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Line winding with minimal twists/tangles, iQuad style...


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#1 Kitelife

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 12:10 PM

There has been a lot of discussion regarding line winding methods, most particularly minimizing the twists or tangles in your lines as you set up your kite each time.

I've tried everything over the years... Halo spools on a drill (fast wind), two winders, one winder, winding on the handles, tying pairs together, tying all four together, straight wind, figure eight wind... In my experience, nothing I've tried thus far compares with the method we've used religiously on iQuad over the past 3 years... We don't even think about our lines anymore, except which weight or length to use. <grin>

Three minutes to set up, three minutes to tear down... No more 20-30 minute untangling sessions. ;)

==

Here's the formula for a reliable one-winder affair, starting with your kite leading edge down, staked at the top of the handles (i.e. secure on the ground) and no more than a 1/2 twist in the lines:

1. At the kite end, disconnect the left lines, then larks head your top line onto the bottom line's sleeving and slide it down to the knot... This should leave the bottom line effectively pulled out further than the top line (I'll explain this later).

2. Repeat the same technique with the right side, then put both sets in one hand so you have the two bottom loops together like two lines, with both top lines attached at the knot(s) on the bottom line sleeving.

3. Although all four lines are in one hand now, you should only be holding the bottom loops in your fingers as you place those two onto the notch in your winder.

3. Wind straight or figure eight, doesn't make a single bit of difference in twisting... It only effects your winding motion, and how the line sits on the winder... I very much prefer a straight wind as it tends to be neater, and I can fit more line into less space on the winder.

** NOTE: You've now attached your bottom loops to the winder, without twisting them prior... As you wind, the winder is NOT rotating or twisting in any way, it's only going to move up and down, in and out, as you make your way to the handles... Simply, there are no twists thus far in the process, it's literally impossible because nothing rotates. (part 2 in the next section)

4. As you finish winding and are approaching the handles, wind down to ground so as not to lift the handles which might allow them to spin (twist)... As you pick up the handles, they should fairly well fold right over the winder so you can strap the whole thing down (securely).

** NOTE: Again I'll point out that the loops (kite end) haven't rotated, and the handles haven't rotated either, not significantly anyway... Ergo, no excessive twists, literally impossible because you've in theory brought the four points at either end together, spooling the line cleanly in-between... You might end up with a twist or two as you inadvertently allow one pair (R or L) to twist somewhere, go through each other once, or perhaps at the handle end.

** NOTE 2: The reason the handles are probably going to fold over the winder so nicely is the fact that we first staggered the top and bottom lines at the kite end before winding... We pulled the bottom lines out further (by 4"-6") which conversely pulled the bottom of the handles forward at the other end, setting the handles up for a neat fold over at the end. ;)

** NOTE 3: I typically leave my handles on, but if you must remove yours, be sure to reverse the method you used at the kite end... Instead, you'll be larks heading the BOTTOM lines onto the top lines, so the tops are extending further out, opposite of the other end, taking out most of the slack (uneven lengths) in the lines.

** NOTE 4: Using this method correctly, it should be impossible for a twist or tangle to form that would warrant disconnecting one line and worming it out, shouldn't EVER be necessary, because again, we've worked with fixed pairs and non-rotation at either end, you should be able to get any twist out simply by rotating the handles together, individually, or putting one through the other every now and then... Disconnecting a line generally causes more trouble than it solves, unless you're working with a real pile of spaghetti. :)

==

Setting up:

1. Stick a stake in the ground.

2. Unstrap your winder, place the TOP of your handles onto the stake (like locking the kite in forward) and walk downwind with the winder in a position that allows it to rock freely (but secure in your hand)... Everything should pop-pop-pop-pop right off, all the way to the end.

3. Take the loops off your winder and put one in each hand, pulling some tension into the lines and spreading your arms to centralize the (apparent) twists a little, but don't try too hard... Working with one side first, separate one pair (top and bottom R or L), then attach to the kite, repeat with the other side.

** NOTE: DO NOT muck with what you think are twists yet, just hook up the kite, place it leading edge down on the ground and walk back to the handles.

4. Picking up your handles carefully so as not to accidentally launch, then waggle one brake line (watching for one side of the kite to wiggle) in order to identify your R/L handles and arrange them accordingly.

5. Now, using the handles, draw tension into all four lines with a conscious mind on your control of the kite... 90%-95% of what appeared to be twists should cancel each other out, leaving 1-3 twists, shouldn't be any more than this if you've done everything right.

