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Everything posted by HedgeWarden

  1. Top and bottom stretch out at different rates. Start with all 4 equal lengths, and compensate by shortening the upper ( or lengthening the lower) leaders' lengths if you find the upper lines have stretched a knot's distance worth. It also works very well to flip top and bottom, as mentioned above, if the lengths are noticeably different. OTOH, top-left to to top-right should be within 1/4 inch or less. Likewise the two bottom lines measured to each other. Always.
  2. All week, at least. A week early if there will be opportunities to fly with other early arrivers. You: Aug 1? Wow.
  3. I have a B2 mid-vent, and generally fly it in winds a bit above a 1.5 full vent comfort zone. I have flown it in the same winds as an extra vent, and my impression was that the extra vent was sluggish and pulled more. BUT that was the first time I flew an extra-vent, and have since flown extra-vents in groups, and appreciate it much more. B2 mid-vent, in my opinion, is much more responsive and much lighter pull than a 1.5. OTOH, I agree that the 1.5 series is the best match for group/team flying. The B2 is great for developing reaction times, and for less strenuous high wind flying. I have not flown a B2 full vent or standard, so can only extrapolate. If you can afford a full set of 1.5s, and have enough cash left for some B2s, I believe you will enjoy solo flying with the B2s.
  4. For beginner, check the merchants and compare these choices: 1. EXP with handles and lines (lines should be Laser Pro), used to be a common starter package. 2. SLE standard PLUS handles PLUS lines. (Or may be packaged as RTF - Ready To Fly) 3. B standard PLUS handles PLUS lines (Or may be packaged as RTF - Ready To Fly), which should come with TWO sets of frames to handle a wider range of winds. If in doubt, contact any or several of the excellent merchants that advertise on this forum or the KiteLife forum. Select option 1, 2, or 3 in that order depending on where your wallet might start crying. They are all excellent for a beginner. But if you have not had prior experience, it might be better to start cheap. Many people do not have the opportunity or the drive to master the quad kite - and unfortunately drop out. If it helps you decide, I am a non-athletic senior citizen (i.e. elderly couch potato), and have managed to reach a fairly comfortable advanced stage - certainly NOT a master. But that has taken several very enjoyable years to do so.
  5. Cool idea! There is a $49 camera around (e.g. Grocery Outlet has some, so they may be close-outs) with few features but usable video quality, about the same size and shape as the Go Pros. Like-wise, Radio Shack had an "Action Camera" on sale for $49 for a few days - different shape. They all have mounting systems, but I don't know if they are compatible. Any-hoo, the budget conscious might want to search for "Action Camera" on the web and eBay. It would be very interesting to know if the mounts are compatible. Cameras, still and video, unless they were very cheeep, used to have a standard tripod mounting socket.
  6. Wayne, now I'm troubled. Unless my memory is messed up again - the second kite I purchased, after the EXP, was an SLE mid-vent. So I think SLE comes in all 3 versions. I'm pretty ignorant about the ultra-light, but I believe the ultra-light was produced only in the SLE line. (Is that correct?) If so, that would make 4 versions of SLE. Bs come in three versions - full, mid, vent. And B Pros come in four versions - adding the Extra Vent. That is the perfect sail in those real heavy gusty winds at the beach, The reason you troubled me, Wayne, is that I generally trust what you say over what I think I might possibly believe to be true. Now I've got to check my kite bag - is there really an SLE mid-vent hiding in there? Anyway - the EXP is an excellent introduction and is adaquate to learn the basic skills. The main problem is that it comes in only a full sail, and seems to be relatively heavy material - so it is limited in the wind range. (The full sail in any of the types will have a limited optimal range.) I have flown my EXP in up to near 20 mph winds with the factory EXP rods (which are essentially "three wrap"), and both the kite and I survived, but that is closer to the power kite experience than the usual Rev 1.5 exquisite control experience. Fair winds!
