Sizes Available: 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15m
Sizes Tested: 9m

Duotone Says:

Completely redesigned and reinvented from scratch, the Duotone Mono is light, simple and devastatingly good. It’s a fantastic all-rounder that features just one strut and incredible handling for entry level, foiling and twintips! If you want a pure, lightweight, do-it-all kite, the Mono is it. This season the whole concept has been questioned and all sizes have been completely redesigned by Ken Winner. Low end and especially high end have significantly been improved and flutter nearly eliminated. With just one strut and very dynamic handling it is sure to excite and the benchmark in one strut kites. In light winds the performance is incredible, not only can the kite fly in the slightest of breezes, but it is also very easy to relaunch too.

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Our Testers Say:

“Light bar pressure, stays in the air during big lulls with some flutter when overpowered. Great lightweight kite that allows you to rig a size smaller when foiling in lighter winds.” // Pierce Martin

“Great build with a robust feel, super stable and user-friendly, good turning, all-around cruising freeride performance that drifts down the line with the ability to turn off the power.” // Dan Lerer

“Light bar pressure, slower turning speed with middle of the road boost and hangtime. Good upwind ability. Great all-around light wind kite, doesn’t have quite the low-end power as previous models.” // Matt Kargl

Meet Our Testers

TKB Says:

The Mono is Duotone’s single strut kite that attempts to package all the upside of minimal airframe LEI kites while keeping the downsides at bay with a noticeably lower aspect ratio canopy and aggressively sweptback wingtips. The Mono uses Duotone’s large diameter inflation valve dubbed the ‘Airport Valve II’ which connects directly with Duotone’s pump hose without the use of a nozzle; the inflation system’s twist valve rotates with the insertion of the hose to keep air in the system. Deflation happens through both the inflation valve and a dump valve on one side of the kite, making both inflation and deflation quick and easy. The Mono comes with a single setting bridle and Duotone’s adaptive wingtip design which offers two options for a soft or hard feel for sheeting and steering. The wingtip utilizes a bit more dacron and the trailing edge employs a strip of lighter dacron with no battens.

The first aspect of the Mono we noticed is the kite’s smooth sheet in and go feeling with medium-plus bar pressure that gives the rider a ton of feedback and awareness of the kite’s position in the window. The steering response and speed are casual which requires a bit more aggressive bar input to get the Mono to turn at faster speeds. The Mono feels very reliable, stable and never catches you off guard, which are great qualities in a foilboarding kite. In terms of power, the Mono generates a very steady amount of power, neither heavy-handed, explosive or lifty, but rather just a really dependable pull from a bit deeper in the window that doesn’t overwhelm the rider. The canopy does have a ton of depower built into the outer end of the bar’s throw and like most single strut kites, you will experience some luffing when completely depowered, but otherwise, the canopy seems tight and under control while flying the kite across the window and turning. The overall feedback into the bar feels fairly crisp despite the reduced airframe and it demonstrated good resistance to stalling when the bar is over-sheeted. The Mono’s ability to generate power when other kites might stall makes this very user-friendly for progressing foilboarders and freeride kiters. The relaunch worked flawlessly from nose down in the bottom of the window, with the sweptback wingtips rolling right up onto a side and re-launching into the air with minimal input from the bar. The lift and boosting power of the Mono isn’t much to brag about, but you can certainly have fun with some medium-sized boosts and it may be an excellent option for the tentative learner seeking to get their first wings. The Mono seems to focus on providing a reliable and user-friendly experience which certainly helps with the otherwise unstable gauntlet of perfecting foilboarding, yet those same comfortable characteristics also make this a worthy partner for the casual freeride beginner working their way up the ladder.

The Mono can be flown with either the Click bar or the Trust bar; descriptions of both bar options are below.

