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Why do we Sleeve Spectra Kite Lines?

Why do we Sleeve Spectra Kite Lines?

kite line sleeving kitKite line Sleeving 

 

(You can find this article in our Kite Resources section too!)

Line sets
 are an important and costly necessity of flying your multiline sport kite, so it is important to make sure that you take steps to protect your line sets to maintain performance, increase longevity of the line and save you money.

Sleeving is like a tube sock that we put on the ends of spectra kite lines or any place where we tie a knot. Sleeving is made of hollow braided Dacron and is usually positioned at either end of each line where the line connects via a Larkshead Knot to the flying straps or to the kite tow point.

Spectra kite line, while stronger than steel, has a relatively low melting point.  Wherever there is a knot in the line this is a place of friction which creates heat and will significantly reduce the strength of your spectra line and will be the point of a line break.

This sleeving material acts like a heat diffuser by reducing and diffusing the heat generated by friction at the knot.


Sleeving Your lines.

At Great Canadian Kite Company, all of the sport kite spectra line sets we sell comes pre-sleeved. We are pleased to offer a variety of quality kite line that provides good braid braid, performance and kite line life. That being said it is possible to purchase line sets that are not sleeved, or perhaps you wish to buy bulk kite line and make your own line sets and then a kite line sleeving kit is a valuable tool.


To make your own line sets you will first want to stretch your lines and make them equal length.  With cheaper line (even cheaper spectra labeled line) you can expect lines to stretch as much as 12-15% where quality line sets may stretch 4-6%.   The point is line will stretch with use and it may be necessary to equalize your lines from time to time.

Once your lines are stretched and measured you are ready to sleeve each end. Our Sleeving kits come with simple instruction, two different colours of sleeving and a sleeving tool.  Here are the basic steps to sleeving your spectra kite line:

  • Sleeve one end of the line at a time making sure that you use the same colour of sleeving for both ends of the same line.  This is really helpful to help you keep straight which line goes to each side of the kite and which its corresponding flying strap.
  • Insert the sleeving tool through the sleeving. Pull the tool a few centimetres through the sleeving.
  • After the tool is inserted through the sleeve carefully take a lighter and melt the ends of the dacron for a clean looking sleeving job. This will keep the sleeving from fraying.
  • Thread your Spectra line through the end of the sleeving tool and pull the tool back through the dacron sleeving bringing the kite line with it.
  • With the sleeving now on your line, you can remove the sleeving tool.
  • Slide the sleeving towards the end of the line being careful not to go too far or you will have to reinstall the sleeve using the sleeving tool.
  • Tie a knot in the very end of the line (including the sleeve).
  • Stretch the sleeving back up the line so it won't bunched up.
  • Tie another knot at the end farthest from the end.
  • Bring these two knots together and make a loop as shown below. Make sure this loop is big enough that you can easily tie a Larkshead knot to attach to the kite or flying straps.  Ensure these loops are the same size on each end of each line.

The end of the line is now sleeved and you can repeat the process for each of the other lines.  Remember: make sure you have the same colour sleeving on the ends of the same line. 

Sleeving kite line

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It's a Spring Thing - Revolution Reflex Kites

It's a Spring Thing - Revolution Reflex Kites

The Reflex Spring is attached to the vertical spreaders, and the effectively changing the way the sail loads and air moves over the sail.

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Buy your Kites in Canada. Exchange Rates & Other Considerations

Buy your Kites in Canada. Exchange Rates & Other Considerations

Great canadian Kite Company - kite shopOnce in a while we get a call from a customer who comes across a American price on a kite and thinks they are getting a great deal... until they get their credit card statement!

Some of these folks don’t understand how exchange rates work and when the smoke clears, what they thought was a great deal ends up costing them much more than they bargained for.

What's the scoop?  Well, kites generally trade in US dollars, and as such, when our Loonie is soft it makes kites a little more expensive.  This being the case, buying kites in Canada can help you avoid credit cards surprises and customs costs and delays.

Of the many things we are proud of at the Great Canadian Kite Company. we take pride that we can compete well with often larger US kite retailers. Sometimes though, Canadian kite shoppers believe better deals are to be had south of the border, BUT we are working hard to make sure that we are your first choice for quality kites and kite accessories!

Before you make that purchase from the USA, consider:

Exchange Rates - There are many currency converters online.  It is important to understand that these converters will give you a rates based upon the most recent close of the currency market and do not include the fee that your credit card issuer charges for processing the exchange.  This could be anywhere between 2-5% in addition to the online exchange rate.

Current exchange rate + Credit Card Exchange Fee x  Cost of item in US Dollars = cost in Canadian funds.
(example:  1 US dollar = $1.30 Cdn. + 3 cents C.C. exchange Fee x $100 US = $133 Cdn)

 As indication only, here is the Bank of Canada's Online Currency Exchange Calculator

Shipping Cost - Free Shipping on US sites usually mean in the continental USA, and don't usually apply to Canada.  In general, the shipping costs (in adjusted currency) are very similar and often you will receive your kite sooner from us.  Unfortunately, your order from the States can be at the mercy of Canada Customs and their processing volume.

