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Random Observations On Rev Flying


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#1 SkyPuppet

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Posted 30 October 2011 - 01:25 PM

Here are some observations from a new-ish Rev pilot about flying that might be particularly useful to newer Rev pilots. I'm hoping others will chime in with general observations that might not fit into an existing topic discussion Posted Image

1. Lateral flight is generally easier with a twist (or a few twists) in the lines. Upright lateral slides, as well as lateral slides that move the Rev vertically (tip stands) come to mind here. When flying an inverted lateral slide, you already have at least a half-twist in the lines.

2. I learn quicker when I spend half my time flying on 30' lines, then switch to 120's till I'm ready to leave. I swear, its the kiting equivalent of jumping out of a hot tub into a cold pool! It wakes up your senses! After first flying the 30's, my reaction time is charged up from handling the short-line situations. Take the 30's down and put up the 120's..... Everything is so much smoother for me, I have much better "feel" across the 120's than when I fly on them cold. I find my precision practice flying much "crisper" when I practice in this manner.

3. 10' - 50's, 120's - Um.... the stock length lines that come with a Rev (75' - 85') are perfectly fine for most situations, but I also find them to be tricky and, well, boring... Here's why: The length is just a little too responsive without having 3D fun. It makes sense for beginners, as beginners seem to flail some. But once you are an experienced pilot, some tricks become almost too difficult (Catch-'N-Toss) to worry about practicing. The wind window size at this line-length is not quite big enough to (impressively) Ladder horizontally or vertically, or to take the Traveling Bicycle out for a ride for a decent distance. I know there are exceptions to this observation, but its meant to be general.

The solution is to get additional line sets, one set somewhere in the 10' - 50' range and another in the 120' range.
With a 10' - 50' set, you can practice just about anything. Yes the window is small but I can always squeeze in 2 Ladder steps, or a couple of Traveling Bicycle rotations on line sets of this length. Beyond these tricks, all the 19 skills (from the B-Series pamphlet) are completely practice-able, along with many 3D moves (Catch-'N-Toss) being easier to pull off. Line sets in this range help improve "touch", "feel", and timing.
With a 120' set you get to show off how much your practice from flying on the shorter line sets has paid off!! As line lengths move out of 3D territory, the wind window becomes massive, allowing you to repeat moves for longer periods of time. This is also very beneficial to practicing! You can really hone your edge-of-wind skills, and you can get the feel for practicing the same move in different areas of the wind window. This practice translates back to short-line technique!

4. If you aren't quite a Jedi yet, and your midi-Chlorian count is feeling low... Flying a Rev at night, with some lights attached to it, just might be the answer! For example, I find it easier to practice Axels at night. I attach a white light to one LE (leading edge) tip and any other color to the other tip. Now, my eyes can't fool my sense of touch - the lights don't let me see enough to try and watch the lines go slack, and I know when I see the white LED come around its time for the pull that starts the rotation! I have also found this useful for practicing the Traveling Bicycle, as you can't watch what the sail is doing as easily - useful for getting a better feel for it.

Posted Image Posted Image

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#2 stroke survivor

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Posted 30 October 2011 - 02:37 PM

Funny you should post this - my 2 most used sets are 50'x50# and 120'x90#!! Posted Image 50' for solo or light winds, 120' around folks and team!! Posted Image

wayne from portland
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#3 SkyPuppet

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 07:20 AM

Great minds think alike SV! Posted Image

I love flying my Zen on 50' line! And 50's are about my limit for throwing out my 1.5 (Race frame) for a Catch-'N-Toss.

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#4 stroke survivor

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 08:09 AM

HaHa!! Posted Image My 50' set gets lots of work because the park I use is very small!! I have tried longer lines there, but it's a bit too small! Posted Image I do like the 80' length, just don't have enough room most of the time!! With my vision problems, I'm not a big catch and throw guy, the 80' length is a good compromise of short, but giving me enough window to fly in! Posted Image

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#5 SkyPuppet

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 11:16 AM

I have problems finding good spots for my 75's. When I do find a spot that would work for the 75's, I seem to have enough room for the 120's as well....

I think the 75's - 85's are a great beginner range! The responsiveness helps to acclimate a beginner to the "feel" of a Rev.

Once I desired to practice flying a little 3D, other than walking the Rev on the ground, I moved to 30's with my 1.5s. Then I made up a 50' set, and found I could still get a reasonable throw on them! I enjoy flying these 2 lengths so much, I rarely fly the 75's anymore. I just can't get a good throw on the 75's, not with the 1.5 anyway.

The guys at the fun-fly out here fly on 100's (96's ?? Posted Image ) so I'll be looking to make up a pair of 100's soon if I want to get some team flying going on. That will make 4 "specialty" line sets for me: 12's, 75's, and 100's.
I'm hoping the 12's will get more use when I get an Indoor Rev.

