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Ocean Rodeo 14.5m Flite Aluula

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Created by Trnsprt > 9 months ago, 3 Sep 2021
Trnsprt
1 posts
3 Sep 2021 10:16PM
Thumbs Up

Hello:

I'm a long time lurker, thought I'd contribute. I recently purchased a OR Flite 14.5 aluula hoping to find a free ride shape to act as a session saver that has the ability to still be fun if the wind picks up. I don't live near the beach so driving is a way of life. I hate getting to the water and having it shut down or even worse just be marginal. So I bit the bullet and invested in an aluula kite, hoping to kill two kites with one checkbook or kill one checkbook with one kite, or whatever. I primarily wanted a light wind option for foil or twin tipping or directional surf that would still be fun with the twin tip when the wind picked up and I dont want to go back to the beach to rig a smaller kite.

As far as getting a hold of the kite, I "purchased it" in May... it took a couple months to arrive because of manufacturer and shipping delays.

Summer has been a bitch at work, so despite having this kite for 6 weeks, yesterday was session one.

This is just a preliminary impression. I'm 200lbs, upper intermediate I suppose, no one's out there saying "look at that guy go", just an average Joe kiter. Been kiting about 10yrs. Started on Rallys. Ride Dices, a couple SSTs and a UFO now. The Flite replaces my big kite, a 5yr old 14m Rally.

First off the Flite in the bag is super small and light. I have a 9m SS UFO for foiling (my OTHER, **** I drove 3 hrs to get here and I don't want to go home dry option). The Flite packs down between that size and my 9m Dice. And the weight feels similar to the no strut UFO.

The kite rigs like every other kite I've ever used. I flew it on a 20cm Slingshot bar. No issues. I rigged to the knots at the end of the pigtails, cuz that's what I always do, it seemed to work.

Big bridle with pulleys. I'm not a fan of big bridles or pulleys, I'll suck it up if the kite lives up to the hype.

Conditions, Sept 3rd, 21 if you want to look at the sensor for Lynnhaven inlet light (readings show a little higher (2ish kts?) than it is on the water in my opinion). I was at First Landing State Park VA Beach, VA. On shore. Breaking waves and tight chop. Forecast was for 18kts dropping to 14 about the time I was supposed to arrive. I rode from 1 to 3:30. I figured it would be a good test. In reality the wind didn't die. The sensor showed solid upper teens, gusts into the 20s and upper 20s, lulls below 15. But overall it FELT like a solid 16 to 18 day. I'd normally rig my 12 for that and accept being a little underpowered in the on shore conditions to have fun in the gusts. 12s seemed to be what most riders were on. I didn't get to test the low end of the kite except in a few lulls. I didn't develop an opinion on the low end ability at all.

Overall impressions. For a 3 strut I felt the kite was very well behaved. I was especially impressed in the gusts. My 14 Rally would have been a slow turning runaway truck as the gusts filled into the 20s. The Flite was very quick, felt like flying a 12 or smaller. Bar pressure is light but positive (I always felt I knew where the kite was.) Downloops were snappy. Power delivery was solid and steady not shocky. The grunt on a water start was easy, if that makes sense. The kite didn't feel grunty or truckyq when pulling during a start. Despite yesterdays up and down wind I never got that "oh ****, too much kite" feeling. Jumps were effortless and the kite glides well in the air. Definitely fun and floaty jumps.

Turn speed of the kite was probably most eye opening in addition to the ability to just keep riding smoothly as the wind increased and decreased. It was a real treat and no brainer to fly. I'd like to make some "revelation" type statement about the kite but in reality the remarkable thing about the kite is that it was unremarkable. It just did everything great yesterday despite stronger than anticipated winds. When the wind did lighten up it glided through the lulls and kept my heavy arse riding powered. When the wind cranked up the kite was well behaved. When I sent it, the kite jumped smoothly and was fun in the air. It went high, it floated. I probably had reliably the softest landings yesterday that I've ever felt. That's not a surprise since I think the Dices (especially the 9) sometimes just drop you out of the air. While being soft the landings were also powered and fast at times. I think that's because I was getting used to how fast the kite responds when it is flown forward (diving) to catch a landing.

