Trimming Guide

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Trimming Guide

Post by Tighe »

Equipment: All 4 line inflatable kites like Naish, Wipika, Slingshot, etc.
Date: 04/20/02

When you buy a new kite, the manufacturers most likely will provide a complete plug and play system of bar, leader lines, lines etc. Over time there most likely will be line stretch, as well as you may find reasons why you may want to modify the basic setup. Before doing this it is a good idea to understand how line lengths affect the flying characteristics of the kite and how it effects your safety system. Below is a basic guide for checking your setup and adjusting things as needed.


Connect all four lines to a stake,long screwdriver in the ground or post, have your harness on. Make sure the lines are free of twists. Hook into your main (harness line) and trim loop. Make sure the trim strap is at its longest.

If you walk back and tension the lines now, all four lines should be equal, or with some kites like Naish Ar5`s, slightly slack fronts (approx 2.5cm - 5cm). When you tension the lines tight, all lines may appear equal. Relieve the tension till they begin to sag to see any differences.

For most kites and flyers the four lines are equal when in the trim and main loop.

You adjust your lines to get this position by changing the position of or adding knots to your leaders (use figure 8 knots).

Your arm position relative to the bar, when you are in both loops, is important for your comfort, and this is where the trim loop only kites (like Wipika Airblasts) users should set all lines equal - at a comfortable arm position to the bar. That is the key to get yourself a comfortable arm position when the kite is fully powered, where you set this (lines equal/fully powered) position is what advanced riders do, they usually set it further away, than us mere mortals backs are comfortable with :-) !! You can buy different length main harness lines, always check this if you are getting sore joints/tendons in the arms and lower back.

To ride more powered up you will need to lengthen the trim loop adjustment on most kites, to suit your style, but many new kites do allow plenty of adjustment range for the average to advanced rider. Many advanced riders are comfortable to ride through gusts one handed, to allow the kite to depower further, as most all the 2002 model 4 line only inflatable kites do.

You need to make all four lines equal at the distance from the bar you are comfortble with when doing looping and spinning tricks, as well as riding with a big kite to boost high.

The main goal is to ensure that you adjustment strap "contains" the adjustability of the kite. If inproperly set up you can easily oversheet or undersheet your kite, which usually results in poor performance. More than anything else flying your kite in varied conditions will give you the best understanding of how well you have it set up. For example, if you are in light winds and seem a bit underpowered, if you let out your adjustment strap and the kite has less power and doesn't respond as well, most likely your front lines are a bit long.
(copied from Kite
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