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2018 Airush Ultra 9m

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Created by cbulota 1 month ago, 23 Aug 2017
cbulota
WA, 1079 posts
23 Aug 2017 8:09PM
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Hi guys, I had a chance to demo the 2018 Airush Ultra (single strut) in a 9m size and wanted to share my thoughts as I was truly amazed by it's overall performance. It's my very first time trying a 9m single strut kite, the only other single strut kite I used regularly is a 5m.

I do roughly 50% of my kiting on a twin tip, 25% on the surfboard and 25% on the hydrofoil so wanted to test it in all these disciplines.

First go on the hydrofoil in 10-15 knots, without much surprise the kite performed really well. You immediately notice the advantage of having such a lightweight kite when the wind drops and the kite simply doesn't stall anywhere near as easily as a heavier 5 strut kite for example. Turns super fast, goes upwind really well and drift downwind was also great. Definitely a great kite for foiling, no surprise there as it's really designed for this.

Second go on the surfboard in 15-18 knots. Was a bit underpowered but was still a great kite to ride. A friend of mine who weighs only 65 kgs and is an expert wave rider grabbed it that day and did much better than I could with my 85+kg. He really liked it and said the drift, grunt and upwind performance were all great, just not quite as reactive as a true wave kite.

My third go was on the twin tip in 18-22 knots. This is when I was truly amazed. Having so much canopy area that is unsupported and being a die hard 5 strut kiter myself, I was convinced I would've found some weaknesses in the kite then, but I simply couldn't fault it. It truly feels like any other premium freeride kite I ever rode. I was able to easily boost 5m-ish jumps with a few seconds hangtime even without being well powered. I did my best to try to make the kite collapse while loading it heavily or looping it, but never managed to fault the kite. The kite has a very direct feel to it and a smooth medium bar pressure.

The first thing you notice about this kite is how fast it's flying across the window and how agile and light it feels. It's hard to explain but it's something different from any other kite I've tried before.

Next step is to try it in 25+ knots ... but I don't know when I'll get a chance to do this.

My only feedback would be the size of the bag, which is a bit too small. At first you think ''wow it's nice to have such a tiny kite bag'' but then you realize you have to pack it super well (i.e. take your time and fold it multiple times) otherwise it won't easily fit in the small bag.

Also, my advice is to inflate the kite really hard so that the single strut can be as firm as possible, this gives the kite a better structure and will help with relaunching especially in lighter winds. I did test many relaunch scenarios in various positions and wind conditions, the kite was again flawless!

Having only 1 strut, the kite inflates super fast i.e. 30 seconds or less for a 9m, which is awesome.

In my opinion it's a kite you must try, I'm sure you will be impressed as well.

Christian

Youngbreezy
275 posts
23 Aug 2017 8:16PM
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Frothing on the ultra for sure

jamesperth
WA, 474 posts
25 Aug 2017 7:34PM
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Yeah I'm interested in trying this too. Had Clouds and didn't quite do it for me, the new breed of Single strut kites look pretty interesting.

ActionSportsWA
WA, 461 posts
25 Aug 2017 8:23PM
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Hi Christian, I think you overlooked the part at the start of the review about disclosure. Aren't you selling these kites this year or at least receiving a commission on sales recommended by you?

It it makes a difference to readers.

DM

Gazuki
WA, 537 posts
26 Aug 2017 9:33AM
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Bahahahah, again, LOL@!

thefacts
50 posts
26 Aug 2017 10:32AM
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GOOGLE will give you more info on the kite.......

the walks
WA, 446 posts
26 Aug 2017 4:16PM
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Just wondering if this kite will help an expert 65kg waverider learn some manners on the water

Youngbreezy
275 posts
26 Aug 2017 4:48PM
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Select to expand quote
ActionSportsWA said..
Hi Christian, I think you overlooked the part at the start of the review about disclosure. Aren't you selling these kites this year or at least receiving a commission on sales recommended by you?

It it makes a difference to reader







thefacts
50 posts
26 Aug 2017 7:55PM
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Select to expand quote
the walks said..
Just wondering if this kite will help an expert 65kg waverider learn some manners on the water


Expert!!!!......., not. I agree with the manners part - cowboy would be more apt. As for the pimpin comment, glass houses DM.

carbine
WA, 1401 posts
1 Sep 2017 10:54AM
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Select to expand quote
ActionSportsWA said..
Hi Christian, I think you overlooked the part at the start of the review about disclosure. Aren't you selling these kites this year or at least receiving a commission on sales recommended by you?

