It is my logic choice, since I kite with fuel’s from 2003. I have skipped 2009 and 2010, and used 2008′s for 2 years, but now I have 4 brand new Fuels 2011!
It is not the most beautiful kite, it has some nice colours, but the lightning shaped lines are.. euh not the most charming ones, it is more brutally looking, but he who cares? The bar with 4 lines looks really okay. Release system (push) looks very solid and reliable. It is nice the loop will be straight down when unhooking.
The tests…I have used now 3 out of the 4 kites; The 13m in 15 knots and 22 knots, the 11m in gusty 20-26 knots and the 9m in 22-28 knots.
The first feeling with the kite is easyness; you can close your eyes and still know exactly where it is! It is probably due to the way it is connected to the kites; totally no bridles or pulleys just directly connected. It has 2 connecting options for the front lines; “wake”or “freeride”, Which I found not be make any big differences.
The 15 knots for the 13 m was for me (80kgs) way to less, but it still let me do a perfect f-16 after 5 minutes, so it does not need any getting used to. I do get the feeling that a 13m as biggest kite is not really enough. I also used in 22 knots, that was hard! The kite was all over the place and was very unstable.
The 11 m2 was tested with gusty wind. The fuel 2011 will let you know it is gusty! it gives you the power directly, as all previous fuels. So no change there. Jumping the kite was really not the same as before…the ideal power moment it just not there or quite vague! Wow what a disappointment, I just loved the incredible yank it would give with previous fuels… its at least a bit gone!!! Another big irritating issue is the front line swivel (99 us dollars!). It just doesn’t work! The front lines will just be crossed as like it was fixed. After 10 loops one way, it really needs to be twisted back by hand. And no way you can do that while the kite is flying….what was wrong with the swivels form the past?? And yes there is more not really okay..it jellyfishes…even with really hard tubes the kites are opening and closing due to wind force differences, you can even really see it.
The 9m in perfect conditions, was really fun to play with. Looping was perfectly like it should be, predictable loads of power and landing it without any force on the lines is no problem, it just will stay in the air as it should. Jumps are high yes, but it seems that taking off is less radical, but seems it gets you higher when air born. People were saying it was sky high, but it did not felt like that. Might it fall down in the water, it really gets up from the water in no time, that is different than 2010 and 2009!
In the end it was my usual, logic choice to buy a fuel, sure it will probably not be as fragile as 80% or even 95% procent of all other kites out there, but I am a bit disappointed. It might be that I need to grow in to the kite, buy I did kite with the F-one Bandit 4 and the Naish Torch 2010, and they both are also kites I could have chosen.
The weakness of the Naish (broken bars are quite common!) and the bridles of the Bandit (which are known to tackle around the LE point) are keeping me stuck on the Fuels….