Some time ago, I blogged about Team Impossible, and especially their routine flying Flexifoil stacks. Given that so few kiting teams in the world fly Flexi-stacks, would that be something for Flying Fish to add to their quiver? I managed to get my hands on a 2-stack of the smaller Flexifoils (Stacker 6, Gold colour scheme) off eBay for a very decent price, and that allowed us to try them out, and see if they'd be suitable for a pair routine.
Stoney Cross Plain, on a beautiful cold day, and with a blustery wind: 10-16 mph, with gusts up to 25mph.
The Gold Flexi-stack flew fine, definitely pulling, but not too bad, and remaining very controllable despite building up considerable speed. Of course, sharp angles are not possible, but smaller and larger loops and circles came out pretty reliably.
So far, so good! But a key requirement is that the Flexi-stack can be launched by one person, as it becomes rather difficult flying a pair routine if one of the pair needs the other to help launch the kite .... Of course, at a festival you have ground crew to do that, but ground crew is usually not available during practice.
Fortunately, it turned out not to be too difficult to launch a Flexi-stack without help. With both kites flat on the ground, a few tugs on the lead kite usually made it come off the ground a bit. Trick is then to power up straightaway, and the lead kite will pull the second kite along. I'm sure we'll get better at this with practice, although we may have to launch our kites before the music starts, and then start the routine with the kites high up in the window rather than on the ground (and maybe finish high up as well??).
We've pretty much decided we are going to get a second Flexi-stack given our first positive experience. No rush whatsoever, so we can afford to be really picky when it comes to the colour of the other stack. We have to like the colour on its own, and it has to contrast nicely with the gold!
Watch this space ...