Can i use any bar to any kite?
A common question which i get a lot during season.
The answer: Yes and No :-)
1/ Loop-Knot system
Every line is connected to a kite trough a loop and knot system. Sometimes you can find
the knot at the pigtail of the kite or at the end of your lines. If you use a brand X-bar for a brand Z-kite, it may happen that knots have to be connected with knots.
You simply solve this problem by putting a set of extra pigtails in your quiver. No big spender? It's also common that kitelines end with a loop/knot at the steering lines, so you can choose. End with a loop-loop you simply make a knot at one end. No ideal setup but you can kite, no worries..
Any bar will technically fit any kite if both brands are working with the concept of steering/front lines ending at the same length. 24m/25m was the most common length, nowadays 22m/23m looks like the ideal freeride setup. There's a new post coming which covers line lengths.
3/ 5th line
If you use a 5th line bar at a 4-line kite, you probably can fly this kite but your 5th line safety system wil not work. Do not test this in high winds, always in low winds with a buddy. Also consider yourself as an experienced rider for doing this.
Everything mentioned below is written with the idea that the performance of your kite should be exactly as the brand wants it to be, so FULL ON!!
1/ Angle of attack
Every kite is designed to perform under a certain angle of attack. This angle is key in your and the kite his performance, you constantly play with this by pulling or pushing at the bar. Let's not make it science and just know that sheeting in and out is 1 of 2 key features on your bar that can change the angle of attack, so:
Angle of attack changes trough:
- bar shifting
2/ Length Depowerline and trimmer
The length of your depowerline is for every brand different. In knowledge that the angle of attack changes when sheeted in and out, this means that kite X with bar Z will not perform as Kite X would with Bar X. You are able to trim this right with your trimmer, but this demands some knowledge how a kite should fly in the air.
An example, the depower-length and trimmer of an Ozone bar is considerably shorter than a Duotone bar, so this means a Duotone kite is restricted in performance with an Ozone bar. Or an Ozone kite will easily be oversheeted with a Duotone bar.
3/ Low V or high V
Changing the place where the two front lines separate can change significantly the dynamics of your kite.
Putting higher the V, the more stable your kite will behave, it works also in the other direction.
A kite will turn lighter with a lower V.
Summary: You can connect any bar to any kite but the kite will lose in performance.