I posted this review on FA already, but Ithink I should put it here as well.
I guess the time came to share some thoughts on the kite that I have been really impressed with for last two months.
I tried not to do it rightaway as I felt I was too excited discovering its abilities each time I was flying it.
Acoustik UL is a kite designed and developed by Konstantin Ratsos from Flykites, Greece (http://www.flykites.eu
My excitement comes also from the fact that I was observing the process of this kite’s development
and after seeing about 10 versions of this kite I finally got to fly the final product.
Reading this small review please keep in mind that I am not a very experienced kite flyer still not a complete novice.
I am still at the learning phase which with this kite is a great experienece. But first things first… some general info…
Height: 81 cm
Weight: 193g + tailweight 12g
Leading edge: 4.5mm cft - Matrix
Spine: 5mm cft - Matrix
Lower spreaders: 5mm cft - Matrix
Upper spreader: 4mm cft - Exel
Stand-offs: 2.5mm – inner, 2mm - outer
Sail: Riptop nylon + Ventex Strong + mylar + PVC + dacron
Acoustik is thought as a custom made kite, so I had a chance to choose my own color scheme (even for the dacrons).
The sail is sewn very neatly. Main panels are made of ripstop nylon and ventex, ripstop LE tunnels.
Reinforcements for sailgrabbers are of a light mylar and dacron pieces shaped nicely to fit into sail panelling.
Nose is covered in a PVC same as the tailweight velcro.
I like the simple solutions used in this kite starting from a simple pultruded carbon frame
through yo-yo stoppers made of cable ties up to PVC pipe slices used to hold the connectors in place – all to keep the kite light.
You can see more details on the images here:https://plus.google.com/photos/100231941530540785601/albums/5851626966548134161
Bridle is set as a 3-point with regulation of the AoA on the uphaul.
You can also add a small turbo –which is rather a compensation to use in turbulent winds.
But to get to the point…
The first thing for me was to change my „mode” of flying.
I was used to flying mostly STD kites, so I had to switch to a lighter, smoother movements for an UL.
Acoustik has a nice wind range starting about 4-5km/h up to 30km/h (which I felt was too risky so I didn’t try higher winds).
The kite is very stable with no oversteer, it does not generate much pull but enough to give a good feedback on the lines.
It stays very responsive. Flying straight lines and sharp corners with precision is easy.
Acoustik feels very well balanced. It goes easily into flare/fade.
The same with a nice and deep turtle still with no problem to return from.
You can also feel the right balance in half axels and cascades/cradles – the pitch seems perfect to me.
What I really like about this kite are spins – flatspins in taz machine or 540s are really flat and nice,
also when it comes to lazy susan rotation (with nice multi lazy) and easily executed cyniques.
Other tricks (which I am able to perform) come also easily and nice – jaccob’s ladder, yo-yo, lewis, backspins.
Also „ground tricks” and start tricks are included – roll-up start, superstart or rising fade.
Flapjack works very nice here as well – the first one I tried (not used to UL kites)
with a stronger pull became a flapjack with a double spin – from one pull!
There is still a lot of tricks which I am still learning or which I didn’t try yet, so I am writing only about those I managed to execute.
You can see much more on Alex Belov’s videos (which I suppose a lot of you have already seen): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJydSVcsF8Mhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4G74Hv9FPy4
They show much more possibilities of Acoustik UL.
I hope Alex as a more experienced pilot will also share his thoughts on this kite.
What may be important to add, I consider Acoustik UL a really good kite for learning tricks.
Looking at my own progress. I used it for 2 months - the weather was not always good
so it is hard to tell how many hours I spend with it. It might be about 10 sessions with 2 hours avarage.
I can count the tricks I learned at this time:
- 540 – never tried it before – came easily
- 2-pop roll-up
- cascade to taz
- a combo of superstart-to-cynique (which I was really surprised with at the begining).
I don’t know if it is much but I feel like evolving using this kite.
Also I gave the kite to a few novice pilots (I hope the guys will not feel offended) to try it.
Right from the first shot they were able to execute lazy susan, flapjack or even a roll-up start.
I have a feeling this might be a good kite to start to learn freestyle with.
Before posting this text I read it once more.
I am sorry for being so enthusiastic about this kite but I can’t help it! I tried to keep as clear-headed
and dispassionte as possible writing this „review”.
I will let you know when I find something that would change my opinion on Acoustik.
For now the only disadvantage is that I find it highly addictive...
To give a full view (or my point of view) below you can find my videos from flying sessions with Acoustik UL:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdnuaO8UYzEhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4ShiFNNC-4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKFp1N2A8lEhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2Iym_2cB3Ihttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6gacqEDfs1Ehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O0DYSdeXbNg
and also a few scenes here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfYZwW1f0Bw&noredirect=1