==

I generally teach this one in person, but figured it was time to break it down thoroughly for those who rely on forum information between events. ;)

Post back here, share your successes or failures with this method, I'll be happy to clarify if prompted.

==

UPDATE - Video tutorial now available on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cuw3vBD50hs

John Barresi

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#2 lummas

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 12:21 PM

I can certainly concur that this works great. We discovered this method back in the late 90's as Sky Dance and Jeanette and I have been using it ever since, sometimes handles on and sometimes off. It works every time!!

Thanks John for writing it out.

Mark.
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#3 Felix Mottram

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 12:33 PM

<snip>
5. Now, using the handles, draw tension into all four lines with a conscious mind on your control of the kite... 90% of what appeared to be twists should cancel each other out, leaving 1-3 twists, shouldn't be more than this if you've done everything right.
<snip>


I concur with everything you have said but even experienced fliers may be spooked by the very occasional multiple apparent lock-ups.

If the lines have been wound with very slightly different tensions it may be necessary to pull them back into alignment to release them. This will require a helper. The last time I did this was down at Portsmouth for one of the Decs this last weekend. Ironically, it is the confidence that all [Edit] 'will' be well very quickly with a very short determined effort that wins the day.

Felix

Edited by Felix Mottram, 01 September 2009 - 12:46 PM.


#4 Simon

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 01:02 PM

==

I generally teach this one in person, but figured it was time to break it down thoroughly for those who rely on forum information between events. ;)

Post back here, share your successes or failures with this method, I'll be happy to clarify if prompted.


Hi JB I should be flying with you guys, been doing it this way since...And very well written.

Well anyway, Anyone in the UK want to see this method just come and see me, and I can show you.

Mark, can you have a word with #4 please he still winds from Handles to kite :huh: oh well, "tricks new dog old teach can't an"- rearrange to suit :)

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#5 RevWizard

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 01:36 PM

Mark, can you have a word with #4 please he still winds from Handles to kite :huh: oh well, "tricks new dog old teach can't an"- rearrange to suit :)

I am also one of those guys that, very successfully, winds from handles to the kite. Maybe 5% of the time the other way.

Long John (formerly Mr. R)

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#6 Mitch

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 02:11 PM

First, I am a bit in awe that I'm getting advice from the very John Barresi. I've admired your work for some time. Thanks for the careful explanation.

I keep my a finger between the two line sets, R and L as I wrap. If you do a straight wind, every time your hand circles the stationary winder it puts one twist into the lines. Am I correct that all those twists come back out as you rock the lines off the front of the winder? Do you ever try to separate your handles when you are trying to get the tangles out, (especially after a flight) If you don't untie one line, do you pass the handles through the lines as a first step or try to rotate them first? This may be an entirely intuitive process based on the tangle you see, but if there is a trick I'd sure like to know it.

Thanks again
Mitch

#7 FortFlyer

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 02:30 PM

I usually unwind from handle side out then wind from handle side to kite, This rotates the twist area on the lines and keeps them from being worn in 1 area prematurely. (But I have no problems with tangles)

My biggest form of advice to give that seems to have worked for most is.

" Take your time while winding and it will save you 10 times that extra minute or 2 while unwinding "

That's as simple as it can get. ;)
Jim,
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#8 LS Kite Stakes

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 04:42 PM

I am one of JB's students and I use his method with 100% success. Taking your time and using care and a cool head is one of the more important things to remember when a snafu happens. If a major macramé' issue does befall you, do not try to pull it out by pulling on the ends of the lines, this will make it much much worse. I made a huge mistake with a 50# 120' LPG quad set and ended up with about 60% of the set in a total rats nest. I realized it was nothing more than loops through loops through loops that were through more loops. I sat down in a camp chair with the macramé' ball in my lap and spent about 2 hours carefully pulling it all out. I never disconnected the kite or handles from the lines the entire time, just took my time and stopped whenever I felt myself beginning to tense up from frustration.
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#9 lummas

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 05:09 PM

Hey, I have to admit that I do it from either end (when I am not going to leave the handles on) and it works just as well either way. Also, I sometimes do have my finger between the pairs when winding and sometimes do not bother. Doesn't make a great deal of difference either. BTW - I too wind stright, not figure 8.

Just FYI

Mark.

