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My First Flight Report


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#1 LS Kite Stakes

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 07:42 PM

I drove out to Port Townsend WA and picked up my dad from his home, and continued on to Fort Worden State Park. We set up on the north beach on the other side of the Kenzie Battery. After setting my dad up with the Ascension single line in the new reel I have made, I pulled the Rev out and set it up. I used the SLE rods. I managed to unwind the line with no macramé issues! One thing I should note, this beach is short, with sand and rocks. Not the ideal place to try a new kite. The winds were about 10 to 15 MPH, with a few light gusts. With the kite ready to go, I picked up the handles, took a deep breath, and rocked the handles back with a tug. The kite took flight, and did the nicest 40 foot arc, while I was furiously trying to correct the unanticipated turn, and it crashed into the ground leading edge first with a loud BANG! OK, I will admit it, I lost my head, could not remember which way to turn handles. :kid_brooding: After a few more tries, I finally managed some semblance of control, and was able to turn left and right across the wind window. I tried to find the hover, that is difficult! I would get it for a moment, the it would start to move forward and the wind would catch it, and it would take off. I can see a real big learning ahead! I did manage to get reverse flight, and was able to reverse launch a few times. My dad, who is 80, found this all very entertaining, and offered observations and sage advice on a few occasions. I flew the kite for nearly 2 hours, getting better and better at it. I even did some dive stops!

Now for the ugly. I noticed after a particularly hard "oops!" the right tip at the leading edge looked funny. So I landed the kite, staked the handles, and went to look. I found the last three inches of the LE broken off! :kid_frustrated: I decided that it was time to put it up, enough fun for the day. Now I got to find a spare $18 to buy a replacement rod!
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#2 Sailor99

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 07:47 PM

That is really bad luck on the leading edge. Normally the SLE would take the first flight battering.

Sounds like you did really well though. A reverse take off on a maiden flight is excellent. Well done!
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#3 Love2fly

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 08:49 PM

Well done! :clap; Too bad with the SLE...things happen and you learn from it and move on. Enjoy.
Laura
 
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#4 brad

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 02:48 AM

Welcome to the darkside :sign_kitelife:

#5 Aerochic

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 04:08 AM

Sounds like you had a very productive first outing! I think you'll find that you learn something new with each flying session, but Congratulations for sticking to it and not letting the kite intimidate you! I'm surprised that you broke an SLE Rod tho! Those things take alot of abuse! (which is good when you're starting out). One thing I really really do recommend is replacing that SLE set of rods with 3 wraps. Despite it's durability, I found the SLE very difficult to learn with. I've noticed the most improvement in my learning process once I changed out the rods. Breaking the SLE might have been a blessing in disguise.

My dad, who is 80, found this all very entertaining, and offered observations and sage advice on a few occasions.


This made me laugh as my own Dad does the same thing! He's always telling me "you can't fly a kite without a tail", Snickers!

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#6 quaa714

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 04:47 AM

Gotta agree with Aerochic. While the SLE is durable, except in your case....oops, the 3 wrap is a lot less stiff and offers much more flex. That flex is key in learning the capabilities of the kite. The SLE also does not allow the kite to gather and hold the wind as well as the smaller LEs, thereby making it harder to fly with the SLE on lower wind days.

Over all tho, sounds like you are off to a great start. Keep it up!

"Cya in the Sand!....."

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#7 steveb

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 06:59 AM

I noticed after a particularly hard "oops!" the right tip at the leading edge looked funny. So I landed the kite, staked the handles, and went to look. I found the last three inches of the LE broken off!

If I lived nearby, I'd happily give you a set of spare SLE spars.
Other than using them for banner poles or using them for a big SLK, I don't think I'll ever use the 9 SLEs that I have. :unsure:
Maybe there is another Rev flier near you that has a set of SLEs getting dusty.

#8 LS Kite Stakes

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 07:48 AM

I do have a set of 1/4" 3 wraps in the bag, but I stuck the SLE rods in because I thought there was less chance of breaking them. Bazzer does live nearby in Lakewood, but I have never met him, and I am not that forward to contact him out of the blue like that. One thought I had was to do a temporary repair to the rod I have. To do this I was going to machine a aluminum tube for a sliding fit inside the spar, cut it off at about 2 inches long and machine it as thin as I could. I would epoxy it in the tube at the break. I do have a home machine shop and this would not take me long on my 75 year old lathe. This should do until I was able to procure a replacement rod. I know I am going to get flamed for this, but consider it my learning spar, and when I get better, I will not need it! I have a sail for a diamond kite that is 7 feet tall, and I need spars for it! If anyone is willing, I will pay for shipping on a set of unwanted SLE spars! :sign_kitelife:
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#9 RevWizard

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 07:54 AM

If I lived nearby, I'd happily give you a set of spare SLE spars.
Other than using them for banner poles or using them for a big SLK, I don't think I'll ever use the 9 SLEs that I have. :unsure:
Maybe there is another Rev flier near you that has a set of SLEs getting dusty.

