Thanks for not posting
(yet) I didn't get a chance to finish my post- work called!
I want a kite that will preform like a large spinnaker
but not the trouble- basically:
1. will float in light air, or put up a smaller version and have it pull steadily when the waves are making it difficult at the air-ocean interface.
2. will pull consistently and with minimal trimming
3.will be retrievable in a gale or worse.
4. will float high in the air- higher than my mast
and preferably 2-10 times higher.
Background: I hate going down wind! Why? because the sails
are all so unstable! Even my jibs slat together when going over swells downwind, and the main should just be stowed- it can actually be quite dangerous. So why not make a sail that is designed for downwind sailing! One that you can use with other sails
, but will not be a big problem on deck
or for steering
Why not just make a big asymmetrical spinnaker
? A big sail like that has its advantages- I don't think you can find a better 1-3 knot
sail, but when the wind
picks up and your heading down, a kite might be able to do a few things your current
sails cannot do. For example:
A kite can get clean air above the waves, the mast
or whatever! This is why the old square riggers used their topsails in a blow.
A kite can power you life raft, and make it easier to see!
A kite can work with all your other sails (under specific conditions) and give you even more push. (It may just be one or two knots/hr more, but you know how that adds up in 24 hours.)
Flying a kite should not require new, expensive equipment
(though I don't know on this point.)
I can think of other possible advantages, but the above is enough for me to try a kite on my cruising boat.
How about a simple sled kite, about 10 feet across and 20 feet long to see how it works? I would place a "zipper" in the center, where if it got out of control it would part in half and fall into the ocean. The zipper would be controlled by a smaller trip line.