Models

Slingshot 2013 Rally

The new 2013 Rally is reinvented to be your first choice when it comes to kitesurfing in the waves and freeriding. The Rally is a 4-line kite designed with surfing in mind. The Rally has new Connect Forward attachment points, a new bridle setup, Reflex Wingtip technology and reinforced trailing edge.

The Rally sits further forward in the wind window allowing you to ride upwind with ease. However, the Open Delta-C shape also gives you the opportunity to position the kite further back in the wind window for when you wanna ride with the perfect resistance and when you want to perform load-and-pop tricks.

The Rally delivers maximum range, instant de-power, effortless relaunch and precise handling. The canopy is rock solid thanks to the inegrated Splitstrut technology. The Rally is of course equipped with Slingshots patented one pump system and this year the Rally also comes in a 7m version to complete your quiver.

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Slingshot Fuel 2013

 

Here are some sneak photos of the new Slingshot Fuel 2013. I havn’t heard about any major changes, but why change a winning concept? At least I guess we can expect some new kind of graphics, hopefully a bit more colorful than those we see on these photos…

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Slingshot Rally Review

I’ve been riding with my Slingshot Rally’s since last autumn, and will here give a small review of the best kite I’ve tried to date in the waves.

2012 Slingshot Rally is the second version of the shape Slingshot calls an “Open Delta C”, which blends the features of C-Fuel and RPM with the delta kite’s wind range and depower performances, and the result is for sure worth a test!

There is really no significant changes from the first edition, the new version is rather a result of optimization. The bridles have been tweaked so that the kite now has more precise control and the balance of the kite makes unhooked and drifting properties top notch. Some extra reinforcements have been added to the wingtips where the 3 pigtails attach, so you can trim the kite, depending on how much bar pressure you desire. For those who remember the split struting from the past, this is now back, and gives the kite a great stability.

As I started writing, I find this kite especially suitable for wave riders, but Slingshot Rally will also be the perfect kite for free riders as well as the beginner. Common to both is that you want a kite that is so easy to handle as possible so that you can concentrate on anything but the kite.

The kite control is quick, which is a result from the short bridle that comes without any pulleys. There is such a good feeling with the kite, it is extremely easy to manage. Slingshot Rally also has a huge wind range with an unmatched depower. There are many kites can be drifting hooked, but Rally drifts also unhooked and if it stalls, so it makes it to the “good way”, so it is easy to catch again. Whether it is because the kite only has 3 struts, is very light, or if it is the balance of the kite that gives it its drifting properties I do not know, but the result is just perfect.

Last but not least, there’s no pull in the turns. There are perhaps some who do not think this is so cool, but it’s a different style which people prefer. I think it is very important in the waves, so you will not be torn away from the wave in the bottom of the turn, so you can always position yourself where the wave breaks, so you can utilize the wave all the time. Also in strapless aerials and airs it is an advantage not to get ripped off by the board, and for beginners, it also means that you are not punished by any fault input. And when it happens, the kite is easier than easy to water start again.

So just to recap:

The kite is quick

The kite has no pulleys

The kite has only 3 struts

The kite water starts easy

The kite has no pull in turns

The kite has a direct bar feeling

The kite is going really well upwind

The kite drifts perfectly – even unhooked

The kite has a very simple and short bridle set-up

The kite has Slingshots tested one-pump system

The picture above shows the very simple and short bridle set-up without pulleys

Above seen is slingshot’s one-pump system that many other brands choose to pay a license to use. Please also note the small closure feature on the inflate valve (far right in picture), which means you can hammer the kite into the ground or water without popping the plug out.

I really thought much about anything negative about the kite, and I had to find something, it must be that the fabric can flapper a little when the wind is very strong and gusty. But if that is what you have to pay to get a kite with 3 struts with somewhat less direct kite control, with a very short and simple bridle without pulleys, which drifts perfectly and is so easy to ride unhooked – then I can live with that =)

 

Slingshot bar is also right in the eye. Not so much bullshit and no frills. It just works perfectly with a quick release, easy to keep around unhooked. If you choose to release, the system is so easy to assemble, it can be done in the water without any problems. There are deepower the bar and the bar has a swivel which prevents lines from twisting. (Which happen if you rotate many times around the same axis). The bar seems a little heavy when you just hold it by hand on land but on water it just feels really good in your hands.

