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Lesson #1, Pancake to a Fade (Read 3313 times)
Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
OK already! I get enough pressure so here we go:

Let's break everything down.

The Fade part:

This will work better if you have a lineset about 10ft, or 3m in length. Or you can just walk closer to your kite and grab your lines. The reason is so you can see your lines, bridal and kite really easy. (I'm getting older and my eyes are getting older too. Plus I don't want to walk too far when i reset the kite.)

Let's start with the kite on the ground in a flared position. Belly down, nose away. Grab your lines and then sweep your hands back while taking a step or two back and watch when the kite is in a nose down position and then stop pulling the lines, and see what your kite does. If it pops up and then lands in a lawn dart position, You are pulling too hard and fast. Remember that when you are stepping back it adds to the speed of your sweeping hands. Take a deep breath and reset your kite. Now let's try it again but slower, Hmm, (Jim, You're gonna like this one!) Let's try it like there's a big growling dog next to you and you have to pet it. Once your hands on it's head, you pet it firmly yet slowly. So pet the Growling dog, and step back. What did the kite do? If it pops up and lawn darts again, you will need a bigger dog, or slow down your sweep, or slow down your step, or all of the above. (I did this for four hours straight just to get the hang of this move so don't think it'll come just like that!)

Now if your kite never leaves the ground and the nose of the kite seems like it's stuck on a track, you need to pull, or step faster, or both. ( I have never seen any one not pull hard enough, but there's always a first.)

So the desired result is to have the kite roll from the flared position with the nose just about 6 inches off of the ground into a: kite on it's back nose towards you position.( aka the Fade position) Nice! Now try to notice your lines and where and when they touch the leading edge. This will be key in "catching" the kite with your lines so it won't over rotate, or under rotate. "catching" the leading edges with your lines is like catching a water balloon, "Soft and Deliberate". Keep doing this till you find the right position your kite likes to stay in a fade. Then do it again and again till you can almost do it by feel and not have to look at the kite. This is key to muscle memory. (You have been doing this from the ground haven't you?)


The Fare, or pancake part:

I would have you fly straight down a few feet and then extend both hands and arms forward while stepping forward. This will get you into the flare, pancake, or whtever you want to call it. Keep watching the nose of the kite each time you do this and try to see if you can make it pancake flat with the horizon. (I use to say even with the ground, but we fly on Kite Hill.) Continue this until you get a feel for the movements and can actually stop the flare when it's perfectly flat. (Yes I did say stop the flare. †No moving forward, back or otherwise.) Kind of cool watching it just hang there for just a split second.

Now that you got that, let's test your skills. Fly straight down to the ground, but do a flare landing. What that means is before you do the famous Lawn Dart Landing, lunge forward and do the flare as described above, and let the kite settle "Softly" to the ground. Got it? Way cool! Look familiar?

All toghether now:

Now that you have the individual parts, movements, and everything else in between. Let's try it.OK, fly your kite down towards the ground, then flare out to a pancake, and stop the kites momentum. (Remember, when the kite was laying on the ground, it wasn't moving! A-Ha! Now it's making sense.) Now start your pull to a fade, and make sure you tend the slack and the "Catch". Wow, Look at that! Now you need to do this over, and over again. †Oh yeah that's nice. Now to get out of the fade, you just simply pull on one line and slack the other, and the kite will roll out of the fade, pull on both lines and fly away. ( You can smile now! ) Now do it again and again!

Hope that covers most of my learning progression. You can add to this if you want, or you can tell me I'm crazy and need to take kite flying lessons, but I would like to know if this helps anyone or if I need to add anything. Also try this with different kites so you get a feel of how each kite does things a little different. Now stop reading this and get out there and practice this!
 
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Reply #1 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
runeski   Ex Member

 
Hi Reggie,

    I have the Prism video, It's pretty good! It tells you how to do all sorts of tricks, if everyone had a copy it would save you alot of typing! But I;m sure those who don't have it are thanking you for your time, putting it into words!

  Runeski
 
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Reply #2 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
Gian   Ex Member

 
Awesome!  You are the man, UB... especially since the DVD no longer comes with a booklet! 

I'm printing this out for my next crashing flying session!

Thanks for putting the time into typing this out -- very helpful for the newbies like me.

-Gian
 
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Reply #3 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
streamhawk   Ex Member

 
Reggie, that's about the best explanation in writing I've ever read. Bravo! I'm ready for lesson #2 and #3, etc. Keep it going, good stuff!
Bill
 
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Reply #4 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
tntyz   Ex Member

 
I was out working on this one today with tips in hand from an earleir thread.  I actually started to get it once in a while.