When I down looped it the kite went around fast for a 14.

Now, it's still a 14.5m kite. So wing tip to wing tip it's long. It certainly didn't loop like a 12m dice, which seems to pivot on its wing tip, but it wasn't heavy on the bar and it didn't hesitate. Compared to my 2017 Rally in the same size the Flite felt 2 sizes smaller and absolutely maneuverable.

On the twin tip playing on the waves it was a little cumbersome to fly and loop quickly to stay where I wanted on the wave. Some of that is rider ability. Some of that is flying a big kite. With my old Rally I'd probably say I plan a 3 or 4 second delay from when I steer the kite on a wave to when the kite responds and another couple seconds for the kite to actually deliver power and fly where I'm asking it to. With the Flite, I'd say that time was cut in about half. I dont want to give the impression the kite is automatic. It isn't. You still have to fly it and anticipate it. You still have to work. But I'd say on a similar day I'd be at about a 8 on a scale of 10 stress level with my old 14. Trying to absorb gusts, muscling it around etc. With the Flite I was at about a 6. It wasn't effortless kiting, but given that I was riding a 14.5 in conditions I'd usually ride a 12 in I was impressed.

2 things the kite did remarkably well yesterday, gliding through lulls, getting upwind in the on shore (mostly) conditions. I could ease off the power, play in the chop and surf on the way in and then easily power up and with a tack or two be right back out for more. Usually I'd be fighting that on shore low end battle trying to get back off the beach. The Flite... probably by nature of the fact it was big for the conditions more than a good pointing kite, just motored out.

Pointing heavily upwind I noticed the kite would luff just behind the leading edge above the center strut at what felt like the max upwind angle, but there was no trailing edge flutter and that really only happened trying to point the ** out of the kite.

That's about it. I am interested to get it out on the surfboard in 12 to 14 and see how it rides or on the foil. I'll try to remember to update here when I do if anyone is interested.

Thanks for reading
Tom

KBGhost
QLD, 203 posts
5 Sep 2021 8:41PM
Thumbs Up

Great review thanks. An honest detailed ordinary kiter review is worth 10 magazine reviews.

Kamikuza
QLD, 6390 posts
5 Sep 2021 8:51PM
Thumbs Up

I had the chance to demo one but the wind was so light, I wouldn't have bothered if it wasn't for the new kite.

Crazy good. Couldn't believe I got up and foiling so easily in such light wind. Drift when you turned downwind at it was pretty good too, for such a big bow kite.

Leighbreeze
WA, 516 posts
6 Sep 2021 5:08AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Trnsprt said..
Hello:

I'm a long time lurker, thought I'd contribute. I recently purchased a OR Flite 14.5 aluula hoping to find a free ride shape to act as a session saver that has the ability to still be fun if the wind picks up. I don't live near the beach so driving is a way of life. I hate getting to the water and having it shut down or even worse just be marginal. So I bit the bullet and invested in an aluula kite, hoping to kill two kites with one checkbook or kill one checkbook with one kite, or whatever. I primarily wanted a light wind option for foil or twin tipping or directional surf that would still be fun with the twin tip when the wind picked up and I dont want to go back to the beach to rig a smaller kite.

As far as getting a hold of the kite, I "purchased it" in May... it took a couple months to arrive because of manufacturer and shipping delays.

Summer has been a bitch at work, so despite having this kite for 6 weeks, yesterday was session one.

This is just a preliminary impression. I'm 200lbs, upper intermediate I suppose, no one's out there saying "look at that guy go", just an average Joe kiter. Been kiting about 10yrs. Started on Rallys. Ride Dices, a couple SSTs and a UFO now. The Flite replaces my big kite, a 5yr old 14m Rally.

First off the Flite in the bag is super small and light. I have a 9m SS UFO for foiling (my OTHER, **** I drove 3 hrs to get here and I don't want to go home dry option). The Flite packs down between that size and my 9m Dice. And the weight feels similar to the no strut UFO.

