Sept 17, 2010
Author: sbckiteboard.com / John Bryja
Nick Abbot shares with SBC Kiteboard what's new in the 2011 North Kiteboarding line-up.
At NKB we strive to make the most innovative, durable and user-friendly products on the market. It’s often the smallest details that make a difference and for 2011 we took a even closer look at all existing production details and continued to improve them one by one after a great quality advantage in 2010. The result of our extensive construction overhaul is what we call PROGRESSION 10: A very detailed catalogue of product features that are simple yet highly effective for quality and performance. By simplifying the production process and standardizing single parts of products throughout our range, the construction process and the number of parts needed has been greatly optimized. For the first time ever computer supported sewing machines have been implemented, guaranteeing a perfect stitch that is durable and of the highest quality. Cloth cutting processes have also been optimized, allowing us to use more expensive and higher quality materials that are lighter and more durable. Even the seam construction diagram has been changed from the classic zigzag stitch to a stronger triple zigzag. All top are now stitched and glued. The list of improvements is long and peppered with completely new innovations like the Fusion 10 and the new pigtails. Before any product can leave the factory, it must pass all quality inspections and check points. Every production process is defined in the smallest detail and accurately logged, allowing us to achieve the highest level of quality control for every single product. With the sum of innovations, new materials, construction changes and quality control procedures, the standard of our products has risen to an entirely new level.
Think about two slightly different surfboards; both the same size, same shape, same rails, same fin configuration, yet subtly different in rocker or outline or fin angle. From just looking at them not one person in 100 could tell which is going to ride better. Yet after riding both you might easily determine that one is clearly superior. Now think about the 2010 Rebel and the 2011 Rebel. To even the trained eye they look almost exactly the same. Not one in 100 people could tell by looking at them what the differences are. Yet still, when we handed a 2011 Rebel 6 proto to one of our long-time Rebel customers for a test run, he thought it was a big step better than the older model. That's where kite design has arrived lately. You just
can't tell much by looking.
All 2011 North Kiteboarding Kites are now built using the highest quality Technoforce D” material. D” stands for Dynamic and Durability. Over the past years the North Kiteboarding R&D team has been experimenting with exclusive Technoforce D” material and developing it closely together with Teijin, the market leader in canopy materials. Multiple tests over the years have consistently produced the same results:
• Technoforce D” material offers a 40% higher breaking strength
• 70% higher tearing strength and also improved flying characteristics.
The main advantage of Technoforce D” is less broken kites due to way higher durability than other canopy materials – even after years of heavy use. One main reason for this is the unique coating system of the D” material. Each individual thread is first coated before being woven together and then completely coated again to produce the final material. This ensures that even if the outer coating is beginning to wear thin after years of heavy use and UV exposure, the individual threads are still protected and the material remains crisp and durable. Technoforce D” also features a unique double ripstop construction which significantly increases diagonal stiffness.
Because of the dynamic load transmissions placed on kites, stiffness has a massive influence on flying characteristics. Practical tests have shown better flying performance of kites with Technoforce D” compared to typical canopy cloth due to this higher diagonal stiffness. The stiffer structure of the entire kite geometry ensures that all kites feel more solid and crispy and react immediately on steering commands. Load transmissions working on 3 dimensional bodies are variable, besides warp and weft the stiffness has an massive influence on the flying characteristics. Due to the unique double ripstop construction, Technoforce D” offers a significant higher stiffness concerning diagonal stiffness then common clothing. This is the key to the stiffer structure of the whole kite geometry and this is the reason why all kites feels more solid, crispy and react immediately on steering commands.
From now on, all North Kiteboarding Kites are built with Technoforce D” material. There’s simply no better choice of canopy material.
2011 Rebel 5/6/7/8/9/10/11/12/14 : Available Now
Whether you're ripping apart waves, getting huge, lofty jumps or just blasting around on flat water, the 2011 Rebel is a stylish 5-line all-terrain free-ride/wave machine that gives you an unmatched "connected" feel and virtually limitless performance in all conditions.
The Rebel has become famous for it's direct de-power, smooth, predictable turning, even when de-powered, and short bar stroke. And this year is no exception! Flutter-free wingtips have again greatly improved the smoothness and consistency of the Rebel's turning. This smooth turning combined with optimized canopy profiles that are highly resistant to back-stalling provide seamless power delivery ideal for surfing. Improved bar feel and de-power in the small sizes means even more comfortable and accessible top-end so you can keep having fun even when the wind gets nuclear.
The loaded 5th line design provides the highest level of safety as well as being responsible for the unique short de-power stroke and direct lively feeling. Mainly due to the floating strut construction, the Rebels get a very direct and precise feeling – even when depowered. Our highest quality standard "Progression 10" construction means the Rebel is built to last and withstand the demands that serious riders put on their kites, as well as providing a long list of other slick details like back line V bungees and snag free strut ends. Now stop dreaming and go ride!