  7. FWIW I have used "Beacon 527" glue to repair a number of external ferrules and internal dowels on dual and rev kites. I cannot swear that I have not had to redo a fix done with this glue, since I have had a few rods that needed to be fixed twice (other end or fixed end?). Advantages - it remains very slightly flexible and resists drying out or crystalizing, so it takes the bending well; it sets up and cures overnight, so take your time spreading, spinning, adjusting and wiping off excess; no mixing, it is similar to the old "Duco Cement", but much stronger. I have also used this glue to make kite stakes - golf balls on fiberglass rods - with no failures yet. Also to reglue the foam rubber to quad handles. It has lasted better than the original glues. Has anyone else had experiences, good or bad, with this glue?
  8. Update on using bridle line for sleeving - unsuccessful! Used bridle line has been under enough stress that the weave is very tightened. After removing the core, I was unable to thread a wire through the center to pull the flight line through. Unused bridle line works great tho.
  9. I'm saving the old bridle material for sleeving. It is exactly the same line that is used for the thin sleeving on many new line sets. Should be able to cut 8 1 ft (30 cm) sections from the relatively unworn sections of the old bridle - pull out the cored, and wa-la.
  10. Sounds to me, John, that you were "dancing" with the music if you comment on the changes in speed and loudness as making it difficult. I didn't mean to imply simple to dance to - rather setting a rhythm and mood for you and the kite's movements. Experts such as yourself can certainly "dance" to a wider spectrum of music than beginners. Myself - more stuck on very old rock and pop - my age and lesser talent showing. If you want to dance to internal music, as btbt suggests, that is obviously fine. If you've seen videos of a courtyard full of seniors performing tai-chi in synchronization - the rhythm is there, audible or not. And if you want to completely free-style with no rhyme or rhythm - that is probably very appropriate for freestyle flying. Although music could still set a mood. My first experience flying a dual line to music was extremely emotional for me - it was so beautiful to connect that way. But everyone is different. Short answer - try it. If you like it, fine. If not, fine.
  11. For yur next "trick" - rods on the front side, and bridle on the back side! (It's possible.) Looks right unless you notice that the bridle seems to have unnecessary twists, and the logo says something like "noituloveR". So two rules: 1. You can read the trade name of the kite facing you (as you fly.) 2. You cannot see the vertical spars because they are BEHIND the kite. I've always been in sync with #2, but #1 snuck up and smacked my reality.
  12. When I fly solo - which is 95% of the time - I like to "dance with the kite". OK, my body don't move much usually, but my mind and my flying does. Often I screw up a move, or the wind throws a curve - the kite does it's thing and I just have to respond. So the dancing is truly a two way conversation. Surprisingly (?) recovering from screw-ups has added as much to my ability as trying to perform pre-scripted moves. SO - my question is how the H do you dance without MUSIC? I guess if all you are trying to do is practice moves, that doesn't make sense. But if your aim is to fly connected with the kite and the wind, and the world, enjoy and let the little kid out to play, then music is essential to my experience. OTOH - if your idea of music is not danceable, then it would not add to your experience.