The kite rigs like every other kite I've ever used. I flew it on a 20cm Slingshot bar. No issues. I rigged to the knots at the end of the pigtails, cuz that's what I always do, it seemed to work.

Big bridle with pulleys. I'm not a fan of big bridles or pulleys, I'll suck it up if the kite lives up to the hype.

Conditions, Sept 3rd, 21 if you want to look at the sensor for Lynnhaven inlet light (readings show a little higher (2ish kts?) than it is on the water in my opinion). I was at First Landing State Park VA Beach, VA. On shore. Breaking waves and tight chop. Forecast was for 18kts dropping to 14 about the time I was supposed to arrive. I rode from 1 to 3:30. I figured it would be a good test. In reality the wind didn't die. The sensor showed solid upper teens, gusts into the 20s and upper 20s, lulls below 15. But overall it FELT like a solid 16 to 18 day. I'd normally rig my 12 for that and accept being a little underpowered in the on shore conditions to have fun in the gusts. 12s seemed to be what most riders were on. I didn't get to test the low end of the kite except in a few lulls. I didn't develop an opinion on the low end ability at all.

Overall impressions. For a 3 strut I felt the kite was very well behaved. I was especially impressed in the gusts. My 14 Rally would have been a slow turning runaway truck as the gusts filled into the 20s. The Flite was very quick, felt like flying a 12 or smaller. Bar pressure is light but positive (I always felt I knew where the kite was.) Downloops were snappy. Power delivery was solid and steady not shocky. The grunt on a water start was easy, if that makes sense. The kite didn't feel grunty or truckyq when pulling during a start. Despite yesterdays up and down wind I never got that "oh ****, too much kite" feeling. Jumps were effortless and the kite glides well in the air. Definitely fun and floaty jumps.

Turn speed of the kite was probably most eye opening in addition to the ability to just keep riding smoothly as the wind increased and decreased. It was a real treat and no brainer to fly. I'd like to make some "revelation" type statement about the kite but in reality the remarkable thing about the kite is that it was unremarkable. It just did everything great yesterday despite stronger than anticipated winds. When the wind did lighten up it glided through the lulls and kept my heavy arse riding powered. When the wind cranked up the kite was well behaved. When I sent it, the kite jumped smoothly and was fun in the air. It went high, it floated. I probably had reliably the softest landings yesterday that I've ever felt. That's not a surprise since I think the Dices (especially the 9) sometimes just drop you out of the air. While being soft the landings were also powered and fast at times. I think that's because I was getting used to how fast the kite responds when it is flown forward (diving) to catch a landing.

When I down looped it the kite went around fast for a 14.

Now, it's still a 14.5m kite. So wing tip to wing tip it's long. It certainly didn't loop like a 12m dice, which seems to pivot on its wing tip, but it wasn't heavy on the bar and it didn't hesitate. Compared to my 2017 Rally in the same size the Flite felt 2 sizes smaller and absolutely maneuverable.

On the twin tip playing on the waves it was a little cumbersome to fly and loop quickly to stay where I wanted on the wave. Some of that is rider ability. Some of that is flying a big kite. With my old Rally I'd probably say I plan a 3 or 4 second delay from when I steer the kite on a wave to when the kite responds and another couple seconds for the kite to actually deliver power and fly where I'm asking it to. With the Flite, I'd say that time was cut in about half. I dont want to give the impression the kite is automatic. It isn't. You still have to fly it and anticipate it. You still have to work. But I'd say on a similar day I'd be at about a 8 on a scale of 10 stress level with my old 14. Trying to absorb gusts, muscling it around etc. With the Flite I was at about a 6. It wasn't effortless kiting, but given that I was riding a 14.5 in conditions I'd usually ride a 12 in I was impressed.

