MY KITE FOR WAVE & FOIL
WEIGHT & SIZES
LIGHT - EFFICIENT - AGILE
The fact that a light kite always flies way better than a heavy kite is in principle nothing new and widely known. However for a long time not much attention was paid to it, because the kites were instead overdesigned in order to optimize for freestyle and for the highest quality optics. Also my new kite Maverick II does NOT follow this goal. My kite should cover perfectly my personal range of use and this is mainly in the waves with the surf-board and in light wind at flat water with the hydrofoil. For that reason the kite has to be very light. On the other hand for the use in the waves it must be stable. Why the Maverick's weight is still so little I explain below.
The special efficiency of the Maverick is the orientation for Hydrofoil as well as for the waves and the notably large wind range. I do not want to go back to the beach and inflate kites just because the wind changes. On the foil you are quickly overpowered and with the push of a wave on the surfboard you also appreciate a kite with great depower and confident flight characteristics. The lowest wind range on the other hand requires a powerful kite to prevent break down. But not only the pure wind range is important to me. My kite must also have a linear power build-up, drift well and be totally easy to relaunch even in very low wind. I also want to ride the 5m with the same bar as the 12m kite.
I have never liked a lazy kite. He could lift you up so well and jump as high as he wanted. For me it was always more important that my personal kite is extremely agile, but not nervous. I do not want to be limited by the kite which could happen very fast in the waves with a lame kite. Also with the Hydrofoil an agile kite is in my view clearly of advantage, because I can react so much faster. While foiling there is often only very little tension on the lines and then a lazy kite is not convincing me. Therefore the Maverick has been developed by the shape and by the bridle attachment from the first prototype for these kind of characteristics and this is even more pronounced with the Maverick II.
"The primary goal in developing of the Maverick was riding a small kite as early as possible and not as long as possible a big kite. Big kites are always lazier than smaller kites and I just do not like lazy kites."
I have designed the Maverick exactly for the use on Hydrofoil and in Waves. You can see this well by the shape of the wingtips with enough surface and the sweep back in order to produce a good turning speed and to have no unwanted nose-down. The wingtip of the Maverick II has a bit less area because that makes the relaunch much easier. By adapting the profile and a slightly larger diameter of the front tube in this area the kite is stable at the edge of the wind window even in very little wind. The individual details such as the profile, the twist and the skin tension only create a good kite when the entire shape is matching each other.
A kite that is agile, powerful and has an easy handling even in strong wind at the same time must have a perfect working profile. Since the range of use of the Maverick is clearly defined you can only choose a profile where the air flow immediately is clean after depowering the kite. This creates a constant pull on the bar and not the uncomfortable ON / OFF performance which is for me much too jerky on many kites.
Both on the Foil and on the Waveboard a good groundpull is an advantage, but in the higher wind range the kite should not work like a tractor that constantly snaps me from the board. The design of the profile at the Maverick kite was therefore quite complex and only due to many years of my experience in kite design I could apply exactly the profile which has the desired characteristics.
Each kite needs a stabilizer at the wingtip to perform well in very tight turns and at the very edge of the wind window. Unfortunately too often performance and handling are given away at this point. In the prototype period I have tried out wingtips with more narrow outlines very intensively. The version that is now used in the series kite is a noticeable improvement especially in terms of relaunch behavior. The kite feels a bit lighter overall and you notice where the kite is even without looking for. For the use in the waves that´s a very important feature for me which I really wanted to improve further in my new kite. The wingtips on the Maverick II now also have a little more skin-tension as this makes the kite fly more stable even in more wind and thus creates an even more direct feeling at the bar.
My new kite should be light, very light. No-Strutters are very light, but mostly have a small wind range. They work very well in low winds, but as soon as the wind picks up you have to change the kite, because the handling becomes disastrous. Single-Strutter can do that better, but I am still missing the support of the profile at the wingtip when forcing the kite into very tight turns. However developing a classic three-strutter would have removed me from the goal of developing a very light kite. That's why I've modified the two struts near the wingtip to micro-struts with extremely thin diameters and call this 1 plus 2. This design is almost as light as a single-strutter, but the kite turns way better and in the high end wind range it has more control, because the profile is better stabilized.
