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Thread: 2 lines into 4 lines ? Can it be done?

  1. #1
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    2 lines into 4 lines ? Can it be done?

    Hi,

    I'm pretty new to kites, I have a Slingshot B Three, had it a long time now.

    It has 2 lines and a bar, I saw on the beach the other day someone using a 4 line kite with 2 handles and they launched it backwards with it upside down ... I never knew a kite could do this!

    I've been reading online and watching youtube clips about 4 line kites and the other kites that are out there which seems to be alot more than when I got my slingshot.

    Anyway... the grip on my bar is starting to come off so I was wondering, is it possible to turn a 2 line kite into a 4 line kite?

    Could I buy the handles and more line and then change the setup at the kite (bridal?) so that it is now a 4 line kite or are 4 line kites completely different?

    Or do I have to save and buy a new kite completely to get a 4 line kite ?

    Cheers!

  2. #2
    falling over alot parksy's Avatar
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    Everything is possible, but some things are not worth the headache. Buy another kite that is designed to fly on 4 lines, it will be money well spent and be much less hassle.

  3. #3
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    You probably could, but as parksy says it'd be more hassle than it's worth, you'd need to spend hours tuning it. Instead of spending 40 on handles and lines you might as well spend 60 or more on a proper four-liner.

    For the ultimate in four-line kites, you want a Revolution - tricky to fly, but a lot of fun when you get it right, they're a bit weird though!

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  4. #4
    bat faskit festa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Geoff View Post
    You probably could, but as parksy says it'd be more hassle than it's worth, you'd need to spend hours tuning it. Instead of spending 40 on handles and lines you might as well spend 60 or more on a proper four-liner.

    For the ultimate in four-line kites, you want a Revolution - tricky to fly, but a lot of fun when you get it right, they're a bit weird though!


    man that look like trick photography !! mega flying but how the hell do they not get tangled ???
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  5. #5
    Registered Member captain caveman's Avatar
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    as above ..... its not worth the effort when u can pick summit half decent and 4 line for less than 100 nowa days
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by festa View Post
    man that look like trick photography !! mega flying but how the hell do they not get tangled ???
    Careful choreography and some knot theory! It's like diabolo, there are certain sequences that will "undo" other sequences.
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  7. #7
    Registered Member Broady's Avatar
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    The revolution kites are my favorite type of kite to fly. Not the easiest thing to fly, but it doesn't take long to keep it in the air and have a fair amount of control over it.
    Takes a bit more practice to get as good as in the vid....
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  8. #8
    bat faskit festa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Geoff View Post
    Careful choreography and some knot theory! It's like diabolo, there are certain sequences that will "undo" other sequences.

    as cool as penguin p155 that bud
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  9. #9
    Registered Member iwatkins's Avatar
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    Great vid. But I get the cold chills of a "knot nightmare" right there.

    Back to the OP. Yes, you probably could convert from 2 lines to 4 but you would need to build/sew in rear bridles. Whether the kite would then be stable with the brake lines being used is another matter. Getting the angle of attack right is critical and you may fine your kite doesn't take kindly to changes in this.

    I've converted three foil kites in the past and none have have been any good afterwards. Wanted to try, but all ruined.

    I would just buy a 4 line kite and have done with it. A small and fast 4 liner, fixed bridle, on handles kite is worth having anyway for those days the wind is nuking and puts a stop to any traction activities. I run an Ozone 1.5m LDStunt for this but others are available. Video of me using this kite the other day below.

    Cheers

    Ian

    http://youtu.be/xM_doCveQKg?hd=1

  10. #10
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    Hi all,

    Excellent thank you for all your advice, I think I will just save up and buy a 4 line kite as it seems the safer option.

    Cheers!

  11. #11
    Registered Member BigE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by parksy View Post
    Everything is possible, but some things are not worth the headache. Buy another kite that is designed to fly on 4 lines, it will be money well spent and be much less hassle.
    Agree on this one unless you have spare handles and lines to try it out on before you need to spend any cash. I've had a look for a manual but can't find one to see if it would be viable. Two options: 1) save up and get a 4 - line kite, 2) take a picture of the kite laid out showing the bridles, if it's a 4 group set-up it could be switched over to 4 lines. I'd give it a go if you want to send it to me (without lines n bar) and cover the postage cost, I could use my lines and handles to prove it works.
    Build, tune, fly....repeat

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  12. #12
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    There might be some kites of interest to you on this.
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  13. #13
    Registered Member Proletariat's Avatar
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    I am fascinated by this topic... Here is My First Novel...

    I think about this all the time, because I have a two-line kite that is incredibly fun to fly, powerful, but so cranky to relaunch that I rarely fly it. It's a 1.7m, and if I pull big wide circles, I can actually landboard in 25mph+ winds. Unfortunately, if I bring her down accidentally, I have to lay out my lines, go put a sandbag on it, and walk back to my padded loop hand thingies and relaunch (all the while hoping something doesn't get borked -- it almost always does.) The other option is to find a pole, a tree, a soccer net, a fence or something else and let the wind plaster it until I can gently pull it into foil shape and launch. Again, something almost always goes sideways.

    So... I've been thinking about it a lot. I paid $150 for the kite and it's not worth it to sell so I think it's worth adding a 3rd and 4th line. It's high AR and flat on the bottom, unlike your B3. However, I also have a Beamer III 3m, and I've been studying that bridle, so I think I might have a handle on a possibility for adding a 4-line bridle. I think there are a few important points to consider:

    ####################
    # To muck or not to muck #
    ####################
    1) Messing with kite fluid dynamics is fun. If you've reached a point where flying the kite is mildly hum-drum, the only thing that can be gained from modifying your kite (IMO) is knowledge, fun, and possible success -- albeit the last is unlikely as everyone above intimated. Of course, you could ruin your kite, but if you take notes, track your steps and keep your changes simple, it's not hard to go back to the original setup (or just tie a cat to it to increase the drag... Two cats if you need more.)