2 things the kite did remarkably well yesterday, gliding through lulls, getting upwind in the on shore (mostly) conditions. I could ease off the power, play in the chop and surf on the way in and then easily power up and with a tack or two be right back out for more. Usually I'd be fighting that on shore low end battle trying to get back off the beach. The Flite... probably by nature of the fact it was big for the conditions more than a good pointing kite, just motored out.

Pointing heavily upwind I noticed the kite would luff just behind the leading edge above the center strut at what felt like the max upwind angle, but there was no trailing edge flutter and that really only happened trying to point the ** out of the kite.

That's about it. I am interested to get it out on the surfboard in 12 to 14 and see how it rides or on the foil. I'll try to remember to update here when I do if anyone is interested.

Thanks for reading
Tom


Hey Tom
Thanks for an informative non biased review.
I have the 14.5m & 17m A Flite.
Just reading your review only confirms how controlled these Aluula kites feel.
You would have noticed a huge difference coming from a SS Rally.
You definitely don't have to muscle Aluula kites around they just do most things easier.
I could go on but will enjoy reading what a great low end they have when you get a day.
Cheers have fun & relax.

RickyDee
NSW, 45 posts
5 Nov 2021 6:19AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Leighbreeze said..

Trnsprt said..
Hello:

I'm a long time lurker, thought I'd contribute. I recently purchased a OR Flite 14.5 aluula hoping to find a free ride shape to act as a session saver that has the ability to still be fun if the wind picks up. I don't live near the beach so driving is a way of life. I hate getting to the water and having it shut down or even worse just be marginal. So I bit the bullet and invested in an aluula kite, hoping to kill two kites with one checkbook or kill one checkbook with one kite, or whatever. I primarily wanted a light wind option for foil or twin tipping or directional surf that would still be fun with the twin tip when the wind picked up and I dont want to go back to the beach to rig a smaller kite.

As far as getting a hold of the kite, I "purchased it" in May... it took a couple months to arrive because of manufacturer and shipping delays.

Summer has been a bitch at work, so despite having this kite for 6 weeks, yesterday was session one.

This is just a preliminary impression. I'm 200lbs, upper intermediate I suppose, no one's out there saying "look at that guy go", just an average Joe kiter. Been kiting about 10yrs. Started on Rallys. Ride Dices, a couple SSTs and a UFO now. The Flite replaces my big kite, a 5yr old 14m Rally.

First off the Flite in the bag is super small and light. I have a 9m SS UFO for foiling (my OTHER, **** I drove 3 hrs to get here and I don't want to go home dry option). The Flite packs down between that size and my 9m Dice. And the weight feels similar to the no strut UFO.

The kite rigs like every other kite I've ever used. I flew it on a 20cm Slingshot bar. No issues. I rigged to the knots at the end of the pigtails, cuz that's what I always do, it seemed to work.

Big bridle with pulleys. I'm not a fan of big bridles or pulleys, I'll suck it up if the kite lives up to the hype.

Conditions, Sept 3rd, 21 if you want to look at the sensor for Lynnhaven inlet light (readings show a little higher (2ish kts?) than it is on the water in my opinion). I was at First Landing State Park VA Beach, VA. On shore. Breaking waves and tight chop. Forecast was for 18kts dropping to 14 about the time I was supposed to arrive. I rode from 1 to 3:30. I figured it would be a good test. In reality the wind didn't die. The sensor showed solid upper teens, gusts into the 20s and upper 20s, lulls below 15. But overall it FELT like a solid 16 to 18 day. I'd normally rig my 12 for that and accept being a little underpowered in the on shore conditions to have fun in the gusts. 12s seemed to be what most riders were on. I didn't get to test the low end of the kite except in a few lulls. I didn't develop an opinion on the low end ability at all.

Overall impressions. For a 3 strut I felt the kite was very well behaved. I was especially impressed in the gusts. My 14 Rally would have been a slow turning runaway truck as the gusts filled into the 20s. The Flite was very quick, felt like flying a 12 or smaller. Bar pressure is light but positive (I always felt I knew where the kite was.) Downloops were snappy. Power delivery was solid and steady not shocky. The grunt on a water start was easy, if that makes sense. The kite didn't feel grunty or truckyq when pulling during a start. Despite yesterdays up and down wind I never got that "oh ****, too much kite" feeling. Jumps were effortless and the kite glides well in the air. Definitely fun and floaty jumps.