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#6 stroke survivor

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 11:26 AM

That's a pretty good length - me, I use 10'!! All depends on ceiling height, how long your indoor lines should be!! Beware low ceilings!!!Posted Image

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#7 stroke survivor

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 12:17 PM

100's?? Is there a space restriction?? Kinda oddball length these days!!

wayne from portland
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#8 Jim Foster

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 03:48 PM

Lynn and I usually fly on 100s. When flying with others we use 100s up to about six fliers. Those with whom we fly do the same. We use 100s when flying demos on all but the largest of fields. Seal Beach Festival, Morro Bay Festival both call for 100s as 120s are too long, especially if the wind is a little low and you have to back up some.
There are several pairs and teams with whom we fly on occasion who carry and use 100 foot line sets.

Of course, 120s always with larger groups when space is no problem.

That's what we do.

That being said, there is a video on YouTube of 18 of us at Kite Party 8, all together on 75s. A bit of a traffic jam at times, but it was really fun.



I would only suggest this activity with experienced fliers. One misstep can turn a mega fly into a mega tangle.
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#9 HedgeWarden

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 09:23 PM

Well, I had to try it out - 160' lines.

Finally got to fly them at Ocean Park (Long Beach WA peninsula) on some wide open beach and nice winds. As expected, it took longer to traverse the wind window (twice as long as 80' ;)), and the kite size-wise looked more like a Rev II than a 1.5. Response time on Laser Pro lines was not adversely affected, although there may have been some smoothing of the response (i.e. smooth flying). So, for a really big stage to fly on ... 160' lines!

The biggest difference I found was that the sea gulls were not used to such long lines, and had a greater tendency to run into them. :lol: Yup, crashed the kite - but no permanent harm to either bird, lines or kite.

Good observations, SkyPuppet. I'll remember the idea of warming up on short lines, then switching to longer lines. Another way to fight boredom is to fly Rev IIs. Hey, mystery Santa Claus, I'm really Jonesing for a full set of B-2s in lime and black. :kid_smartass: (Spoiled brat that I am.:P)
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#10 kwmf

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 11:22 PM

My most used lines (not counting my 12' indoor lines) are my 30' and 50' lines, with the 80's coming out when space allows and I feel like walking (if I'm lazy I'll just setup the 50's).

I'm considering a trip to that side of the pond next year to get a skills upgrade and tune up, so 120's are on my shopping list.

#11 REVflyer

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 03:20 AM

practice 3-D'ing on longer lines than you'd use to show-off for the public, at least 20%. Then when your turn is called it will all seem so effortless!

To throw a longer line length you need to make sure you add a couple of steps before the pitch-off from your finger (imagine a javelin thrower). You'd adding momentum and it's free! After you've pitched the kite, run like crazy backwards. Eventually the distance you'll need to travel in reverse will shorten & shorten and your throws begin traveling further out as well. Throw towards one of the wind window corners. Leave it pasted inverted, at the end of the throw for a few moments, to show you meant to do that!

There's a perfect angle and arm action you are looking for. where exactly in the travels, do you execute the pull? what happens if you vary that height? Can you still catch it if it's 2/3 up in the window? How does that effect the flight path? Does it result in nice glide, instead of wankin' it directly downhill (towards your face from overhead)? What happens if you only jerked one string? Does the location and direction of travel have any influence on that one-line pull? How far out on those top leaders can you yank without cutting a pinky on the raw spectra?

On the Zen I practice catches on 50# 120s (or 90#/90 feet). Lots of mass so you can pitch it and glide it a respectable distance each way. You can only throw the kite so far out and I'm not the fastest guy on two feet either! I can pretty reliably throw and catch on 60'-75' in most any set of wind conditions. The lower wind speed there is the better I like it. In bigger wind you can do a horseshoe shaped almost-catch with the speed series kites. They look like they're coming back to you (from the catch technique) but about half way there they slowly seek the down-wind direction again in graceful curve.

so now to show-off I go to 45-50 feet and can catch it over my head facing backwards. Throw & catch from a stationary position, someday I plan to be capable of this technique from a crossed-leg sitting position!

We use 100 feet of 50# line frequently in our home turf no wind areas as pairs or small team meetings. But for flailing a kite 50# tangles too easily. I like the 3D line to be 90 LPG as it's so wire-like it seldom snags. Ultimate slipperiness is the Skybond which I'm pretty fond of as well.

Fall's finally here in the district of columbia so we will be experiencing winds above zero MPH for the next few months.

#12 SkyPuppet

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 07:34 AM

Team flying on 75's!!! Posted Image Definitely experienced fliers only! Cool vid Jim Foster!

