Good KAP days (I don’t ask for much: sun and wind is all I need!) are a rarity at this time of year and the thought of wasting time tuning a wobbly kite seems a bit contrary to getting the photos I want but we are suffering from very light winds whenever the sun shines just now. So with only a light wind to play with I return to the CiM Lifter. At 4m2 it wants to fly when the flowforms don’t BUT it’s been out of balance since it was supplied.
After some success with balancing a far simpler Sutton Flowform30 I decided to take on the many shroud-lined Lifter following Peter Lynn’s instructions ( see this blog ) . I have been shy of messing with the vitals of this kite but the thing is something of a liability as it lurches about trying to align with the airflow. I have put off making the adjustment for fear of making a bad kite worse, but now I need the light wind lift!
It flew with a right hand bias. With some nervousness I untied the shroudline and found it had been thoughtfully marked with a dot at the factory length. I shortened the Left hand centre shroudline by 2cm in 1cm steps.And that did the trick!
The kite is not as stable as a flowform but it will fly in less wind, it’s a handful at 7 or 8 mph (Bft3) but a practical KAP platform in 5-6mph (Bft2) particularly when flown with the super light Coramid line. For testing I flew it on a heavier but softer Dacron line as there was much hauling in and out of line as I made the adjustments.
So I now have a flight of kites
which will get my rig aloft from 5 mph through to 30 (or more if the PFK spec is to be believed!). The lifter likes to drift to left and right as it stabilises in a variable air flow rather than gently rise and fall like the flowform, I think this is a characteristic of the type: ‘ram air’ parafoils can’t escape the buffeting of air hitting the filled cells. The drogue is essential as it damps the yawing.
Some details on the CiM Lifter are here
The CiM Lifter is available on request in the UK through Emkay kites