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Author Topic: Help-Skynasaur circa 1985  (Read 1950 times)
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Ken Bour
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« on: June 03, 2012, 06:17 AM »

I purchased this Skynasaur kite (see pic) in Ocean City, MD in the mid-1980's although we haven't been able to pinpoint an exact year. Although I can still connect the two pieces, the long spreader (or spar) split when we flew it last week in Duck, NC. I would like to find a replacement part, so that the kite can continue flying, but the maker appears to be out of business. It looks complicated and I don't know its dimensions other than the kite wing length measures 90" from tip-to-tip. I uploaded a few images including a tag that was attached to the carrying bag that I never removed. Notice that the tag says "Trooper," but I cannot find any information on Skynasaur kites with that type - only "Tracer."

Secondly, I would appreciate any feedback on the quality of this kite. Evidently, I paid $130 over 25 years ago, but I don't know if that would place it in the beginner, intermediate, or advanced category. I presume that the shop salesperson wouldn't have sold me a kite above my total newbie status at the time.

Lastly, given that I own this kite and assuming I can find a new main spreader, I would appreciate a recommendation on a second kite. From recollection, I don't believe that this Skynasaur "Trooper" will fly in winds lower than 6-8 MPH, so would it make sense to add an UL and, if so, which are your favs? Even though I have owned a stunt kite for two decades, I have very few hours in the air and am still a beginner when it comes to anything but basic movements.

Any other thoughts you have will be appreciated. I am seriously thinking about spending more time with stunt kites now that the bug has re-bitten me.

Thanks, Ken

P.S. I noticed that there may be a kite club in the Washington, DC area, but the website looks out-of-date. If any members happen upon this post, I would like to know if it is still active and how to become involved.



Note: Edited 6/27/2012 to replace attachments with image links
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 12:06 PM by Ken Bour » Logged

Kites: SkyBurner WidowMaker-STD, SkyBurner ProDancer-SUL, Skynasaur Trooper
Ken Bour
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« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2012, 07:36 AM »

Update: I took apart the main spreader (see image). The two pieces measure 32" and 30" respectively. When assembled, the total length is 60". I stuck one of the whisker holders (proper name?) into the crack to illustrate the spar damage.

Also, I just noticed that one of the rubbery spar holders is starting to tear/split, so that piece needs to be replaced.

Ken



Note: Edited 6/27/2012 to replace attachment with image link
« Last Edit: March 05, 2013, 12:01 PM by Ken Bour » Logged

Kites: SkyBurner WidowMaker-STD, SkyBurner ProDancer-SUL, Skynasaur Trooper
chilese
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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2012, 08:48 AM »

Hi Ken,

Most modern spars come stock at 32.5 inches or 40 inches.

I'm guessing your 32 inch spar is also a 30 inch spar with a 2" exposed ferrule glued into it?

You can buy pultruded spars from any good kite store, including our sponsor
(ad upper right).

For the kite to maintain it's balance, you'll probably want to get a spar with the same
weight. If you could weigh the spar without the ferrule and ratio the weight up by
a factor of (32.5/30 = 1.08), you can order a replacement spar by weight. Then,
use a fine tooth saw and tape to cut the new spars to the proper length. Most people
would leave one of the new spars at full length and only cut one spar. This would
shift the balance a little as the ferrule would be moved up or down depending on
which spar you decided to cut. I would cut the upper leading edge spar, gluing the
ferrule to it. That way, any future replacement of a cracked LLE (lower leading edge)
would involve no cutting. Normally, the LLE is the one that breaks.

For the kite to maintain its original fittings, you will need to order a spar with an OD
approximately the same as the ones you are replacing.

Do you have a micrometer or calipers to measure the diameter of the bad spars?

Also, you should replace both side leading edges to maintain weight balance left/right.

The rubbery spar holders are now called "leading edge connectors" and can be ordered
also. You should probably replace all 4 of those and you might as well replace the
center-T fitting as well.

Whiskers are now called standoffs.
And the whisker holders are standoff connectors these days.
Fortunately, kites are still called kites.  Smiley

I believe the Skynasaur kites were made by Mike Simmons. I own a few Tracers and
have seen the Trancer.

Tracers:


« Last Edit: June 03, 2012, 08:55 AM by chilese » Logged

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rncembal
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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2012, 11:41 AM »

Mike sold the production rights to Skynasuar which later became Mile High Kites. Once Mike sold the rights he ceased producing any kite so they would have been made in the Colorado facility.I have to find my old goodwinds kite bible that will have all the specs.
 Rob
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Ken Bour
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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2012, 01:38 PM »

Thank you very much chilese, skb, and rncembal. While it appears as though the kite is "fixable," the process seems to require more customizing knowledge and skill than I currently possess.

Do you think anyone might want to buy this 1985ish Skynauer Trooper AS IS for an exceptionally fair price? The kite doesn't owe me anything and, if it could go to a new owner who is willing to fix it, perhaps that would be my best option.

My preference, at this point, would be to purchase a new (or used) modern kite and, perhaps, get both STD and UL models so that I am ready for any wind condition that arises.

I recognize that it is a common newbie question to ask, "What kite should I buy," but I would still appreciate any recommendations. Researching this question on GWTW, I glean that the following models seem to be among the most popular: Widow Maker, Talon, and Deep Space. Should I be looking at any others?

