For 2020, the CAPA joins Duotone’s award-winning range of kites. A specific and highly advanced foil kite design that blends aerodynamic performance features from both kite and paragliding innovations, it’s suited to experienced hydrofoil or snow-kite riders looking for something that complements the low-drag of the hydrofoil, skis or snowboard, as well as any other performance orientated rider on all boards. Here we go behind the design with Kari Eisenhut.
What was your vision behind the Duotone 2020 CAPA?
The development, accessibility and popularity of hydrofoiling has played a part in the inspiration behind my vision for the 2020 Duotone CAPA.
When compared to riding a twintip or surfboard, hydrofoiling not only offers a completely new sensation, but the physics behind functionality and performance is dramatically different – such as the <50% decrease in drag. So as a designer looking to enhance the performance of this discipline I had two options.
1: Adapt my style of hydrofoiling to a high-drag tube kite.
2: Adapt the function of the foil kite to a low-drag hydrofoil.
As the leader of ADVANCE paragliding R&D team and as a hydrofoiling addict, I came to the conclusion that option two was the only solution. Working with our Head Engineer from ADVANCE, we developed the CAPA; a specific and highly advanced design that blends aerodynamic performance features from both kite and paragliding design in order to deliver a foil-specific design to complement the 2020 Duotone line of kites.
How did you achieve this and what does a foil kite specific to hydrofoiling have to offer?
Getting going on a hydrofoil always starts with huge drag. That said, once you are up on the foil, you can ride tight up and downwind angles at a speed variation that is double to that of a twintip or surfboard. That doesn’t mean that you have to go fast on a hydrofoil, just that you can cruise very slow or fast in all directions, a huge difference to the more constant cruising of a twintip and surfboard.
So for the CAPA foil kite, there were new challenges and demands that needed to be met such as:
- Instant power delivery to get up on the hydrofoil.
- Self installed ‘off switch’ that eliminates downwind forces and enchanters free hydrofoiling.
- Huge speed range .
- A wide variation of angle of attacks to enable the freedom to ride your course.
- Big lift, making foot movements during maneuvers incredibly easy.
Were there any challenges you had to overcome?
At ADVANCE, we have the know-how and experience in materials that have benefited our ‘double skin’ designs for many years. Investing in the lightweight paragliding equipment and working within events such as the Red Bull X-Alps, we are able to create a foil kite that with take hydrofoiling to new heights.
With a low-drag hydrofoil and the effect of apparent wind, we had to deliver a product that would fly, stay in the sky and relaunch in no wind.
What are the main design and performance features for this all-new CAPA vision?
The balance between ease-of-use and performance is what counts. It’s a value that cannot be ignored.
With the CAPA, we’ve managed to deliver the most high performance, super stable, easy to fly foil kite with a huge wind range, to be ridden on the water with a hydrofoil.
We acknowledge that this is our point of view, but we’ve tried and tested many different market leading products within the same field and believe that the CAPA is different. But it’s you that has to tell us what you think; the benefits and experiences. What benefits you feel, your experiences; that’s how we develop year upon year.
Who will enjoy the 2020 CAPA?
Any experienced hydrofoil or snow-kite rider searching for a specialised, high performance design that complements the low-drag of the hydrofoil, skis or snowboard, as well as any other performance orientated rider on all boards will be happy with the CAPA.
Which line lengths do you recommend and with what bar?
The CAPA works on 12m – 24m line length depending on your level and riding style. It’s important that you know a minimum of 60cm depower is needed in order to use the complete angle of attack (wind range), with an additional trimway of 20cm on your bar.
Expert hydrofoil riders looking for the full potential of the CAPA should use shorter lines – under 17m – with 70cm depower on a shorter chicken loop on the bar with the possibility to oversheet, have the maximum of control of the CAPA in gusty conditions and a 20cm trimway.
Are there different tip settings?
No – just use the original settings the CAPA comes with, that’s what works the best.
Put the 2020 CAPA in a nutshell.
In our eyes, the 2020 Duotone CAPA is a new foil kite that redefines the benchmark of easiness/performance balance ratio. It’s designed for an experienced rider who wants to use the full benefits of a low-drag hydrofoil on water or with skis on the snow.
This article first appeared on the Duotone website here.