#10 Major Hostility

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 06:05 PM

I've been using this approach all summer without a hitch. I find that "straight" winding works better for me than "figure 8" winding.

3. Take the loops off your winder and put one in each hand, pulling some tension into the lines and spreading your arms to centralize the (apparent) twists a little, but don't try too hard... Working with one side first, separate one pair (top and bottom R or L), then attach to the kite, repeat with the other side.

This part, separating each pair and then stretching out and back (from the staked handles), is really helpful as it will remove most of what look like twists when you first unwind.


4. Picking up your handles carefully so as not to accidentally launch, then waggle one brake line (watching for one side of the kite to wiggle) in order to identify your R/L handles and arrange them accordingly.

At this point, I usually use the method John shows in the B-Series DVD, holding both handles together and rotating both of them to the left or the right until the last of the left/right winds come out. I usually have to do a few rotations to each handle afterwards to get everything lined up. I'm thinking that perhaps I'm not careful enough near the end of the winding process when I pull the handles off of the stake. I'll have to watch that going forward.

#11 Jynx

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 11:01 PM

JB ~ Been using your technique since the Rev cinic in TI!

When it used to take 20 minutes... (you're right) it's 3 or so now! ...AND I'M BLOND!

THANKS MUCH!

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then there will be peace"

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#12 Dean750

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 01:02 AM

It worked for a couple of tries after I was given the "discription" of how to wind quad lines. I held my line card out when we were breaking down after the "discription" and was quickly told to do it myself. :lol:
I still spend a few minutes..... or more.

Start and end windnig with 2 loops on a finger. I've taken to taking the handles off right after the kite comes off the lines. Pair them with the mate. I even put the top loop end of the lines on a stake to seperate and untwist the lines, Pulling tension on all four lines side by side looking for a line thats saggy. Strait, untwisted lines.

Some how I manage to put a couple funky wraps in my lines set just about everytime I touch them. :lol:

This would be easier with a roady.....

#13 REVflyer

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 03:45 AM

I wind towards the kite onto the handles directly.

Unwind away from a well placed stake
that is holding all four lines as two pairs (top and bottom separated as 2 halves/or sides) and separate the handles
to move any tangles towards the stake
before affixing the kite.

It's two trips down to the other end of the lines for set-up and break-down but absolutely fool-proof.

Since I never remove the handles, any major adjustments to line lengths can be made on the leaders. I use hi-test bridle line and no sleeving (which certainly lessens the tangle opportunities!) Without sleeving it's very easy to adjust minor differences by simply adding another knot into the longest loop. A "picker knot" is placed into the loop, so lines can be released from the bridle, even with gloves on.

Several individuals I've shown this method to have adopted it and complimented me on the simplicity, it's so logical. You must remember to unwind the lines from the handle, not just feeding off the loops like thread from a spool. Move you hand around the handles taking off each wrap individually and under tension. Pull the handles up tight at the end of the lines and separate them to as wide as your reach is possible. Any tangles will travel down to the stake, where they can be removed before affixing onto the bridle of the kite.

Since I use magix sticks/training wheels, the kite does not need to be placed under tension & inverted to launch singlehandedly. In fact it's great fun to roll the kite into the lines and do an "unrolling launch"!

Always wind-up your own lines like you intended to sell 'em. The worst troubles happen when you let somebody else do it for you.

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#14 Hezz

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 04:07 AM

Perfect description JB, this is what I have been doing for years, never got on with the winding from handles to kite method, best to do it with tension on the lines (kite to staked handles) as in your method.

thanks
Hezz

#15 awindofchange

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 10:09 AM

Ok, I must butt in here for a second.

Everything that has been said is pretty much spot on and great advice. If you have multiple Rev's and share linesets and handles between them all then this is probably the best way to take care of your lines.

That being said.....what if you only have one Rev?

Well, most beginners who are having difficulty with their lines do only have one Rev, one lineset and one set of handles. So here's what I tell people when they are first starting out.

Leave the lines completely attached!!!

If you are not going to be swapping lines from one Rev to another, there's really no reason to undo the lines at all. And what was said to me when I first started is "If you put the kite away with all four lines straight and connected right, they will be that way when you get it out again".

So here's what I recommend for people who only have one Rev and don't want to disconnect/reconnect the lines every time. We'll start with putting the kite away after flying first.

1) make sure all lines are straight with no twists and land the kite. Stake it down either leading edge up or down, doesn't matter.