Thanks, Ken

P.S.  Today being the first Sunday of the month, I rode my motorcycle to the Washington Monument and met a couple of friendly W.O.W. members, including a gentleman named Richard who was expertly flying a dual-line kite and was extraordinarily helpful! Clearly, the club is still active.
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ko
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« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2012, 02:05 PM »

Hello. I do not have any idea what your kite is worth .As for what kite to buy? Fly and get advice from your new friends. there is nothing like local knowledge and I do not know a kite jockey that wont share and give more advice than you will ever need!LOL anyway welcome back
regards Kurt
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have fun kurt
chilese
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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2012, 04:49 PM »

The Trooper would probably cost about $40 in parts to fix.
  (The 4 LE spars would be around $32 for P-series replacements)

Shipping would be $5-$10 to anyone in the states who bought it.

The market for used, older kites is very small. Not a lot of us
collectors. There are very few desired older models.

You might get up to $50 (maybe) as is. That's just my guess.
_______________________________

As far as modern kites for you to purchase......

Your list is excellent, although the Talon and Deep Space are tailored
more for people who want kites that are top end tricksters.

For your first jump into modern kites, the best advice is always try
before you buy. Find some kiters in your area and fly as many different
newer kites as you can.

My suggestion would be to get a proven design that flies very well and,
by default, will be fairly tricky.

Although these 2 suggestions have been around for years, they are
well balanced, forgiving kites. I own models of them both. They can
be had in at least standard and UL models. They come in several colors.
Click on the small photo to see a larger picture.

   Widow Maker by Skyburner (made in USA) (standard, UL)

   Quantum Pro by Prism (made in USA)(standard, UL, vented, SUL)

« Last Edit: June 03, 2012, 04:51 PM by chilese » Logged

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Ken Bour
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« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2012, 06:16 AM »

Thanks, chilese, for the excellent info and advice.

I am sold on the SkyBurner WidowMaker and now just need to make the purchase-this week!

Given that the Skynasaur Trooper has little or no collector value, I think I will offer it up free to any local W.O.W. member who would like to repair it whether for self or as a donation to a worthy cause. That way, no expense to ship. If I get no takers, I'll just toss it. As I stated above, that kite doesn't owe me anything... Smiley

Ken
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rncembal
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« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2012, 08:58 AM »

I didn't read that you were in Duck . There is a local shop (not the big one) That can help get it flying and it will be a great kite to have to teach others with when you don't want to risk you more expensive pieces. You will smile after dealing with them
Rob
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Ken Bour
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« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2012, 09:34 AM »

Thanks for the tip, Rob, but I was only in Duck, N.C. last week for vacation. I live in Northern VA about 25 miles outside of Washington, D.C.

Ken
« Last Edit: June 05, 2012, 08:23 AM by KBour5 » Logged

Kites: SkyBurner WidowMaker-STD, SkyBurner ProDancer-SUL, Skynasaur Trooper
rncembal
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« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2012, 12:04 PM »

According to the Goodwinds  old kite book Trooper LE  spine and spreader  all 2100 Protruded standoffs .098 fiberglass . but it does not list any dimensions
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mikenchico
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« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2012, 01:13 AM »

Pultruded Carbon .2100's run $5 each, I would get 2 to replace both spreaders to keep the balance. A replacement ferrule is .90  cents, if you can't or don't want to fight yours off. APA-A's are .95 cents each, again I would do both sides. Worth considering the investment to keep it around.

It was a Mid range kite in its day.

« Last Edit: June 05, 2012, 01:17 AM by mikenchico » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2012, 01:41 AM »

Talk to Steve here and he can get you set up with what you need and even cut the spars for you.  Mike is right the troop was a more intermediate kite.  You can get it fixed up for around $20 ish and it would be worth having around for a true old school fly from time to time.  IF someone has it Kitelines magazing vol 11 had a mention of the trooper but i don't remember if it had the specs or not.
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« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2012, 07:58 AM »

Vol 11 issue 1 - no spar measurements just basic materials. Carbon tubes, 1 piece leadind edge, vinyl connectors, 1 oz nylon sail, end caps used for the standoff to spreader connectors (and they slip so you should replace those too with APA's). The review found the kite to be nearly as competent as its bigger sibling the Tracer which was winning many comps at the time.

An experiment with low aspect ratios and deep sails (11" at an 86" wingspan) with a wide nose piece to increase lift that worked very well for the tricks common at that time. A first step toward the polyvent kites of today, you still see the influence of Mike Simmons Tracer/Trooper in todays designs.


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"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
Ken Bour
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« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2012, 08:21 AM »

Thanks, Ca Ike and mikenchico, for the extra effort in locating information on this particular kite. The fact that it had carbon tubes makes sense given the "CARB" designation on the inventory tag that I uploaded.

If the W.O.W. club declines my offer of a freebie, perhaps I will ask if someone in this forum (maybe Steve?) would be willing to fix 'er up.

Hoping to purchase my Skyburner WidowMaker today!

Ken
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Kites: SkyBurner WidowMaker-STD, SkyBurner ProDancer-SUL, Skynasaur Trooper
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