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Author Topic: Sticking Spreaders/Leading Edge Connectors  (Read 2410 times)
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Kitemac
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« on: November 23, 2010, 07:21 AM »

The upper and lower spreaders have become very difficult to remove from the leading edge connectors on my Quantum.  The Quantum is stock and this issue started in November.  My thoughts are this is either temperature contraction, the spreaders becoming jammed in the connectors due to the higher fall winds or a combination of both.  When I put the kite together at room temperature it is a snug fit and does not require the amount of pulling I am doing in the field.

Any suggestions (lube? etc.).

Thanks,

Tom

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ko
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« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2010, 07:54 AM »

hi tom, the fittings being tight on a quantum seem to be the norm.they were on mine. i just got used to twisting and pulling to get them out i kmow they arer stuborn. there has been talk about different lubes ,personally i did not use any as i was afraid something would pull out and hole my sail otherwise spit is probably the way to go unless i guess it is freezing!! dont now nuthin about that
regards kurt
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have fun kurt
inewham
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« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2010, 08:35 AM »

before inserting rub the spreader end on the side of your nose or similar place where your skin gets sweaty/greasy - it will be much easier to remove but not so much that it pops out in flight

You can also get a little spreader removal tool that helps, at a quick glance I can't see them on GWTW but most kiteshops will know what you're talking about if you ask for one (assuming they're still available)
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tpatter
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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2010, 08:53 AM »

You could keep the lower spreaders always-connected, reducing your work by half.  Smiley

-Tom
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6 kite tom
sbrown
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« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2010, 09:05 AM »

Doesn't the Quantum have a half-sized bag, requiring you to break it down every time you pack up?  Roll Eyes

I'd just make or buy a proper length bag and keep the LEs assembled, with the bottom spreaders kept in their connectors.
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RobB
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« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2010, 09:34 AM »

I grasp the spreaders with my fist, and use my thumb to push against the APA connector. Just be careful not to poke the other end of the spreader through the sail (voice of experience....)
~Rob.
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DD
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« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2010, 09:44 AM »

my 2 cents..
I agree with the 'sweat lube'. i too worry about adding lube to the connectors or the spreader. Some have suggested a little silicone spray wiped on the spreaders before inserting them.
It also may sound obvious but I ALWAYS hold the spreader as close as i can to the connector and push the connector off with my thumb. You are less likely to puncture a hole in the sail with an errand slip of the spreader the further you are from the connector.
You may also find a flat piece of rubber(like the kind that you use to open stubborn lids on jars) does well for giving you extra grip to hold the spreader.
I have a couple of the plastic kite "tools", they seem to work but i rarely reach for them.
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Sine Metu!
tcope
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« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2010, 09:53 AM »

I'd just make or buy a proper length bag and keep the LEs assembled, with the bottom spreaders kept in their connectors.
Spreaders... running across the face of the kite and keeping it fully assembled. Not the leading edges. It would be hard to keep a kite fully assembled and fit it into it's bag.
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Todd Copeland
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tpatter
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« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2010, 10:06 AM »

I'd just make or buy a proper length bag and keep the LEs assembled, with the bottom spreaders kept in their connectors.
Spreaders... running across the face of the kite and keeping it fully assembled. Not the leading edges. It would be hard to keep a kite fully assembled and fit it into it's bag.


You "fold them up" so that they are approaching parallel to the LEs.  If you can also slide your upper spreader into a gap between the LE spar and fabric, then its all cleanly put away.  Cuts setup and breakdown time to about 40 seconds.

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6 kite tom
freecheese
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« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2010, 10:16 AM »

I don't disconnect my spreaders either, unless I need to fit my kites into a backpack or something. Just fold them up against the leading edge, wrap up the sail and pop the kite into the bag. I'm usually in the air within two minutes of arriving, unless I end up chatting with someone first.
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tcope
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« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2010, 10:20 AM »

You "fold them up" so that they are approaching parallel to the LEs.  If you can also slide your upper spreader into a gap between the LE spar and fabric, then its all cleanly put away.  Cuts setup and breakdown time to about 40 seconds.
I'd think this would be strain on the connectors and possibly lead the them ripping. For me, connecting them would add about 5 seconds. I don't know that this changes anything. I also would rather insert them each time as this way I can make sure they are not loose.
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Todd Copeland
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tpatter
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« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2010, 10:28 AM »

To each his own, connect them any way you like.  I just felt that the best way to avoid difficulty in removing them is to not remove them at all. Smiley

I've been doing this for 2 years and nothing has worn - less wear actually I think since you are not inserting and removing them all the time.  When I rarely do remove them, it is quite difficult as they are very tight.
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6 kite tom
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« Reply #12 on: November 23, 2010, 10:47 AM »

Some people worry about wearing their APA connectors out from leaving spreaders inserted.

I never remove the bottom spreaders and have only had to replace a few APA connectors in all the years I've been flying.

I look at the risk of slipping and ripping the sail compared to the nearly negligible cost of replacing a few APAs every decade or so and leave them in.
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mikenchico
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« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2010, 11:20 AM »

I almost always remove my spreaders, DD explained the process well

...hold the spreader as close as i can to the connector and push the connector off with my thumb...

You need to push the APA off with your thumb, pulling on the spreader only causes a Chinese Finger Cuff type thing, the APA will tighten on the rod if you hold the leading edge and pull on the rod. "Nose lube" can help, just rub a finger on the side of your nose though and transfer to the spar, you really don't want a carbon sliver in you nose. ALWAYS make sure the spar is pointed away from the sail when removing, sail flat on the ground, spar pointed up into the air, again the sad "Voice of experience". You can use your other hand to slightly twist the rod while gripping and pushing with your thumb if needed.
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"Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see" John W Lennon

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Allen Carter
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« Reply #14 on: November 23, 2010, 11:39 AM »

Some people worry about wearing their APA connectors out from leaving spreaders inserted.


I've found it to be exactly opposite. A tight fitting APA left alone will stay tight on the spreader for years, but APAs that have the spreader pushed in and twisted/pulled out all the time, especially if there's dirt/sand involved, will get looser and looser. The flex from filding the spreader up against the LE and storing the kite doesn't seem to be a problem. I have a kite that was made in 2002, flown in competition for two seasons, sold, sold again, and once again and then bought back by me two years after I let it go. The same APAs that came with it are going strong.

All bets are off for any other LE fittings...

I stand by my statement a few years ago that APAs are one of the most important advancements in sport kiting. Nothing comes close.
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Allen, AKA kitehead
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