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FLOW BEE

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  • mdelliott@waco.expresspersonnel.com
    First time out with new reel bar. Is a little heavy,probaby about the same weight as older model, large kite-ski bar. (I m guessing) Seems to be well
    Message 1 of 3 , Oct 31, 2000
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      First time out with new reel bar. Is a little heavy,probaby about
      the same weight as older model, large kite-ski bar. (I'm guessing)
      Seems to be well constructed, sturdy. Some of the plattic parts that
      cover the four spools could be broken pretty easily if it were to hit
      rock with any force. The bar came with a 6 ft piece of tubing to
      place over one line and then attach some type of leash. I didnt think
      6 ft would be very effective at depowering a 15.5 kite so i put on a
      longer one.
      A little background, Im still pretty new at this, using naish AR5s.
      If i get back where started Im thrilled. Jumping is fun, although
      the only landing method I've been able to master is kicking off my
      board and taking a deep breath.
      Went out with a 11.5, Launched real easily, "brake star" works
      pretty good, you can operate with your thumb and seems to be very
      secure once tightened. Unlike hand brake which was pretty much on or
      off the brake star could be finely adjusted to where you could set it
      to where the kite slowly reeled out all the way with just enough
      power to stay aloft.
      The inner harness loop was well placed, easy to hook into. You could
      set this position of the trim with the brake or leave it to where it
      powers back up when you get out of the loop. Once going the
      additional weight is not noticeable. Worked the same as a nash bar,
      or with the brake it can operate like an adjustment strap on my
      longhorn bar(still have to use the inner loop to tighten and
      releasing brake to loosen).
      Bringing the kite down take a little more work than I thought but
      manageable. I was able to bring it down faster sitting down, putting
      my foot into the inner loop and pumping away with my leg. After the
      first push out with your arms the kite goes into the depowered
      position and stays there, was a tendency To fly past vertical and
      then drop. Slight back and forth seems to prevent this.One time the
      kite dropped and landed ind grassy area so I did the majority of the
      wind up on the ground without a lot of tension on the lines. MISTAKE.
      Left side had 4 ft unwound even though right side was completley
      wound. Also as I let out the lines to correct this the line snagged
      inside one of the reels to where the kite would not go out any
      further. I had to rewind to a point, the snag came loose by itself,
      and then unwound all the way and then rewound with constant even
      pressure(kite overhead)and the lines were perfectly even.
      Overall I like it. Reel is really helpful around lakes with trees,
      Especially with my preferred line length of 40M. Cant sail with less
      than full line length without loosing sheeting ability. I could stop
      the kite before it was completely unwound by applying the brake, the
      kite would be in the fully powered position. Depowering requires
      releasing the brake, pulling on inner loop, and resetting brake.
      sorry so long winded...
    • sammy@mailops.com
      Don t be sorry for giving us as much info as you can! Thanks for the firsthand report on the Flowbee reel bar. May I ask: how much di you pay for it? And
      Message 2 of 3 , Oct 31, 2000
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        Don't be sorry for giving us as much info as you can! Thanks for the
        firsthand report on the Flowbee reel bar. May I ask: how much di you
        pay for it?

        And don't hesitate to be long winded again if you find out more as
        you use it more. :)

        Sammy
        (Hope this doesn't post twice since I got disconnected the first try.)

        --- In kitesurf@egroups.com, mdelliott@w... wrote:
        <sniped lots of useful info>

        > sorry so long winded...
      • mdelliott@waco.expresspersonnel.com
        I ordered the bar back in May when the designer (Rick Hunt? I think was his name, Mr. flowbee)thought the price would end up being less. He let me have it at
        Message 3 of 3 , Nov 1, 2000
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          I ordered the bar back in May when the designer (Rick Hunt? I think
          was his name, Mr. flowbee)thought the price would end up being less.
          He let me have it at wholesale price, $850 if I recall, havent seen
          the American Express bill. I think- the flowbeee web site says MSRP
          of around 1200, flowbeekite.com.
          In response to the weight issue from brought up by Ron, the weight
          doesnt really matter when your up and going. You do notice when your
          kite is on the water and your trying to relaunch (for me still
          frequent occurence)and if the bar ends upside my head during one of
          my not so graceful, fully powered, tumbles across the surface of the
          water(fortunately not to frequent).

          On the line length variability brought up by somebody else, Some
          what.Might be easier to explain if I describe how it works. The brake
          and the winding mechanism are only directly linked to the two front
          lines in the center of the bar.The outside spools to the back lines,
          are conected to the inside spools in such a manner that when the
          center spools are locked, the outside spools are still free to turn
          one revolution back and forth. When the lines are all the way out,
          and you pull on the inner loop, The inside reels turn once before the
          outside reels engage, your depowered. If you release the inner loop
          it returns to powered. If you have the winding ratchet engaged(finger
          operated switch), the kite will stay depowered when you release the
          inner loop.
          As you wind up the kite it is in the depowered position, you can
          stop winding at any point and fly the kite. When you are letting the
          lines out the kite starts in the depowered position but seemed to
          tighten up the back lines and go into the powered position after a
          few feet. Setting the brake seemed to hold it in the powered position
          for flying with shorter lines. In either case with the brake holding
          the inner reel you cant operate the inner loop. It did seem that when
          winding up the lines, I could stop and set the brake, disengage the
          ratchet, then release a few feet of line which powered the kite back
          up, reset the brake and fly with shorter lines. To depower i had to
          engage the ratchet, release the brake and give center loop a pull. So
          somewhat you can vary the line length, you loose the quick and easy
          trimming method you have when lines are all the way out.
          I have still only used this once so far for a couple of hours.
          Havent had a chance to get back out. Hope Im not giving any incorrect
          info.

          MARK

          In kitesurf@egroups.com, sammy@m... wrote:
          > May I ask: how much di you
          > pay for it?
          >
          > And don't hesitate to be long winded again if you find out more as
          > you use it more. :)
          >
          > Sammy
          > (Hope this doesn't post twice since I got disconnected the first
          try.)
          >
          > --- In kitesurf@egroups.com, mdelliott@w... wrote:
          > <sniped lots of useful info>
          >
          > > sorry so long winded...
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