Articles > Flysurfer/Peter Lynn Performance Comparison

By 'rabidric', 15th July 2004:

Here goes a mammoth post….
this is intended to provide a structured introduction to a thread focused on design merits relating to upwind performance, l/d, areodynamic cleanliness and glide between the two leading innovators of modern foils. then the free-for-all can begin.

my intention was to create a balanced performance comparison (not handling really as this is subjective). To do this i asked for comments from a couple of people who actually fly both kites- otherwise a question like this on a forum just generates arguements about which is "better" from people who are not equally well informed.
whilst issues like safety, handling, stability and relaunch are more important overall than performance when it comes to just having fun; these are subjective and can depend greatly on conditions.

current kite and board design is limited by controllability issues of high l/d designs, when these hurdles are crossed then kiteboarding will make the next big leap in all round performance. i believe that in the next decade kite design will improve to the extent where high l/d foils become more controllable/stable over a wider range of conditions, and board design will also improve, so that kiteboarders will come to match windsurfers in heavy conditions also. My own interests are speed, racing and long distance jumping- you might guess that i come from a windsurfing background!

From one who likes his p2:

i know i'm a bit bias towards FS in my posting, the truth be told i really have no problem with what anyone flies, but i do with people who talk down FS kites without ever trying one, plus the Psycho2 is an absolutely amazing kite.

it's difficult to compare my two kites, the G is really a kite for higher and turbulent winds, while the psycho is a lower wind and clean wind kite, not that it doesn't handle turbulence very well, but that the guerilla is still better in that respect.

as for upwind ability i would not like to say as i have yet to try the psycho fully powered up yet, both are excellent, and i can only compare the guerilla the other day when i was just powered and was still flying upwind much faster than any of the tube guys (got a few comments about the lack of pumping afterwards, apparently none of them had ever see a guerilla before)

to compare my two kites, both 13m - the guerilla is the ultimate stable kite, it will sit at the edge of the window 2feet off the beach with no hands on the bar, such a simple kite to fly it often is mistaken for a beginners model, but the performance is up there with almost any kite i've flown, except the psycho2.

the P2 is just amazing, it's not as stable as the guerilla (but what is?) and it requires more input and careful handling, especially in light gusty winds, but powered it is a gem, despite being much more powerful, it turns more quickly than the G13 and in terms of forward speed when you send for a jump it is about the same, which is very very fast.

powering up the P2 is like hitting a switch, you just go up, the pop is incredible, even with the bridleing on mine set to the most gentle setting for upwind ability, and the hangtime even in low winds is just funny, definately a high performance kite, and is best compared to the 18m guerilla in my opinion.

the bridle issue is one that many people don't like about FS kites, i came from a land based open cell foil background so careful packing came second to me, in terms of drag i don't think i can notice any, and baring in mind it has one less line than the equivilent tube/arc kite you save 30yrds by doing that, i would say the P2 is probably about equivilent to the guerilla in terms of upwind ability, but you wouldn't be disappointed by either kite.

for jumping and hangtime the P2 wins hands down, it gets you higher, longer, floatier, but requires a lot more technique than the guerilla, which if you mess up a landing will be sitting there waiting for you when you surface again. i would say if you are already jumping then the P2 would serve you well, if not then it could prove frustrating at first.

yesterday after replying to your mail i spent 5 hours on the water with the P2 powered up, i can now say it is absolutely incredible, the wind was quite gusty but at no point did the P2 even look like it was going to overfly/luff/collapse - it was incerdible, and to compare upwind performance to the guerilla, it's was better (but my friend on my guerilla wasn't as powered - it was also better than the various inflatables that were out there - X3/X4/Cab blacktip (all igh aspect) - i was also jumping much higher and longer than the others out there (even though they were better riders than i) and it was turning at a similar rate (with the bridle set to tip brakes) - plus i could stay on one kite when they all had to up size in the lulls and dowwsize in the gusts.

i guess what i'm trying to say is the P2 has left me stunned in terms of performance, it is awesome, nothing less, and if you can familiarise yourself with the way it flys you will be having the time of your life

from the other who likes his gII:

I'll do my best... This is for a Psycho2 13 and a Guerilla II 13:

Upwind capability - not much in it, both are outstanding offering fairly easy 45 degree upwind progress unless over or under powered.

De-power range - The Psycho2 has the edge here with a ratio of 1:4 with bar fully in or fully out. Unsure what the ratio is on the G but it's probably more like 1:3 or a little less.

Usable wind range - Psycho2 has the edge once again. I can landboard with it in winds from 8mph to 23mph (so far) so long as it's not gusting too sharply. The G2 starts to get me moving in 12mph, becomes fun in 14/15mph and tops out at about 25/26mph (again, so long as it's not gusting too sharply)

Gust handling - G2 all the way, unless it's nasty sharp gusts you often don't even notice them.

Handling - G2 is more stable and in its wind range turns faster and makes you feel more connected to it than the Psycho2 does. You do have to keep a watchful eye on the Psycho2, especially when jumping... despite its pretty good stability.

Jumping - The P2 is floaty like nothing else. The G2 is quite floaty. However, due to the increased turn speed of the G2 I can pop a smallish jump while on the move, redirect the kite while I'm in the air, land and keep on speeding along - so far my attempts with the P2 have me landing before the kite is fully redirected and hence all my forward speed is killed. Other people are fully stoked by the P2 though, so I think I've just yet to suss how to fly the thing properly.

Have I missed anything?

Phantom may be a closer match performance wise to the FS but harder water relaunch ruled it out from questioning

Personally just from looking at the cleaner design(e.g. sharper TE) of the FS I would expect it to be superior in performance; the PL arc design creates a lot of lift that is vectored out sideways which incurs a drag penalty worse than any modern bridle I imagine.

Any one else?……….



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