Re: Definations

Subject Re: Definations
From (Andy Wardley)
Date Jun 1997 12:55:50 +0100
Newsgroups rec.kites
Chris. Tulumello <> wrote:
> I've reviewed the Prism vid "Advanced" about 1 zillion times, now
> maybe I'm just videally challenged but the 540 looks much like an axel
> started from behind (tail toward me). Is this how I should be
> visualizing it?

A 540 Flat Spin (to give it its full name - so called because it spins through 540 degrees) is similar to an Axel in that the kite spins while the belly is facing the ground. An Axel starts with the nose of the kite up or slightly facing towards you. If you set it up well, you can get the nose of the kite to drop right down so that you get a very flat Axel that is similar to a Flat Spin.

But, the big difference is that the Axel (and let's imagine you're doing a nice flat one here to aid the comparison) starts with the nose towards you and the line that you "pop" is running past the leading edge of the kite (i.e. in the direction of the nose). A Flat Spin starts with the kite facing away from you and the line is running past the trailing edge of the kite (i.e. in the direction of the tail).

An Axel normally involves a rotation of about 360 degrees.

A Flat Spin (a "180 Flat Spin" to be correct) is a rotation of, you guessed it, 180 degrees. That is, the nose starts away from you and completes half a turn to point towards you.

A 540 Flat Spin (or simply, "540") is one and a half turns (540 degrees) where the nose starts away from you, and ends up towards you.

Around the time that I started doing Flat Spins there was some confusion about what was what. People referred to "single" or "double" Flat Spins but no-one really knew which was which. After all, they are neither one nor two complete revolutions. After a heated email debate (with Andrew Lomas, I think), I coined the name "540 Flat Spin" to make it absolutely clear. The name stuck and the rest is, as they say, history.

You may have realised that you don't often see 360 Flat Spins because you end up with the nose pointing away from you. When you try to fly out of this position, it usually involves flying down to where the ground is waiting to greet you.

However, there is a very, very slick 360 Flat Spin opportunity to be had in the middle of a Flic-Flac [ a Flic-Flac starts with the kite bellied out like a Flat Spin starts, but you pull both lines to pull the nose of the kite down and then release to let it rise up to point at you with the belly of the kite now up - the "Flic". Pull again, and release, and the kite pops back to its original position - the "Flac" ]. So, in a Flic-Flac, execute the "Flac" to get the kite bellied out away from you, pop a 360 Flat Spin and then continue the Flic Flac.

Very slick when done right and certainly cool enough to keep beer in.

> Also, many references here and in the FAQ re: the flat spin... what is
> that?

Hope the above explains it.