Pictures by John Bilderback

Pictures by John Bilderback

Blade has once again come to the party and all in aid of a good cause - breaking records and raising much needed funds for the research of Motor Neuron Disease.

 When we first approached Blade in late 2014, they couldn’t have been more accommodating and enthusiastic about helping us achieve these two goals. We went to Blade because we knew through past experience that they were reliable, efficient to deal with and had a product that would stand up to the rigorous test we were about to put them through.

 Kiting over 1,000km along the Great Barrier Reef, in a predominantly downwind direction, we needed a kite that would withstand the daily beatings associated with boat launches, jagged reefs and excessive sun and salt exposure. And the Blade Trigger did exactly that. Across 8 days and 1300km, not a single Blade kite let us down, no punctures, no tears, no issues whatsoever.

With a simple 3 strut design the Trigger’s are light weight and simple to inflate/deflate. We found awesome improvements in these kites to previous years, with much faster and responsive turning, especially in the bigger sizes. One of the most impressive points I noted on these kites was their ability to drift downwind without over sheeting and wanting to drop out of the sky. We rode on the most aggressive downwind angle possible and not once did this kite fall on me.  If I could make one change to these kites it would be to change to a larger inflate/deflate valve (however I believe this change is in production now!)

 The Blade Uni Control Bar is likewise a simple, lightweight, ergonomic and very efficient design. I know Blade has made some positive changes to their bars recently, including adding a stopper ball, which turned out to be a very handy tool. I also love the fact that you can easily adjust the cleat to change the bar throw, this is a must have for smaller people like myself.

However, a few changes we would love to see is a softer grip that won’t leave you with calluses on your hands all summer, a front line swivel point that is closer to the chicken loop, allowing you to more easily unwind from those kite loops and a more reliable de-power cleat. Whilst the de-power is perfectly designed for quick power and de-power, it doesn’t always hold so well and easily slips into full power mode! Then if the velcro doesn’t hold, the depower wraps around the centre lines, making it again difficult for us smaller people to unwind.

Overall, a great kite…fast, responsive, perfect for wave riding as well as those yummy lofty jumps we all love so much. Blade kites also come in a new and improved bag with handy pockets and internal straps to keep your kite in place in the bag. We loved these. We love the Trigger

Jess Syne AKA Digs!