It it makes a difference to readers.

DM





Put a disclaimer on anything you have ever said mate.

"Full of ****"

eppo
WA, 6314 posts
1 Sep 2017 12:07PM
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A Site sponsor (with the name of his actual kite selling business in the icon) whose been selling / reviewing kites since the early 2000's. I'm sure we all aware that DM sells what he is talking about. So I'm not sure why the full of Sh1t comment was given.

I didn't know Christian was promoting or getting commission on these kite...did you?

ActionSportsWA
WA, 461 posts
1 Sep 2017 1:59PM
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Hi Guys,

Y'all know me. The profile pic and SB name gives it away that I am a retailer and school owner. and I usually preface my reviews with my blatantly obvious connection to my business. If you look at the profile info about me, It gives it all away. I try to keep it real and have built a busines on my no BS reviews over the years. I am no stranger to the forum rules and have been posting help topics, gear reviews and answering questions for almost 14 years on here and even before that on Kiteforum.com

My logins are Kitehard (first login name), AKSonline (during brand identity crisis) and now Action Sports WA.

There is a big difference to posting as an individual with no disclosure about a brand they have a financial gain by promoting. The rules are for everyone.

DM

carbine
WA, 1401 posts
1 Sep 2017 2:01PM
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Select to expand quote
eppo said..
A Site sponsor (with the name of his actual kite selling business in the icon) whose been selling / reviewing kites since the early 2000's. I'm sure we all aware that DM sells what he is talking about. So I'm not sure why the full of Sh1t comment was given.

I didn't know Christian was promoting or getting commission on these kite...did you?




Clearly just trying to shut christian down for his own reasons (commercial) and is acting like a bully.

Then trying to claim some higher moral ground......I think thats long gone chief.

eppo
WA, 6314 posts
1 Sep 2017 3:02PM
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You may be right about the bullying? Then again you may be wrong. How would we know that ?

But when an individual like Christian posts about a kite it would be nice to know his position. I'm pretty sure we at least know DMs position.

Although I think we can all agree both these gentlemen are fantastic and worthy contributors and worth listening to.

snalberski
WA, 411 posts
1 Sep 2017 4:29PM
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I think DM is totally entitled to point out when posters are breaking the rules, and infact I thank him for doing so. Prior to DMs post I had no idea that the reviewer had a financial interest in selling Airush products. Thats not to say that the review is dishonest in any way but DM is correct... it does make a difference to the reader. I'm still very interested in the kite but!

thefacts
50 posts
1 Sep 2017 9:49PM
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Point made DM but there is no denying there is some underlying history between you two - lets keep it professional and about the gear, leave the handbags at home. I am sure there was no intent to deceive and as stated by Eppo both your opinions on gear are appreciated. We all have something in the closet DM but they are best kept there.....back to the post - any anyone else tried out the Ultra!!!

Youngbreezy
275 posts
3 Sep 2017 9:05AM
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I am also keen to hear more about the ultra particularly relating to the top end and overall wind range, if you oh could get one of these to work ok on a twin tip as well as sb and foil you could really have a 1 kite quiver

ludbey
TAS, 79 posts
3 Sep 2017 12:59PM
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I would be interested in knowing the weight of these kites as well, everyone comments about one strut kites in general being lighter but the only one I have had a chance to check out Was the 2016 12 M North Mono which I compared to my 2015 12M Reo and the difference was hardly detectable. [admittedly the scales we used were only a cheap set of luggage scales]. The reason I ask is most of the time I am travelling so weight and pack down size is an issue but also just purchased a foil and eventually light wind conditions will be a target, any info much appreciated.

easttimor
1 posts
5 Sep 2017 6:39PM
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RRD bar on Airush kite
im thinking of buying a 12m airush ultra
at present i use a 2012 or 2013 rrd bar on my rrd and epic kites
will i be able to use this and avoid having to buy a new bar?

Auswind
WA, 386 posts
Site Sponsor
7 Sep 2017 3:14PM
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Select to expand quote
ludbey said..
I would be interested in knowing the weight of these kites as well, everyone comments about one strut kites in general being lighter but the only one I have had a chance to check out Was the 2016 12 M North Mono which I compared to my 2015 12M Reo and the difference was hardly detectable. [admittedly the scales we used were only a cheap set of luggage scales]. The reason I ask is most of the time I am travelling so weight and pack down size is an issue but also just purchased a foil and eventually light wind conditions will be a target, any info much appreciated.



