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Designer’s Corner: Eclipse Surge 2010

Designer’s Corner: Eclipse Surge 2010

Originally Published in the October 2010 Issue of The Kiteboarder Magazine

Designer Profile:
Name: Bill Hansen
Age: Legal Adult
Location: San Francisco and Pacific NW
Job Title: Head of Product Development
Designing: Over 25 years

Product name: Surge
Product category: C-Kite
Sizes available: 5, 7, 9 & 11m
Release date: September 2009

Is this a new design or a next generation on an existing design?
The Surge is a completely new design within a traditional C-kite geometry.

eclipse_surge

As a new design, where does it fit in your product mix and what were you main goals in developing it?
The Surge is an addition to the product line and fills a void for a traditional C-kite. The primary goal was to create a kite with exceptional performance and stability which has a wide wind range and eagerly flies to the edge with smooth power delivery and non-pivotal turning. This criteria was developed jointly with Felix Pivec who was instrumental in the Surge product development.

What was your biggest challenge during the prototype phase?
The design problem is an indeterminate system and there is no unique solution but rather a range of solutions which may or may not adequately solve the problem. As such, there are trade-offs in parametric features such as structure, profile, planform, size and wind range. Felix is a very demanding rider in his definition of a good C-kite and what others may find acceptable for general riding is not acceptable to him. Thus our goals were very specific with regard to efficiency. Weight, form drag and structure were critical to the end result and controlling them can often be contradictory to other aspects, so blending them properly was a challenge.

If you could choose one standout performance or new construction feature to highlight, what would it be?
The Surge readily flies far to the edge and stays there in a stable, controllable way which opens up a much wider wind window for the rider to generate power with smooth, sweeping, nonpivotal turns.

What is the biggest advantage of your control bar?
The surge will fly with any 4 or 5 line bar in either fixed or chicken loop configurations so the bar design is non-critical.

How does self launch and self landing work on this kite?
It handles conventionally like any contemporary C-kite with wide wingtips.

What are some of the other key product features and performance characteristics?
The Surge has a continuous curve leading edge which is aerodynamically smooth and clean and also structurally uniform relative to segmented constructs. Performance-wise, it is surprisingly powerful for it’s size because of it’s ability to generate apparent wind and keep it through the turns.

What style/level of rider will most enjoy this product and in what conditions?
Any rider who wishes to push his skill and performance level in terms of freestyle tricks or wave riding will enjoy the Surge. This includes moderately-skilled riders making the transition from bows or deltas. In particular, those who wish to explore the fixed bar and unhooked riding style of Felix Pivec will find the Surge particularly well-adapted.

What is your warranty policy on this product?
Eclipse offers the Bullet Proof Warranty on all kites.

What differentiates your product from your competitors?
We believe the Surge is an extraordinary C-kite and the differences will become obvious to those who try it. We’ll let the kite do the “talking.”

TESTED: Felix Pivec, Pro Rider
The new Surge is super stable, user-friendly and everything I want outof a C-kite but people really need to try it and form their own opinion. I have been I have been riding it for the past 3 months and just love the
simplicity of it.

Originally Published in the October 2010 Issue of The Kiteboarder Magazine

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