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Author Topic: Low Wind Flying  (Read 3238 times)
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mikenchico
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« on: June 05, 2009, 02:34 PM »

OK we spend a lot of time talking about what kite is best for low winds but no time talking about HOW to fly in low winds. What are your secrets? I'd start with.

Your wind window is directly in front of you and consists of a verticle area rather then a large bowl. Keep the kite directly downwind as much as possible.

Keep your field, you'll have to step back slowly to gain altitude, but anytime the kite is going down walk forward slowly again.

What tricks are good to gain back field? Cascades can usually be done while moving forward in all but the lightest conditions, are there others?

Fly to the top and turn the kite down or away and walk briskly if you've lost field due to re-launches etc (that's when I loose field) 


Smooth movements

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chilese
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« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2009, 02:54 PM »

I asked Mr. Reed how he could fly standard kites in so little wind.

He wasn't bragging, he simply stated: "It's not a big deal. Just keep your lines tensioned as much as possible."

That simple statement translates into such items as:
Don't oversteer your turns or corners.
Bring a slack line trick back under tension as quickly and smoothly as possible.
Even one line tensioned is enough to keep a kite in the air for a little extra time.
Fly light lines to minimize droop.
Fly lines long enough to get where the wind is.
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mikenchico
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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2009, 03:10 PM »

I'd put in 'mind your slack' twice but never got the idea down quite right, perfect John
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"Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see" John W Lennon

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DWayne
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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2009, 03:14 PM »

Patients. Things happen a lot slower in low wind conditions.


Denny
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ko
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« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2009, 03:20 PM »

Patients. Things happen a lot slower in low wind conditions.


Denny
+1 i like to start with inputs that usually dont get the job done and then gradually increase until it works, but then i like slow and floaty
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have fun kurt
Allen Carter
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« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2009, 03:51 PM »

I generally don't like short lines for very light wind. If I'm going to work to keep the kite in the air, I like to have some altitude to play with.

I've pretty much given up on 50# line for full size (7'+) kites. For years I flew on 75# instead, but lately I've been not bothering with anything but 90#. 50# is just not slippery enough, and doesn't seem to give me any "weight" benefit. I do use it on very small kites.

As previously noted, be gentle with the kite. It's gonna move slow, don't yank.

Line tension is very important. You need to keep the air against the kite. Pull turns rather than push, etc.

Being really familiar with the kite helps. Kites I have a lot of time on I can fly lower and still enjoy. Less thinking, more flying. I can remember watching Dan Whitney tricking a stock, standard weight Gemini for hours while others were flying Vapors. He was just totally in sync with that kite.

Smooth wind. 2MPH of laboratory grade beach wind...

« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 03:54 PM by Allen Carter » Logged

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kiten00b
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« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2009, 07:11 PM »

Quote
Cascades can usually be done while moving forward in all but the lightest conditions, are there others?
They are a bit passé these days, but backspins work well in light winds for gaining ground and flic-flacs  & Jacob's Ladders work in the light stuff, too.
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Steve
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« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2009, 07:18 PM »

Quote
They are a bit passé these days,


In whose world?   Shocked

http://video.yahoo.com/watch/3835287/10478075
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Steve ... Ancient One
-look to the sky with imagination, grasp the wind with outstretched arms and take flight
lylenc
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« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2009, 07:58 PM »

Expand the window by flying down portion of movements at the edge of the window and flying up portion at the center of the window, for example an infinity pattern. Take steps forward and extend arms forward during down portions. Try to use just arm pull for up movements rather than taking steps backwards.

Do an oblong 360 so that you move up wind as much as possible.

Slow cascades with hesitation in flare position as long as possible seem to take less energy than just flare glides from the top of the window. I usually fly with 50' lines, so that may expain why I don't get much flare glide distance compared to someone using longer lines.

Watch trees, smoke, dust, fluff, flags, and other indicators for wind shifts. If wind switches 90 degrees you can have the kite positioned for the change and walk down the former center window line to regain ground, while keeping the kite in the new center window.
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Craig     Walla Walla, WA     Just One More!
johnfarl
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« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2009, 08:25 PM »

Steve you cascading maniac.  You do own the cascade.
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tpatter
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« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2009, 08:28 PM »

How about the 360 for low wind - hehe!  Smiley

Actually, thats the one I like to do most when other folks are standing around waiting for wind.  Looks impressive and its a crowd pleaser for sure!  Smiley

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fidelio
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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2009, 04:57 AM »

i've given up on short lines in light wind as well. even when there's nothing you can feel at the ground if you can get your kite up 40 feet off the ground you can many times find a breeze up there.

when trying to make up field position (moving forward again), many places will teach you some version of a downwind glide, but it's important when doing this to start moving forward before your kite is pointing towards the ground. start moving your feet when the nose of your kite is pointed sideways, halfway through the turn. also, when you're at the bottom of your glide, make sure to initiate your turn twice as high off the ground as you would normally. the light wind and the motion of the kite means it will turn much more slowly than expected.
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Fˇdeli°
inewham
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« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2009, 02:58 PM »

Resist the urge to pump the lines - while a nice controlled pump is useful, every frantic pump is followed by a stall.

Learn to fly away absolutely on the edge of stalling, learn to zig-zag gently.

Use tricks that need lots of slack and help gain ground like helicopters, flat spins, backspin cascades, 180 to a landing, slow rising cascades, taz-machines.
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anOldMan
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« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2009, 04:06 AM »

Steve you cascading maniac.  You do own the cascade.

And I have not heard The Iron Butterfly is very lone years. Good song even if the title is impossible to pronounce.
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Hill  :-? :-?   What hill?   I don't remember any HILL!!  :-? :-?

anOldMan
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