    ########################
    # What applying both brakes does #
    ########################
    2) With 4 line kites that have a fixed bridle (as opposed to depower kites), pulling on the brakes (the lower lines) actually deforms the foil a little. If you deform the kite with both brake lines, you get a bit more power/lift, but the kite flies more slowly. That means pulling on the brakes should go from

    ________

    to

    \______/ if you're looking at a cross section. However, typically, brake lines are only attached in to the trailing edge (in a line) and the power lines are attached starting at the leading edge in 3 lines like this:


    you get more deform on the back of the kite than the front. So your double applied brake deform would actually go more like (assuming left is leading edge):

    c.,______,,,...---

    to

    c.,__,,..--''''
    (I should really draw a picture, but I'm too lazy, so you get ascii art)

    So the front 66% of the kite remains slightly more rigid/uniform, while the trailing edge gets more heavily deformed. If it doesn't do this, I don't think it will work... but that should cover the cross section goal.

    ###############################
    # How do you deal with your existing bridle? #
    ###############################
    3) I think your bridle only 3 attachments to the front of the kite, per spar (spar is just a line running from leading edge to trailing edge). I also think that no bridle is attached to the trailing edge, so the kite probably relies on being filled up with air to keep the trailing edge rigid(ish). I also think that, since the primary bridle point (where the bridle meets the lines) is close to the tip than the center, the kite turns left and right by changing \____/ to |____/, providing more sideways lift on one side.

    This is total speculation, but rooted in my neophyte knowledge of fluid dynamics. What this means is that you *might* have to move the primary bridle point towards the center of the kite so that the leading edge deformation (and thus, the foil normal direction) changes a little less dramatically, but the new trailing edge bridle should deform the corner more while not compromising your flight speed as much.

    #############
    # Handles vs. Bar #
    #############
    4) I would go directly to handles and skip the bar altogether. I've tried to recreate the perfect brake/power line balance using a bar on my lower aspect ratio kites and it's a massive exercise in frustration. It's a little easier on higher aspect ratio kites, because the ones I have are more sensitive to tiny inputs, but you still have significantly more flexibility flying the kite you just modified with handles.

    #######################
    # What applying one brake does #
    #######################
    5) If you deform a 4-line kite using only one brake line, the kite turns really quickly because one side has a large amount of drag, while the other is still zipping through fluid (air). That means that the top-down view of your kite goes from :

    _________
    /|././.|.\.\.\.\
    |.|.|.|.|.|.|.|
    \|________|/ <--- no drag on trailing edge == flies straight

    to

    _________
    /|/././.|.\.\.\
    |.|.|.|.|.|.|.|
    \|_____.--''"' <--- drag on this side == turns right
    (okay, I'm beginning to think it would have been less work to just draw the damn thing)

    In bridle-parlance, this means that the bridle have shorter lines going to the outside and longer lines going to the center of the kite. Just about every fixed, 4-line bridle I have seen on trainer kites has this config. Okay, that covers the top-down bridle goal.

    #####################
    # Where is the trailing edge? #
    #####################
    6) Your kite is a lower aspect ratio, similar to the Beamer so I think you could follow a similar bridle model. However, it looks like your foil is diamondish shaped vs. a relatively rectangular/oval shape, and I think that diamond shape might give you fits. I'm not sure because I haven't tried it, but it may require a ton of tweaking the trailing edge cascade (a cascade is nothing more than multiple down-bridle lines attached to a single up-bridle line.) I think the biggest pitfall would be the accidental deform of the center of the kite, but I really have no idea.

    If you have a windows computer, you could always download some sort of bridle/kite design software or plans to get an idea of how your kite would react to particular bridle modifications:

    I've used a few of these, which have varying levels of complexity/capability:
    KiteModeler 1.5a beta
    The largest kite plan archive - Kite Plan Base (KPB)
    KiteBuilder.Com - Your source for kite building plans, kites, information, and kite making supplies
    http://www.surfplan.au

    #######################
    # The above is complete rubbish #
    #######################
    So, everything I put in here is purely speculation. Yes, I have done a lot of thinking about it, and I look forward to modding/designing kites in my copious spare time (/sarcasm). Take or leave it, as you see fit, but certainly take it with a grain of salt. If you want to skip all the tweaking, testing and modding, I would HIGHLY suggest the 4-line HQ Beamer (4m is a good size and is very versatile). Everyone here told me to get a Beamer. I didn't listen, and had a tough time learning, accordingly. Now, I own an HQ Beamer III 3m and it is one of my favorite kites. More importantly, I start out all of my friends on this kite and it gets them hooked. It's fun, not as dangerous as an enticingly-priced-yet-hard-to-fly-and-extremely-sneaky-with-too-much-surprise-lift 5m Ace (for example.)



    Hope that helps a bit. Fly safe.
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  14. #14
    bat faskit festa's Avatar
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    that had to hurt
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  15. #15
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    As everyone else has said - way too much headache to do.
    Cheapest 4 line kites on the market are:
    - Cross Kites Quattro (the Cross Kites Quattro 2.5 is an ideal starter size)
    - Pansh Flux
    Both are good entry level 4 line kites for people on a budget.
    With the Cross Kites Quattro, I have also set one of these up before both the 1.5 and 2.5 on a Peter Lynn powerkite bar, so works fine on handles or bar.

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