Finally, there is a very handy bag that can both be opened at the top and is has a side zipper. The bag is spacious enough to fit the kite, bar and pump, but if you prefer you can also secure the pump and bar on the sides of the bag.

Overall a very positive review, but it is also very hard to find something negative to write about with this amazing kite. The Rally will not be the first choice for those who want to ride freestyle, but for freeride, waves and beginners it is spot on. Nor am I alone in this assumption, since testers from around the world all come with the same very positive feedback.

The Rally comes in the following sizes:

Sizes: 4m, 6m, 8m, 9m, 10m, 12m, 14m

Let me know if me if there are any items that you require more information about.

/ Raphael

Patrick Rebstock with his Slingshot Rally:

Here are some more reviews of the Slingshot Rally:

http://www.kiteboardingreview.com/kitereviews/20-slingshot/97-slingshot-rally-2011

http://www.sbckiteboard.com/2011-kite-review-display?news_id=1764

http://www.forcesix.com/2011-slingshot-rally-review.html

http://www.sbckiteboard.com/2012-kite-reviews-display?news_id=1867

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Advantages and Disadvantages of C-kites

Advantages and Disadvantages of C-kites

The C- kite is considered as the original kite used for kiteboarding. Until today, it is the sole inflatable kite available on the market. It consists of square corners; it forms a deep C-shaped arc in the course of flying. Its lines which are attached at the four corners of the kite give its unique characteristic.

This type of kite has advantages and disadvantages.

Some of its advantages include a ‘direct’ feel when riding. C-kites constantly pull and put pressure on the rider enabling him to feel more attached with the kite. C-kites also turn faster than the bowkites and they tend to turn around a pivot instead of an arc which is the case for the bowkites. Whether this is an advantage or disadvantage can be discussed, but the fact that the c-kites turn faster make them easier and safer to loop and they do not generate as much power in the loops as the bowkites. Bowkites can’t be looped as quickly as the c-kites, the result is more power in the loop and at the same time more likely to crash in the water (since they need a bigger looping radius).
C-kites also offer more performance for their specific wind range. They can only fly well in their hardly specified wind range; thus, prepared to be fine-tuned for a precise range.

These are very specialized kites completing a higher performance kite. These kites are also great for unhooked riding; it means that the kite doesn’t need to be slipped in and out more often.
The shape of the C-kite also maximizes SLED boosting; thus, improving jumping performance.

C kites also have some disadvantages. First of its disadvantages include having a very specific wind range. It means that more kites are needed to cover all possible winds which can be very expensive. To cover all wind conditions, around three to five kites are needed. But even purchasing five of the cheapest kites is also expensive.

A smaller wind range also means that you will need to put together kites more frequently. It also involves water re-launch. To be able to re-launch, these kites need to be spanned onto their back and directed to the rim of the wind window. With the limited sheeting ability, C-Kites can be unsafe for beginners. It means that they can’t be de-powered just like bow kites.

To fly the kite, there should be more power to control it. It is very disadvantageous for beginners because they do not have enough experience.
C kites consist of safety releases; however, they don’t have the ability to plunk a lot of power by sheeting out.

Kites continue to evolve, so the pros and cons will keep on shifting. But one thing remains; these kites are outstanding performers. Not many kite manufacturers design pure c-kites nowadays. Most of them try to design kites that benefits of the advantages both from c-kites and bow-kites. These kites go under names such as Hybrid-C, Delta-kite, SLC-concept kites etc…
However, Slingshot still design pure c-kites to please a small but faithful band of kitesurfers have realized that c-kites is the only way to go! The Slingshot Fuel is also known as the c-kite’s c-kite!

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2012 Slingshot RPM

Slingshot’s RPM has was a great kite already when it was released year 2009. The RPM is now released in its 4th version, tuned to perfection! You´re probably familiar with Ruben Lenten and Youri Zoon. Ruben is the guy’s that make insane kiteloops, Youri is the world’s kiteboarder champion. Perhaps is it a coincident that they both ride with Slingshot or perhaps do other kite manufacturers simply not produce kites that are good enough for those who requires top performance?

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Slingshot RPM 2012

The first pictures of the coming Slingshot RPM 2012 are currently being spread over the net!

