At A Glance
New to the kitesurf game, Odo kiteboarding have impressed us so far with their YO kite, so we were very excited to get the more all-around/freestyle orientated kite, the K1 out on test this issue.
The K1 has been designed as an all-around kite for use in a wide range of styles and conditions. The kite has 3 struts, a simple bridle, and a good quality 1 pump system. There are multiple tuning options on the kite to trim it to your exact style and preference as well as the wind conditions of the day. There are added self-rescue handles too which is always a well thought out addition.
The kite is made using triple yarn ripstop, the C3 from Japanese manufacturer Techifiber Sakai. This is high strength, low stretch and lightweight which make it the perfect material to use for a kitesurfing kite. The bridle uses low friction titanium rings as opposed to pulleys. This creates a smoother feel without the risk of the pulleys snagging or jamming.
The trailing edge of the kite has been reinforced, as have key areas along the leading edge for added protection when landing or launching.
Interestingly, the K1 is available in every size but only up to 12 meters. However, as a more surfboard orientated brand, this makes perfect sense.
Sizes: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 meters.
Odo Kiteboarding keep it simple with one control system: the Quick Vario. This comes in one size that’s variable between 53 and 46cm. The bar features a rope centerline, clam cleat depower system, centre line adjuster, and comes with 22m + 3m lines. There is the option to choose either a freeride chicken loop or a more wave specific chicken loop. We opted for the all-round freeride loop option.
The bar itself is very clean and simple to use. Simplicity is always a strong point for me on a bar, no need for anything too jazzy in my opinion. The grip is comfortable, and the integrated bar floats are again clean and stylish.
The Quick Vario bar size adjustment is easy to use and works well. Obviously, this doesn’t change the actual size of the bar in your hands but does slow down the smaller sized kites as needed.
The depower range is large, and the clam cleat system functions well as you would expect. The ability to adjust the centerline length is a great addition welcomed by smaller riders out there.
The Compact QR safety release is clean and tidy featuring a swivel that functions well. The release is easy to eject and can be put back together simply too. The bar has been well-thought-out with some metal parts using titanium rather than steel to decrease the weight of the bar.
“Great ease of use and a fun flying experience.”
In The Air
The K1 provides an instantaneous comfortable feel, there is a steady pressure through the bar, and the kite remains stable at all points of the wind. Even in turbulent conditions, we found the kites to be very stable, and not only did this fill us confidence, but it also allowed for more progression without having to worry about the kite. On this note, changing wind speeds proved no issue also with the very effective and smooth depower cleat system.
The power delivery is smooth and progressive while being lively enough for those who are wanting something extra from their kite. We used the K1 with both a twin tip and surfboard and enjoyed the experience on both.
For twin tip riding, the kite provides a solid pull at all points with a fun jump and ample float. The loops are quick, and there is enough drive to know you are able to pull some sizeable ones once the wind kicks in. A bit of unhooking action is again great fun with the K1. The kite is stable and has a good pull and lull through the trick and a solid feel in the air.
Once on a surfboard, the K1 is a lively kite to have some great fun with. Certainly more freestyle orientated than its brother the YO, the K1 we found to be brilliant for the all-around surfboard rider who mixes it up with waveriding and strapless freestyle.
There is a good drift with the K1, though we did find the bar does need to be a little further ‘in’ than some to keep that connection at all times. Downlooping, your way out of a wave, is good, and you are able to really take control of the power through the bar.
Riding fast will produce the best results with the K1, upwind was no problem whatsoever, and for a more freestyle shaped kite, we enjoyed the more lateral rather than downwind pull which was produced.
The relaunch is good, the more delta-shaped canopy keeps the kite rolling to one side rather than the dreaded downwind dead position.
Great ease of use and a fun flying experience. The K1 will cater to the needs of a lot of kiters in a range of disciplines.
To be extra picky, we did find when completely depowered the red safety line a little saggy. This did not, however, alter the performance of safety of the kite in any way, more of an aesthetic.
A solid contender if you are looking for an all-around kite for the new year. Stable, performs in gusty conditions and great all-around performance for the huge variety of disciplines our sport offers.
This review was in Issue 73 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Odo Kiteboarding