2011 Vegas 5/7/9/10/12/14: Available Now
The Vegas is a pure C-shape kite that embodies radical new-school riding and delivers the precision feel needed to stomp today's most technical tricks and challenge tomorrow's limits. A non-compromise design that delivers massive pop, steady pull and a predictable, direct turning radius. Pull the trigger on massive mega-loops or unhook and launch into a mobe with the assurance of rock-solid pull and steadiness. The Vegas delivers high de-power with the widest range of use although it’s a C-kite and gives you virtually no de-power for full-on powered wakestyle. The 2011 Vegas: Style and conviction without compromise.
2011 Fuse 5/7/9/10/12/14: Available January 2011
A dedicated free-ride/wave kite that already sparked the future of 4 line performance. The Fuse is a brand new kind of free-ride/wave kite with a huge wind range, light, predictable feel and great jumping qualities. Its unique and simple new Attack Control Bridle gives the Fuse smooth, reactive steering that is especially evident when de-powered, making it a huge step forward in terms of manoeuvrability and directness on 4 lines. Additionally, the new AC Bridle gives you the ability to safely and completely de-power the Fuse on its back similar to a 5 line system. Easily accessible low-end power and extreme resistance to back-stalling gives the Fuse great light wind capabilities while the AC Bridle ensures direct de-power and a crisp
bar feeling even in strong winds with easy push and pull power.
2011 Evo 4/5/6/7/8/9/10/12/14: Available January 2011
The Evo presents a seamless blend of free-ride and new-school characteristics. Offering an incredibly stable, C-oriented feel with the smoothness and de-power ability of a hybrid, the Evo allows you to bang out the latest unhooked freestyle tricks, jump high, throw kite loops and cruise with ease. Consistent, predictable power development and steady bar feel makes the Evo excellent for unhooking and super easy to throw kiteloops while providing tons of pop for throwing new-school moves! Super easy relaunch due to the round, compact shape of the Evo makes trying new moves all the more tempting. With added low end in the big sizes the Evo will also get you out on those light wind days to strut your stuff.
2011 Dyno 16/18: Available January 2011
Enter the Dyno. This is the light-wind kite. It offers parked power similar to a parafoil together with superior dynamic power, better depower, more nuanced bar feel, better turning speed and superior safety (owing to inflatable elements). A versatile kite that will fly on either four lines or five, it has superior performance and handling, light winds and lulls are handled with ease.
2011 Select 132/135/137: Available October 2010
Utilizing our unique and incredibly lightweight Textreme® carbon construction this board is simply magical under your feet and has a feel like no other! The Select is aggressive and incredibly responsive while still retaining insane control through the roughest and choppiest water. This precision flex and feel gives you crazy, explosive pop for new-school moves and big jumps and encourages you to step up your riding within minutes of stepping into the straps! If you're looking for a lively, fast and incredibly smooth ride, the Select is as good as it gets!
2011 Team Series 135/131/133/135: Available October 2010
The Team Series range is comprised of three high performance new-school boards, specifically designed for and tested by our progressive freestyle competition riders. With the team's ever-increasing demand on specific performance qualities, the Team Series continues to push the limits of board construction and development. Featuring the most aggressive and uncompromised flex patterns, the Team Series' stiff centre flex and bendy tips account for the ridiculous pop and solid, precise landings attained by these boards. Edgy and fast with excellent upwind performance, the Team Series is a powerful new-school tool that knows no limits when it comes to launching into the most tech tricks and stomping those impossible landings.
2011 Jaime 129/132/135/137: Available October 2010
Our longest running model to date, the Jaime is a product of years of refinements in both shape and high tech construction and just like the man himself is an absolute legend! The Jaime continues its legacy as a performance oriented freeride / newschool twin tip with an emphasis on early planing, comfort and speed. The stiff center and flexy tips help the Jaime retain positive grip and powerful pop for tech tricks and jumps, yet still blaze through the chop with smoothness and ease. In a nutshell, the Jaime is a stylish, high-performance all-rounder that adapts to nearly all conditions it encounters.
2011 X-Ride 129/133/136/140: Available October 2010
The X-Ride remains one of our best selling models with it's smooth, comfy feel and versatile range. Heaps of grip from the specially designed G-10 S-bend fins make takeoffs easy for boosting over the moon. Or take advantage of the curvy outline, the cylindrical concave and the progressive rocker to carve like a hot knife through butter in small waves and blast through the most evil chop with ease...All without ever getting rail-spray in your face! A truly versatile machine that feels easy and comfortable from the moment you place your feet in the straps, the X-Ride appeals to a wide audience and a variety of styles.
2011 Soleil 128/134: Available October 2010
The Soleil remains the high performance freestyle board, now completed with a constant rocker and a cylindrical concave, being the choice for our progressive female riders competing on the world tour. With optimized flex tailored specifically to women's weight, this board provides massive pop for female freestylers looking to jump and throw technical tricks! A little
bit more scoob is responsible for less water in your face, a little bit more grip and easier turning. Other customized accessories include smaller foot straps and specialized fins with female kiters' specific needs in mind. And let's not forget the progressive graphics to keep things stylish!
