Sunday, July 5, 2009

Bladder Blues

Sunday we had 8-14 knots from the SSE, which is great wind for summer in Florida. Since my formula windsurfing boom is out of commission, and the wind strength and direction were ideal for my 12 m kite, I decided to go kiteboarding for the first time since early May.


I was nervous after the hiatus, but everything came back ok...


...for the most part.


I got comfortable on the water and even tried some crappy jumps, but I still need to learn how to turn properly. At one point my buddy Scott was semi-planing on my Kona longboard with a 6.6 sail and we were going about the same speed. He probably coulda passed me if he'd known how to use the harness and his "third leg".


My neighbor Bill brought his jetski, which was entertaining for our cute German visiting scientists, who also went windsurfing some more.


The lower wind threshold for good riding on the 12 m kite and big twintip board seems to be within 1 knot of the threshold for the 9.8 windsurfing sail on my formula board. The difference is that below the threshold on the formula board I can still stay upwind, whereas below the threshold on the kite I can't stay upwind and have to get back to the beach by figure-8 flying the kite.

The only bummer was that one of my wingtip strut bladders leaked. It didn't make a noticeable difference in how the kite flew, but it made that wingtip flutter a bit and I think I should get it fixed before I go out again. There definitely seems to be a price to pay for upkeep of light wind planing gear, whether it's a windsurf or a kite.


PeconicPuffin said...

Don't drink coffee before your makes a big difference.

James Douglass said...


Frank said...

Nice scientists !! Man, windsurfing gear depreciates faster than dodges.
Glad you found good deals. Florida seems a lot like Texas light wind in summer and heavy wind in winter.