  13. For me (as Katrina said) the trickest maneuver is the ball. Backing into the lower corners of a ball with the usual turbulance from the other kites is tricky. Maintaining the burst speed to synchronize with the other kites - watch me, I'm usually either the first off the line (before simon-says "now") or the last (oh - everyone else is already moving - that's what "now" meant) or travelling the wrong speed - but those are just my personal devils. In light wind, holding an upright hover can be difficult - espeically at the top or the bottom of the group. Generally people are very tolerant of mistakes - we are all just having a lot of fun. (Serious fun, not goofing off.) Hope to fly with you, Dan. -Howard
  14. Hmmm - choosing between a mid-vent 1.5 and a B2 is difficult. I love my mid-vents because in the area of wind speed that the standard and the vented supposedly overlap, the mid-vent shines without twitchiness or wallowing. I've been experimenting with a mid-vent and race-rods when the wind picks up and a standard sail *starts* to require more work - it's just smoother but very responsive. OTOH, I have a B2 mid-vent, and when the wind picks up to 1.5 full-vent speed, or even 1.5 extra-vent speed, the little B2 flies like a humming bird - fast, responsive, and very light pull. A lot of fun. I haven't flown a B2 standard sail, but do have much older Rev II kites - and again they fly lighter, more responsive, but probably not with the precision of the B2s. Personally, I think everyone should have a B2 or Rev II in their bag for variety. But if you are serious about precision flying in groups, then a mid-vent 1.5 might be a better first choice. So - do you want to increase your finesse on 1.5 kites in that middle wind-speed range, or do you want a separate and different hoot? (Hint: the correct answer is 'both of the above')
  15. I have only full sail old Rev IIs (solid color), and a mid-vent B2 (beside my stable of 1.5s). Personally, I would not want to slow the mid-vent B2 any further - IOW, I'm not "jonesing" for a full vent B2. If I want slower and/or more precision, I'll use a 1.5 full vent. The mid-vent is a real kick to fly in winds upward to 20+(!) MPH, on 50 lb 80 ft lines. Under those conditions, it is light, very responsive, and considerably faster than a 1.5 of any type, in my experience. It can get frolicky and jump out of control easily, if you don't stay on it. Pretty much like the full sail Rev II in lighter winds, I'm sure. Precision surprised me - quite good, but not like a 1.5. E.g. I managed ragged cartwheels with the B2 before I managed them with a 1.5. Compared to the older full sail Rev IIs, it is more controllable and takes a higher wind. I like the comparison to the Micron - they are all great for response training, as well as being fun without being exhausting like a power kite.
  16. I'm guessing some black color bleed from the bridle. But I have no solution to clean it. Take Mark's suggestion.
  17. The mob flashed. Wind very marginal - what a great job everyone did! For everyone on the field - HIP..HIP..HURRAH! For everyone supporting us from the sidelines - HIP..HIP..HURRAH! For JB, and especially Brett and Bri Howard, profound thanks for organizing and pulling us through. And the experience and patience of all the team leaders who pulled us together... WHEW!
  18. My two cents: Stick to the 1.5 size (EXPs, SLEs, B's, B Pros), as they have the best balance between speed and precision for a beginner (and actually for most experienced fliers most the time) Rev 1s feel heavy and too slow (I have not tried a Zen, so do not apply that opinion to Zens.) Rev 2s are fast and lighter feeling than 1s and 1.5s. The speed and the lesser precision makes them not the best choice for beginners. But once you have some experience - they are a hoot. For flying in a group, the 1.5s are standard. The "Bs" or Barresi design are more expensive than the SLEs, but a "B Package" comes with two frame sets, a set of handles, and a helpful DVD - which makes them very competitive. I started with an EXP Ready-To-Fly (RTF) set that had handles and lines with the kite - and a start-up video. It's the most economical way to start. However, if you are more interested in the power kiting experience (speed and pull), then one of the supersonics or similar Revs may be your choice for a second kite. I know them only from reputation, not experience. As you compare kites, be sure you have factored in: Kite, Handles, and Lines. For lines, you want Laser Pro 90 lb, and to start around 80 ft is fine. For flying in groups, 120 ft lines are standard. Any of the shops that advertise here should make sure you have what you need. Startup videos are very useful if you do not have a mentor. John has posted a number of great videos covering the basics on this forum. Have fun, and fair winds..
  19. Wind prediction for Mon about the same as yesterday and today (Sun) - LITE . Sun bright and hot today. I plan on drifting down (from Ocean Park) in the early afternoon - hopefully the wind will pick up a little. High tide at about 5PM. So.. who's here tomorrow? (Bri and Brett and...?) See yah.
