Monthly Archives: November 2013

Review: 2014 Cabrinha Vector

The 2014 Cabrinha Vector kite has been upgraded to fit into the same category as most performance freeride kites. The Vector has all of the features I look for in a good beginner kite and I really feel most riders will continue to love it throughout their kiteboarding progression. The new bridle has no pulleys which really makes for a nimble, direct feel between the kite and rider. It turns fast, with tuning options on the wingtip for a more or less bar pressure. I flew the kite set on “B” for a more direct feel and shorter depower stroke.

2014 Cabrinha VectorThe new Overdrive “1x” bar is the same bar used on all 2014 Cabrinha models and has a complete kill switch once the quick release is hit. I put this to the test on three different occasions. After the first time hitting the quick release, I was amazed at how fast the kite depowered and fell into the water (comparable to any 5th line kite I’ve flown). It’s a complete shutdown system in all wind ranges. Each time, I managed to climb up the flag line, retrieve my bar and assemble the chicken loop with no problems or tangles. With the kite dead downwind of me, the relaunch was effortless by simply pulling on one outside line with the bar all the way forward. All of these features make the Vector a winner for beginners who may be dropping their kites often or for advanced riders practicing new tricks.

2014 Cabrinha VectorIt boosts big, too! I pulled the trigger behind a Core of Engineer’s boat that was hauling a$$ up the Columbia and felt a very smooth lift and soft, forgiving descent. The Vector even kite loops. It has little to no flutter in the trailing edge which was a big annoyance in the years past for me and this kite. The Vector has the same double rip-stop nylon canopy, the same skeletal frame tech and utilizes the same Overdrive control system as the high performance Switchblade and Drifter. Welcome to the big leagues 2014 Cabrinha Vector! Check out the video on the 2014 Vector here.

-TJ

Review: 2014 Dakine Renegade Kiteboarding Harness

Big Winds is fired up to be one of the first dealers in the U.S. to offer the newly updated 2014 Dakine Renegade kite harness. I’ve had the opportunity to use the new Renegade harness kiteboarding over the past three months and I can’t get over how comfortable this harness feels, right off the shelf, with no break-in period. The Renegade comes with a memory foam pillow that feels just like you’re laying back into a Tempur-Pedic.

2014 Dakine Renegade HarnessesIt’s newly improved freedom spreader bar pad is ultra-slim, and doesn’t get in the way when you’re bending over to pump up your kite or making a stylish grab. The Renegade is feather light for 2014 and with all of the new features, it’s worth every penny for the comfort it provides when kiteboarding. If you have used the Dakine harnesses in the past, you will notice right away what an upgrade the new ones are. Check them out at www.bigwinds.com or give us a call toll free at 1-888-509-4210.

-TJ

Review: 2014 Starboard Astro Stream 9’6 x 36″ Whitewater SUP

Big Winds is stoked to be representing one of the most highly anticipated whitewater inflatable SUPs on the market, the 2014 Starboard Astro Stream 9’6 x 36″. After a very successful season with the 2013 Astro Whopper, Starboard Team rider and three time whitewater champion, Dan Gavere helped design a board that is ultra-durable and super stable. At 36″ wide, the widest point of the Stream is in front of your feet yet it retains a generous width all the way back to the tail. This allows you to really get into an aggressive stance and maintain your balance when your back foot is nearing the tail. It’s great for punching through the holes and waves. With a volume of 387 liters, the new Astro Stream has nearly 100 liters more than the 2013 Whopper Deluxe and almost 200 liters more than the Whopper Fun 4″ thick version. The Stream has 6″ of thickness but is solid as an oak tree with a double layer of 1.8 mm PVC around the rail. Extra stiffness and extreme impact strength are a couple of new features we noticed right away. When you have this board inflated to 18 psi, the rail feels as solid as steel. The new Astro boxes have also been upgraded with a thicker wall and made to take a hit without cracking. The new Astro white water 2.5″ fins are soft and shallow, providing a little more traction than running the board without any fins (something we practiced quite a bit with last year’s Whopper). The front fin placement is right behind your feet, which is much better than the traditional “surfboard” thrusters that are so far back.

 

Dan Gavere on the Astro Stream

Dan Gavere on the Astro Stream

Here in the Northwest, the rivers flow year round. But the summer months can be pretty shallow on our local Hood and White Salmon rivers, so the short fins are really going to be nice to navigate the low volume rivers and creeks. Lastly, the addition of extra handles both at the nose of the board and on the sides are a nice new feature, especially for the rapids that may be a bit difficult to navigate standing up. Dropping down to your knees and having a place to grab is essential. The new Starboard Astro Stream 9’6″ is a great choice for beginner through advanced paddlers looking for the ultimate in compact whitewater performance. Please feel free to give us a call to place your order today, toll free: 1-888-509-4210.

www.bigwinds.com

Rock ‘n’ Roll with Speakers on Your SUP

Jammin’ out to your favorite tunes while paddling has always been done with headphones. Well, not any more. Big Winds has the new waterproof, shockproof and mountable EcoRox bluetooth speakers!

EcoRoxWith an easy to install suction cup mount, the EcoRox speaker can be enjoyed while cruising with your friends on the water for a social Stand Up paddle. This speaker sounds great, and is easy to use via bluetooth from your smartphone, or plugged in with a wired device. With a 10 hour battery capacity to rock out with out any cords, the EcoRox makes for a very compact and light weight way for everyone to enjoy the music.

ecorox
The EcoRox speaker comes as is without any mounts, but for only $14.99, you can purchase the suction cup mount, or a mount for handlebars:

This is a great idea for anyone looking to have a waterproof way to let everyone enjoy the tunes! What happens when someone is trying to call? Yes! Answer it with your EcoRox speaker!

Have more fun on the water and rock on!