The Slingshot RPM is the original “Open C” kite which has revolutionized the kite world almost as mush as when the bow kites entered the market. The RPM evolved to become the kite that made Youri Zoon the world kitesurfer champion. It has become a riders favorite throughout the world among both beginners and advanced riders.
The RPM 2012 is built on the same platform as the 2011 version, that is Open-C canopy and Slingshot’s patented Split Strut technology. Features that pushes kite design into a whole new level. Slingshot claims that they have refined the “Full Suspension Bridle” and modified the wing tip attachment points to optimize kite performance and to deliver complete tuning customization. These extra features and the new kite size 7m allows complete versatility in all conditions and all riding styles.

Slingshot RPM 2012 gives you:

* OPEN-C DESIGN PLATFORM
* SPLIT STRUT INTEGRATED 3 STRUT DESIGN
* NEW SIZE (7M), QUIVER BUILDER!
* REFINED FULL SUSPENSION BRIDLE
* PROGRESSIVE POWER STEERING
* LOW PROFILE WING TIPS
* SLINGSHOT ONE -PUMP
* DIMENSION-POLYANT DACRON LEADING EDGE AND STRUT MATERIAL
* TRI TECH PROTECTION
* SLINGSHOT LEGENDARY CONSTRUCTION
* LIFETIME RIDER HOTLINE SUPPORT

As you can see the RPM 2012 also comes in a new canopy design. Gone are the arrows :)

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2011 Slingshot RPM Review

At a glance
Slingshot claims that the new 2011 RPM is there strongest kite ever. The kite is an extension of the previous years 2010 version, maintaining the open C profile with dual pulley-bridles like we’re a re used to. The 2011 RPM comes with 3 split strut design which means that the struts are embedded into the canopy and hence makes the kite even more solid with enhanced durability.
The 2011 RPM has a one-pump inflation system and four different connection points for the rear lines that allows you to tune the settings for your prefered bar pressure. The front lines also have different connection options so the kite can be tweaked for freestyle och wakestyle.
 The solid metal bar is more or less identical to the previous year and it remains a leader on the market. A small modification has been made on the sheeting rope where a rubber tube is attached in the end of the rope to prevent the rope from sticking awkwardly into the shutter box. The smallest bar set up is a 17 inch bar with 20 meter lines extending to 20 inch with 27 meter lines for the biggest kite. The lines are the strongest on the market and each of them can carry a load on 800 lb, so you don’t snap these lines in the first case!
In the air
While testing a 9 meter kite on the beach in lighter wind we find out that the kite flies fast through the air, has great stability and generates some impressive lift even in light wind conditions. The bar pressure settings can be set between medium light to heavy and you can really feel the difference here. Adjust the settings to wake style and the kite sits back a little in the wind window. Perfect when you want to be able to park the kite in the sky and keep it in the same position so that handle passes gets easier since you have “plenty” of time to perform your trick without having the kite dispositioned in the wind window.
On the water
The bottom end of the RPM seems to have been improved and we managed to get up on the board and ride in winds as low as 14 knots. Just pilot the kite through the wind window which increases the bottom end significantly, and it gets you going. The RPM flies upwind easily when you power up and it gives you nice boosts and floats with great precision at all time. The rock solid construction also provides great stability and we were impressed of the way that the RPM handles various wind conditions. Strong gusts are smoothened out which gives you confidence to perform tricks even when the wind is a bit to rough. The line swivel is a small, but great innovation since you don’t have to worry about your front lines getting tangled up and you don’t have to mess with bar after a break on land. Small thing like this swivel, adjustable bar settings, strong lines, reliable construction etc make the kite an overall user friendly kite without and annoying things to bother about. The RPM is the kite’s Volvo or Ferrari depending on how you look at it. It turns fast, gives great boost and loops fast and powerful. It relaunches with ease and is a pleasure to fly. Also a great kite for unhooked tricks since it generates good amount of pull when popping. Its park and popping performances are among the best on the market and there is no surprise that Youri Zoonand other pro´s are nailing 900’s and other insane tricks, it all becames a lot easier with the RPM. Without hesitation on of the best kites on the market suitable both for advanced riders and beginners that need a kite they don’t have to exchange as they progress.Conclusion
The 2010 RPM was a great kite and it´s no big surprise that Slingshot has chosen to tune up an already winning concept with some improvements when it comes to wind range, stability and rigidity. The RPM is now a very refined kite and you really get value for this kite, which besides has a good second hand value as well. Slingshot has set the bar high for all competitors this year and it will be interesting to see if they can match this monster. In fact with RPM, Slingshot might squeeze the market for the also very popular Fuel which from now on may be the choice for the more extreme and aggresive form of kitesurfing. 
For more information on the 2011 RPM check out Slingshot’s Official Site or visit Kiteboarding Review
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2011 Slingshot KEY HD

2011 Slingshot KEY HD

The 2011 Slingshot KEY HD kite is a kite for the one who value safety, convenience, stability and easy relaunch, no hassle. The Key HD features a great wind range (unmatched according to Slingshot), excellent upwind performance and full depower.

