I have been fielding a lot of calls lately with people asking me:
“John, what’s up with the 07 Diablo and 5th line…is this a 5th line SLE? Is the line under tension? What gives?”
Here’s the answer to all your questions so you can all sleep well tonight.
The new 2007 Diablo can be flown as a traditional 4 line kite and you will get the exact same performance out of it as last years Diablo kites. ( Click here to watch Jeremie Tronet kill it on the Diablos.) However, Ross designed the new 2007 Diablo bar to be a true 5th line bar with all the bells and whistles.
This new bar is designed to be flown as a Variable Tension 5th Line bar. Unlike other kites which rely on the 5th line to hold the kite’s shape while in flight the Diablo flies fine without the 5th line. The true function of the 5th line comes only under highly powered turns. In these circumstances the kite might warp slightly, the wing tips squeezing in. The 5th Line, if properly trimmed (see below) will hold the kite’s shape under these conditions and will help prevent any warping under highly powered moves.
Trim? 5th Line? Wha? The 5th line on the 07 Diablo bar is a Variable Tension 5th Line. As you add or remove trim from the kite with the trim strap you will need to adjust the 5th line as well, by uncleating it, adjusting its length to match your trim and re-cleating it. The 5th line should always be tense but not under load. In this way it will prevent any warping of the kite under highly powered moves. You do not want to use the 5th line to somehow adjust the projected area of the kite and the 5th line should not be taking any significant load when under normal flight conditions.
Leash?! Yes, you leash off the 5th line. So, yes, you can use it as an emergency brake if you need to.
Finally, Bow Tie? Yes, there can be issues with a 5th line wrapping your kite up like a bow tie and spitting it out in pieces. This is why we have the bright red “Oh Sh*!” handle on the side of the bar. If you see this situation evolving in front of your eyes release yourself from the chicken loop with the easy to access and engage safety system and jetison the whole bar set-up, holding on to only the Oh Sh*! handle….this will flag the kite off one rear line and will prevent the 5th line from killing your investment.
Questions? Post ‘em here.
John Z - OR :evil: