Felix

 

16/10/2011 Blackheath

Another sunny Sunday. From 10:30am it was a Zen breeze until a residual weather front approached about two hours later. We were four fliers and occasionally fell into team order. Steve (goestoeleven) joined us when we had switched from Zen to 1.5... Steve had obviously enjoyed plenty of flying time since the last time he joined us on Blackheath. We flew ad-hoc and then some called moves. 'Pendulums' and 'rolling balls' were flown. When we were packing up a local person approached us and exp

Felix

Felix

 

01/07/2012 Blackheath

"Race for Life" dominated Blackheath today with 10:30 and 14:30 events. The very limited parking usually available was obviously off limits so we resorted to pay and display in Greenwich Park given that parking restrictions are already in place around Victoria Park near the Olympic site, our usual fall-back site if Blackheath is not available. It is obvious that during the Olympics we will have to find a different venue for our weekly fly. The TFL site is suggesting that a 15 minute journey, fr

Felix

Felix

 

27/08/2012 After Portsmouth

Conditions on Saturday were much better than forecast so while there was rain at the beginning and the end of the day the winds did not get too high. Vented kites with 4 wrap were good for much of the day but we switched to 3 wrap later. The kites were packed wet at the end of the day but quickly dried on Sunday morning when we stayed with the same configuration but in sunny conditions for most of the day. Sunday's arena mega-fly was particularly successful with Jacob calling a 25 person team

Felix

Felix

 

24/02/2013 Blackheath

The prospects were a bit grim. North easterly breeze, snow flurries and all that. As with last week the re-instated football pitch was in use and ML opted to set up to the east of the road as the NE breeze was not obstructed in any way. We've flown on this field before (notably on one snowy AGM winter weekend) but it does feel strange being a bit lower than the rest of the heath. Full vented with Race/3 Wrap worked OK today and in the short free form fly we did see some great rolling intera

Felix

Felix

 

10/03/2013 Blackheath

No sign of spring today. Low grey clouds, wind north easterly with light precipitation, not quite sleet! Full vented 1.5s, (my frame was green race) but it sometimes felt that the Xtra Vent would have been the warmer kite to fly given more movement on the ground. Once again a mix of uncalled free flying with called episodes thrown in occasionally. Of course it is easy to measure the capability to fly recognised moves but it can be much more interesting to improvise 'in the air' and find the

Felix

Felix

 

24/03/2013 Blackheath

Late March gloom with an overnight dusting of snow did not present any real obstacle in getting to Blackheath today but the wind chill on site made it feel colder than any other flying day this winter. Full vented with green race for me again was over stressed on a couple of occasions even with extra brake. My kite and others with different frames were landed safely to ride out the squalls. Conversationally it was decided that free flying as we have been 'practicing' recently does not really

Felix

Felix

 

24/11/2013 Blackheath

It has been an intense week in anticipation of Thursday’s HMRC inspection which was a gruelling four hour meeting. Glad to set off for Blackheath today for a head clearing moment! c11:00am arrival and Martin and Maggie were changing to full sails with race rods. The breeze occasionally dropped off or peaked but most of the time it was good for team flying. There were a few brief bright moments but soon after 1:00pm a light shower arrived as we were packing up… I shuffled some kites in prepa

Felix

Felix

 

After Miami Beach 9/12/2013

Thursday to Sunday we did get out on the beach in the morning. On Thursday we set up close to the water opposite our hotel c8:30 and having switched to the shorter line sets started to fly the the full vented 4 wrap iQuad training kites in the smooth onshore breeze. Rich Comras arrived at about 9:30 and while he was setting up his kite the lifeguard who had recently arrived told him that from 10:00 we would not be able to fly at that location but that there was an area to the north where the b

Felix

Felix

 

21/12/2014 Blackheath

It was gusting over 30mph today from the west, mostly cloudy but dry with some brighter spells. Xtra vents with green race worked well with the occasional lulls and gusts. Only two fliers today so nothing called and we did not last very long as the wind chill got through. The Blackwall Tunnel was backed up to Sun in the Sands roundabout so I took the long route home today. Must be Christmas shopping at Stratford generating extra traffic! Felix

Felix

Felix

 

12/03/2017 Blackheath

The forecast for today was not good but the approaching front stalled during the morning so we did get to fly for a bit today. Very little air movement as we walked onto the heath at about 10:30am.  We decided to fly first and then check kit ahead of Berck.  Full sails with diamond rods got us into the sky but little else.  The kit check revealed almost all was in order.  Mostly green race leading edges in the vented kites.  Diamond leading edges in the full sails with black race upri

Felix

Felix

 

24/03/2019 Blackheath

The forecast indicated light NW breeze and some broken cloud. The breeze was just a bit too light for the Double / Single Eddy stack 1989.  I had replaced the spreaders and found today that the main spars are very brittle which given that they are 30 years old is hardly surprising! Did some more bridle adjustments on the Della Porta: 4 squares but something is not quite right.  Probably need to start from the beginning again! I did remember to take Rev handles but didn’t get a c

Felix

Felix

 

Rev Blogs

So, never having Blogged before please let me try to understand what is expected. (apart from the last two!) I fly Revolution kites most weekends on Blackheath in SE London, sometimes with the team, The Decorators. There are anecdotes and observations relating to this and related matters which I may want to record for my own and potentially, (who knows) other's interest! I first posted (in 2007) on the Revolution Forum in respect of organising the Portsmouth/Bristol events in 2008. Occasiona

Felix

Felix

 

20/05/2012 Blackheath

A dull grey day with an unseasonal chilly north easterly breeze but finally the weather forecasts are mentioning warmer prospects. The tents in the fenced Olympic encampment on Blackheath are nearing completion. Mid vented with shiny white spars today felt smooth in the forecast c8-11 mph breeze. I'll try a definitive comparison of all the Race Rods, sometime/never, but... Exmouth next weekend is a new event for some of the team, me included. I get the Friday evening train ride to catch up wi

Felix

Felix

 

26th July 2009 Blackheath

After Dunstable last weekend, yet another windy Blackheath. Ashley and Jade followed into some slo-mo flying without issue. I will have to figure out how to loosen up after the concentrated effort in order to avoid fatigue. It is a bit like remembering to breathe in the mega fly... Felix

Felix

Felix

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