DUOTONE Rebel 9m 2020 Kitesurfing Review

DUOTONE Rebel 9m 2020

Reviews / Kites

DUOTONE 98,599

At A Glance

The Rebel was the kite that changed the dynamics of kiteboarding all those years ago, and it’s come a long way since then. The spearhead of the Duotone freeride range, for some kiters only a Rebel will do. It’s a 5 strut design that can be flown on 4 or 5 lines, although it’s worth noting Duotone’s shift towards a 4 line set up in recent years as modern 4 line safety has improved.

The kite is tipped towards the high-end freeride market and big air junkies looking for hang time. Duotone team rider Lewis Crathern uses it at events such as the King Of The Air, and it has cemented itself in history in terms of its boosting ability. For 2020 the leading edge has been trimmed down, allowing the kite to twist more and improving turning speed. The centre of the profile has been flattened off to increase the power, and there is a new trailing edge design for reduced canopy wear too.

Boasting a wide wind range, it’s a kite that will appeal to a lot of riders. For 2020 the kite is also carbon neutral as part of Duotone’s partnership with the leading solutions provider ClimatePartner. You can read more about this on the companies website, and it’s great to see brands making an effort to tackle some of these issues. The build quality is, as you would expect from Duotone, exceedingly high with attention to detail everywhere and quality components throughout.

Sizes: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15m

In The Air

As soon as you launch the new Rebel you’ll notice the upgrades for 2020; this kite is alive in your hands. Where previous versions were known to be a little slower, in turn, a characteristic loved by many riders; the new one feels a lot more responsive. We always liked the Rebel for its predictable, stable nature; it is still stable and still predictable, but it’s also much more responsive.

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Across the wind range, there is great power development low down, as well as an impressive top end and the characteristics of the kite remain consistent regardless of the amount of trim applied at the bar. The faster speed has enhanced the boosting capabilities of the kite, the launch off the water is really explosive, and the incredible hang time remains. If you want to boost big every time you send the kite, with minimum fuss, then the Rebel is the kite to do it!

The relaunch is as easy as it ever was, just pull on a rear line and the kite easily rolls over thanks to the swept-back tips. Upwind is excellent as you would expect from a high performance 5 strut kite such as this. The Rebel feels like a knife cutting through butter as you charge through the water. It’s fast, responsive and great fun to fly.

You can tune the kite thanks to the Adaptive Tips. By shifting the loops below the yellow or blue knot, you can either dial up the turning speed and reduce the bar pressure or increase the bar pressure and slow things down a little. This ability to tune the kite is great for learning kite loops and in the “below yellow knot” setting the Rebel can provide a more pivotal loop. Alternatively, for the more aggressive rider, you can get a wider, more aggressive arc with the “below blue knot” setting.

Overall

The new Rebel for 2020 from Duotone is going to turn some heads. It has managed to retain the Rebel DNA of old, but add some spice to speed things up in the turn, deliver even more power and make jumping an incredible experience. The Rebel was always known for its jumps and hangtime, yet it is taking that to a whole new level this year! A near-limitless top end range the only thing holding this kite back is the rider.

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This review was in Issue 78 of IKSURFMAG.

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By Rou Chater
Rou has been kiting since the sports inception and has been working as an editor and tester for magazines since 2004. He started IKSURFMAG with his brother in 2006 and has tested hundreds of different kites and travelled all over the world to kitesurf. He's a walking encyclopedia of all things kite and is just as passionate about the sport today as he was when he first started!

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