  20. Hmm, as I understand Bluetooth (with a little help from Wikipedia): Bluetooth has nothing to do with WiFi (except sharing RF band space) or internet connection. The idea of Bluetooth was to connect a device, say a mouse or a headphone set, directly and wirelessly to a servicing device, say a computer or a cell phone. It is intended for short distances only - like 1 or 10 meters, or with high power devices 100 meters MAXIMUM (call a meter a yard+ and you can see the distance is problematic.) My experiences: a. Bluetooth mouse to laptop - works great. b. Bluetooth headset to cell phone (to play MP3s on cell phone to headset) - depends on which side of the body the cell phone is located. c. Bluetooth "hands-free" in an auto, to cell phone - works fine within the confines of a vehicle. Generally Bluetooth is a one-to-one link. However, there is a provision in the spec for "broadcast" to up to 7 slaves (a "piconet"). OK for teams of 8, but lacking in general usability (e.g. mega-fly grids). And the question of equipment - I am ignorant about how programmable the Bluetooth features of a typical cell phone is are - but I am not optimistic about piconet abilities. Hey, don't feel bad about suggesting it! My training as a engineer makes me naturally critical of ideas - sometimes too much so. Part of the process of sorting out the possible for the merely interesting. (And usually missing the real game changing ideas.) I was contemplating suggesting an FM wireless microphone for the captain, and any MP3 players with FM radio reception capability for the team members. Unfortunately, I think the 100 ft maximum range allowed for these devices by the FCC makes this idea also impractical. Sigh. John, Terry, and Katrina have certainly demonstrated that FRS radios can perform continuous transmissions if forced to (except for some brands/models that specifically limit broadcast time.) And FRS has a range that easily covers an entire performance or even festival area. On the other side of that coin, FRS was not intended for continuous transmission. More like: "Joe, see deer?", "Roger, Roger!", "Where is Mark?", "Bang.", "Ow!" . Now I think I have seen some cell phones that advertise "Walkie-Talkie" mode of use. I don't know if they are using direct unit-to-unit communication or if they are using a cell-phone transmission relay system. And again, "Walkie-talkie" mode of use is assumed to be short transmissions and long reception periods. I am inclined to think there should be a better solution, short of Amateur Radio licenses for all the team leaders.
  21. Katrina, You've already provided some good facts from experience to correct some bad conclusions I may have drawn from theory - or more to the point, dangling questions. As for "good luck" - go break a leg. (Really trying to make a joke here. Did not mean the original post in an ironic or sarcastic sense.) See you and the rest of the gang in Lincoln City, if we can get ourselves organized.
  22. Katrina, I don't understand why the VOX would not work for you. Is it a problem with the delay - e.g. when you say "NOW!" and the VOX kicks in on the "W"? That I would understand. I would not expect much battery life in continuous transmit mode, though. As for the privacy codes - they are transmitted at the beginning of a transmission. If a receiver is set for code 0, or to the same code as the transmitter, then it will turn on its amplifier (i.e. you can hear the message that follows the code transmission.) Otherwise, the receiver will ignore messages with a different privacy code than what it is set to. Each brand and/or model may have different privacy codes, or no privacy codes at all - the codes are not specified by the FCC. So, it is essential for everyone to use code 0, or no code, as you said. Good luck, and keep us posted with facts instead of this theory stuff.
  23. Question: Are you using standard handles (same length leaders top and bottom) or B-series type adjustable handles (longer multi-knot top leader)? Using a longer top leader provides more reverse force (or brake), and can diminish the tendency to over control the bottom lines. With good balance between top and bottom lines, inverted hover and flight is easier.
  24. I call it "inside out" because to correct it, I pulled each wing back through the bridle - like fixing a shirt that is inside-out. But yeah - the effect is almost like having the sail reversed, except parts of the bridle upper legs are twisted on themselves.
  25. Taking down my B-Vented yesterday, I noticed something strange about the setup. I checked it out on the living room floor today, and found I earned another star on my goof-up tally sheet. History: * I've managed to tangle the lines of all four of the Decorator's kites parked on the ground. During WSIKF. * I've adjusted my lines on my handles for one more knot of brake, and had to completely remove the handles to sort out the resulting tangle. And many other misadventures. But the new one may be a topper. * I've discovered after several years and multiple clinics, I've been putting the vertical spars on the wrong side of my vented B. I had not noticed it until yesterday ... (drum roll) ... because the bridle was also on the wrong side of the kite. :kid_frustrated: Removed the two outer leading edge spars, and easily "turned the kite inside out" so the bridle is on the side that says "Revolution" again. I'm just hoping it flies as well, with the bridle not tangled on itself.
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