Import Costs & Fees - Many folks have expressed surprise of having to pay more for their item at time of delivery.  Many report Sales Tax (GST or HST) payable at time of delivery.  Some have been hit with broker costs and processing fees from $25 - $80 depending on how their kites are shipped.

After-Sale Service -  We pride ourselves on "being there" even after the sale is done.  Don't misunderstand me, many US kite retailers are great as well, but as your home-grown Canadian Kite Shop, we can generally address your concerns, part requirements, etc. and get them delivered to you faster and always at a competitive price.

Returns & Exchanges - Great Canadian Kite Company has one of the most generous return and exchange policies and making your exchange or return is faster and easier than doing so back to the USA.  Shipping costs are often significantly less and turn around times much faster!

Special Orders - We have a good inventory of in-stock kites and accessories.  Many of these are elite kites from some of the Best Kite Makers in the world.  We choose our suppliers very carefully and have endeavoured to build good relationships with them.  As such, if we don't have that special kite you want in stock; we are often able to special order.  Quickly and easily!

Canadian Jobs & Canadian Economy -  We are a family owned and operated Canadian Kite retailer based in Taber, Alberta.   We support kite events and charities in Canada.  When you buy from us you are supporting Canadian small business, who in turn invest in the local economy.

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Getting the most from your Revolution Reflex

Getting the most from your Revolution Reflex

I think this was am amazing step forward for the Beginner Rev flyer who doesn't have the benefit of seasoned quad-line flyers to help them get started.  A great resources to that end is Rev Club 38

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Kite Flying is for Lovers!

flying Kites at Writing on Stone Provincial ParkThis year Andrea and Mike (owners of the Great Canadian Kite Company) are celebrating 30 years of marriage!   They are often asked what the secret to staying married so long is - to which Andrea usually responds -WINE! Lots of wine! LOL!

They will also tell you that developing hobbies and things to do together (aside from work and racing the children) allow you to make time to have fun together!  Kite flying is one of those activities that have provided many hours of fun for them.

Mike enjoys launching the larger single line kites and making a bit of a display.  HeGreat Canadian Kite Company flying kites
enjoys his dual line and quad line sports kites as well.  Andrea tends to reach for her quad-line Revolution kite.  It’s not unusual to find them flying in a local soccer field, or a provincial park somewhere.

The two like flying together and are working away at some semblance of a quad line kite team - which usually ends with laughs and one or two oops!   It has been good for communication, even if that communication involved a few colourful metaphors!

One lesson Mike had to learn was to relax more with his kites when flying with his family.  It took him a while to realize that kite flying needs to be fun for all involved and getting too uptight about the kite getting damaged, or how involved the family was tended to suck a lot of joy out of the family time.

Mike came to realize that kites can be fixed, and with the right attitude even untangling kite line can be a Zen experience too.  It is so great to help your children and friends learn to fly kites.  The big smiles as they complete their first loop is worth the effort!

Mike and Andrea snuck away last evening to a local park with their Rev kites - and even being eaten alive by mosquitos - they had a great time.

It was especially good for Andrea.  She has a stressful job in healthcare with long hours.  She has found flying kites is a great way to unwind, deal with stress and have some fun!  “Even setting up the kite, attaching lines is relaxing.” She said.

Great Canadian Kite Company is owned and operated by a Canadian family of kite flyers - people who enjoy kites - together.  Running one of Canada’s best online kite stores is just an extension of that passion.

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Buying Kites is Easy at Great Canadian Kite Company

Buying Kites is Easy at Great Canadian Kite Company

We sure enjoy flying kites, and our mission is to help share the joy of Kite flying with everyone!  This is why we do our best to provide great kites at fair prices.

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Southern Alberta Kite Flyers Group

Southern Alberta Kite Flyers Group

We are forming an online group for those who live in Southern Alberta Canada.
A group for those who enjoy flying single line kites and multi-line kites, it is a place to connect, share kite photo's, flying field info and gather during the year to fly together.

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Wind Ranges for Kites - What to think!

Wind Ranges for Kites - What to think!

Andrea of Great Canadian Kite Company flying her Revolution kite

I remember as a kid trying to fly kites that you had to run like mad just to keep them aloft. It made for a very frustrating experience. One exception from my childhood was a delta shaped black plastic kite  - the one that you affixed adhesive eyes too. These fiery eyes made it look pretty cool, and you know, it flew pretty well! As fun as that kite was, being made of plastic it didn't last very long!

When we started the Great Canadian Kite Company (read our story here) we wanted to make sure that we sold a quality product that flew well and was built to be durable by quality kite standards. As such, the kites we have chosen are from reputable manufacturers with proven designs that fly in the stated conditions.

But even then... what does a wind range really mean? A wind range is provided to communicate the range of wind speed that the kite will fly in. So a range of 10 - 40 kph means that the kite is capable of flying in winds as low as 10 Kph to an upper limit of 40 kph.

