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John Barresi

Member Since 31 Dec 1969
Offline Last Active May 06 2015 09:06 AM

#66166 100 Rev fly at 2010 WSIKF (Aug 16-22)

Posted by John Barresi on 16 February 2010 - 10:37 PM

I'll send out email correspondence to the mailing list I have for mega fly pilots well in advance (60 days prior) to cover some essentials, but I should mention...

Bringing your own FRS/GMRS 2-way radio with headset is pretty critical since we may or may not have a sound system to use, if you can, bring 2 so there's a spare on the field... Last year, we had over 40 pilots with their own radios, made communicating pretty easy... This year, I'll have a stronger transmitting radio as my signal didn't always reach the end of the line last time.

For those coming from England (where FRS/GMRS is reserved for police, etc), try and have your local contacts bring some for you... We'll try and have some spares in the iQuad group, but no promises.

In the email correspondence, I'll go over ground rules, equipment needs, basic field conduct, schedule and other important goodies.

Bear in mind, I realize this is a collective effort by a bunch of fliers to do something really cool... Nobody is getting paid, so you're not "going to work" for anyone at WSIKF... I'll just send out the info, do your best to be familiar with the basics and we'll do our best to take care of everyone. ;)

#64516 Progression and difficulty levels?

Posted by John Barresi on 07 January 2010 - 01:22 PM

Bottom line, if you don't try it, and DRILL it, you won't learn it effectively.

This is where you distinguish the difference between "try" and "do".

"Do" doesn't mean you master it in one stroke, it means you repeat with intent, and no judgment as you make mistakes, which will make you better.

"Try" is just having the *idea* that you want to get better, but end up doing the same thing you've always done, or give something up after a few tries.

Don't over-think it, try and try again, SEE the maneuver happening in your mind's eye, even if you think you can't do it, visualize all the way.

Don't let your mind run games, we all have an innate tendency to kick our own ass internally... That's bull, it's just kites, go, go, go, go!

It doesn't come right away, and more so, it takes an average of 30-45 minutes working SPECIFICALLY on 1-3 things (only) before you start to crack the shell, so to speak.

You all have the ability, there's no great physical or mental prowess required, I assure you... It's methodology, repetition and desire that define the learning.

Gospel, all the way.

#63870 International Register of 'Revolution' Team Fliers

Posted by John Barresi on 31 December 2009 - 12:28 AM

I just whipped a couple of very rough, quick diagrams to show how the grid works...

25 pilots, 5 columns of 5... Kites as seen from behind, bodies as seen from above:
Grid Positions(25)-01.png

One column of 5, as seen from the side:
Grid Positions(line-angle)-02.png

If you had any doubts of the basic knowledge required, I trust it's dawning now... And remember, this has already been done successfully with 50+ kites, more than once.

Also bear in mind, the grid LOOKS far more complicated than it actually is, but this should serve to illustrate the need for standardized knowledge. ;)

Very rough for sure, and the end product will be a bit more polished (with supporting verbiage and video) but this is just a taste of the diagrams and information that we'll be making available.


Now, to get the juices flowing... Translate these calls to the grid above:

  • "Rows 1, 3 and 5, face right... Now."
  • "Rows 2 and 4, face left... Now."
  • "All kites, slow forward... Now."
  • "All kites, 180 (or turn to face the other way)... Now."
  • "All kites, fly back to columns... Now."
At any time, if it all goes south... "All kites back to grid... Now."

The beauty of this system is that everything can broken down into groups by points of reference... It's really just a matter of knowing what # row and column you're in.

The mathematics of the whole thing really does work better with an even number of rows and columns, i.e. 6x6, 8x8, as opposed to the 5x5 I'm showing here.

Again, using the diagram above:

  • "Columns 1, 3 and 5 fly up while columns 2 and 4 reverse down... Now."
  • "All kites back to grid... Now."
  • "Center kite (3-3) hold position, kites immediately around the center kite face outward to form a ball... Now."
  • "Outside kites (all of columns 1 and 5, all of rows 1 and 5) face outward to form a ball... Now."
  • "On my call, the center kite will spin to trigger a slow burst by both balls... Now."
  • "All kites, slow reverse back to balls... Now."
  • "And... Back to grid, now."
Crap, now I won't be able to sleep... Too much fun. <grin>

#63850 International Register of 'Revolution' Team Fliers

Posted by John Barresi on 30 December 2009 - 09:06 PM

The other realization of course, is that I've seen even the best pilots go screwy when surrounded by a couple dozen other pilots.

Peripheral activity, losing your kite, varying speeds around you, other pilots who lose control momentarily, all of these facets (and more) can rattle even a capable pilot.

Scaling up is the way to go, start small (team), grow (small mega team of 12), expand (grid of 16 = 4x4) and so on.

It's really not that hard when you measure the facts, but all of the factors, it's best to layer on the knowledge like making a good stable cake.

#63513 Pinned topics

Posted by John Barresi on 28 December 2009 - 07:42 PM

Ha, just did that before I read this. :)

Trick is, I can't quite turn all the pinned topics into a Wiki...

The information is SO varied and spread out through each topic, it's not practical to summarize.

So, mirrored topics in a separate section may be the best way to go, as a somewhat unstructured Wiki.

#63446 International Register of 'Revolution' Team Fliers

Posted by John Barresi on 28 December 2009 - 02:34 PM

At WSIKF 2010, we were TOO BIG for the event (literally)... Even with 50 pilots, we were overlapping our bounds nearly every day, a big problem.

