domenica, luglio 31, 2011

How to exchange the depower line on a 2010/11 North Trust Bar

Im writing this post because after days spent on the internet looking for some information related to the above subject, I've been able to find just a short video (see above) related to the 2009 bar which doesn't fit well to what I needed, especially bacause as you know in the latest release of the trust bar the North team added what they call "iron heart", a little piece of metal which connect the depower line to the chicken loop.  A heck of iron piece. So arm yourself with patience when trying to disconnect it.

DISCLAIMER: I'm not responsable for any mistake here. You are always responsable of what you are fixing. Don't blame on me if you do something wrong. Always check your depower line and bar before getting out to the water!

Before starting with the exchange please make sure you have one screwdriver (flat head) and eventually an hammer. Put the bar on a flat surface, detach the rear and front lines and extend them as you are going to connect them to your kite.

Once you've done this, start disconnecting the used depower line. Please make sure to remember all the passages since you won't have any problem at the time you'll need to reconnect everything. The best way is to let all the item in the same place (better if you are on a flat surface): the vario cleat, the stopper ball, the micro loop... just slide the depower line till the iron heart.

Now it comes the first problem (this is valid in my case, just read on). If you are not used to clear with fresh water you bar, you can find that the little "U" piece of metal that couple the plastic (black) part with the steel one completely stuck. Don't worry. Use the flat head screwdriver and with some little movements try to pull it out. I used an hammer in order to unstuck it (don't be too brute anyway since you can damage the iron heart); you can also use an awl and give two or three good hit on the other side, if you want.

Once you get it out, separate the plastic from the iron one. Separate the stopper ball and then the line fro the vario cleat. Well done, now you can change the depower line with the new one.

If you did everything correctly you can now follow all the passages back to the beginning. Insert the depower line (the splice must be inserted first, the pass the line through the splice). Remember to put the stopper ball and the sliding stopper in the correct position (the ball should be down the sliding stopper).
Now insert the depower line into the plastic part of the iron heart but wait,  don't close it with the U metal part.  Keep on going "back": the line should pass through the bar, again into the stopper ball, the sliding stopper, the vario cleat, then into the pulley and back to the vario (see the picture for your reference).

Ok, now the most difficult part: you need to pass the depower line through the trimline. I used and iron wire for this task: pass it through the trimline, insert it through the depower line, pass it again through the trimline. Now gently pull it till the depower line is inserted. Make a knot to fit it in the correct position.

The last part: sheet your bar all the way out as if you are depowering the kite. The depower line should have the same length (see picture). Now you can insert the plastic part into the metal one and insert the U metal ring to fix them togheter. You're done!

domenica, luglio 24, 2011

A new arrive: GIN ZULU III

I recently bought a new kite, a GIN Zulu III in a 13sqm size. Yesterday I tested it at the Pantano del Ebro spot, at around 1h and a half car ride from Bilbao, a typical summer spot in the Cantabria autonomous region here in Spain. The wind was not too strong and was really gusty but I had some fun anyway. As I recently sold my 2010 Cabrinha Crossbow to a friend of mine I needed a big sail to ride in low wind conditions. As I've been testing the previous GIN Zulu II model some time ago (check this post here) in a smaller size, I decided to give it a chance.

I must confess I've been impressed by the  GIN Zulu III. First of all, the kite construction is comparable if not better than most of more advertised kites. The canopy seems to be bomb proof, the bar is spectacular with its innovative safety system. The kite has 5 struts and a 4 lines system.
In action: it turns really quick even in this big measure, generating a lot of power and allowing the rider to easily pass wind holes. The kite responds quickly to bar pressure (I tried it in the "freestyle" configuration) and it's not as hard as the Crossbow (something which I really hated about the Cabrinha kite). My impression is that it also has a wide wind range, probably more than GIN itself advertise. I will check anyway and give some more feedback later on. Check the following video I recorded yesterday which shows the turning abilities of this wonderful kite.

An update about the wave board I recently sent to repair. I'm in contact with RRD to see if it's a construction problem. I sent them some pictures and a complete report of the damages. Let's see if they can sort this out.

giovedì, luglio 21, 2011

Muskiz - La Arena

While I'm fighting against RRD to have my board either substituted or repaired within the warranty terms, on the last Tuesday we had a nice session in Muskiz, La Arena beach, just at 10 minutes ride from Bilbao. Conditions were inconsistent, with the wind blowing from W/NW quite gusty (I would say 14 to 25kn) and 1.5mt waves in the outside. I got into the water late, waiting for some friend, but I must say it was quite funny. I borrowed a kite waveboard and noticed the differences from my RRD: the deck is definitely more robust, the board's weight is higher. I didn't care since you I couldn't feel the heavier board while in the water; moreover a higher weight helped me out in those typical "bump-and-jump" condition of the Cantabric sea.

Meanwhile I'm preparing for holidays. I will spend almost one month back to my home country. My kites (and my wife, of course) will join me during the trip. Please, keep your finger crossed for RRD warranty (I'm not too confident, anyway...). Stay tuned!

martedì, luglio 19, 2011

X-Tech construction: too fragile?

I'm writing this post because I'm pissed off. I've been using the RRD Board since two months, and I had to bring two timesit to fix some bad cracks I've seen at the end of the sessions. I'm guessing if the X-Tech construction is too fragile for a kite board. Yes, it is light, but two cracks in a row it's really too much. The first one could be due to a bad land after a jump - I can understand - but the second seems to have been caused by my heel right below the front pad. I went out last sunday and the conditions were kinda choppy. Even if I'm loosing weight I'm still a heavy guy, I know, but I would expect a stiffer deck for this boards, especially considering that it will be used mostly in hard conditions like what we had two days ago.
I'm fed up with having to pay 30€ each time I use it... :-(