Hi Ludbey,

The ultra is ~30% lighter than a lithium and about ~20% lighter than a Union.

Ultra 7m - 1.95kg



Union 7m - 2.45kg


Ultra 12m - 2.7kg



Union 12m - 3.45 kg






Select to expand quote
easttimor said..
RRD bar on Airush kite
im thinking of buying a 12m airush ultra
at present i use a 2012 or 2013 rrd bar on my rrd and epic kites
will i be able to use this and avoid having to buy a new bar?



Hi easttimor,

The Airush kites are designed to fly with a low Y on the front lines & equal line lengths all round and will fly great on your bar.

Auswind

Foghorn
WA, 58 posts
7 Sep 2017 5:42PM
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Rrd bar is dual front line safety works well on rrd kites but I'd be cautious to use it on anything else.

Auswind
WA, 386 posts
Site Sponsor
7 Sep 2017 9:52PM
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Select to expand quote
Auswind said..

Hi easttimor,

The Airush kites are designed to fly with a low Y on the front lines & equal line lengths all round and will fly great on your bar.

Auswind





Select to expand quote
Foghorn said..
Rrd bar is dual front line safety works well on rrd kites but I'd be cautious to use it on anything else.



Apologies, the Ultra requires a bar with single front line safety. The bar will need to be converted to this system for safe flag out of the kite when released to your leash.

Auswind

ludbey
TAS, 79 posts
8 Sep 2017 6:03PM
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Hi Auswind, much appreciated, that seems significantly lighter than the 2016 12m Mono I weighed at around 3.2kg and your 12m ultra at 2.7kg admittedly we didn't use the same scales but that seems very good. I will try and get a demo as soon as possible.
Cheers Tony

Youngbreezy
275 posts
13 Sep 2017 8:34AM
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Any updates on the ultra? There's been a few varying days of wind to test it out, I'm still keen to hear your reviews cbulota! I really want to Know about the top end and overall wind range

cbulota
WA, 1079 posts
13 Sep 2017 10:11AM
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Hi All,

My apologies for failing to disclose my affiliation with Airborne/Airush. At the time of writing this post we were still at the early stages of our agreement which I why I purposely chose not to mention it yet.

If you've been following my posts over the years or know me personally, you already know I prefer a straightforward and transparent approach.

As we are now getting closer to finalizing our agreement, here is my disclosure for transparency's sake:

I'm not in the business of selling Airush kites. I'm in the business of running a school and teaching lessons, which is my main passion and also what I do best. The plan is for my school to be using Airush kites. Any Airush sales generated from my recommendations will be systematically turned into FREE lessons/coaching. In other words my financial gain from referring sales is non-existent to very limited at best.

I will be sure to disclose this in my future reviews and update it if necessary.

Now back to the kite review which is what this thread is about.

I tried the same 9m Ultra in winds gusting from 25 to 30+ knots on the twin tip, this is when I found the limitations of the kite.
If felt very overpowered and challenging to control. When sheeting out too far in this much wind, the canopy starts vibrating which can be felt through the bar as well. Needless to say the kite was harder to control. I did manage to boost quite big with very impressive hangtime, however it was harder to get vertical lift due to the limitations in sending the kite fast enough. Perhaps a smaller size Ultra would've provided better results, I will try with a 7m at some stage and let you know.

In other words it's not a kite I would recommend for OVERpowered twin tip riding, a kite with a similar shape but with more struts is definitely a big asset for this.

In conclusion, an excellent kite for anything from 10 to 25 knots for my body weight (85kg) going from hydrofoil to surfboard and twin tip. Great for casual boosting sessions (great lift and hangtime) as well, as long as you're not overpowered.

Thanks for reading

Christian

the walks
WA, 446 posts
13 Sep 2017 5:32PM
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R u really 85 kgs

cbulota
WA, 1079 posts
Tuesday , 17 Oct 2017 9:17AM
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A great new review from Jeff at kiteboarding.com



I normally don't even consider teaching lessons in less than 15 knots in deep water, but this kite has completely redefined the possibilities. See for yourself in the video below. Look around the 20 sec. mark when the student steers the kite really low at the edge of wind window and (as all beginners do) has the bar pulled all the way in in low wind and yet the kite refuses to stall and comes right back up! No way this would be possible on a multi strut kite.




Christian



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"2018 Airush Ultra 9m" started by cbulota