Additionally, because of the sheer range of skill levels, just getting 50 pilots in the air took upwards of 45 minutes to get in place, primarily due to two things:

1. Lack of knowledge in using and implementing the grid.
2. A few newer pilots taking down the whole pack, restarting the process all over again.

With these observations, I hope you'll all appreciate the need for some international standards for starting and ending such large flies, conduct immediately before, during and after the attempt(s), as well as who might present a potential problem for the BIG PICTURE.

Step back, put your fear of exclusivity aside... We're kite fliers damn it!

Look at the people who are stepping up to try and make such things more accessible for everyone, weigh in on their collective characters and experience (as a group)... There's no conspiracy, this is the next logical step for large mega fly attempts worldwide.

The details aren't formed yet, and while some executive decisions must ultimately be made, again weighing in the collective character of those who are willing to take all that comes with leading oversized mega flies, we will be listening deeply to all of YOU.

#63030 Shoutbox

Posted by John Barresi on 25 December 2009 - 11:55 AM

Hi everyone, just added "shoutbox" as a present to the Rev forum... It's kind of like chat, messages that refresh every X number of seconds.

First, if you don't care for the shoutbox at all, you can make it invisible by clicking the "My Prefs" button in the right of the shoutbox, then set "Display Global Shoutbox" to NO... Doing so removes it from the "every page" display, but you can still access it anytime using the Shoutbox link in the main navigation menu.

Or if you just want to show/hide it, click the little "-" or "+" in the upper right corner of the Shoutbox section. :)

You can also click the "archive" link to view past shouts from our members.

Enjoy, please do let me know if causes any problems... And remember, you can always disable it. ;)

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen shot 2009-12-25 at 11.49.59 AM.png
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#63015 Color scheme ideas

Posted by John Barresi on 25 December 2009 - 10:43 AM

wb = welcome back ;)

#63014 How to set up a routine

Posted by John Barresi on 25 December 2009 - 10:42 AM

In the scenario you mentioned for Lincoln City, it's a demo situation, WAY different than a competition.

Honestly, fly clean, move your kite to the music, and most all, FEEL it, enjoy it, that's what the audience will respond to most, not the complexity or professionalism of your performance... Take my word on this, 20 years of competition and demonstration experience speaking here.

If you want to "take it to task" and prepare a routine, I recommend you start browsing kite ballet videos... The older, the better.

Older routines are simpler, more "feel", whereas more recent routines are more likely to be focusing on WOW and tricks, much of which the audience doesn't understand.

A crowd at Lincoln City, they want to see people enjoying themselves, groovin'... Take stock of the routines you've seen there and the audiences response to each one, I'm sure you'll agree... Non-complex routines, but highly enjoyable might include Penny, Al Washington, Carl Bragiel, etc... Some of what they choose to do might be difficult, but it's all understandable to the uninitiated. :)

When someone goes too trick heavy on their stuff, unless they're one of the best pilots around, you can pretty much assume the audience will be lost, sometimes even if they are the best.

For some fodder, here are a couple of articles...


Realize of course, some of the articles above are tailored for competition.

When all else fails, consider the words of my good friend Rob (Bob) Hanson...


Enjoy yourself, fly clean, and the crowd will respond. ;)

#62957 New forum is open for business!

Posted by John Barresi on 24 December 2009 - 01:53 PM

Okay, just testing a quick fix...


This image is 3072 × 2304, let's try it.

Burka, this work for you too?

I better start getting some + reputation for all this hustling... You can't say I don't listen. ;)

#62885 New forum is open for business!

Posted by John Barresi on 23 December 2009 - 11:33 AM

Two ways...

1. As it is now, right from the index, log in box drops down for one-page login.
2. Remove it, click on "sign in", takes you to a second page for logging in.

Reason I ask, two people have reported that they can't click their cursor into the fields, and have to use the tab key to get there.

Those who have similar issues and don't know about the tab key might not be able to log in.


Reminder as well, please start using the Posted Image on all posts that give you useful knowledge or are reporting something that makes your life here easier.

#62829 New forum is open for business!

Posted by John Barresi on 22 December 2009 - 03:02 PM

Also, I'd love folks to get into the habit of pressing Posted Image on helpful, useful, informative posts whenever appropriate.

I'm leaving Posted Image available for now, but...

1. It should only be used for derisive, profane or destructive posts.
2. It will be removed in short order if misused.

Any post with more than 5 positive marks should become highlighted somehow, to make it easier to spot.

#61508 Got my Zen!

Posted by John Barresi on 24 November 2009 - 01:45 PM

I know the Zen has just been released, but I wanted to start a dedicated thread for people to post in with their photos and experiences. :)

Can't wait to hear from y'all!

#60801 Line Managment and care

Posted by John Barresi on 03 November 2009 - 05:15 PM

Whether you wind with the figure-8 or straight method, if you've locked down both ends and they're not rotating, then you bring 'em together and pull 'em apart (by winding/unwinding), any apparent (individual line) twists come out under tension.

The only way a single line can twist (regardless of what you do in the middle - i.e. winding style) is if you allow one extreme end to rotate, adding an individual line twist per rotation.

Simple mathematics.

Whatever works for you, but that little pearl supersedes everything else. ;)


Try both methods with new sets of lines, side by side... Wind/unwind 5 times each, then walk down one line with your fingernail to push any twists down to the end (should do this anyway from time to time)... Now, which winding method generates more line spin (untwisting) at the end?

#57764 Line winding with minimal twists/tangles, iQuad style...

Posted by John Barresi on 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: