The Zephyr is a dream machine for light wind flying with finesse.
- Technical Specs
- Tips & Resources
Finesse. The Zephyr is a light wind dream machine. Float on the breeze. Stall, slide, pirouette on a dime with a flick of the wrist. Beautifully balanced, the Zephyr is an aerobatic stylist. It’ll float on its back or carve laser-sharp lines, effortlessly.
The Zephyr is tricked out for pilots with a few hours in their logbooks. No-snag leading edge pockets. Yo-yo stoppers on the wings. Leechline for stealth flight. Variable center of gravity. Tune it for your style and get ready to amaze.
A low-wind dream needs feather-light materials to be responsive to the subtlest touch. The high-aspect sail is Icarex polyester and Mylar laminate. It won’t absorb water or stretch out on those humid days we get in the Rain City. The frame is hand-wrapped SkyShark tapered carbon spars. Very fancy. Very light. Includes Dyneema flying lines with flight straps and a full length zippered sleeve.
|Packaged Weight||1.5 lbs|
|Packed Size||36 x 4 x 4 in|
- Equalizer Flight Straps
- Duos Straps
- Prism Line Winder
- Kite Repair Kit
- Kite Stake
- Tenacious Tape
- Large Link Lines
- Roll-Up Bag
- Wing Tip Lashings
- Velcro Kite Wraps (set of 3)
- 50# x 50ft Spectra Flying Lines
- 50# x 75ft Spectra Flying Lines
- 150# x 85ft Spectra Flying Lines
- 50# x 100ft Modulus Flying Lines
- 90# x 100ft Modulus Flying Lines
- 150# x 120ft Modulus Flying Lines
- Zephyr Bridle
- Zephyr Wingtip Nock
- Zephyr Spine Weight
- Zephyr Upper Spreader
- Zephyr Upper Leading Edge
- Zephyr Standoff Retainer Fittings
- Zephyr Standoffs
- Zephyr Spine
- Zephyr Lower Spreader (Male)
- Zephyr Lower Spreader (Female)
- Zephyr Lower Leading Edge
- Zephyr Leading Edge Fittings
- Zephyr Center T
- Yo-Yo Stopper Kit
Tips & Resources
What’s the difference between the Zephyr and the E3?
The Zephyr flies in lighter wind and corners more precisely than the E3. Both can perform the full range of freestyle tricks.
What’s the lightest wind the Zephyr will fly in?
Pilot skill makes a difference as the wind goes away, but the Zephyr can fly happily on light lines in 2-4 mph with a bit of experience.
What does the spine weight do?
The small removable weight included with your Zephyr allows you to adjust the balance of the kite for more radical tricks like yo-yo, backspins, etc. It will also make tricks easier in high winds by increasing the weight and inertia of the kite. Install by removing the spine from the nose and tail and sliding into place.
What’s better about an Icarex polyester sail?
Icarex is our highest performance sail fabric, used only in our lightest and most sophisticated sport kites. It’s half the weight of ordinary sail materials but just as strong, with very low stretch that helps your kite hold its shape in the wind.
What’s better about wrapped carbon tubes?
Wrapped carbon tubes make an airframe lighter and stiffer for a wider wind range and much more responsive feel. Wrapped tubes cost more and can be more fragile, so they’re typically not used in beginner kites. The Zephyr airframe includes both straight and tapered wrapped tubes for light wind precision and response.
What does the adjustable tension line in the trailing edge do?
The tension line is called the Leechline. Tighten it at the wingtips to make the kite smooth and silent by stabilizing the back edge of the sail. Or fly it loose if you like your kite to buzz like an angry hornet as it tears across the sky.
What are yo-yo stoppers?
Yo-yo stoppers are small rubber fittings that clamp around the leading edge between the upper and lower spreader fittings. They make a huge range of yo-yo tricks easy to do. During roll-up maneuvers, they catch the flying lines as they wrap around the kite and keep them from sliding any farther down the wing so you can control the kite even with several wraps around the frame.
What’s the difference between 2-line framed kites and 2-line foil kites?
Framed sport kites have a fixed wing shaped by lightweight sailcloth stretched across a rigid fiberglass or carbon fiber frame. They are typically more responsive and a little more challenging to fly, but they’re capable of a wide variety of tricks once you learn basic control. Trick flying with framed kites gets addictive- with a good kite you can enjoy years of fun mastering more and more challenging tricks like back flips, somersaults, snap stalls and radical landings.
Foil kites are made from fabric only, with inflatable chambers that create a wing shape from air pressure in the air inlets as they fly. They are similar to paragliders and ram-air parachutes in their construction. Ram air foils are not as responsive and maneuverable as framed kites, but they are more forgiving, require no assembly, and have no rigid parts that could be damaged in a hard crash. While larger foils can pull incredibly hard in stronger winds, they can’t do the wide range of aerobatic tricks that a framed kite can. So they’re better suited for the fun of getting pulled around in stronger winds, or learning two-line basics with a forgiving wing that will put you in control as quickly as possible.