2) Grab your Rev sleeve and winder, walk to the kite. From behind the kite, move it forward about 5 feet to slack the lines and carefully take the kite down and roll it up. Your flying lines still attached. This will give you a little bit of slack with the lines as they are wrapped around the kite a couple wraps as you roll the kite up. Don't worry about the flying lines at all.

3) Slide the kite into the sleeve, letting all four lines run out of the sleeve on the top.

4) Tuck the sleeve under your arm and pull any slack out of the lines so that all four lines are tight against the stake / handles.

5) Start winding all four lines onto your winder - start about 6 inches from the end of the sleeve. You may have some extra slack line drooping down between the winder and the kite, that is normal. Start winding with all four lines tight against the stake. Wind the lines snug onto the winder, not loose. Keep winding all the way up to your handles.

6) When you get close to your handles make sure that you DO NOT PULL THE HANDLES OFF OF YOUR STAKE!!! You need to wind right down to the ground so your handles stay staked to the ground. If you pull the handles off of the stake they will flip, twist and spin giving you twists in your lines that you will have to take back out when you re-set up your kite. Wind DOWN to your handles about 6-8 inches from them and then secure the lines with the bungee on the winder.

7) Carefully stuff any extra drooping line into the bag as you carefully slide the lines and winder into the top of the sleeve. Slide the winder down in the sleeve as far as possible - at least 12" or more. Once you get the winder inside the sleeve, carefully pick the handles up off the stake so they don't flip around and slide them into the top of the bag above the winder. Slide them down far enough so that you can secure the top of the bag by either folding over the flap or pulling the drawstring - depending on which type of sleeve you have.

8) Pull your stake out of the ground and your ready to depart. :) Don't forget your stake.

Ok, now we come to setting the kite up to fly the next day:

1) Stick stake into the ground firm.

2) Carefully pull the handles out of the bag, keeping them from twisting, flipping of going inside themselves. Set them on the stake so that either the brake lines or top lines are on the stake (depending on which way you packed the kite up the last time - either leading edge up or leading edge down). If you can't remember which way you packed it away last time, just stake one end - it should be fine.

3) carefully slide the lines out of the bag - again keeping them from flipping or twisting. Undo the bungee and start walking backwards as you let the lines back off the winder.

4) When you get to the end of the winder and all the line is out, carefully slide the kite out of the bag, unroll and set it up. All four lines should separate as you set the kite up. Park the kite either leading edge up or down depending on how you set your handles on the stake.

5) grab the bag, walk up to your stake, carefully pick up the handles and within one or two twists (if any) you should be ready to launch!

I usually pick up the handles and then slide the bag onto the stake with either the draw string or handle of the bag so that 1 - my bag doesn't blow away and 2 - so myself and others can easily see the stake in the ground.

I don't want to contradict anything that has been said above, it is all very sound and solid advice. But if you only have one Rev, many people who I have taught seem to have very good luck doing their lines this way and I hope that it helps anyone else out there who is also struggling with their lines.

The main bit of advice is that once you find a way to do your lines that works - stick with it!!! There really isn't any one true right way to put away your lines. Basically if it works for you and you don't end up in a huge tangle - that's the right way to do it! :)

Hope this helps.

#16 Dean750

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Posted 02 September 2009 - 04:29 PM

Great thread. It's a good feeling knowing your not the only Rev Nerd out there. :P

One that has a little bit of all these methods is basically how I manage when I'm not over excited and in a hurry.

Lines on the winder as stated by JB and others have said. Left and right sides attached to one another. I would never recomend connecting one side to the other, basically starting and ending with one loop. Recently put a knot in my 50# 40'ers trying that method. Still working on the knot, but learned my lesson.

I just unbungee, put the loops over a finger and get the first tangle out if there is one within the first 12" or so. (I pull one loop through the other sometimes when I'm in a hurry :rolleyes: ) Leave the sides attached (top to bottom or vice versa) and put the loops on the stake. I normally lay my stake holder over the first side and then put the other side on the stake.
Unwind and with one loop over a finger on each hand, spread my arms gentally bouncing the lines if need be to get the lines separated to as close to the stake as I can.
Attach kite to lines, lay the kite bridle down LE toward your stake. Make sure before you leave the kite that no end caps are wrapped and the bridle hangs freely from the kite before you lay it down. (Get to that in a second)
On the way back to the stake, before all four lines come together stick a finger in between the seperate sides. With your free hand, unstake the loops keeping them pinched between a couple of fingers or so. Slide your finger up the lines toward the loops. Any twists or through one anothers are concentrated in a small area and you shouldn't have any trouble seeing any problems.
Walts Marble stakes work well here. Hang your stake through the loops. Let the tip of the stake just touch the ground so it doesn't flip outta the loops and now using that hand pinch all four lines together and hold them firm and still behind your finger between the lines. As you slide your finger toward the loops the twists should just spin out. Tangles you still may have to do by hand, but they're in a small area so it's not as hard or frustrating. Attach handles and all ya gotta do now untwist individual sides if necessary and stand the kite up and fly away.

