by Brian Friedmann
US F-One Team Rider
Location: Wadell, California
The Bandit heritage is carried on with the next version of this popular Delta shape kite. Had a chance to get out on the 8 meter B5 kite this afternoon and it did great in the non steady wind conditions with overhead surf. First thing that you notice when pumping up the kite is the greatly reduced leading edge diameter. It appears to be almost 1/3 smaller than last years kite. The struts are also smaller and the kite is a little flatter than the Bandit IV and the front bridles have been shortened to eliminate any possibility of being caught up on a wing tip. The construction and build of the kite is exceptional, something you would expect if you have ever owned an F-One kite.
The wind was fairly inconsistent with some longer lulls. Regardless the kite showed it’s strengths with more low end than last years model allowing me to stay upwind even during the lulls. Most folks were kiting on 9m-11m kites and the 8m B5 was managing fine and staying upwind. And although the wind was on the light side at times, you could tell the kite turned faster than last year. Bar pressure also seems to be reduced slightly from the prior year model. With the lighter wind conditions there were times when it was easy to outrun the kite when going downwind. They B5 drifted great and never hesitated or started to fall out of the sky. It’s as stable or more than last years kite. Overall the performance has been improved from last years kite with more low end, faster turning and smoother handling. Really nice kite and looking forward to trying the other sizes.