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Author Topic: Which Revolution kite to get for a beginner?  (Read 595 times)
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vinzbee
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Location: San Francisco Bay Area

« on: July 30, 2014, 10:55 PM »

Hello everyone!  Last weekend, I attended the Berkeley Kite Festival, and after watching different teams perform choreographed tricks I got inspired to start flying, especially after seeing how awesome the Revolution kites are.  Anyway, I don't have any experience flying kites except for those regular, toy kites that I used to play when I was still a kid.  I've done some research and realized how confusing and difficult it is to choose the right kite so I'm here to ask you, the experts, for some advice, suggestions, and recommendations.  Basically, I want to get a kite to learn on and at the same time be good enough for when I'm already a decent pilot (is that what you call someone who flies a kite?), if and when that ever happens.  Since the kites don't come cheap, I don't want to get something that's considered as a beginner kite and then eventually upgrade to a better, more advanced kite and get stuck with a basic kite that I may not fly again, and since I'm not sure if I'll lose interest or get discouraged in the near future if I'm having a hard time learning to fly, I also don't want to invest in getting multiple (standard, vented) advanced kites right away just so I have the right kites for different wind conditions.  So I guess I'm looking to get just one kite for now that's versatile enough to fly in different wind conditions here in the SF Bay Area.  Since I normally don't check the wind speed around here since there's usually no need to, I'm not familiar with the averages at the different spots where you can fly here, so I'm not sure if I should get a standard, mid-vent, or vented.  I'm also not sure how each type would handle in different wind conditions, like if the vented would be harder to learn on or control when the wind is about 12mph vs a standard or a mid-vent.  Also, I sort of narrowed down my choices between the B-Series (maybe even the B-Series Pro perhaps?) and the B2, again, I'm not sure which one to pick, maybe it's one of those apples and oranges comparisons, but I have no idea really.  Then I guess once I figure out which model and type of venting to get, I'll probably just stick with the default frames that come with it. Lastly, since these kites don't come with lines, I'm wondering which ones I should get since different lengths are available.  I'm really excited to get my kite so hopefully with your help I'm able to order the perfect one for me, then I can start learning from the DVD that's included and then head outside and practice on my own and hopefully meet other people to fly with and to learn from.  Thanks!  Smiley
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rmesm
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Location: Spokane, Wa

« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2014, 12:23 AM »

My 2 cents worth... B series are great! B-Pro's are the best! I own several of each. My advice to begin would be to get a standard sail B series with 2 frames, a 3 wrap and race rods. Great kite to start and you will not out grow it! If you get hooked quickly (and you will) your next kite should be a full vent  with another 3 wrap and a 4 wrap frame. With these 2 kites and frames you will be able to fly in almost any wind conditions! Also, I would suggest you find some Rev pilots near you to help you get started. We all love to help new Rev flyers get their kites in the air. The learning curve will be greatly shortened with some help.  Get 120'  line set.  All team flying is on 120' lines and you'll be there soon!  You'll need longer leaders on your handles..Watch John B's tutorials... Lots of great info. Once your fully hooked, you will own a full set of B-Pro's standard sail through extra vent. My favorite is the mid vent.  Good luck and welcome to the dark side!     Mark
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Bob D
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« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2014, 04:14 AM »

I have a B series mid vent with race rods. It's got a great lower end and the mid vents give you the venting for higher wind if you have the regular frame too. The tricky part is learning handle control: tip the right handle forward to spin right, tip the left handle forward to spin left, tip back to neutral to stop the spin, make sure both handles are in neutral to go in a straight line. Start with flying up a short distance (both handles tipped forward), stop, and fly back down to the ground (both handles tipped back.)

I started with a Supersonic because I didn't want to be stuck with a beginner kite like the XP but I hadn't realized how fast and twitchy it is so it took me longer to learn to fly. The B Series is a great place to start.
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Bob D.
nckiter
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« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2014, 07:10 AM »

B-series with the two frame set up would be my recommendation also. You will not out grow it but you will probably add to it Wink

If most of your flying will be in an area with marginal to low winds, go with the full sail. If you are fortunate enough to be in an area with steady winds, pretty much all the time, 7 mph and up, consider the mid vent. Venting is not just for higher winds, it also is a smoother flying sail less subject to bumpy / gusty wind conditions. Add a race rod frame later on and you can fly down in the lower wind ranges. Grin
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2014, 08:03 AM »

Hi Vinzbee!

