Q&A on the new Slingshot IRS Bridle

Slingshot recently published some answers to the most popular questions surrounding the release of their new Intuitive Response System (IRS) in January that features on the 2015 RPM.
Here they are in full…

What’s IRS?
The Intuitive Response System (IRS) is an unprecedented new development that replaces the RPM’s former pulley system with a revolutionary shock-absorbing bridal that constantly distributes line tension as the kite moves through the wind window. Rather than pulleys moving back and forth along the bridal, the IRS flexes and retracts, keeping the bridal trim and slack-free and giving the kite a quicker, smoother and more responsive feel.

2015 RPM W BRIDLE CALLOUTS - Q&A on the new Slingshot IRS Bridle

How does it work?
The IRS has been described as a bungee, but that’s not completely accurate; we’re calling it a “Load Shock.” The piece of the IRS that makes all the difference is a section of high-tension elastic chord fitted inside a webbing of 800-pound Spectra line. This piece is integrated into the RPM’s bridal and acts as a shock absorber of sorts as the kite encounters different angles and wind loads during a session. When you’re riding at full power in steady wind, with the kite relatively “parked,” the IRS performs in its extended position, with the load distributed evenly on the high-test spectra sections of the shock. As the kite is steered one way or another in the window, corresponding sides of the IRS flex and contract to evenly distribute line tension and reduce slack on the bridal.

vincent bergeron 4954 - Q&A on the new Slingshot IRS Bridle

How durable is the IRS?
Much like the layers of a climbing rope that flex and retract to absorb load, the load shock component of the IRS is durable, light-weight and extremely strong. Since the bungee piece of the system is sheathed inside a high strength Spectra line, it will only extend to a precise length. This means the shock is never stretched to a length that will compromise its performance. Although Slingshot has put its “Bombproof Approved” stamp on this new system, we understand that, like any piece of kite gear, wind, sunshine and saltwater can take its toll. With that in mind, we have included two replacement “load shock” pieces with each new kite (and additional pieces can be ordered for just a few bucks). These replacement pieces are easy to swap out with the old ones if needed. An added benefit of the IRS is that it eliminates pulleys and the wear and tear they have on bridal lines.

vincent bergeron 7239 - Q&A on the new Slingshot IRS Bridle

How does the IRS affect kite performance?
With the elimination of the lag time created by pulleys moving up and down the bridal, the IRS gives the new RPM a faster, more responsive and more directly-connected feel to the kite. Turning speeds will feel about the same as the 2014 RPM, although reaction time will feel faster and transitions smoother. Bar pressure will feel similar or slightly less than last year’s RPM, although you will notice a more uniform feel when sheeting in and out with the new bridal.

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