I'll add this information and practice as you suggest.

Thanks for stepping up for us!
 
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Reply #5 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Thanks for putting the time into typing this out -- very helpful for the newbies like me.

Gian, you're quite welcome. Now let me know if this works for you and if it all makes sense when you are doing the excersizes.
 
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Reply #6 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
   I have the Prism video, It's pretty good! It tells you how to do all sorts of tricks

Runeski, I also covet the DVD, but this exercise was taught to me by Mr. Matt McGee and is not in the video. I think explaining the moves and some things to look for help along with the DVD.
 
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Reply #7 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
streamhawk wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
I'm ready for lesson #2 and #3, etc. Keep it going, good stuff!

Hi Bill, Refresh my memory, what was lesson #2, and #3? I'm still working on learning to type. It took me all about a 1/2 hr to type all of that! Angry
 
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Reply #8 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
I was out working on this one today with tips in hand from an earleir thread.  I actually started to get it once in a while.

Hi Tony, I saw that you looked at the thread Vu started, so I knew you would be practicing the tips there. But I thought I'd start a new thread so I could just focus on the pancake to a fade and pass on what was taught to me. Let me know how this works for you.
 
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Reply #9 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
nailimexam   Ex Member

 
As I have been practicing the fade launch, I have noticed that when I "lawn dart", it seems to be caused not by pulling too hard, but by releasing to little and/or to late.

Of coarse if I throw too much slack, I loose control.

The key for me has been finding a balance.


Catching the kite in the fade position is a little like landing a jump...legs too stiff and you crash...legs too loose and you crash.

Just some of my thoughts,

Anyway, great wright-up, great Idea! Keep it up!
 
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Reply #10 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
PadawanFlyer   Ex Member

 
Great to see this post Reggie! 

I remember that I thought I knew how to pancake to fade until you taught me this practice technique (which took me quite some time to be able to do most of the time and I'm still working on it).

It really helps to develop the touch needed in order to readily catch and hold the kite for a rising fade.

The slow pull teaches finesse.  I remember when I first learned the flic flack on the Hypnotist.  That kite allows you to aggressively hammer them around very quickly and it even looks good, but good luck moving that technique to a kite like an UL or SUL.

Great tutorial! 
 
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Reply #11 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Great to see this post Reggie!  

I remember that I thought I knew how to pancake to fade until you taught me this practice technique (which took me quite some time to be able to do most of the time and I'm still working on it).

Hi Tom, yeah I remember, Seems you can do it pretty good now! I know Jim's gonna see this post and hve something to say.I used this on him too!
 
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Reply #12 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
Iddo   Ex Member

 
Hey Reggie,

Thanks!

Iddo
 
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Reply #13 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
benjai   Ex Member

 
Nice explanation!

I practiced the launch to fade in exactly this way when I first had my Nexus (a couple of weeks ago) as it was the only thing I could do in a few yards of space. As a complete novice I'll add what I found in case it helps anyone else out there (I found it really frustrating too!).

1. Short lines really help a lot - I didn't have any, and I didn't want to chop up my new lineset, so I just used ordinary string!!!
2. I practiced in zero wind for about an hour to get it. It meant if you "lawn dart" there is no wind pushing the kite back into the ground so the kite wont break.
3. Zero wind means you cant hold the fade - only flip the kite to this position (at least not without running backwards on the Nexus - and I only had a few yards remember)
4. It's all about feel and timing. To learn, I deliberatly did it wrong to see how the kite reacted. then when it didn't work, I knew why - here's my conclusions
4a Pull too hard/quickly - kite overrotates
4b Pull too softly - kite doesn't rotate enough (stays belly down, or nose down)
4c Give too much slack during rotation - kite overrotates, and when slack is taken up, flips straight back out of the fade into the lawn dart
4d Don't give enough slack (most common error), kite flips up and immediately stops rotating and falls into a lawn dart
4e "Catch" too hard or late (by which I mean take up the slace again) flips straight back out of the fade into the lawn dart
4f "Catch" too soft or late - kite flys too "nose up" meaning the fade is unstable and wobbly, and with the Nexus at least, almost impossible to hold

One other thing - when I tried this in some breeze, the timing was identical, but I had to give more slack, more quickly. This meant starting with my hands by my side, with the pull back to behind me about a foot followed by hands out fully in front to give enough slack.
Hope that helps someone.