Turn speed of the kite was probably most eye opening in addition to the ability to just keep riding smoothly as the wind increased and decreased. It was a real treat and no brainer to fly. I'd like to make some "revelation" type statement about the kite but in reality the remarkable thing about the kite is that it was unremarkable. It just did everything great yesterday despite stronger than anticipated winds. When the wind did lighten up it glided through the lulls and kept my heavy arse riding powered. When the wind cranked up the kite was well behaved. When I sent it, the kite jumped smoothly and was fun in the air. It went high, it floated. I probably had reliably the softest landings yesterday that I've ever felt. That's not a surprise since I think the Dices (especially the 9) sometimes just drop you out of the air. While being soft the landings were also powered and fast at times. I think that's because I was getting used to how fast the kite responds when it is flown forward (diving) to catch a landing.

When I down looped it the kite went around fast for a 14.

Now, it's still a 14.5m kite. So wing tip to wing tip it's long. It certainly didn't loop like a 12m dice, which seems to pivot on its wing tip, but it wasn't heavy on the bar and it didn't hesitate. Compared to my 2017 Rally in the same size the Flite felt 2 sizes smaller and absolutely maneuverable.

On the twin tip playing on the waves it was a little cumbersome to fly and loop quickly to stay where I wanted on the wave. Some of that is rider ability. Some of that is flying a big kite. With my old Rally I'd probably say I plan a 3 or 4 second delay from when I steer the kite on a wave to when the kite responds and another couple seconds for the kite to actually deliver power and fly where I'm asking it to. With the Flite, I'd say that time was cut in about half. I dont want to give the impression the kite is automatic. It isn't. You still have to fly it and anticipate it. You still have to work. But I'd say on a similar day I'd be at about a 8 on a scale of 10 stress level with my old 14. Trying to absorb gusts, muscling it around etc. With the Flite I was at about a 6. It wasn't effortless kiting, but given that I was riding a 14.5 in conditions I'd usually ride a 12 in I was impressed.

2 things the kite did remarkably well yesterday, gliding through lulls, getting upwind in the on shore (mostly) conditions. I could ease off the power, play in the chop and surf on the way in and then easily power up and with a tack or two be right back out for more. Usually I'd be fighting that on shore low end battle trying to get back off the beach. The Flite... probably by nature of the fact it was big for the conditions more than a good pointing kite, just motored out.

Pointing heavily upwind I noticed the kite would luff just behind the leading edge above the center strut at what felt like the max upwind angle, but there was no trailing edge flutter and that really only happened trying to point the ** out of the kite.

That's about it. I am interested to get it out on the surfboard in 12 to 14 and see how it rides or on the foil. I'll try to remember to update here when I do if anyone is interested.

Thanks for reading
Tom



Hey Tom
Thanks for an informative non biased review.
I have the 14.5m & 17m A Flite.
Just reading your review only confirms how controlled these Aluula kites feel.
You would have noticed a huge difference coming from a SS Rally.
You definitely don't have to muscle Aluula kites around they just do most things easier.
I could go on but will enjoy reading what a great low end they have when you get a day.
Cheers have fun & relax.


Hey Leighbreeze, was contemplating an Aluula Flight 17 - you are one of the few already with one. I currently have a Zephyr V2 which has given 9 years of great service but is on its way out. So am torn between a Zephyr V7 or the Flight 17. Any thoughts? I'm 115kgs so I often need a 17! Thanks