Just another way. With all these choices it's hard to see how lines should continue being a problem if you have problems with your lines. I just can't win, so I just continue to spin the bottle and see what kinda puzzle I get next time I'm out. :P

Ok, the kite is still belly down, LE toward you. Doesn't matter which hand you start with but gently tug the top line. Which ever hand you tug on, that side of the kite should slide toward you. Keep doing that till you can see the end of the end cap. Stop tugging on that hand. With the other hand, pull those lines strait, but not tight. Now gently tug on the brake line of that hand.
When done right this method spins the whole kite 180 degrees and when it pops up ready to fly it's inverted. Get the hang of this and you won't have to make that last trip back out to set the kite up. Comes in handy in cutting the walks of shame down a bit in other situations too :) I'd of given up trying to learn the dive stop axle if I'd of had to walk out after all my failed attempts.

Dean :blushing:

Edited by Dean750, 02 September 2009 - 04:35 PM.


#17 antman

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Posted 03 September 2009 - 02:38 AM

my method ha never failed me.. however i quad has to do this because of how many line sets they have .. to wrap them on handles would mean carring a bulky bag of some sort.. for local flying i use my own method because i only have a few line sets and i found this method top be the best..

1 assemble your kite

2 take both left and right lines off of the handles

3 tie them to the kite

4 lay the kite leading edge down

5 with one hand on the lines themselves use the other to un wind the lines untill you get to the ends

6 you are now ready to fly

once yop master this both setup and take down can be done in minutes and you dont have to untie your lines from the handles

taking the kite down

1 land the kite LE down

2 walk foward and lat the kite lay flat

3 pull your top leaders down towards the bottom of the handles and you lower leaders towards the handle tops at this point they should all meet in the middle

4 start to wind up your lines

5 unhook one side from the kite and ties the loops together with a lark head.. repeat with the other side

6 now your ready to leave the field

i hope this helps for everybody
GOD PUT ME HERE. TO ENJOY THE WINDS

#18 REVflyer

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Posted 03 September 2009 - 03:12 AM

antman,
if when you unwrap the handles, you placed the sleeved loops onto a well placed stake, instead of directly onto the kite
you can check lines for adjustments before hooking onto the bridle. It's just one small difference but it keeps everything perfectly tuned as a matter of habit.

It's a first thing to do with every new line set anyway (or any pilots that struggle with their overall control).

#19 Scott_of_melnsct

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Posted 03 September 2009 - 06:02 AM

5 unhook one side from the kite and ties the loops together with a lark head.. repeat with the other side

6 now your ready to leave the field

i hope this helps for everybody



I hope I'm around the next time you do this Ant. According to these instructions you're leaving your kite behind.
Scott A Koenig
Founding member: Tennessee Wind Militia
"We muster to fly at a moment's notice"

#20 Jeepster

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Posted 03 September 2009 - 07:00 AM

... Setting up: ...

3. Take the loops off your winder and put one in each hand, pulling some tension into the lines and spreading your arms to centralize the (apparent) twists a little, but don't try too hard... Working with one side first, separate one pair (top and bottom R or L), then attach to the kite, repeat with the other side.

** NOTE: DO NOT muck with what you think are twists yet, just hook up the kite, place it leading edge down on the ground and walk back to the handles.


Let's see; I've collected seven Revs plus four other quad kites, seven line sets, and nine handle sets. That yields 693 unique kite-handle-line set combinations. Unless I'm caught in the rain or are making a quick move to another field, the lines always come off both kite and handles.

One additional suggestion: When you spread the line pairs to reduce the amount of apparent twists, I find that a little "extra" tugging on first one pair and then the second will help unravel the twists. That approach is needed on Shanti lines more so than LPG.

Great write up, thanks.
Tom




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