TrickTail Manual - UltraLite - Standard - Vented

Congratulation's! You have just purchased one of the most innovative delta stunt kites in the world today!

The TrickTail family utilize a combination of the latest materials, construction techniques and technological innovation to provide you with years of flying pleasure. Created with the experienced and professional pilot in mind, the TrickTails are designed for finesse, and with a subtle flying style the pilot can achieve optimal harmony with these kites. During precision or trick flying in light winds, a sensitive touch generates smooth transitions from one graceful figure or trick to the next. The TrickTail concept, (form, tail and bridle) allows the pilot to develop a flying style never experienced before.

Pilots will quickly realize that very aggressive actions to the lines will not generate the expected reaction from the kite.

Don't Panic!!!

Tip: Tricks like a "Snap Stall"., "Axle", "Cascade", Etc. don't require the traditional sharp jerk on the lines. With the TrickTail, they are more elegantly accomplished with a soft start, accelerating to a fast controlled pull on the tensioned line. This technique allows the pilot to completely control the speed of the kite throughout the move and opens the possibility of developing new variations and interpretations.

This new style of flying may take some time to adapt to, however the rewards are worth it. Spend a little time (or maybe a lot of time once you get addicted) to master this kind of flying style...

And soon you too will develop a new dimension to your flying skills!!!

Assembly Instructions:

1) Remove the TrickTail from the bag and lay it out in front of you, nose away, bridle side up.

2) Connect the leading edge spars at both sides.

For the Standard TrickTail (early models):

Early models used nocks attached to the wing tips by bungi cords, with the anti-tangle ("Trick") line attached to the nock. To assemble this version, just place the nocks over the wing tip spars.

For the Standard TrickTail (later models):

Later models use a nock, a tension line and a vinyl end cap with the anti-tangle line attached to the end cap.  (Note: The nocks are usually found inside the ends of the vinyl end cap-anti-tangle line assembly).
To tension this model, place the nock over the wing tip spar, pull the tension line, (attached to the sail at the wing tip) through the nock, then back through the sewn in loop at the wing tip, then back through the nock a second time. Pull the wing tip tension tight then wrap the excess line tightly around the nock. Lock the line by placing the cap at the end of the anti-tangle line over the nock and tension line. Repeat for the other wing, making sure that tension is equal on both wings.

For the UltraLite and Vented TrickTails:
The UltraLite uses a short, internal ferrule that you insert into the wing tip spar. The Vented uses a similar tension line attached to a nock, place it over the end of the wing tip spar. To tension the wing tips, find the loose end of the tension line that passes through a series of two overhand tensioning knots and pull it tight until the leading edge fabric is smooth. (Note: look at the fabric surrounding the lower leading edge-spreader fitting and tension the wing tip until this area is taught and wrinkle free). Secure by placing the cap at the ends of the anti-tangle line over the nock and line. Repeat for the other wing, making sure that tension is equal on both wings. Wrap any extra line around the wing tip spar and securing with a couple of half-hitch knots.

3) Center "T": The Center T on the TrickTail (Standard and Vented Models Only) can be adjusted by setting it in either the above-the-sail or through-the-sail position. This changes the handling characteristics of the kite.

a) Standard above-the-sail position:

Use in light wind, precision and trick flying. this is the best position to start with the TrickTail. It will provide the best control and precision.

b) Tuning through-the-sail position:

This version allows the experienced pilot to stall the TrickTail more easily in the upper wind range. In this position the TrickTail slides more easily but looses precision.

Note: It is possible to change the position of the center T without disassembling the tail by removing the ferrule from the center T, then rotating the T fitting to the new position. Reinstall the ferrule.

4) Spreaders: Insert the upper (none in the UltraLite) and lower spreaders. With all models, the end of the spar which has the standoff fitting closest to the end of the spreader goes into the leading edge fitting. (Note: early models of the standard used an external aluminum ferrule for the center T. Later models use internal carbon ferrules. If you need to order replacement spreaders or T fittings, please specify which style of fitting your kite uses).

Important: Always check to make sure that the bridle lines are not wrapped around the spars.

Standard TrickTail - Light-Wind Tuning Tip:

  • Remove the upper spreader to give more profile to the upper sail area. This will increase precision and give better forward speed.
  • When the wind gets stronger, (about 6+ mph) replace the upper spreader as soon as the upper leading edge begins to bend.

5) Telescoping Standoffs: The TrickTail is supplied with 3 pairs of tubular carbon standoff sleeves:

a) Inner Standoff Sleeve (20.5 cm / 8")

b) Outer Standoff Sleeve (2 variations):

  • Standard Long Sleeve (14 cm / 5.5") - Precision and constant speed
  • Low Wind Short Sleeve (13 cm / 5.1") - Provides more speed in light winds
a) Inner Standoff (20 cm / 7.9") 2 mm carbon rod with 6 cm / 2.4" x 5.5 mm carbon outer sleeve.

b) Outer Standoff (2 variations):

  • Standard Short Standoff - (15.7 cm / 6.2") x 2 mm carbon rod - Larger wind-window, greater wing tip speed.
  • Higher Wind Long Standoff - (16.2 cm / 6.4") x 2 mm carbon rod - Provides improved precision as wind speed increases.