Welcome to our little world!

I'm a long time Bay Area flyer, and there are some other locals here on the Forum. Where are you from? I can suggest lots of good spots to fly and people to connect with. Send me a PM if you want.

To your questions:

I'd say avoid the B2 for a first quad. The smaller kites are much faster and harder to learn with.

No reason to spend the extra on the B-Pro at this point. Much of what makes them special is the added durability for heavy use, and even a regular Rev is a very durable kite to start with. Most of my Revs are more then 15 years old. I'd go for the -Pro only to get custom colors, but if you like stock colors it might not be worth the expense.

Flying a standard sail rev in too much wind is much more fun than flying a vented sail in too little wind. You'll get stuck on calm days if you only have a vent, even a mid vent.

Line length may be determined by your flying field to some extent. A lot of the places I fly really only work with 75' lines, though I prefer 100' when I have the room. Around 75' 90# is probably a safe bet for a single line set.

Start looking at weather web sites for wind speeds for a given location. I use Wunderground.com. It has wind history so you can see what the averages are and how it varies by season. I've flown all over the Bay Area, so I can give you impressions on what different sites are like. Good flying spots are hard to find. The quality of the wind is effected by the surroundings, so even a large park in the middle of a city and/or with trees around the edges can be a frustrating place to fly.

If you are near Berkeley, go see Tom at Highline Kites. He's the sponsor of the Berkeley Fest, sells Revs and is a great guy. You may find kites a bit cheaper on-line but Tom's service and support is priceless. He works out of a mobile kite store at Berkeley. Has been there for decades. He can introduce you to local flyers too.
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Allen, AKA kitehead
dragonfish
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« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2014, 10:45 AM »

Lots of great advice here.  I've already replied on AKA's KiteTalk forum, but thought I would post up a short version here too. 

The Bay Area Sport Kite League (BASKL) will be putting on a Learn to Fly Workshop on Sat. Aug 9 at the Berkeley Marina.  You should definitely come if you can.  I would also recommend holding off on buying a kite until then so you can try some of ours and get a better feel for what you like.  This may help you decide which amount of venting to get for your first kite.  Most kite fliers (myself definitely included) will be happy to share their kites, especially if it means we will have a new kite flier soon. 
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wagsboyz
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« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2014, 11:12 AM »

Wow!   Take Dragonfish up on that offer.  What an opportunity to check it all out and learn something in the process.  Ask around while you are there, someone might just make you a deal on something slightly used and let you or teach you how to fly it.

Revs are alot of fun and soon you will have bags of different kites.

Welcome to the world of kites
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vinzbee
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Location: San Francisco Bay Area

« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2014, 01:07 PM »

Thanks everyone for the responses!

Allen, I live in Daly City, I'll also check out Highline Kites later when I get off from work!

I'll probably hold off buying one for now until after I attend the free workshop that BASKL is holding on 08/09.
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Jim Foster
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Location: Laguna Woods/Walnut Grove, CA

« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2014, 07:27 PM »

You have received loads of good advice here. The best is the invitation to go learn to fly on August 9th. The Bay Area fliers are a great group. Attending such an event will save you more time and frustration than you could ever imagine.
It's nice that you were so motivated by the team flying at Berkeley. My wife Lynn and I (Kite Kids) were fortunate to be able to make Berkeley this year and fly several demos, as well as fly with our friends Carol and Cass Pittman as Kids at Heart and then the four of us teamed up with Jeannette and Mark Lummas, and Ron Despojado (Too Much Fun) flying as "The Magnificent Seven". What fun we had, and, giving someone else the inspiration to take up this fun hobby makes it all worth while. Enjoy!
Cheers, Jim and Lynn Foster
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