The flight of birds has always fascinated me especially their agility. They achieve this by twisting their wings completely. No bird has rigid wings like an airplane. Any aircraft designer would dream of realizing a stable and simple torsion wing instead of being limited only on flaps at the end of the wing. A kite with a stiff fronttube is almost similar to a rigid wing. Such a kite cannot really be influenced by the kiter in its flight and turning performance as a pull at the bar usually affects only at the wingtip. In contrast to that the Maverick can turn or rather twist over much of his area because it has a quite thin leading edge. Itturns therefore much narrower and more important to me is that the air flow is permanently clean on the kite. You notice this immediately, because the feeling at the bar remains constant even with tight turns. For me both in the wave, as well as on the foil an essential feature.
In order to stabilize the quite thin leading edge at the Maverick a very well working bridle is necessary. I've used a pulley in just one position right where the bridle needs to move to get a very efficient depower effect and keep the depower way at the bar as short as possible. If you push the bar completely away from your body the kite is completely without power which always gives me a very safe feeling. The remaining points are fixed to create a very direct bar feeling and to enable the relaunch even at very low winds. My bridle is assembled with lightweight flying lines rather than thick and heavy bridle lines. This creates less air resistance and also contributes to the low weight of the kite.
The requirement to build a lightweight kite for the use on the foil which at the same time is stable enough for the use in the waves requires a rethink in the design. However for me it was clear from the beginning that I will not use rocket technology with hocus-pocus materials where the kiter as a customer should perform the final test. That's why I use the extremely robust Ripstop from Contender on my kite which has excellent stretch and tear resistance. It's light enough but really stable. From the same company comes the Dacron for the leading edge and the struts. Both materials are woven and finished in Germany and Switzerland. A one-pump-system and a large IN/ OUT-valve are standard today. But why is the Maverick kite so light now?
A light kite needs a light kite bag. With only 135 gr this bag is really light and fits well for traveling. It is simple, functional and nevertheless solid. No needless details and just the focus on the essentials. A bag how I have always wanted to have. The two side lines close the opening at the top of the bag and also serve as a shoulder strap. Because the Maverick and the bag are so light no padding is needed here.
"There are many kites that fly well straight line, but my new kite also needs to be very good in the turns to work perfectly on the hydrofoil and the waveboard."
To have lots of fun on the Hydrofoil my kite not only has to be lightweight, good to relaunch and have a good performance, but also covers a really large wind range. In addition to that I expect a very predictable bar feeling. If you ride a jibe with the hydrofoil towards the kite there is usually only very little tension on the flying lines due to the little existing drag of the foil. Then you realize very quickly how well a kite is designed for this range of use. The Maverick excites me every day on the Foil because he's finally the kite I've always imagined.
For use in the waves my kite must be able to drift well. Unfortunately many kites which drift well are flying far too deep in the wind window and therefore have deficits on going upwind. The Maverick should also be good in this discipline. That´s why I have taken very much care in the choice of the profile that both characteristics are not neglected. I like a direct bar-feeling, but without much effort. It has to feel light and playful so that I can concentrate fully on the waves. I want to avoid to have to look up to the kite all the time to make sure where it is going or even have a backstall. I really appreciate the special barfeeling of the Maverick in the wave especially when the kite hardly has any tension on the flying lines due to the wave push.
A kite that has a bad relaunch is definitely a fun killer on the foil and in the waves you run the risk of completely destroying the kite because it did not come out of the water in time for the next wave. You do not want to have both. The new Maverick II starts directly and deep in the wind window without having to move annoyingly long to the edge of the wind window. The narrower wingtips and the slightly thicker leading edge as well as the outer struts allow the kite to detach itself from the water more quickly and easily. The special bridle setup supports this through the fixed points and together with the wingtips enough lift is produced so that the kite turns as you wish it to do so.
The Maverick I have developed unlike my previous kite developments not according to the specifications of a marketing department, but primarily purely for my personal use. That's just Wave, as well as Hydrofoil and not Freeride, or Freestyle.
BUT: This kite has been tested also on the twintip board in the development period by very light and even by very heavy kiteboarders just to see how it works. It was noticeable that the Maverick is by the way also an excellent freeride kite. This is mainly due to the very large wind range, the nice bar feeling, the easy relaunch and the playful-easy handling. The kite offers pure fun and because of its agility you always want to try something new and improve your riding skills. The high performance in jumping and in going upwind as well as the ability to ride a small kite very early definitely confirm its qualification for the freeride sector. A great side effect!
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