Note: UltraLite does not use sleeves on the outer standoffs

Additional standoff options for Zero -Wind UltraLite flying:

Martin recommends new standoffs for no-wind flying:

  • Inner Standoffs: 21.5 cm / 8.5" x 2 mm carbon
  • Outer Standoffs 13.5 cm / 5.25" x 2 mm carbon


a) Inner Standoff Sleeve (19.2 cm / 7.6")

b) Outer Standoff Sleeve (2 variations)

  • Standard Short Sleeve (14.6 cm / 5.7") - Larger wind-window, greater wing tip speed
  • Higher Wind Long Sleeve (15.6 cm / 6.1") - Provides increased precision as wind speed increases
Note - The Standard and the Vented are shipped with protective vinyl caps covering the tips of the standoffs attached to the sail. These caps are to protect the sail from possible puncture when packing (especially during shipping) and need to be removed before placing the tubular standoff extensions over them.

Insert Standoffs: place the standoff extension over the standoff rods attached to the sail then into the fittings on the lower spreader.

For the UltraLite, insert the inner standoff into the tubular extension on the lower spreader then CAREFULLY insert into the sail-standoff connector to avoid puncturing the sail. Insert the outer standoff into the sail-standoff connector, then into the spreader-standoff connector.

6) The TrickTail: Turn the kite around with the nose facing away from you and the belly down.
To assemble the tail, take the 4 mm / 5/32" (3 mm UltraLite) TrickTail-Spar, insert it below the knot of the loop at the very end of the tail and push the end with the stopper into the center spine.

Tail assembly 1

Now push the tail-nock that is hanging from the anti-tangle line over the TrickTail-Spar, (Standard and Vented, UltraLite has nock glued to the tail-spar)

The tail gets it's characteristic bow by pulling the trailing edge tension line through the nock, then tensioning and securing it without fixing the anti-tangle line (figure 8) steps 1-4.

Note: The printed instructions that come with the kite illustrate an earlier tail tensioning system that uses a loop of bungi cord to lock the leach line in place after it has been wrapped around the nock. This is shown in the photos above.

Newer models have a tension line tied to the sewn in loop which you should thread through the nock, back through the sewn in loop then back through the nock before adding the vinyl end cap on the anti-tangle line to lock the tail tension.

Tip: Tension the leach line until just before the sail starts to get folds in the tail area, particularly around the inboard sail-standoff fittings.

Important: Make sure the anti-tangle line has no tension on it as this would deform the profile in the sail and cause it to fly incorrectly.
Proper tension should be just tight enough to remove slack without deflecting the wing tips inwards.

7) The 4-Point Sliding Bridle:

Tow Ring image
Note: Right bridle line shown in photo and illustration, Left bridle is a mirror image

The TrickTail bridle is marked and preset at the factory and is able to fly all the tricks and maneuvers with the standard factory settings. Please check the bridle settings to ensure that they are set on the factory defaults every time you assemble the kite.

Important: Make sure the bridle and tow point pig-tails are not twisted when you attach your flying lines. The upper leading edge bridle line should enter the tow ring from the side closest to the center of the kite and exit the side facing the leading edge. The bridle must be free to slide through the tow ring or it will cause the kite to fly incorrectly.

Fine Tuning the TrickTail:
Note: All adjustments should be done in small steps (0.5 to 1.5 cm / .25 to .5") and always equally to both sides.

Upper Bridle Line: Shorten or lengthen it at point A, (Middle Leading Edge tow point)

Shorten it:

  • To increase lift in light winds
  • To decrease pressure on the sail and pull in the upper wind-range.

Lengthen it:

  • in the middle wind-range to tune "stall" capabilities.

Lower Bridle Line:

Move the bridle ring towards the outside or inside to change the turning center of the kite and adjust the amount of oversteer.

Moving the ring towards the Center "T":

  • The kite spins with more pressure
  • There is some loss of precision

Moving the ring towards the Leading Edge:

  • This will increase the kites precision but if moved too far to the outside, the kite will loose all pressure and stall in spins.

Recommended Flying Lines:

To maximize the performance of the kite the following flying lines are recommended:

  • Material: Spectra or Dyneema
  • Line Strength: 25-50 kg / 50-100 lb.
  • Line Length: 25-33 m / 80-100 ft. (Shorter for ultra-light or indoor flying)


  • Make sure lines are exactly the same length.
  • Choose a high quality, slippery line to exploit the kites high speed spin characteristics.
  • When attaching the flying lines to the bridles, make sure that the bridle is not twisted and that the upper bridle line is able to slide easily through the ring.


Always fly safely. Please read this manual carefully before flying this kite.
Never fly near power lines. Never fly near airports. Never fly over people.
Never fly over roads. Never fly in places where your kite could come in contact
with people, animals, automobiles or anything that could get hurt or damaged
by your kite or the flying lines. Always self launch your kite.
Do not have someone hold it, for if you loose control or have the handles in the
wrong hands, you could easily cause the kite to spin and injure your assistant.

For TrickTail Specifications, Parts and optional tuning tips, see our TrickTail Parts / Specification page