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Author Topic: Sometimes Old school is better  (Read 2638 times)
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gwarren
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« on: September 04, 2009, 07:46 AM »

While looking thru my closet of kites to see which ones its time to let go of, I  came across a few I wanted to check out one more time. The winds were just right to fly my UL Midi Sandpiper by Chris Mathenson made back in the 90's.  Wow!!!! It reminded me of when I was 16 and got my first car.  It was a 4 speed pinto.  I could get it to spin the tires and do power slides around corners... if it had just rained.  But then I got to drive my Friends Mach 1 Mustang with a a hurst shifter four speed. Wow, what a difference!  THe power, instant response!  The UL Midi Sandpiper was like that mustang. The sharpness of its corners, the instant response to inputs, the flat axels and double axels.  What a fantastic kite! I have some of the top high end kites of today, but today, they had nothing on this kite.  Perhaps it was memories more than actuallity.  Regardless, it guarrenteed that this kite will never be on the for sale list. As I left the field I wasn't reflecting on the tricks that I missed or hit, but the thrill of the whole experince. It got me dreaming of how great it would be to have a new clone of this kite.  Not an updated remake, but a brand new exact duplicate!

So, if you could clone a dream machine from the past what would it be?

glen
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Sketch
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« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2009, 08:16 AM »

Sandpiper Midi's should have been re-named Sandpiper Maxie instead.
My West Seattle Kite bud Bob Kunkle...let me borrow his Midi for a weekend at Ocean Shores.
I offered him a trade him straight across for my old Vapor but he wouldn't budge.
Maybe its time to make an new offer...one that he can't refuse? Cheesy

Another kite from his bag that I also would have almost given my left...U know whut for was his little JITBoxster' beauty

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thief
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« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2009, 09:27 AM »

100% agree........
love the old school.....its the only school in my box....i cannot wrap my head around those new fangled tricks y'all are doing nowadays......the hand brain coordination just does not work so well for me....(guess that is why i never really got into video games-OR_maybe it is because i did not get into video games....)
i am still looking for a midi sandpiper to go along with my mini-midi
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Beachbum
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« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2009, 09:48 AM »

For me it would be the Jordan Air Pro, flew one once and it was like being behind the wheel of a Ferrari.
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zippy8
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« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2009, 11:21 AM »

I'll fly anything but with Olde Schoole stuff on the lines I soon miss the possibility to do the more modern stuff without major frustration. Nostalgia can only get me so far.

I've often thought that I'd miss some of the kites I've sold~traded over the years but their replacements soon fill the void. Pretty much any out-of-production kite I can think of I'd only like to fly out of curiosity and missed opportunity, not to fly regularly. The only exception to this... guideline... is SUL/Indoor kites  Grin

Mike,
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chilese
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« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2009, 12:36 PM »

In honor of this thread, I am redoing my entire A-Bag.

So far:
Elixir (probably the most modern old school kite ever)
Sandpiper Midi
Vapor
SL7 (still debating my self-abuse level)
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zippy8
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« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2009, 04:39 PM »

OK then, I'll ask....

beyond wallowing in pungent nostalgia why would anyone choose to fly an old (school) kite over something new and shiny ? Please remember that I've been around long enough to have flown some of these buggers when they were new and shiny and IMHO today's kites are demonstrably more accomplished (with no more than a few rare exceptions). Do you really expect me to put my Seven away for... well... anything frankly for other than curmudgeonly I-remember-when-it-was-all-Kevlar-lines-around-here reasons ?

I'm all for honouring past glories and remembering where we came from but once past a quick blast from the past for old time's sake.... why ?

Mike.
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chilese
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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2009, 05:06 PM »

"I'm all for honouring past glories and remembering where we came from but once past a quick blast from the past for old time's sake.... why ?"

Depending on how far back you go can make a big difference.

Obviously, you are referring to the newer, pitch based tricks. Correct me if I am in error here.

But there are at least several kites from the pre-French craze which will yo-yo, JL, comete, etc just fine.

Personally, I've done Taz Machines on an Inner Space and Mojo UL.
I've done backspins (more the barrel roll variety) on Vapors and on a Prophecy. You just have to adjust the far outer standoff to have almost zero effect on the sail shape. I've done yo-yos on the BV Pulse and Elixir. This would include flying around with the lines caught on the ULE connectors instead of yoyo stoppers.

I really can't speak for the more advanced tricks as my skills aren't there yet. But if an older, high aspect ratio kite will yoyo, I'm guessing it will do the Crazy Copter, Yo-fade stuff too.

In addition, the older kites seem to fly better and certainly will cartwheel more easily with their highly curved leading edges. And yes, I do still cartwheel a kite from time to time for a ground recovery.