2011 Gonzales 130/135/143/151: Available October 2010
The Gonzales is a free-ride twin tip with a forgiving flex pattern ideal for jumping and cruising. Get up and going easily with the Gonzales' early planing abilities and take advantage of the excellent upwind performance it has to offer. The lightweight and durable construction is built to last. 4 nice sizes, so anyone should find his Gonzalez which suits him the best!
2011 Spike 141/153/163: Available October 2010
The new Spike is the ultimate light wind twin tip that will get you out on the water in 6-8 knots! Get the technical advantage of optimized flex, lively response and large, flat planing surfaces at the center and heelside to maximize your fun when your friends are sitting on the beach waiting for wind. Unrivaled upwind performance and loads of heel grip will have you blasting around in wind speeds you never thought possible! Because of its size, the Spike can also double as an entry level twin-tip.
2011 SkimFish 137: Available October 2010
Carve up small waves, get out in light wind or challenge yourself with some strapless airs. Whatever your style, the Skimfish is the perfect little toy to keep in your board bag for those days when you need a little something extra to get you stoked and out there! Now built in a classic, durable skimboard construction with comfy grab rails, the Skimfish also offers the option of four fins and a foot strap inserts.
2011 Kontact 5’10”/6’0:/6’2”: Available October 2010
The Kontact is ideal for big, powerful waves or choppy water and high winds. A great weapon for advanced riders and riders who love precise control. The Kontact is ideal for strapped riding and surfers looking for maximum control at high speeds. Long and narrow, the rounded pin tail rides low and smooth through the water. The thin, knifey rail line offers plenty of
grip to drive off the bottom with seemingly limitless hold to grind through high speed top turns. The Kontact is designed around the premiss that kiting allows you to ride with much more power than you ever would surfing and the Kontact is all about harnessing that energy and exploiting it. If you are looking to drive hard through high speed turns with tons of control at
high winds and in big surf, the Kontact is the one and only!
2011 WAM 5’8”/5’10”/6’0” Available October 2010
A high performance all-rounder, the WAM is suited to nearly all conditions from small onshore mush to powerful beach and reef breaks. The WAMs ability to adapt to nearly all conditions makes it the perfect travel board or the perfect one-board-quiver. Super smooth and lively under your feet, the slightly fuller outline, semi-boxy rails and pulled in thumb tail carry lots of speed when the waves are small yet still provide hold and drive when you need it most in bigger surf. The tri/quad fin configuration gives you the option of riding the WAM in quad fin mode for a more skatey and snappy feeling ideal for smaller waves or in thruster mode for more drive and more positive back foot drive in bigger surf.
2011 Whip 5’5”/5’7” Available October 2010
Searching for a little something to get you fired up on those small wave days? Well we were too and that's exactly how the Whip was born! The Whip is a short and wide high performance quad-fin design capable of making even the most marginal conditions fun. Low entry rocker, deep single concave and an optimized thickness profile get this board up and going quickly and effortlessly to generate blazing speed in small surf. Lively under your feet with quick rail to rail transition, the Whip accelerates out of tight arcs and is a blast to ride even in the smallest surf. The wide nose and tail give you plenty of surface area for carrying speed while also effectively creating the longest possible rail line to prevent sacrificing drive when the surf picks up. The classic diamond tail design blends with modernized performance aspects to create a board that can be ridden at least 4" shorter than your normal board allowing it to fit easily into the pocket of small waves.
2011 Race LTD 180: Available October 2010
Kite-course racing is rapidly gaining momentum and the demand for competitive light wind boards is now greater than ever. In the ongoing development to push the light wind boundaries and upwind performance to the absolute max, North's third generation Race Ltd. is once again leading the charge. The 2011 Race Ltd. features a shorter, wider design with more volume that will carry you through the lightest wind lulls. An optimized rocker makes the Race Ltd. incredibly smooth and controllable through the chop and you will never have to worry about stuffing the nose when you're flying down wind towards the finish line. The extremely domed deck allows you to maintain lateral pressure for optimal board trimming to maximize your upwind angle. The 2011 Race Ltd. also features CNC-cut G-10 quad fins and Textreme® Carbon construction that is not only performance enhancing, but also extremely light, reducing weight by 20% over conventional carbon construction. So if you're looking to get out in the lightest possible breeze or blazing around the race course, the Race Ltd. is the absolute performance leader.
2011 Free Race 5’3”: Available October 2010
The Free Race is a 5'3" twin-fin directional that bridges the gap between race and free ride. It will get you up and going in lighter wind than a surfboard without the typical constraints of a full-on race board. The super flat rocker, wide blocky tail and optimized swept-back twin-fins get you flying upwind in a light breeze, while a slightly rounder outline and surf-influenced
rail shape keep things loose and free through the chop. A smooth, comfy ride in any conditions, the Free Race still allows you to put it on rail to tear up small waves or do full speed flat water carves.
Website address: http://www.northkites.com
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