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Author Topic: All time best kite for precision (money no object)?  (Read 8419 times)
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drzewko
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« Reply #30 on: July 22, 2009, 06:14 PM »

1. AeroStar - Sano SS
2. AeroStar - ZeroStar
3. LevelOne - New Age
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« Reply #31 on: July 22, 2009, 07:29 PM »

1. Spectra Edge - 2 World Cups
2. North Shore Radical - 1 World Cup
3. *Platimun AVS
4. *Platimun Pro Comp

The first 3 kites flown by 3 time consecutive World Champs, Team High Performance.

* Designed by Team High Performance, but never used in competition. (personally, the AVS is better than the Edge)
I threw in the P/C just because I feel that's it preforms a little better than the AVS in lighter winds, but still can
handle high winds.
(I was one of the test pilots during the design of the Platinum series of kites)

Ian
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Texanpilot
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« Reply #32 on: July 22, 2009, 08:53 PM »

Not to knock the Sano (I have three of them and love them for tricking), but it's not a precision kite.  It'll do okay figures, but if you've flown some of the other listed precision kites (I have a Prophecy and QPro), you'll see a huge difference. 

I have a question, though.  What about the Jones Airfoil Mirages?  Has anyone here flown them.   I saw their website when they were re-introduced a couple of years ago, and they were being pitched as the ultimate precision wings (Of course, much of that will be advertising hype).   Of course, you couldn't hope to do any tricks with them. . . .
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zippy8
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« Reply #33 on: July 22, 2009, 11:56 PM »

2. North Shore Radical - 1 World Cup

More. Many more.

Quote
3. *Platimun AVS
4. *Platimun Pro Comp

* Designed by Team High Performance, but never used in competition.

Not by them maybe but they were used in competition.

And I really don't think we want to go down the road into debating the merits of each version of each kite.  Smiley

Mike.
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ainokea
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« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2009, 09:35 AM »

2. North Shore Radical - 1 World Cup

More. Many more.

Quote
3. *Platimun AVS
4. *Platimun Pro Comp

* Designed by Team High Performance, but never used in competition.

Not by them maybe but they were used in competition.

And I really don't think we want to go down the road into debating the merits of each version of each kite.  Smiley

Mike.




This post was reffering to THP on what kites they used to win the W/C.
I could care less on who else used the Radical to win the W/C.

As far as the Platinum kites being used in competition, after THP broke up, I left Alan's shop and and also could care less if it was used in competition.

By the way, have you flown the Platinum kites?
It's just my opinion that those kites flew better. And I still feel that way.

Ian
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #35 on: July 23, 2009, 09:57 AM »

Not to knock the Sano (I have three of them and love them for tricking), but it's not a precision kite.  It'll do okay figures, but if you've flown some of the other listed precision kites (I have a Prophecy and QPro), you'll see a huge difference. 


OK, so this is a good opening.   Smiley

Very few people actually fly figures (competition figures) for fun. As a technical challenge and skills demonstration in a comp figures are great, but very few people compete. If the original poster is looking for a comp kite most of this thread is a waste because modern comps require modern kites. If they are looking for kites that fly well, then just talking about kites that can do an easy octagon is short sighted.

I think the term precision or Precision is a lousy way to refer to the flight characteristics of a kite.

See my next post.
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RonG
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« Reply #36 on: July 23, 2009, 10:10 AM »

Not to blow my own horn  Wink .............. but it would take an awful lot to convince me to give up the Machine as a precision kite.  It doesn't do everything perfectly, but precision is where the design started, and it's still what it does best.
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« Reply #37 on: July 23, 2009, 10:11 AM »

Kitemandu Fanatic FX: deep 3D keel, twin tail rudders and 4 wings kept the speed constant and it went where you pointed it until you told it otherwise.
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zippy8
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« Reply #38 on: July 23, 2009, 10:12 AM »

I could care less on who else used the Radical to win the W/C.
...and also could care less if it was used in competition.
Just FYI, we're not really into that kind of snotty attitude in the rebooted forum.

Quote
By the way, have you flown the Platinum kites?
I had the full set of SUL, Pro Comp and AVS for a few years. I've described them in the past as the end of an evolutionary line of hardcore Precision-only kites. For me they were the last truly great kites of that type. Everything since then has been at least compromised in some way to allow slack line tricks - the Falhawks weren't - and if my life depended on cutting some figures.... I'd probably use an NSR Wink but the Platinums would be right behind.

I'd probably toss the Tandem in there too but it's a one wind range kite.

Mike.
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #39 on: July 23, 2009, 11:07 AM »

All these reply's are awesome, and please continue, but can someone elaborate one why there is a difference between competition and "regular" precision?


I made my own opportunity for my semi-annual rant about "Precision" as a word, concept, competition discipline, kite attribute, flying style, etc.
 
 Wink Wink Wink Wink Wink Wink

OK, so I think precision is a lousy term to describe a kite's flight characteristics. Problem is, it's about the only term folks tend to use around here. For lack of something better, or maybe it's just meant to be a catchall.

Precision with a capital P is the name of a type of sport kite competition. Most people think of drawing geometric figures in the sky. Even if they've never see a comp. Very few people fly that way in real life. The requirements for a Precision comp kite have changed a lot. These days you can see some of the best trick flying in the Precision Technical Routine. As you don't need to choreograph your moves to music, folks are able to incorporate tricky stuff that just wouldn't work in Ballet.

I'd say Technical is a MUCH better term than Precision in a comp context. But Precision it is, and because we are used to talking about kites that are good for flying geometric patterns when we talk about Precision comp kites, we're really not talking about what a kite needs to do well in a modern Technical Routine.

So since hardly anybody competes anymore (even when they did, comp flyers were a small percentage of the gen pop) it's safe to say very few people are spending time flying geometric shapes over and over again. So Precision with a capital P is not a great way to reference a kite's flight characteristics.

So then there's precision used as an adjective. "The kite has good precision"

You hear it all the time. What does that mean?

I suppose it could mean the kite would be appropriate for Precision competition, but since nobody flies that way in the real world it would be meaningless.

I think it's generally a short cut to something like "The kite flies straight lines easily and can do nice sharp corners"

Good to know. But what about all the other flight characteristics? I think that in general folks spend so little time flying (vs. tricking) that how the kite flies just isn't very important to them. Being able communicate about flight characteristics is pretty low on the list.

But there is so much more about they way kites fly, how they handle, what they look like in flight. I tend to think in terms of kites that fly well rather than in terms of precision. Some of my best flying kites fall down on the traditional measures like "tracks or rails" or "snappy corners" but have outstanding characteristics in other areas.

Of course, "fly well" is even more vague... 

So here's are some characteristics that I tend to think of when judging the flight quality of a kite, and then some examples.

Speed Control

Some kites seem to have two speeds: Go and Stop. They are not so happy with the in betweens. Some kites have a much wider range of controllable speed. This is of course a highly desirable attribute for flying precision figures (and for pairs & team), but a kite that responds well to speed up and slow down inputs is just more fun to fly. Much more expressive in the sky and much more fun to fly to music.

Edge Handling

Some kites get out towards the edge of the Window and get unhappy. Some kites get out there and float around in perfect control and can do all kinda fun stuff. This relates to stable  stall behavior in general, and makes for a much bigger useable window.

Exiting Stall

Some kite just seem to have to be dragged out of a stall kicking & screaming and accelerate slowly from stop. Others are like "OK, let's GO!". This isn't just the angle of attack setting providing more drive, but the overall design. More drive will get you out of a stall faster, but will make getting into the stall harder. A kite that is nimble into and out of a stall is great.

Spin Control

Related to speed control but different. Being able to speed up, slow down & change the radius of spin easily. For example, a slow tight spin, vs. a spin that just gets faster as it it gets tighter.

And of course there are other attributes. A whole bunch of stuff adds up to making a kite that's fun and expressive to fly. Sometimes sharp corners and wobble free lines aren't the most important. For instance, some of my best handling kites have to be tended on a line. I can fly them plenty steady for fun, but they might not be a good choice for competition, where you sometimes want to think ahead and let the kite fly a while. The Prophecy is a big, smooth kite, but it just doesn't do hard, sharp punch turns very easily. I can put on a great show with it, but the turns are a liability for comps. It has amazing edge handling.

So, when it comes down to it, I think people are maybe missing out when they think in terms of "precision" kites. I wouldn't categorize the Proph or a Midi as Precision kites, but they are two of the best flying kites I own. The Midi is small and quick, but with all kinda great handling qualities. This may be the kind of thing that prompted the Sano reference. A great flying kite.




« Last Edit: July 23, 2009, 11:09 AM by Allen Carter » Logged

Allen, AKA kitehead
ainokea
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« Reply #40 on: July 23, 2009, 12:34 PM »

I could care less on who else used the Radical to win the W/C.
...and also could care less if it was used in competition.
Just FYI, we're not really into that kind of snotty attitude in the rebooted forum.

