Eolo Harness

POSTED : Jun 27, 2005    9 Comments    Posted under: Accessories Review


let this be a cautinary tale of woe…

having recently aquired a 7.3m Frenzy 04, I obviously needed a harness. To which end I purchased an Eolo Radsails Harness from the Kite Store in Covent Garden…..

First impressions? Well, this was my first ever harness, so I had nothing to compare it to! The deciding factor was that it was a measily £30….

First flight:- all was going well, getting used to the feeling of wearing an external nappy…….. comfortable harness, all seemed good. Adjustable fit worked well etc.

So, after about 20 minutes, I let my friend have a go. He is a fair bit smaller than me – I am 15 stone and 6 foot, he is around 12 stone and 5’8″.

All again going well, until after about 5 minutes…THE HARNESS SNAPPED!

As he was around 6 foot off the ground at this point, he came down with a mighty thump. No permanent injuries – just shock and bruises! The harness spreader bar loop had snapped. This is made of plastic…

Upon returning this offending harness to the Kite Store, i was immediatly offered either my money back, or a brand new Maui Mystic Harness – which of course I took!

The after sales service from The Kite Store was excellent, proving once again why online will never be quite as good as person to person!

Apparently, Radsails now only reccomend these harnesses “for kites under 6 meters”. Which is frankly, a load of toss. What about a 15 stone guy in 20mph wind on a 4.9m Blade?

AVOID SAVING MONEY. YOUR EQUIPMENT IS WHAT YOUR LIFE CAN DEPEND UPON. DO NOT BUY THE CHEAPEST – QUALITY COSTS!!

I have learnt my lesson on this one… it was bloody scary!

By : leytoncheeses

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9 Comments + Add Comment

  • Would be interested to hear what Eolo have to say about this. Could you get some feedback on this from the Kite Store? Surely cheaper stuff should be as safe as more expensive stuff, there must be kite mark type standards? I totally agree it is impossible to give a kite size rating for this kind of kit and I can’t believe a manufacturer would have said that. Glad there were no lasting injuries Happy flying

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  • Good service from The Kite Store though, nice to se retailers being responsible and offering good service !!

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  • I find this story a little scary – we are playing with our lives when kiting and accept that there is always going to be some risk, however I find it appalling that a manufacturer would sell equipment that wasn’t up to the task. I bought a Maui Aviator harness (it was also the cheapest in my local kite store) but it at least has a solid metal spreader bar with a substantial looking hook. At the very least I would expect the harness to have a safe working load equivalent to the combined breaking strength of my kite lines – in excess of 1,000kg on my Venom. I’m glad that your friend suffered no serious injuries, hope you have more success with the Maui harness.

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  • Failures on this harness have fallen into two camps- stitching ripping out (naff design) and the plastic buckles failing. The buckles are the same in size and material as many other manufacturers use and just why they fail is slightly mysterious- I wondered whether the whole batch was badly moulded (too much recycle included in the plastic?). Eolo have recalled all the first batch of these harnesses supplied to the UK and are going to upgrade the replacement model. I suspect that this harness was designed to work with the biggest kite Eolo make (a 6m Radsail) and never tested with anything bigger- even the Kitesurf harnesses people usually buy carry no size or strength rating and I have seen the webbing/stitching in these fail when used with large foils which are much more savage than LEIs when it comes to snatch forces.

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  • This sounds really scary,i was contemplating getting a harness but don’t want to risk broken bone needlessly,anyone know which is the best to go for?

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  • I first read this review shortly after buying one of these harnesses… I have to say I have never had any problems with it except for the spreader bar riding up which I think is a common problem. Admittedly I don’t do a lot of jumping with it, but it works fine for me.

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  • i was thinking of buying one of these…not so sure now, has any modification been made to newer ones ? maybe i’ll just have to bite the bullet and spend a little more money.

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  • Always buy the best that you can afford, a good harness will be with you for a long time, so better to make the investment.

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  • My radsail harness ripped where the leg straps insert third time I used it. Wouldn’t recommend them. Have used quadrifoil and now aviator harnesses, much better.

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