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Author Topic: how to tension a LE?  (Read 3787 times)
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dyfrgi
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« on: June 15, 2009, 07:11 PM »

I just got a new Muse from Ken McNeill, and it looks great! I can't wait to get it up in the air. Before I can do that, though, I have to figure out how to put it together.

I think I have most of it. Standoffs installed, spreaders are pretty easy, and putting the two part LE together in the sleeve wasn't too hard. However, I just can't pull the leading edge taught. I hook one loop over the nock at the end, and then no matter how hard I pull, I can't get the other loop over. I think I may have bruises on my fingers, though.

The LE bows outward when I pull very hard on the tensioning line. Maybe I need to bend it in some way before trying to tension it?

Should I have any of the spreaders installed before trying to pull the LE taught? I've tried a bunch of permutations and it doesn't seem to make a difference.

Oh, and relatedly: should I unhook the tensioning line when I put the kite away, if I don't have to break the LE so I can fold the bag up?
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2009, 07:20 PM »

Tension the LE before putting the spreaders in place. You'll need to pull fairly hard, and the LE will bend. Do make sure the upper and lower LE are all the way together at the ferrule (joint). Even 1/8 creep could make the LE impossible to tension. Once you get the LEs tensioned, no need to de-tension unless you need to fold up the kite for shipping or something.

BTE, the Blue Moon site has an excellent Forum, and I bet this question is already covered, if not for the new Muse, then for a previous kite. Link to Blue Moon  ----------->
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dyfrgi
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2009, 07:32 PM »

Thanks, Allen. I did check the BMK forums, but I couldn't find anything on tensioning. I'll post there if I can't figure it out.

I'm pretty sure it's entirely together at the joint. I slid it until it clicked together. The connection is a solid rod inside of the normally hollow spars (which I think may make it not a ferrule). It slides freely enough that I'm sure it'd slide in when I started trying to tension it, if it wasn't all the way in already.
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rxburner
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« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2009, 07:41 PM »

I believe the knot goes in the knock, not over it....

Rx
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dyfrgi
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« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2009, 07:55 PM »

Yeah, the knot goes in the notch, but I have to get it up over the top of the notch first. It's clearly not just wedged in there, from the previous image in that series.

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rxburner
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« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2009, 08:26 PM »

Sorry... just trying to help
Rx

(you can always move the knot up a bit)
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dyfrgi
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« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2009, 08:51 PM »

Sorry... just trying to help
Rx

(you can always move the knot up a bit)

No need to apologize - I appreciate the help. Smiley

Yeah, I'll definitely move the knots if it turns out to be necessary. I emailed Ken about it, so I'm waiting until he gets back to me before I make any changes, since his site says it's pre-adjusted to the correct tension.
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Bob D
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« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2009, 04:46 AM »

I had the same question with my BMK 61/49 because I had pulled the loop tight and didn't see that it's a double loop. Ken wrote back and said to take a closer look to get the other loop so that I could loop it over the nock and then pull the knot over to tension the LE. Ken measures it so that it's perfectly tensioned.

Look under the 61/49 forum for my posting about tensioning. I think there are some good pictures of how it's supposed to look.
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Bob D.
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« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2009, 08:19 AM »

Tensioning is a little more difficult on the kites that have covered LE connectors because there is less space to hold the tube without working against yourself.  Hopefully this will be a little help - http://www.bluemoonkites.com/video/leading_edge.wmv   

Just a quick first shot.  Totally out of focus, but I think it get the idea across.  An important point is to hold the leading edge by the nock or the bare tube,  not the leading edge sleeve, with your off hand.
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MtnFlyer
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« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2009, 08:24 AM »

Also, check out this tuning/tensioning page on Ken's site...

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Bob
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« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2009, 08:25 AM »

Nice video, Kmac.
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Bob
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« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2009, 05:37 PM »

That picture from Bob (MtnFlyer) is what gave me the "a-ha" moment. His picture is worth a thousand words.
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Bob D.
dyfrgi
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« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2009, 08:16 PM »

No matter how hard I pull, I can't get it over the end. Maybe my fingers just aren't strong enough; I have pretty decent grip strength, but not stellar.

I'm holding on to only the rod, not the leading edge of the sail, so I'm not working against myself. I've made sure the cord isn't twisted, including trying different angles for the nock to be at relative to the sail. I've made sure that the two pieces of the leading edge are properly hooked together, checking it by the fact that it clicks when it's all the way together and by feeling it through the fabric. I've made sure the leading edge rod is all the way into the pocket.

No matter how hard I pull, all I accomplish is hurting my fingers. Ow. How the heck can you push on the nock like that with your thumb? That hurts quite a lot when I try it, since I'm basically pushing my thumb onto the connector as hard as I can.
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dyfrgi
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« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2009, 08:34 PM »

Hah! Managed to get one of them. Smiley Held on the the rod with a rubber band, which gave me a better grip. Then I realized I'd put a twist in the cord as I did it. Sad For the second time, avoiding the twist this time, I ran a rope through the loop with the melted knot at the end, tied a loop in it, and pulled on that. Was able to get it enough past the end that it wasn't too hard to slip it on, with a few tries. Still needed the rubber band to hold on to the rod, of course.

That requires a huge amount of tension. Guess I'd better get used to it - the kite doesn't fit well in my car with the LE unbroken, has to be diagonal in the back seat.
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tpatter
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« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2009, 09:49 PM »

Try PUSHING gently on the leading edge (to slightly bow it) while you hold the nose against  your foot (or something).  It is much easier this way for kites that have a curved LE.

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6 kite tom
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