Quote
By the way, have you flown the Platinum kites?
I had the full set of SUL, Pro Comp and AVS for a few years. I've described them in the past as the end of an evolutionary line of hardcore Precision-only kites. For me they were the last truly great kites of that type. Everything since then has been at least compromised in some way to allow slack line tricks - the Falhawks weren't - and if my life depended on cutting some figures.... I'd probably use an NSR Wink but the Platinums would be right behind.

I'd probably toss the Tandem in there too but it's a one wind range kite.

Mike.

Call it what you will, but I don't see it as having a "snotty attitude " just because I don't care about who used what kite in the W/C, or if the Platinum was used in competition. When I left HPK, I didn't care about flying competiton, or the W/C anymore, and I still don't. Those days are behind me and it was fun while it lasted, but it's over now, for me.

But I do agree with you about the Platinum kites being the end of an evolutionary line of kite. An I'm just the opposite of you, for cutting figures, I'd go with the Platinums first, then the NSR.  Grin

Ian
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facesnorth
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« Reply #41 on: July 23, 2009, 11:03 PM »

All these reply's are awesome, and please continue, but can someone elaborate one why there is a difference between competition and "regular" precision?

I made my own opportunity for my semi-annual rant about "Precision" as a word, concept, competition discipline, kite attribute, flying style, etc.

I'm still watching this thread closely.  Lots of good information.  Still "digesting" some of what was said, but I think I'm getting it.  I really don't have any interest, personally, in competing.  But I wouldn't mind seeing one if there ever is any around here.  I'm trying to develop an expanded sense of the kite flying world.  And it seems like most of the emphasis nowadays is on tricking.  So I want to understand the old school a little better, and see if there's any thing I'd enjoy that I may miss out on otherwise.  I can't trick yet, anyway, all I can do so far is fly around, take off, and sometimes land.  So I'm interested in learning about kites that fly well, and curious about kites that fit some of the categories you mentioned of flying well.
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« Reply #42 on: July 23, 2009, 11:14 PM »

I think a specific kite flys, tricks, handles, and maneuvers well or it doesn't - no excuses.  Currently, I think there are kites out there (3 that I've owned, surely many more) that give you all you need in both the tricking and precision category with no compromises - it comes down to what "flavor" you like.  I don't think you have to make a choice - you can have it all. 

Now, if you are talking, "all time best" and you are, then I guess that factors in; but, personally, I think that it would mostly come down to the flyer and not the kite.  It's not like you can just buy precision or tricks with a kite - it takes lots of practice to get there.
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« Reply #43 on: July 23, 2009, 11:38 PM »

I'm trying to develop an expanded sense of the kite flying world.  And it seems like most of the emphasis nowadays is on tricking.  So I want to understand the old school a little better, and see if there's any thing I'd enjoy that I may miss out on otherwise. 


Buy yourself a long tail, a 48' or 96' Transition Tail works well, hook it on your kite and go out to your local park and fly some figures. The tail will slow whatever kite you have and increase its "Precision", you may need to move your bridle point forward for a little more drive but most kites do fine. You'll have a blast, draw some spectators & make some new friends.

That's old school, not done much anymore but still is a lot of fun and gets some attention. Just ask Chistine (the forum princess and Steve's partner), she doesn't fly too much anymore but give her a Viper or Warrior with a matching tail and she's lost in her little private "Kite Zen" place for hours. Someday we'll have to take her to the hospital with third degree sunburn after one of those marathons.



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facesnorth
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« Reply #44 on: July 23, 2009, 11:53 PM »

Currently, I think there are kites out there (3 that I've owned, surely many more) that give you all you need in both the tricking and precision category with no compromises - it comes down to what "flavor" you like.  I don't think you have to make a choice - you can have it all.


Well don't keep us waiting...  Tongue  What are they?

Buy yourself a long tail, a 48' or 96' Transition Tail works well, hook it on your kite and go out to your local park and fly some figures. The tail will slow whatever kite you have and increase its "Precision", you may need to move your bridle point forward for a little more drive but most kites do fine. You'll have a blast, draw some spectators & make some new friends.

That's old school, not done much anymore but still is a lot of fun and gets some attention. Just ask Chistine (the forum princess and Steve's partner), she doesn't fly too much anymore but give her a Viper or Warrior with a matching tail and she's lost in her little private "Kite Zen" place for hours. Someday we'll have to take her to the hospital with third degree sunburn after one of those marathons.


That does sound like fun and something I'm sure I will try someday.
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