There are a bunch of REV fliers in Washington state that might be willing to part with their, never to be used again, SLE rods.
Unfortunately most are to the south of you. I suspect Watty might be the closest.

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#10 Jim Foster

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 09:48 AM

Use your 3 wrap spars. If the wind is too high, switch to a vented. We also use 3 wrap in the vented Revs. If the wind is too strong for that, we slide a 2 wrap leading edge in above the 3 wrap.

We now use the big SLE rods for staking our tomatoes. They make great pea shooters too.
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#11 Kitelife

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 10:16 AM

Knowing that you're on a stock SLE... Another thing that will probably help a lot, research "tuning" on these forums.

By lengthening your top lines (by way of an extension on the handles) anywhere from 4-6", you'll likely gain a great deal more control and the kite won't tend to rush forward so quickly. ;)

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#12 Sailor99

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 11:17 AM

Suggest you don't try the repair. You will introduce a "hard spot" onto the leading edge which will cause excessive loading either side of the repair. I think you will risk another break. You were unlucky to get a break this time, but next time it could go even worse and punch a hole in your frame sleeve. And a few $ spent on a new SLE rod has to be far better than totalling your new kite.......
Over - Jeremy

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#13 big bri

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 11:44 AM

Unlucky bud,Keep flying and smiling.

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#14 GUSTY

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 11:57 AM

Flyers here are echoing the thing I was told the first day I flew my REV SLE (bought used): toss the SLE, put in a 2 or 3 wrap. Which I did: a 2 wrap that day given to me by the very nice lass who was teaching me. She uses a Race Spar instead of the 2 wrap. Don't know how the SLE performs- never used it. I tried to give it away that day and found no takers.

#15 RevWizard

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 11:58 AM

We now use the big SLE rods for staking our tomatoes. They make great pea shooters too.

Texas peas?

Long John (formerly Mr. R)

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#16 Sailor99

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 12:04 PM

Before the SLE gets a real pasting.........

Everything people have said here is of course right. However, in a real blow a SLE comes into its own. I know you can shove in a 3W and 4W. But IMHO a SLE is simpler and stiff enough to hold up to a gale. Bigbri recently gave me a teabag with a SLE and I have to say when it is really blowing it make a really nice cuppa. Also as a beginners rod, it has a lot going for it.
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#17 big bri

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 12:20 PM

I have to agree.Ya just may need it again oneday.Everyboby usually starts with the sle rods


BRIAN...

#18 LS Kite Stakes

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 12:26 PM

The higher wind factor is one of the reasons I want to replace the spar, as well as learning to fly this thing. I think I need to stay away from beaches with rocks for now. Until I have my crash factor reduced significantly, sandy beaches and grassy fields are for me! I will break out (is that a bad choice of words?) my 3 wrap spars when I get to ocean shores next time, I promise.

My offer still stands on paying for shipping on any unwanted SLE rods, and not just for the rev. I want to use them as the frame in a large diamond kite sail I have, the vertical part at least.
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#19 Jeepster

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 01:14 PM

RS ...

You might go over to the KiteLife Magazine site and bring up the archived Vol 13 Issue 2 of Kite Lines ... check out page 47.

http://kitelife.com/...mp;showfile=476

The bamboo "splint" should give you the flex necessary to reduce the stress at the end of the splint.

Cheers,
Tom

#20 quaa714

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 01:47 PM

Before the SLE gets a real pasting.........

Everything people have said here is of course right. However, in a real blow a SLE comes into its own. I know you can shove in a 3W and 4W. But IMHO a SLE is simpler and stiff enough to hold up to a gale..... Also as a beginners rod, it has a lot going for it.


Agree about it being a great beginner rod. I put my unused SLE in my old EXP and use it as a teaching kite for new flyers.

In a heavy wind, Ive found that a combined 3w & 4w still offers more flex and better flight characteristics than the very stiff SLE. This while offering equal amts of protection against potential breaks/snaps and hard landings.

"Cya in the Sand!....."

"Slack lines are fine lines!"


"You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows" BD
"One good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain" BM
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