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Author Topic: Low Wind Flying Tips For The Newbs  (Read 1905 times)
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chilese
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« on: June 20, 2013, 03:32 PM »

General guidelines for flying a kite in light wind.

1 Choose the best flying (not tricking) kite you have for the wind range.

2 Use 50# or 90# line.

3 Know the direction of the wind (cigarette smoke is the best indicator) (I don't smoke).
    This sounds obvious, but low wind direction can change often.

4 Set the bridle for best flying (not tricking).

5 Keep tension on at least 1 line, hopefully both.
     Never let the lines go slack unless you are setting up a trick.

6 Fly horizontal Figure 8s with a DOWNWARD turn at each end.
     This means you'll be climbing the kite through the middle of the window.

7 Walk forward anytime the kite is moving downward, although not enough
      to stall or flare the kite.

8 Stay well away from buildings, trees or other tall objects.

9 Turns should be gradual with minimal hand movement or corrections.
     Set your turn hand position, then lock your elbows against your side.
     Only change the turn radius if you are going to hit something or someone.

I'm better than I was in low wind, but not as good as I'd like to be.

My go-to setup in very low wind:
   Benson Inner Space
   50# line, either 50 or 100 feet

Please feel free to add or modify.

This is mainly for the newer fliers. It's a journey.  Smiley

« Last Edit: June 20, 2013, 03:37 PM by chilese » Logged

John Chilese: Las Vegas, NV
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« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2013, 07:39 PM »

Thank you Chilese for the great information!

I started flying last year in May and found summer flying very difficult due to the lack of wind.  I quickly picked up a 4d to maximize my summer flying (and a vented Rev for the fall and winter winds).  Although a bit twitchy, I slowly learned to stay airborne.
   Although many flyers can get the most low end out of any kite, I think it is important for a beginner to have a kite that is as forgiving as possible for low winds. I recently obtained a used/new Ocius SUL to maximize my summer tricks also.  (Very happy with this kite)
   Today I flew in 2-4mph winds with 0mph mixed in and only touched earth due to tip wraps(my fault,,, I know more slack). My skills in low winds have certainly improved over time, but the kite does help.  I"ve flown my zephyr on short lines, no upper spreader and it has never been this easy. 
   I'm not trying to get everyone to buy a light wind kite, but if you are as addicted as many of us are.... ya may want to invest.

1. Look for the cleanest wind possible- my trick is hold my arm out, thumb up... if the tree/building line is just a tad bigger than your finger nail, you should be GOOD!

2. Fingers on the lines- it allows you to feel tension much better.  As i discovered today, too much slack isn't good either in low wind. Good advice Rob B gave me the other day was to "guide" the kite through the trick nice and slow(really helped me today!)

3.(should be 1)  MOVE!!!!! they are called SPORT kites... walk backwards to maintain tension and forward to gain ground.  you will NEVER do a 360 standing in one spot.

  Being a NEWB myself, maybe my perspective can help some too Smiley

Great idea Chilese!!!!
jim
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indigo_wolf
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« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2013, 08:08 PM »

From Mr. Barresi

ATB,
Sam
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ko
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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2013, 08:49 PM »

Watched J.B. fly a toxic green exile in pretty much 0-1 a few years ago not just flying but tricking  J.C. was there also He is definitely no slouch in the light air game himself... The inner space was a kite I could fly in no wind But I did not enjoy it so I passed it on and wait for 1-2 Thanks for the topic
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have fun kurt
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« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2013, 11:31 PM »

I would edit guideline #3, John.

Cigars work a whole lot better.

I dont smoke either.
I Just put one in my mouth always when flying
 to know when the wind is changing direction. 

            Cool
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zippy8
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« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2013, 11:33 PM »

The first rule of low wind kite flying is you keep your feet moving.
The second rule of low wind kite flying is you keep your feet moving.

Mike,
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Virtual Freestyle - ǝlʎʇsǝǝɹɟ lɐnʇɹıʌ
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« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2013, 11:34 PM »

The 3rd rule is don't let the cigar go out. 
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tpatter
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« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2013, 11:47 PM »

Slack line management is even more critical in very little wind. 

It's far easier to generate slack in little wind, but it's also much more difficult to recover from too much slack.  The wind is not there to help you out and you either have to backup, keep tricking/spinning, or just use the right amount of slack in order to maintain control.

Once you get used to it, 2-4 is like magic with a tricky SUL - slower, easier, lots of control.

Good luck!  May we all someday develop the skills to fly like JW in low winds - he's a true low wind kung fu master.
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6 kite tom
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« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2013, 06:23 AM »



This is mainly for the newer fliers. It's a journey.  Smiley








"PREACH IT JONNY"     Grin   IT TRULY IS    Kiss
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TJC
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« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2013, 06:30 AM »

Where is the like button!!!! Great thread. Thx for starting.

Great advice here for a newbie. Checking out this weekend's weather report for New Jersey looks like i'll get a chance to to put some of these techniques to work! First stop, the smoke shop!!!!!
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lylenc
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« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2013, 08:10 AM »

For non-smokers, a 12" ribbon tail attached to the end of a 3' long wood/fiberglass dowel is a good wind indicator. Stake it at an angle by your kite bag so the tail just barely clears the ground (less obstruction when kite lines go over it).  Works great for detecting wind changes while learning low wind skills and for really shifty days. With experience, most wind direction changes can be felt in the lines as the kite moves in and out of the window. 
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Craig     Walla Walla, WA     Just One More!
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« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2013, 08:41 AM »

Learn where any flags our banners. You can learn what you can fly based on that.
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Sine Metu!
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« Reply #12 on: June 21, 2013, 09:41 AM »

I like low wind flying.  Tricks like multi lazys and 540 can be done in extremely slow motion.  For 540, I actually need to walk a couple of steps backward in very low wind to regain tension after the spin.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2013, 09:43 AM by rudyy » Logged
lylenc
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« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2013, 05:22 PM »

5b Manage the slack lines. Don't step on or over them.
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Craig     Walla Walla, WA     Just One More!
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« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2013, 06:54 PM »

Regarding Zippy's advice and the whole feet moving thing:

My own special advice:  It's dancing, not flying.

Change of mindset, that's all
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