Flying on 160's! I can imagine........ Winding a Traveling Bicycle through like 10 revolutions and still having room to go!! I could probably get 2 full sets of the "2 Down" precision move in before I touched the ground!!
The only thing I have trouble picturing is where I would find the space to fly on 160's!! :( Someday...

My most-used lines for the last few months have also been 30's and 50's.... I love kiting in places that most folks wouldn't dream of Posted Image

I must say, thanks for the Catch-'N-Toss advice REVflyer!!! Posted Image Between watching JB's indoor tutorials, and reading REVflyer's advice (different topic) I can pull off this trick reliably.
I found pulling on one line only makes a decent "catch". Bring the Rev directly overhead, close to a sideways hover. Pull either top or bottom string of the side of the Rev that is closest to the ground. The Rev will come down like a tip stand, make sure the LE tip doesn't put your eye out!!!!!
I LOVE throwing the Zen!! I can throw it at least 30' farther than the 1.5, everytime. Its amazing float capabilities make it a favorite fly of mine!

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#13 SkyPuppet

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 07:49 AM

100's?? Is there a space restriction?? Kinda oddball length these days!!


Yeah it is!!! 100's made a great dualie length, but where Revs are concerned....... Anyways, I'll be gettin' some 100's sooner than later Posted Image

I don't know how they started on the 100's (96's technically, now).... Maybe Kent from AWOC knows, he's been flying with these guys since the get-go!

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#14 stroke survivor

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 10:56 AM

Back in the late '90s and early '00s, the trend seemed to be shorter lines! More people could fit at fests and there were more dualie fliers back then!! Shorter lines meant you could put people stacked, one after the next, each at the end of the others kite!! With the quads being popular now, there isn't as big of an issue, control is so much better! And the whole team thing brings longer lines into play!!

PS: I cut my original Rev 1 lines, that were 100' long, into 60' and 40'!!! Now I wish I'd a left them alone!!!

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#15 SkyPuppet

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Posted 19 November 2011 - 08:45 AM

More random observations:

1. When flying a Rev, I've noticed when the strings twist they cross closer to the pilot than to the kite, compared to a dualie.

2. Revs can float! I dunked my 1.5 vented pretty good in a fountain yesterday. I was unable to fly it out of the water, I'm thinking this was due to lack of current in the pond, and my skill limitations. While sitting there trying to figure out the best way to retrieve it, it slowly floated onto its back on the surface. I was able to reel it in with the lines then, and easily! I feel totally confident to fly this fountain from here on out!

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#16 Jim Foster

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Posted 19 November 2011 - 09:28 AM

Earlier in this thread the discussion was line length. Here is a link to a video of Steve de Rooy flying on two sets of 120' lines linked together. 240 feet.


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#17 SkyPuppet

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 11:59 AM

I wonder if that 240' was 90#...... Looks like it. Looks like strong, consistent winds on that day!

Amazing.

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#18 --Pete

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 01:42 PM

I'm pretty sure my original Rev I lines were either 200' or 150' (I really should unwind, measure and equalize them). Mine look to be a lot heavier than 90# though (possibly they are plain Dacron). I do remember that it was a LONG walk to set the kite up on its tips.

I know; no one would ever set a Rev on anything but the leading edge these days. It never self-launched, so I was lucky. I'm pretty sure I recall leaning it against things like posts and fences, so maybe I didn't even stake the handles down. I certainly have a lot of stakes from back then, though, so maybe somebody clued me in at some point.
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#19 stroke survivor

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 03:09 PM

--Pete - Don't know about length, but mine (circa '97) were 150#x100'!! Short lines were the rage back then at festivals, so I cut them into 40' + 60'!! Wished I hadn't now!!

Self-launching!! The old Rev VHS tape showed to kick the lower tips in towards the flier!! Just leaned it back!! Now inverted is soooo much safer!! But I still used a stake, even back then!!

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#20 RevWizard

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 06:17 PM

I'm pretty sure my original Rev I lines were either 200' or 150' (I really should unwind, measure and equalize them). Mine look to be a lot heavier than 90# though (possibly they are plain Dacron). I do remember that it was a LONG walk to set the kite up on its tips.

I know; no one would ever set a Rev on anything but the leading edge these days. It never self-launched, so I was lucky. I'm pretty sure I recall leaning it against things like posts and fences, so maybe I didn't even stake the handles down. I certainly have a lot of stakes from back then, though, so maybe somebody clued me in at some point.

If they were on a wood winder like mine(October 1990) then they were probably around 30 meters. That is around 110 to 120 feet. I would say they were around 120# but not 150#. Type I think was either Spider or Shanti, definitely not LaserPro.

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