Hello today, I want to talk to you about a subject that is not very well treated but which I consider extremely important: the ordinary maintenance of the kite. The kite is in effect a means of transport comparable to a car or moped and as such needs maintenance.
Proper routine and extraordinary maintenance will ensure that we do not find ourselves in “failure” in the water and can practice with the tranquility of being using a performing and functioning object.
In this video / blog we go into the ordinary maintenance. One dedicated to extraordinary maintenance will follow.
Whenever we arm a kite it’s the perfect time to check some of its parts and see if they need maintenance. These parts are:
- the canopy;
- the inner tubes: the bladders;
- the attachment points of the bridles;
- the lines of the bar.
Let’s analyze these aspects in more detail:
At the end of the session, when we fold the kite to put it back in the bag, it is the best time to look at the fabric and see if there are small cuts or outside. A small cut a small hole can be easily repaired. It is not necessary to bring the equipment into the sails. It is enough to buy a roll of RIPSTOP. This material is used to make all the “light” parts of the kite and is perfect for the panels.
The most structuring parts of the kite like the struts are repaired with the DACRON
Important, in the repair phase it is to cut these materials with a circular shape and, where possible, to apply them in the intrados of the kite.
Available and many color variations will ensure a safe and aesthetically flawless repair
If these small holes are not repaired in the long run they can become real tears.
Inside all the struts there are air chambers called bladders. When you are inflating the kite, it is a good time to see if twists are created between struts and bladders.
This is a sign that the bladder inside is no longer well positioned. Here, too, we first intervene better because if the torsion becomes excessive we could create a hernia that will eventually burst.
Bladders are extremely expensive and take a long time to replace them. On the other hand, solving the problem is extremely easy: just open the zipper on the strat that gives access to the bladder, pour a small amount of talcum powder, shake well and close the zipper. Surely this will put the bladder back in position and prevent it from bursting.
The attachment points of the bridles to the kite are certainly the point of greatest structural stress of the whole kite. Precisely for this reason they are strongly reinforced during construction. It is rare that they break up but it is wise to check periodically.
If we were to see lacerations or leakage of fastening points it is necessary to go to a sail loft and reinforce this point.
The lines of the bar
The best time to check the lines of the bar is when they are put “in the clear” and then connected to the bridles of the kite. During this procedure we could find a knot.
A knot significantly reduces the resistance capacity of the line: it can almost halve it and this increases the possibility that the line breaks during practice. The lines most subject to this risk are the front-lines as 90% of the driving energy of the kite “flows” on them. Being in the water with a broken line is never a good experience!
To dissolve these knots DO NOT use anything sharp or sharp because you risk weakening the fiber of the line.
The best technique is to let the knot soak overnight and then use a flat forceps. Repeatedly pressing the knot in all directions will drop and you can loosen it with your hands.
This is ordinary maintenance. This is the control that every expert kiter should do whenever he fires and disarms a kite