The Click bar was the first bar to scrap the dangling power strap and integrate power tuning into the bar and with four years under its belt, it’s now got the proven track record to cast aside doubts. The Click bar is available in two sizes, either the smaller fixed-length 42cm wide bar with 22m (20m+2m extension) lines or the original 49cm length with 24m (22m+2m extension) lines. The Click bar features a single center-line safety depower system and an adjustable attachment point that allows you to swap the height of the center lines’ V (it’s worth noting that you don’t have to re-thread the entire length of a line through a ring to accomplish the change). The outside lines end in knots and the center lines end in loops. The Click bar features a molded plastic throw line that untwists itself after you spin, a sliding stopper to adjust the length of throw and Duotone’s proven push away quick release. The quick release when opened horizontally, locks into an open position, holding the gate open. Reassembly is easy: one hand inserts the loop back into position and pushes on the catch button while the other hand raises the quick release handle so the catch can move back into its closed position and then the handle is moved back into the locked position.

The Click bar can be purchased with one of the four chicken/connection loop options that are tailored to your specific style of riding. Most freeride oriented kiters might choose the Freeride connection loop which is the smallest option, keeping the bar close to your body. The historically normal sized loop is now called the ‘Freestyle Kit,’ which is sized in the middle for both hooked and unhooked riding. For riders that unhook all day long, there is a large ‘Wakestyle’ loop and for those that only ride with a surf slider rope, there is the ‘Rope Harness Kit,’ which is a small loop with an integrated metal slider to reduce friction and keep the bar close to the rider. Swapping the loops out is easy, you just need a fin key to remove a ¾ inch set screw to change out the desired loop. The Click bar settles the debate between above or below the bar tuning by placing it exactly at your fingertips. The twisting motion for powering up takes a little bit of focus while riding at first and the button for depower is easily accessed at all times. While it’s a big shift from the systems we have come to know, seamless controls like this are the future of the sport. The ratchet knob built into the bar end is easy to grab a hold of and easy to rotate once you have some familiarity with it and works while kiting with easy tuning on the fly. The Click bar also integrates two visual indicators that reveal the power position the bar is set to; one is located on the bar itself, moving left to right and the second is a small red indicator on the leader line for the right outside line. You don’t realize how you visually assess the trim strap’s position until it is gone, so these indicators are actually a very nice feature. Compared to other systems, the mechanics of Duotone’s Click bar is entirely closed, which means you won’t be washing it out. The Click bar features retractable bar bungees, soft bar ends and integrated floats with a fairly dense EVA grip that feels asymmetrical in your palm with subtle raised bumps between fingers, and a very comfortable stamp pattern the entire length of the bar.

The second bar option for Duotone kites is the tried and true Trust bar which received a colorway change this year that sets it apart from the Click bar’s orange and blue chassis. The Trust bar’s left float and bar end are now colored a vibrant yellow to indicate the correct orientation. The Trust bar is a standard 4-line bar with an optional 5th line aftermarket upgrade package, so in theory, you could switch back and forth between 4 and 5-lines from the same base bar purchase. The Trust bar is a dual adjustable length bar that comes in two options, 42/49cm and a 46/53cm length. On the smaller bar, you can choose between 19 or 22m lines and on the longer bar, you can choose between 24 and 27m lines. Duotone feels line length is an important tunable feature to match with your kite and style of riding. Our kites came with the 4-line base version with the single center-line safety depower that runs up to one of the bridles. The center lines are knotted for rigging purposes and the outside lines end in loops. The adjustable length spectra throw line features a tuning cleat with a magnet on the depower strap to keep it in place. The Trust has a push away quick release with a below the bar hand swivel that also functions as a quick release travel guard. At the time of purchase, you can select from four different chicken loop options (Wakestyle, Freestyle, Freeride and Rope Harness). We tested the bar with the Freestyle loop, but we think the Freeride loop is an excellent idea for those kiters that won’t be riding unhooked. The Trust features a spectra trim/throw line, a sliding stopper for long tacks and a firm molded chicken finger to prevent accidental unhooking. The padded bar ends are tunable and offer integrated floats and retractable bar bungees for a clean wrap up. In addition to adjusting the length of the bar, you can adjust the length of the outside lines by pulling the bar ends apart and choosing from three color-coded knots for length options (green/blue/red). The bar grip is fairly plush EVA with middle of the road texture which makes the Trust a very comfy and feature rich bar. The Trust bar is a long time favorite of testers and the limited changes to the bar this year lends credence to the proposition; don’t mess with perfection.

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