Leighbreeze
WA, 516 posts
22 Nov 2021 1:09AM
Thumbs Up

I would say yes the 17m OR Aluula for big dudes like us definitely fits the low wind end of TTip or even Kitesurfboard if needed.Lightweight for a 17m.
Probably the lightest 17m on the market.
Still as responsive as a 12m or 14m.
Had an excellent session only last week in onshore eseast 8-12kts just blasting along the beach.
Getting air riding waves.
It just excelled in that wind strength.
Wind then picked up to 10-14kts adjusted the depower on the OR Shift bar slightly for a more relaxed feel for the rest of the session.
Really great 17m kite ,would highly recommend it if you can afford one.Even a touch less than the new Duo Juice 15m.

junglejim1971
VIC, 124 posts
26 Nov 2021 7:16PM
Thumbs Up

Great review of the Aluula kite, I have the 10m Roam and its an absolute blast I use a 20 psi e SUP pump to inflate to Perfection every time. I just got an axis 890 b series front wing to fly along in sub 10 knots. awesome stuff boys and girls, go get 1.

The kites are super impressive worth every cent im never going back to a brick kite

Next comes the rise for me

Aluula Aluula Aluula all the way baby

dachopper
WA, 1652 posts
27 Nov 2021 12:25PM
Thumbs Up

I can second that, I've got the 12 Roam, but for your weight, I don't think the roam ( even the 14 ) would be enough in the lighter winds. May as well get the big daddy !

KBGhost
QLD, 203 posts
1 Dec 2021 7:08AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
junglejim1971 said..
Great review of the Aluula kite, I have the 10m Roam and its an absolute blast I use a 20 psi e SUP pump to inflate to Perfection every time. I just got an axis 890 b series front wing to fly along in sub 10 knots. awesome stuff boys and girls, go get 1.

The kites are super impressive worth every cent im never going back to a brick kite

Next comes the rise for me

Aluula Aluula Aluula all the way baby


I tried a 10m A Roam for the first time last weekend. Wind was trending down and gusty, the lulls were getting too low for the Koala 5m. A mate had changed to this kite and was foiling effortlessly in about 10kts I guess with some dips around 7kts.

Very interesting kite to fly coming from light foil kites. I had flown the Flite 14.5 before. The roam felt very light in the sky, which was doing my head in a bit as it looked big & heavy compared to my usual kites. Flies like a feather on a string although I wouldn't park it at the edge of the window too long.

The turning speed caught me out, this kite spins with little bar input, I went to loop to start and ended up just spinning the kite on the spot almost. Eventually adjusted my technique and off we went. Bar feel is very light and the kite never feels like it's really powered up and pulling... and yet you're up and riding with little fuss. Decent speed too, I was cruising around at up to 18kts in light wind.

One strange thing I noticed after coming from other kites is that it was hunting around all the time when flying parallel to the water, almost steering itself up and down a little, required constant minor corrections to fly straight. Don't know if anyone else has noticed that. Also the OR bar felt chunky and angular in my hands, love it or hate it type bar I guess. These were the only 2 minor things that I could criticize, I was super impressed with the kite.

Overall my impression was that this kite made everything effortless and i would definitely consider one for double duty, light wind foiling & stronger wind TT-ing. I would probably want to try to the Rise first though!

dachopper
WA, 1652 posts
5 Dec 2021 3:05PM
Thumbs Up

I think the attention and turn speed can be adjusted quite a bit by using a small bar. I have the 12 meter, and am using the small north navigator bar with 22m lines, it still rips around like a 9 meter. Im on an 800cm front foil, and can get up and go in about 6 kts. 4 kts is struggle town, and you'll be pumping, diving and looping the kite trying to get out of the water. Really comes down to how powered you want to be.

It's not a great jumper so if you like big floaty jumps, then this is not going to do that well, but not many kites will in 6 kts.

I use this as my almost no wind kite, then change to the edge over 12/14 kts. Either straight to the 7m, or go 11m if twintipping.

RbGar
88 posts
29 Jan 2022 11:52PM
Thumbs Up

The OR buys sent me a 14m A Roam to check out, very nice large kite, I've foiled it and it stayed up in the air nicely for a biggin, and I also love it for surf sessions in marginal winds



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"Ocean Rodeo 14.5m Flite Aluula" started by Trnsprt