Now if old school only brings pre-whisker or NSR style kites to mind, then we are in agreement as to nostalgia has its place.

zippy8, I would be interested in your opinion on how the Elixir compares with modern kites in its ability to do the current craze of tricks. It is a kite that I like more as I become better. I use to really hate that kite.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2009, 05:08 PM by chilese » Logged

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Allen Carter
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« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2009, 05:27 PM »

More than anything it has to do with flying style. How you like to fly. What you like to do.

There are plenty of things old kites sometimes do better than new kites. Or if not better, then certainly different.

If you have to have the capability to do a lot of modern pitch based slack line tricks, then you certainly don't want an old kite.

Most modern kites are "do it all" designs. They may vary in size and weight, but the basic mode is usually "if it cant do (insert popular trick here) nobody will buy it". In order to be many things to most people a lot of compromises are made.

A lot of the compromises are in basic flight characteristics, but since folks don't actually fly a whole lot it's no big deal.

I sort of think of old kites as specialty kites. Strong in some areas at the expense of others. Makes for a kite with personality.

Until last year I've always had at least one current kite in my bag. Most recently A Deep Space, then an Exile. I've flown tons of kites. It's been over a year now since I've had a kite with yoyo stoppers and I haven't missed it much. I'll get another Deep Space some day, but it'll sit in the bag a lot while I enjoy flying a Midi or something equally limited.
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« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2009, 06:58 PM »

I think old kites are like old wine - you only really enjoy the truly good ones.

I like to fly my friends Vapor or Prophesy on occasion, but its a short stint where I really appreciate the differences and then back to my pitch-monster.
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zippy8
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« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2009, 07:02 PM »

But there are at least several kites from the pre-French craze which will yo-yo, JL, comete, etc just fine.

Hmmmm There's a world of difference between "will do" and "are worthwhile doing on a regular basis". I've put several kites of great vintage through a trick or two that wasn't even the suggestion of a twinkle in someone's eye before they were long out of production but that doesn't mean I'd consider them suitable candidates for flying that way long term. Partially this is design and partially this is detailing.

Quote
zippy8, I would be interested in your opinion on how the Elixir compares with modern kites in its ability to do the current craze of tricks.

It's been an age since I've flown one. I came to the conclusion at the time that I needed either a Gemini or an Elixir, but not both. So I have a Gemini. If the Elixir received the sort of development that the Gemini has received then maybe it'd be worth a look. But it hasn't so it's stuck with the provisos and excuses that a kite of that vintage needs when it comes to flying with a contemporary repertoire.

Quote from: Allen Carter
Most modern kites are "do it all" designs. They may vary in size and weight, but the basic mode is usually "if it cant do (insert popular trick here) nobody will buy it".

Possibly. But it's not like all modern kites are anonymous and interchangeable - they can be had with personality too. A Cosmic TC XS or Element will supply more than your RDA of that  Huh

If people are happy with flying the same thing (both in terms of content and equipment) that they were 15, 20 years ago then fine. After all, it's been enough to keep the RevHeads happy all this time But having tried a few "current" tricks I'd miss them if they weren't an option.

YMMV

Mike.
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stapp59
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« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2009, 07:30 PM »

Interesting discussion.  May be as many opinions as fliers on this one.  Roll Eyes

For me the kite must FLY first and foremost. I have a few classics PEUL, Illy98, NSR, Mojo and enjoy them.  Although...

I do enjoy tricks and expect to progress further.  I think Blue Moon and Aerostar do an excellent job of combining both classic flying with more modern tricking ability. There are others I'm sure and preferences seem to evolve with time and ability.

Debate away...  Grin
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2009, 11:23 PM »

If I could have only one kite forever, it would be a modern kite.

Luckily, I get to fly all the old weird stuff too.  Smiley
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« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2009, 11:53 PM »

I'll agree with Mike, looking back often looks rosier then the reality turns out to be if you could really step back. I still have those old kites and like John said they are fun - for a short time. I soon miss the responsiveness and wind range of the new kites even though I can only do a handfull of "Tricks" they still outperform those old kites even when flying old school. About the only kite that still does what it was meant to do as good or better then anything on the market today is the Flexi Foil, Limited in what it does but nothing has yet replaced the smoothness, grace, power and speed of that kite. Guess that is why it is still available unchanged 30 years later.

« Last Edit: September 04, 2009, 11:57 PM by mikenchico » Logged

"Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see" John W Lennon

"People do not quit playing because they grow old, they grow old because they quit playing" George Bernard Shaw
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« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2009, 12:07 AM »

Some old school kites (post standoff) have a certain charm and some do cool tricks that can be a challenge on newer kites but old school kites are extremely limited in the trick dept and, well, old. It's fun flying a good one but I find myself wanting more out of it after a while.

It's not like there aren't newer kites that can't do old tricks well and newer tricks too. I'll take a Fearless any day over ANY old school kite, and I mean any Grin
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James -
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