Finally, I note to try to explain the "feel and timing" aspect (and I like the previous "catching a water baloon" analogy Smiley). I find it like this :
Imagine taking a tennis ball and racquet - imagine the action of hitting the ball vertically about 3 feet (this is like the pull part of the launch to fade). Then imagine catching the ball on the racquet WITHOUT it bouncing - you have to move the racquet DOWN rapidly, join with the ball, and slow down smoothly. This is just like the "give slack, allow rotation, take up slack" part.

Hope this helps. Above all, don't give up, you'll get it in the end and it looks way cool.

Ben
 
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Reply #14 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
benjai   Ex Member

 
Just forgot to add one more thing:

When I practiced this, I found the lower spreaders would "walk" out of the centre "T". I had to push them back in every few times. It's worth keeping an eye on this - although it might be specific to the Nexus.
 
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Reply #15 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Hey Ben, Thanks for adding your experience with this kind of excersize. I like your tennis ball stuff too. I used to play alot and used this move to help teach racquet control and hand eye coordination. It's been so long I forgot abbout that.

Thanks for your words of wisdom. This is the kind of suff I wanted added to this thread. I also want to hear other people's results when they try this out. Hope all the noobie's get a feel for this and then we can move on to another lesson. Tom has given me some ideas.

I want to thank Vu to inspire me to put this lesson on the forum. Hey Vu, Have you tried this yet? I didn't want to hijack your other thead. Let us know about your experience with all of our suggestions.
 
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Reply #16 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Hey Reggie,

Thanks!

Iddo


Hey Iddo,
You're more than welcome.

Hope this helps! Can you give me any feed back on this? I'll wait till you get a chance to try it out for a few hours, then let me know.
 
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Reply #17 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
benjai   Ex Member

 
UBNVUS wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
Hey Ben, Thanks for adding your experience with this kind of excersize.
Thanks for your words of wisdom. This is the kind of suff I wanted added to this thread.


Reggie,

You are very welcome. The fact that there are people like you (and others) who are prepared to put the time in to help others and share experiences, is what makes this forum so great. So thak you. I'm glad to try to contribute where I can, and give a novices perspective - I've taken advice, so I try to give some back. Unfortunately, my previous post detailed everything I've learnt so far Grin Grin!!!

I also haven't forgotten about trying the pancake to fade at various positions in the window - except to say that it gets more terrifying the lower you are Grin I'll keep you posted with how I get on - wind is rubbish here at the moment (so gusty that I straightened out a line clip on my Nexus yesterday when a gust hit).

Ben
 
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Reply #18 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
benjai   Ex Member

 
Oh, there is one other thing I can add...

If you are practicing the pancake to fade launch (like I did), dont forget to start with your lines crossed (like I did Grin !)

Ben
 
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Reply #19 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
MarkyMark   Ex Member

 
Condensed version for the lazy, yo.

1) Fly downwards
2) Push hands forward
3) Sweep hands back
4) Enjoy your fade

Mark your mark.
 
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Reply #20 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
tntyz   Ex Member

 
This has been a very informative thread for me.  Thanks to all who have contributed their tips and tricks.

My personal challenge was starting the whole process high enough.  My thought process when something like this, "Hmm, is the kite straight now?.  No, I mean perfectly straight.  Ah, yes, just a slight tweak to the left.  Now right just a bit.  Better.  Should I flare now?  How about NOW?"

Well, you get the idea.  I worked on seeing when the kite was in the proper attitude and initiating the trick higher in the window.  Much better results.

For me, it's a matter of confidence.  My perfectionist nature tells me that I am not allowed to make mistakes.  Learning is a process of letting go and opening up.
 
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Reply #21 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
My personal challenge was starting the whole process high enough.  My thought process when something like this, "Hmm, is the kite straight now?.  No, I mean perfectly straight.  Ah, yes, just a slight tweak to the left.  Now right just a bit.  Better.  Should I flare now?  How about NOW?"
Learning is a process of letting go and opening up.



Hi Tony, As a side note to your perfectionist ways, you might want to give this a thought. If you were perfectly lined up with the ground in a perpendicular nose dive and did this flare to a fade .it would be great, but you would be locking yourself to limits of the manuever. If the kite is a bit off, it opens the door to another trick. For instance. If you pancaked out and the wing to your right is a little higher, then when you pulled to a fade, the wing to you left is lower. Perfect position to start the backspin. WOW! Now if you're a perfectionist, think about this. With water if there is an action, there is a reaction. So with Kiting, if there's an action, you need to react to continue to fly.

Also, glad this thread is helping you. I too am gald for others fee back and additions. I know Jim is at the ocean, but when is Dean gonna jump in? Dean, what are your thoughts?
 