The Slingshot Key comes with the Keychain keybar.

 

 

 

Tech specs:

  • Hybrid Delta Canopy Shape. Advantages with this is unmatched range, effortless relaunch in every condition, superb upwindability, unmatched in-flight stability, lofty vertical boost.
  • 5 Strut Design. Solid feel through all areas of the wind window. Umatched stability. Maximizes canopy shape integrity.
  • Onepump. Original Slingshot patented single point inflation system.
  • CFI attachment point. Provides custom options for depower and bar pressure.
  • Ballistic Aramid scuff guards on every segment seam. Prevents overall wear and tear.
  • Mark cloth reinforced trailing edge. Increases durability.
  • Compact bridle. In flight stability and eliminates the risk of tangle.
  • Strut tight tail pipes. Prevents line tangle issues.
  • Ergonomic nipple placement. Less overall drag.
  • Slingshot legendary construction. Bomber quality.
  • Lifetime Rider Hotline Membership. Unsurpassed customer service.

 

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Slingshot Fuel 2012

fuel 2012You may already have seen it at your local kite spot, the Slingshot Fuel 2012! Slingshot has once again released a beast on the market. the Slingshot Fuel 2012 is an improvement of an already more or less perfect kite. The new split strut design makes the Fuel 2012 extremely steady when you fly it through the wind window. The bar pressure is slightly lighter compared to the 2010 year model which drops even more when you pop making handlepasses easier than ever before. When it comes to big jumps you still have to get used to the typical c-kite characteristics, but once you get a grip over it you´ll notice that this kite is a monster when we´re talking about big airs. This is something that you especially get a feeling for if you´re making unhooked kiteloops, the pull upwards is extreme, not like you´re looping with bowkites that tend to pull you more downwind. The secret behind the improved upwards capabilities lies within the split strut system combined with the aerodynamical shape that creates more lift and reduced drag.

Turning speed is of course lightning fast and water relaunches a piece of cake. The safety system is also top notch. The previous version of the Slingshot could be a bit slacky in its shape during high pressure, loaded jumps etc. The new splitstrut however seems to have fixed this issue. Slingshot has really done a terrific job this year, keep up the good work!

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Slingshot RPM 10m Review

I recently had a session with a Slingshot RPM 10m, 2009 version. A hybrid kite, i.e. a combination of a traditional c-kite and a bow kite.

First impression:
The kite is extremely robust and well constructed. The leader lines are reinforced to withstand really tough conditions! I´ve been riding kites from many different manufactures such as Cabrinha Crossbow, Royal, EH etc… but none can compare to Slingshot when it comes to construction. No wonder Ruben Lenten and Youri Zoon rides with Slingshot!

In the air:

The RPM is positioned a little back in wind window making it almost immune to gusts. You can let go of the bar and the kite is just parked there in the sky. The handling is fast, the kite immidiately response on your manouvers. You could have wished more from the RPM when it comes to jumping. The hang time is simply not very good and it feels like you fall down quite fast from the sky, but perhaps is it just me that isn’t good enough to control the kite in the sky… though I feel that I can jump a lot higher and more controlled with bow-kites.

The bar:

The bar has a metal aluminium core which makes it strong and indestructible. Slingshot are still obstinate when it comes to the the lines that goes through the bar, they look like some cheap rope bought in a store for sailing and they do get worn out quite “fast”. What you can do is to put some wax on the ropes, not only will it make them slide easier through the bar, but make it less vulnerable to wear. The depower strap is also quite shitty, you pull it down and attach it in some kind of cleat stolen from a sailboat and it works in the same way, it just tends to wear the rope. These ropes also have a tendency to scrape against you fingers when you ride with one hand placed on the middle of the bar. Conclusion is that bars where the center lines is wrapped in a plastic tube is much more comfortable!

Overall:

The RPM is great kite. The bar could be more comfortable, but I guess that is something Slingshot have worked with and I assume that bars from 2011 are nicer than this 2009 version. The RPM is a pro kite and my feeling is that you must be an advanced rider you fully enjoy this kite.

 

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