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  #31  
Old 07-05-2006, 09:22 PM
CrazyJay CrazyJay is offline
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btw Rick, I remember that u used to have helmets with communications inside. How clear were those? Could you hear through the wind? Where do i get a setup like that?
Thanks
jay
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  #32  
Old 07-06-2006, 07:41 AM
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I still have one for hang gliding, it works well. However it isn't potted for water service. I have yet to use one of these but what most kitesurfing instructors are using is a VHF walkie-talkie in a bag housing. I don't know if they use it in voice activated mode or if it is just one way for instructions for the student. I would think background noise would be a problem. However when you are on tow background noise generally falls away once you are a distance from the water.

I would think over that suggestion to try towup hang gliding some more. Your first tandem flight is to about 1400 ft., you get to fly on your first flight and the view over Biscayne Bay, the ocean, sharks and dolphins in the shallows and even the Miami skyline is pretty impressive. It only lasts about 15 to 20 minutes but it is memorable. http://www.miamihanggliding.com/ . You will learn about weaklinks, tow systems and bridles, maintaining tow line tension, avoiding overflying if you pay attention during your tandem session. It would take a lot longer to learn this stuff in a course, if they even offer one these days in boat tow technique. Easy info, no pain and not much risk involved.

If you really want to get big air, hang gliding and paragliding are the way to go. On the land in hang gliding we tow to 2500 to 5000 ft. plus. Hundreds of guys have already been killed and maimed in the development of functional, durable flight and safety systems over the decades. Today, things work well. In 2002 there were NO hang gliding or paragliding fatalities in the USA, in 1974, the early days of hang gliding, 40 died in the USA alone. Being in the early part of the learning curve in a new inertia sport can suck with the injuries and fatalities.
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  #33  
Old 07-06-2006, 09:00 AM
CrazyJay CrazyJay is offline
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How can i turn down a 2400 ft towup. do you know who runs that service in Miami? Maybe we can set something up for next time i am down there.

I believe the future of kitetowing will be in the 20-30 foot range, not 125. It's a blast to go up 25ft and stay there..... indefinitely. It also is the right height for learning new tricks. I have already thought of several that will work well behind a ski.

Hopefully this Sunday at the skyway (east 10 knots) wil be the day for going out again
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  #34  
Old 07-06-2006, 09:54 AM
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Jay - keep us all posted on Sundays deal. if its only blowing 10 none of us will have anything better to do but come and watch and film too.
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  #35  
Old 07-06-2006, 03:13 PM
CrazyJay CrazyJay is offline
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its blowin about 10 from the west. i'm gonna see if i can get billy and his ski to go to the backside soon. anyone videographers interested?
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  #36  
Old 07-06-2006, 08:06 PM
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Looked but didn't see you out there...
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  #37  
Old 07-06-2006, 08:10 PM
CrazyJay CrazyJay is offline
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wind never really came in today. need about 10-12 to keep the kite from stalling.
Gonna try again tomorrow and this weekend. I will post here b4 we head out.
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  #38  
Old 07-07-2006, 10:59 AM
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Some more about hang gliding. You know how fighter pilots say nighttime carrier landings deliver some of the most uneasy and stoked moments in a flyers life? Truck tow hang gliding can be like that. You are blasting down a road at 40 mph + and they you yell "clear" and are catapulted backward off the bed of the truck. The truck is triggering thermals as it blasts down the road which in turn kick the hell out of you trying to stay in line with the truck and wings up. It is an intense experience particularly on hotter days. You tow up to about 1/2 mile high and then release the tow line to the recovery parachute and you are on your own.

You glide along looking for lift. I've never soared with eagles but I have thermalled with quite a few buzzards. You may see a stack of buzzards coring a thermal so you fly over to intercept the invisible column of rising air. Suddenly you hear a rushing of air, like when you stick your head out the window on I-95. Your variometer, if you have one of these vertical velocity meters, goes nuts beeping like a lunatic. You hear the rushing of the wind, that is you rushing UP. Thermals are finite and easy to fly out of. When you come into one, one wing only can get caught blasting skyward throwing your off balance for a while until you can arch into to core the thermal. There is a lot of tradecraft, knowledge, experience and a bit of luck that goes into thermalling and cross country hang gliding. I remember hearing a story about a guy who was caught in some cloud suck* in a deteriorating storm cloud and ended up at about 11, 000 ft. AGL, a launch record. Hang gliders are built tough and in theory can sustain more G forces than some fixed wing aircraft. We carry reserve parachutes, sometimes several, comm. gear,fared kevlar helmets, etc.. It can be a rush and enlightening thing to experience.


* Cloud suck is when a cloud, say a cumulonimbus pulls you into it through very powerful convective forces and can fly you upward at 60 to 100 mph + in grey/whited out conditions. Guys have tried to dive out of cloud suck but considering you can pull the wings off some gliders at 70 mph, good luck. You don't know which way is up but you are flying there hell bent for leather. Bad part is that if you after you go much above 13,000 in a 50,000 high cloud, you lack sufficient oxygen to stay conscious. That's OK because hypothermia isn't all that far behind. There was a case of some HG in a competition in Europe being sucked up into a cloud. They were later found scattered all over the area, in cold induced fetal positions, dead.
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  #39  
Old 07-07-2006, 12:51 PM
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AND TOWUPS ARE CRAZY??? :lol:
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  #40  
Old 07-07-2006, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toby wilson
AND TOWUPS ARE CRAZY??? :lol:
Totally, at least for higher altitude towups.


Why?

The guys that died in the European Comp. were killed in the mid 80's I believe, somewhat early in the learning curve for hang gliding. We know a great deal more about wx related hazards today in flying AND kitesurfing (if people bother to consider it).

Many of the 40 guys that died in 1974 in the USA hang gliding lost it because of gear failure, no safety systems, insufficient knowledge and appreciation of what could go wrong. They were feeling their way along with totally inadequate and inappropriate gear. This could go on for a while. Starting out a new sport can be painful, for the pioneers anyway.
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