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The new CrazyFly Hyper opens up a new flank at the brand’s own European kite production facility with the Hyper aimed very specifically at the ‘high performance freeride’ sector. First of all, let’s get build quality out of the way; how does it measure up against twenty years of Asian kite manufacture? The answer is extremely well. The LE seam is beautifully tailored so that it sits underneath the canopy to improve aerodynamics in the center of the kite and allow a little more room on the valves. A Dacron load frame is placed on the upper half of the canopy leaving the load bearing underside very clean aerodynamically. Overall, it’s a moderately heavy build, with plenty of reinforcement and unique green Kevlar patches, and having the factory on their doorstep is clearly giving them a lot of advantages in terms of quality control. The air frame is extremely rigid for a kite with so much span, which translates into some decent stability and reassuring feel for such a high aspect beast. Five struts keep the canopy super tight with zero flapping going on at any angle of attack. You may need to make some adjustments to your flying technique if you come off a more mainstream, all-round model. Being high aspect, it handles a bit more like a foil kite, meaning your turning is done with the bar out, and the kite is quite pivotal and trim-sensitive when sheeted in. It takes a little effort and technique to generate your initial speed with, and it isn’t just going to drag you along, which means that it absolutely trucks upwind.
Once up to speed, sending the Hyper results in a high level of controllable lift and a gentle descent. This lift is extremely easy to access, even going into a jump without commitment it was surprising how much height it would achieve. 10m+ WOO scores were achieved without a huge amount of power in the kite. The Sick bar is a refreshingly clean affair with the safety line running up a PU tube, avoiding the usual wear points which will give everything longevity. There’s an easy to use un-twister for the frontlines above the chicken loop. Again all this is made in-house, and is well conceived; all the quick release plastics feel reassuringly sturdy. The lines are a high grade of Dyneema from Liros, although a little color coding in the line material wouldn’t go amiss for when things go wonky. In a way it’s nice to see such an extreme design come to the market, with a lot of brands playing it relatively safe with their booster model, this skinny beast has a serious amount of usability and has the potential to give anyone a knee-wobbling case of vertigo.
In a sentence: An easy to fly kite with fantastic build quality and with a dirty secret: it wants to send you into orbit!