First kite! I did a bit of practice on a Radsail 3m with some handy scudding experience but found after a couple of hours I was getting a bit bored. So I looked at some options for a cheap entry into kiting, having realised I wanted to be moving along.
My only other experience being witha 5m with no brakes (removed to increase performance!!!!!!!) No idea what it was but it was too big.
Skymonster were doing a deal with the Creek Canyon orangy board thing so I was committed!
Firstly, lets get the bag out of the way as that seems to be the current hobby. ITS A BAG!
Ok, back to the kite, I had read that the handles were a bit cheap and nasty. Personally I have found them Ok. Still working and I found that when I pull one the kite turns so I decided not to be too snobbish about it. I do occasionally get sore fingers where they are around the top strings but I have to be out for three to four hours first.
Setting up was easy, strings were all the right length so I put them on, checked again because it seemed too good to be true and then I was off. It scared the pants off me. My mate davehippy was flying his 3m radsail again, scudding about and I was quite dubious about getting full on into the wind so I kept it to the edge of the window to start with. Its very easy to do this with the kite because it is so manouverable. In fact I was on my board after half an hour.
I parapacked first time after reading about it on this site! so easy! Up and at ‘em in about two minutes.
The board is OK, I found it better to start with then a flexi I tried simply because it doesn’t turn so easily and I was more interested in getting moving and keeping moving. Combined with the kite they are a good match in winds over 10mph. I found it easy to get going, using the kite over to one side of the window and then building my courage and moving it further into the middle of the wind. It does take a lot of moving around to keep the power on other than in very strong winds, so much so that I have it doing figure eights in the air to keep the power on.
At first I could not go across the wind and only moved downwind but now I can tack sometimes, although I always lose ground eventually. This seems to be because it has a narrower window to work in in than say a beamer 3.6 I flew on the same day, or it may be that it needs 30m lines instead of 25m. So I have to have the kite lower and nearer the middle than a better quality kite.
I also have the luffing problem I have read about from other members. As recommended a quick application of the brakes soon bring it around and tweaking one brake as it turns means it will turn very tightly.
There is no pull at the top of the window, in fact it will collapse if it is too high. and has a habit of tucking one end or the other into the middle and then needing an untangle before flight but as I get more used to it I find it easier to catch it. I dont see other kites doing it and I dont do it with other kites so I assume it is a ‘feature’ of the radsail.
When it does collapse it does usually easily catch the wind and reinflate, very often just before it hits the ground. Its very easy to take off upside down and then flip around when it does nosedive
When its staked out it looks like a pile of rags, I found that if is allowed to partially inflate it starts hopping around with a life of its own. I notice more expensive kites will happily sit on the ground with the front edge up and not try to take off like this does.
I have found the radsail to be an OK kite, looking at it from a quality point of view I have no complaints although it does look a bit cheap next to a beamer. After about 20 hours of flying I have found it to be a good starter kite. The strings have stretched a bit so they needed adjustment the other day.
Although I am looking for another now and thinking depowerable because I use the board I would not sell the Radsail. I have noticed other people with the same view. It’s so predictable and easy to control that I have found that when boarding I just keep it further to the edge of the window if it’s blowing a bit. Also when on the beach it was totally predictable.
Overall, am I glad I bought it? Yes. and although it does make me want a bigger one I have not considered Radsail for my next kite. I will buy a smaller one soon for the very windy days though as the 3m is just so much fun and so cheap.
Of course having read all this you may think I haven’t got a clue. You’re probably right! But I am addicted and skip work at any opportunity (not many at the moment but I keep trying!!) just so I can go flying.
Now while I was writing this I noticed the Ozone Access is on sale……… hmmmmm!
By : wibbley