The upper range can be a little more flexible if just flying the kite is the priority. When kites fly in winds above the range, they will often become much faster, harder to control, pull too hard and become difficult to trick. Too much wind will rip stitches and fabric, or break framing and line. It also can increase the potential for damage with hard crashes.

In higher winds you can add wind brakes or add tails, and this will often raise the upper limit.

Nexus Kite by Prism KitesSometimes, especially with stunt kites (low wind or Indoor) you see a lower wind range of zero or 5 or 8 or 10 kph. Low wind kite flying is an art as much as it is a science, and many manufacturers when establishing the lower end of the wind range have folks testing it who are really good pilots!

So can the kites fly at those low ranges? You bet! Can anybody fly them in the low range - with some practice you can learn to keep your kite aloft at the lowest wind ranges.

As kite professionals, we are here to offer you experienced recommendation on the kinds of kites and kite accessories that will get you in the air with the goal of providing the best kite flying experience we can!

Great Canadian Kite Company also have some Resources for the Kite Flyer:

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Top 5 Consideration when Buying your Kite

Top 5 Consideration when Buying your Kite

buying kites in canada

There are many businesses that you can purchase kites nowadays, but discerning shoppers are looking for more than just a low price. In addition to a competitive price, they are looking for quality and support to enrich their kite flying experience whether it be a family affair or for a single person hobby.

Quality kite retailers are such that they provide added value for their customers - its good for business and its good for the sport of kite flying. Not all retailers that sell kites know kites, and this difference can make or break your kite flying experience.



Here are 5 Things to Consider when Buying your kite:


1) Does the retailer sell quality kites from manufacturers who stand behind their products? - Not all kites are created equal, and there are a variety of materials that can be part of a kite. Some materials are great for durability and fly-ability, and some aren’t.
Look for a ripstop nylon sail cloth and fiberglass or carbon fibre framing. Also, consider whether they come with line and a storage sleeve or case.
Quality also is a measure of kite performance. Do they fly well and are they fairly robust to endure the learning curve?

2) Can you get replacement parts? Do they have your back after the sale? There are lots of people who will line up to take your money, but the quality kite dealer is there both before and after the sale.

Why? Because serious kite retailers want their customers to enjoy kite flying and experience success.

Why? Simple, because we enjoy kites too! And people who enjoy kites will buy more kites and happy kite flyers are really the best ambassadors for the sport!

All that aside, we deal with many, many people who have purchased their kites from retailers who don’t stock parts or provide after sale service. Lets face it, a quality kite that you spend money on, you want to fly for a good long time. Your kite retailer should be able to help get you back in the sky, FAST!

Also, quality kite retailers have good relationships with the manufacturers and can be a liaison for any warranty/defects or new and exciting products. In addition, this relationship helps with special orders, and troubleshooting, if need be.

3) Are you buying your kite in Canadian or US funds? This will save you serious money, and in most cases get your kite to you fast. Before you buy from a big box        e-commerce site, make sure you know what funds you paying with.

We have had several people tell us horror stories after purchasing from large .com retailers. They tell us that by the time the smoke clears on their credit card; after the exchange rate and credit card fees, import related costs and tax, they have paid considerably more for that kite compared to what they could have purchased it from us at the Great Canadian Kite Company.

Homegrown Canadian Kite shops are generally on top of their business and understand that in today's market place we compete globally, and we must be competitive with the US retailers. However, it is up to the consumer to be sure they are comparing prices correctly.

4) Are they knowledgeable about kites and kite line? It is always a good idea to purchase your kites from a company that is knowledgable about kites. A retailer who knows kites, whose focus is kites and not just another sku.

Knowledgable kite companies can help you make informed decisions and answer any questions you may have. Quality online kite retailers like Great Canadian Kite Company not only have free online resources but also have a Toll Free number that you can call and talk to a real person. They also have email addresses that are constantly monitored and will provide a timely response to your inquiry.

5) Are they kite flyers? The bottom line when choosing where to buy your kites is are they kite flyers themselves? Are they passionate about kites and do they have genuine, on the kite field experience with the kites they sell?|

Having someone with experience and passion can go a long way to enriching your kite flying experience, and dealing with any kite issues you may have. Someone who knows what it’s like to get to the flying field and there’s no wind or be able to give you practical tips to having a successful kite flying experience with your children. A kite flyer can also keep you abreast of new products, modifications, kite events and so much more!

Great Canadian Kite Company has distinguished itself for all these things - Quality products, Top-Shelf Service and kite expertise to support you before, during and after your purchase.  In short, We know kites and our commitment to knowledgable service is second to none!  We are your Kite experts.

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Flying Kites for the Health of it!

Flying Kites for the Health of it!

Health Fitness Revolution shared Top Ten Benefits of Kite-Flying on their site  in April of 2015. There are other articles along the same line but Health Fitness Revolution put together  a pretty impressive list. Here are their Top 10 Health Benefits of Kite-Flying:

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