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Reply #22 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
PadawanFlyer   Ex Member

 
UBNVUS wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
... If the kite is a bit off, it opens the door to another trick. For instance. If you pancaked out and the wing to your right is a little higher, then when you pulled to a fade, the wing to you left is lower. Perfect position to start the backspin. WOW! ...


Totally agree - you taught me this Reggie!  Its all in the "work with what the kite wants to do" mentality.

Something like, if you are on your way to the market to buy a donkey, don't pass up three free thorough-bred horses on the way!

This afternoon Eli and I were out flying a bit.  Hit did a flap-jack, but with a twist.  He launched into the turtle, did 2 multi-lazys, and then brought it down for a picture-perfect tip stap, all in a flash.

I asked him, were you trying to do that?  He said, well, I was trying to do a flapjack, but it went around so easy and seemed so light, I just pulled it a few more times.  The stab was just luck.

I'm working on the JL now.  I used to try 3 rungs no matter what, often ending up on the ground.  It really makes more sense to bail when I know I'm in trouble and just flic-flac or float a fade until I get things back on track.  Looks alot better anyhow!  I mean, it looks like I meant to do it, which I do, only what I am doing has changed since my original goal is not reachable given what has happened (make sense?).


 
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Reply #23 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
runeski   Ex Member

 
Makes perfect sense! I'm new to trick kiting, but I have come to realize exactly what you were talking about. You can't make the kite do aything the wind wont allow. Thats my opinion anyway, maybe the pros will tell you differently!


            Rune.
 
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Reply #24 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Totally agree - you taught me this Reggie! śIts all in the "work with what the kite wants to do" mentality.


Thanks Tom, It's nice to know that someone actually listens to what I say and really takes it to heart.

Now if I would listen to me I could probably get past the Tip wrap Hyper spin stage!  Grin
 
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Reply #25 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
You can't make the kite do aything the wind wont allow. Thats my opinion anyway, maybe the pros will tell you differently!


Hi Rune, Actually the Pro's do tell you the same thing. You should read the article in the Stickies section written by Matthew McGee called Conseptual Kiting. It was one of the first things I read that truly made any sense to me. I actually asked Matt a few questions about the article and he went even more indepth than I could imagine. He also was the one that told me that "do what the kite is giving you and stop fighting it." That was a big break through for me. I just needed to watch the kite and know in an instant what the kite could do from  any position it was in.

And yes, I still practice the snap stall all the time to solidify my foundation. You can ask Tom, or Jim. They'll tell you I use the stalls to set up for my moves, but I 'm working on making the stall almost unseen so it looks like I'm not stalling at all. It's the finess thing.

Thanks for your feed back!
 
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Reply #26 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
Iddo   Ex Member

 
OK,

I think that this goes beyond the immediate subject of Pancake to Fade. As someone who learns mainly from the written instructions here and the DVD, I think that until I somehow manage to do the trick (more or less by accident, as you never know exactry what is involved until you see it in 3D in front of you), it is always vague, and then when my mind tells my hands that the last set of moves were correct, it is "stored" in a different way. All you have to do from then on, is repeat it over and over in different points in the window, and different winds, and different kites, and there you have it Wink.

Cheers,

Iddo
 
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Reply #27 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
I think that this goes beyond the immediate subject of Pancake to Fade.


Sorry Iddo, I hijacked my own thread. Angry

So have you gotten to try this out yet? If you need a 3D image maybe some one can do a you tube video and post it. I don't have a video camera anymore so you're out of luck seeing me do it.......and of course I still do this to make sure I still can.

Thanks for keeping me in line!
 
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Reply #28 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
kitenut   Ex Member

 
Great explanation of the technique for the fade!  Thanks so much.  I'm still working on Lesson 1.  I can pull from the flare (on the ground) to the fade and avoid the "lawn dart" (I assume that's nose down? Undecided but after a brief fade the wing tips settle back to the ground.  Although the wind was yucky, I have a feeling I shouldn't blame it on the wind.  Any advice?

Cheryl
 
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Reply #29 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
kitenut wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
but after a brief fade the wing tips settle back to the ground
Cheryl

Hi Cheryl, Sorry I didn't get to say hello on the introduce yourself thread, so Welcome to the Forum. You'll meet some really great folks on this site.

Back to your question, depending on the wind speed, you may have to walk backwards to create enough lift under the wings to maintain the fade. Remember that your kite is in a different flying position. Just like an airplane flying upside down, it will require a bit more power to fly, and if the wind is fairly brisk, you may have to walk forward. There's a lot of walking, lunging, and cuss'in all at the same time when you start flying kites! Grin

Hope that helps!
 
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Reply #30 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
The Enchanter   Ex Member

 
I just discovered these drills today, so as soon as the weather clears, I'll be taking them with me.