Are small kites easier to fly?
Small kites are faster, more responsive, and typically require more wind. That makes them more challenging for beginners learning the basics, even though smaller kites typically cost less. Full-sized kites like the Quantum are easier to learn with because they take larger motions and respond more slowly. They’re also more stable in light winds, with a stronger pull that helps send feedback down the line as you practice finer control. Larger kites are easier to learn tricks with by giving you more time to react and more stability.
How do you control a two-line kite?
2-line kites fly on two control lines about 100’ long. The lightweight, delta-shaped wing is designed to drive forward in the wind while you steer it around the sky by pulling or releasing the control lines. A small pull turns left or right, while a big pull will put the kite into a loop or a spin. Some 2-line kites can fly faster than 50 mph in a strong breeze (the world record for a kite is 108 mph). As you get the hang of steering you’ll be able to maneuver through high speed, precision passes, tight spins, trick landings and a wide variety of aerobatic tricks.
How long does it take to learn?
Learning to fly a two line kite is like riding a bike; once you get the hang of it you never forget. In moderate, smooth wind, most people get basic control figured out in a half hour or so.
What happens if you crash?
Our beginner oriented sport kites are designed to take a beating as you learn how to avoid those unplanned landings. Intermediate and advanced designs use lighter weight, higher performance frames that can be easier to break, but allow finer control and a crisper feel in even the very lightest winds.
Can you adjust the bridle for different winds?
Your framed sport kite is set up to fly best in moderate winds from 8-12 mph, and the bridle doesn’t need to be adjusted for a good basic wind range. As you get to know your kite, you can fine tune the bridle for lighter and stronger winds and adjust how fast it flies, how hard it pulls and how tight it turns.
For more details, see the “TUNING AND ADJUSTMENT” section of Stunt Kite Tips and Hints.
Can you fly a framed kite with a tail?
You sure can. A long tube tail makes a spectacular show in the sky as it traces your path through loops, ground passes and figure eights. Tails take a bit more wind but make strong winds easier by slowing the kite down and reducing the pull.
How do you fly multiple kites in a synchronized stack?
Most framed kites can be flown in a synchronized stack of 2, 3, or more by connecting them at the spine and leading edges with five equal-length stacking lines. The optimal stack line length varies by kite size and model. Stacking lines are available in accessories.
The Nexus 5-Stack and the Micron 5-Stack are pre-made stacks, rigged and ready to fly with special carrying bags that allow you to store the kites flat without detaching any lines. The custom bag makes setup and takedown a cinch.
How long should lines be for 2-line kites?
Most sport kites fly best on lines from 65 to 120 feet long. Shorter lines are better for light winds, longer lines give you a bigger wind window in stronger winds. Light lines as thin as 50# test reduce drag for light winds but can break in strong winds. Heavier lines handle more pull, but add weight and drag in light winds. Experienced kiters collect a range of different strengths and lengths to cover every condition.
Prism kites come equipped with lines in good all-around lengths and strengths for normal conditions. If the wind is strong enough they can break in a gust, but they’re light enough to perform well in light winds as well.
Where can I learn Sport kite tricks?
Our Freestyle Pilot video is a complete course in freestyle tricks that will take you from the basics to the most challenging landings and tumbling moves.
You can also check out our page of instructional animations for many popular dual-line kite tricks.
What lines should I use?
Most multi-line kites fly best on braided Spectra fiber or Dyneema lines. Both names refer to a high performance, super strong polymer used in bulletproof vests and aerospace applications. It’s stronger by weight than steel, with a slippery surface that keeps your lines from binding against each other with multiple twists. It’s also very low stretch, giving you direct fingertip control of your kite.
Some sport kites come with braided polyester rather than Spectra lines. Polyester is stretchier and costs less to manufacture. The stretch and additional drag of a polyester line can make a small, fast kite more forgiving for beginners. Once you’ve got the basics you can always upgrade to Spectra lines to give any kite a performance boost.
How much wind do you need?
We make sport kites that fly in a huge range of conditions, from a roaring nor’easter to no wind at all. We even make kites you can fly indoors, simply by walking slowly backwards through the air. But beware, if you catch the kiting bug you might soon find yourself with a full collection of different kites, so you’ve got a favorite for whatever mother nature throws your way.
What’s your best framed 2-line kite for beginners?
For more than a decade the Prism Quantum has set the gold standard for a durable, versatile all-around sport kite that can take what you dish out as a beginner, but keep you challenged and learning as you progress all the way into freestyle tricks. It’s big enough for stability and a wide wind range, and provides great feedback with an impressive pull when the wind comes up. An elastic shock absorber in the tail soaks up those unplanned landings, and extra reinforcements in the spars give them a long life.