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Street protection

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#1 kwmf


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 05:51 AM

On another thread RevFlyer (if I recall) mentioned something about some people applying tape to the leading edge to protect their Rev against tar and concrete when street flying on such hard surfaces.

What measures/mods do people put in place (if any) for such environments?


#2 jburka


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 07:28 AM

I don't bother with anything...

#3 AldenMiler


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 07:33 AM

Laura uses lights to soften the blow...


"Don't go in there!" RC

#4 John Barresi

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 09:33 AM

I don't bother either.

My protection? Fly cleaner. :)

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#5 kwmf


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 09:43 AM

My protection? Fly cleaner. :)

If I could fly half as good as you, I wouldn't bother either ;)

The trouble is 1) I'm still learning, and 2) with the poor exchange rate I need to care for my equipment as much as possible.

Plastic endcaps are easily replaced, its more the leading edge and other non consumable parts I'm concerned about.

If anyone wants to sponsor my learning I'm happy to let the tar and concrete do its worst ;)


#6 Watty


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 10:19 AM

I've really never bothered to make any modifications for street kiting. I always use my full-sail B-Series as it was when I first got it. With that said, I don't like to fly my rev indoor over concrete because it is made of the lighter material that can wear more easily.

Spence "Watty" Watson



#7 RevWizard


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Posted 21 July 2010 - 10:50 AM

Rough hard surfaces can:
- cut the bridle
- wear down the end caps
- wear holes in the leading edge
It can even cut holes in the sail when the sail is face down on it

My advise on rough hard surfaces is:
- tend to stay away from them
- if you must, then don't drag the tips or leading edge on the rough hard surfaces.
If the sail goes face down, don't try to launch or pull the REV. Stand it up and fly it out.

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#8 REVflyer


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Posted 22 July 2010 - 02:44 AM

Stephen, you can make mods to increase the durability, but I don't. Ride 'em hard, then go get a new one!

You can buy 3M's 9460 bonding adhesive
(it's like tape in use, but is designed to "bond" two pieces of metal together, available from kite builder suppliers) In fact, you can make an entire kite using this stuff without any sewing at all! It comes in a 1/4 inch width, you'd layout the leading edge sleeve without the frame, flat, you'd have to carefully center the tape along that crease/fold

after first affixing it to reinforcing material (I like stuff that's nylon backed with a mylar layer, shiny or matte finish depending on which side you bond "down"). You'd trim down the excess fabric so everything is centered under the adhesive when applied.

You iron the leading edge after everything is PERFECTLY positioned. This is a one-time shot, it's totally permanent when done properly. You can reposition it for an hour or so, overnight sitting is almost as durable as ironing it (use weights and 24 hours). Practice on a scrap piece first.

You're not adding much weight, and increasing the thickness at the very most abused end of your kite, the leading edge. Rounded end-caps won't fail unless you tap 'em hard on to concrete seawalls. Bridles for me are replaced probably twice a season, but I'm a flailer and ride everything hard. I like jewelry, watches, & crap but everything I enjoy has to be durable enough to punch a stop-sign!

You could make an even wider strip of reinforcement with multiple passes of the tape laid down parallel to each other. You could slap tiny patches of kevlar under the most highly abused areas (localized reinforcements as opposed to globally applied)

All this stuff is possible, I'm lazy though, (kites are supposed to be fun not WORK!)
so unless I'm making a kite at at workshop, under my club-mates' expert supervision I'm not doing any repairs or reinforcements. Attached is a reference that shows kevlar patches on very high wear area of another quad I enjoyed for 3 years or so. The reinforcing patch diagram should be easy to adapt to your application, if you are willing to go to all the trouble! Personally, I'd rather just fly and make my wonderful bride buy new kites when my favorites become unflyable rags. That's 3 or 4 thousand hours of continuous abuse, I like to fly over parking lots because the footing is sure. I'd rather buy a new kite than bust-up an ankle or wrench my aching back.

Did you notice how the reinforcing patches template creates a cover over the elastic knots? How about the rendering of the SLE fat stick or a set of skinny tubes being used as the leading edge. We had a lot of fun playing around with the Spirit kite back around 2003--05. We called our version a Tirips in honor of the developer Steve LaPorte (his Spirit spelled backwards)

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