UBNVUS wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
Have any of my lessons helped you, or are you beyond that?


No, I'm not beyond any expert advice. And just about anyone can make me look like a bear in a tutu.
 
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Reply #31 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
No, I'm not beyond any expert advice. And just about anyone can make me look like a bear in a tutu.


Expert? Who me? Jim, you gotta talk to this guy, I'm far from being an expert. I leave those titles to the likes of Matt, and Elrod. ( Yet another good laugh from the forum! )
 
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Reply #32 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Hey Tim and Cheryl, Did you try these out yet? Need some feed back. I'm hoping if you share your experience doing the tasks, we can all learn from each other and move on to the next...

Feel free to add your own comments or experiences.
 
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Reply #33 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
rjs   Ex Member

 
yesterday was my first outing with lesson 1. My wind was quite gusty and building from a storm coming in. Several attempts while walking backwards across the field allowed me to see how this is going to work. Actually got it to the fade and held for a second or two and a few attempts. VERY COOL. Can't wait to get out and try again. I only had about a half hour before the rain came in.

Just a little feedback.

Bob


 
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Reply #34 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
The Enchanter   Ex Member

 
UBNVUS wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
Did you try these out yet? Need some feed back.


Hey Reggie... I printed out the day's lesson, brought it to the field, studied it in my truck to get in "the zone"... but I just couldn't focus with a carnival going right next to me.

If I had known there was a carnival scheduled, I'd have gone elsewhere. Needless to say, I just fooled around and simply played without really thinking about what I was doing. Yet, somehow, I got my 'Lix in a roll-up and was able to yo-yo out! Damnedest thing... and soooo exciting!

I'll make sure to be more diligent next time, and follow the lesson. Maybe I'll escape to the lake front (Lake Mendota) on a late lunch so I'll have it all to myself. When I do, you'll see a post here.
 
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Reply #35 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Actually got it to the fade and held for a second or two and a few attempts. VERY COOL. Can't wait to get out and try again. I only had about a half hour before the rain came in.

Just a little feedback.



All right Bob, that's what I'm talking about! Now when you were doing this, did it lawn dart on you? If so what made it lawn dart, and what did you do to correct it?

Thanks for sharing!
 
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Reply #36 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
UBNVUS   Ex Member

 
Quote:
Hey Reggie... I printed out the day's lesson, brought it to the field, studied it in my truck to get in "the zone"... but I just couldn't focus with a carnival going right next to me.


OK Tim, I see I'm gonna have a problem student here. Gettting distracted, doing other things way beyond the task at hand. Hmmm, What punishment should we lay upon thee. I know. you must stay after class and do the lesson till it get's dark. Grin Grin Grin Oh,, and bring me some Carmel Popcorn to smoooze the teacher!! Wink
 
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Reply #37 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
rjs   Ex Member

 
UBNVUS wrote on Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm:
All right Bob, that's what I'm talking about! Now when you were doing this, did it lawn dart on you? If so what made it lawn dart, and what did you do to correct it?

Thanks for sharing!


Yes, lawndarted it several times, seems I need a shorter dog
Grin

I think what I remember doing is adding slack to the lines alittle, I still have to figure when to add it, and sort of catch the kite with the lines. I was trying to figure out at what point in the rotation I have to do this. More practice is needed, hope to get out today.

Thanks for these lessons, it is really helping me out.

Bob


 
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Reply #38 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
kitenut   Ex Member

 
Hi Reggie,
I finally got some sailing time this weekend.  (I was on beautiful Lake Michigan Saturday, but there was not time to fly, then once home there was no wind ARGGH!)

Anyway, I got out to the soccer field for an hour & a half yesterday.  YEAH!  The wind was variable, but better than it has been.

Anyway, when the wind is very light I can manage the pull from flare to fade (from the ground) without a lawn dart.  I did manage to hold a fade about 1 or 2 seconds.  Walking backward doesn't help a thing.  Not sure what I am doing wrong.

When the wind picked up a little bit I thought, now's my chance to nail this thing.  Nothing doing. Every try ended up with a frightening lawn dart.  Fortunately my kite is still in one piece.

I feel like a remedial case on this move.  It seems impossible.

On the positive side, I did start to get the idea of "catching the leading edges" with the lines.  Can't say that I can do it though.

Thanks,

Cheryl
 
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Reply #39 - Dec 31st, 1969 at 4:00pm
kitenut   Ex Member

 
Hey Tim,
I see you are in Madison, WI.  I lived there for 10 years.  Where do you fly on Lake Mendota?

Cheryl
 
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