At a Glance
The Catalyst from Ozone has been around since 2009 and sits in their line up as the all-round, do-it-all kite. Featuring 3 struts, an Open-C design and a pulley-less bridle system, the Catalyst is a simple, yet very effective kite. For 2015, the Catalyst has had all tiny niggles tidied up to create a stunningly efficient kite.
A large inflate/deflate valve makes pumping up incredibly fast, and packing down almost instant.
Ozone have opted for Taijin D2 canopy material, and Taijin Dacron resulting in a strong and crisp feeling kite, which will withstand some serious beatings. One-pump, back line adjustments, and also various back line attachment points, are all some of the extras as standard on the Catalyst.
A simple backpack style bag holds kite, bar and repair kite well, with enough straps on the outside to hold another kite if needed. The repair pack included holds more spares than you hopefully will ever need.
The 2015 Contact Bar from Ozone has had quite a facelift. Still featuring the excellent push away ‘Megatron’ chicken loop, it now also features an incredibly comfy ergonomic grip, which also looks the bee’s knees. All Ozone kites are 4 lines, and all can be used on the same bar making things that little bit cheaper if you were to get a few different style kites from the brand.
The safety system on the Contact Bar is of the highest quality. A light push of the release and the bar shoots up one of the front lines to the stopper ball situated on said line.
Any twists in your lines are very easy to untangle with the well positioned ‘Spinning Handle’, and relaunch is a breeze with small stopper balls situated on each leader line showing exactly where to hold the line to get the kite to flip over.
In the Air
Ozone have very clearly put their years of design knowledge into this kite. There is literally not a ripple on the fabric or a flutter to be heard once the kite is in the sky. This is true kite craftsmanship. We have had this kite out in light and strong winds, and used by complete beginners to seasoned riders, and every single one has been able to do exactly what they set out to with this kite. A light bar pressure with direct back line attachments means you can really feel what the kite is doing at all times, coupled with a medium length throw on the bar means all arm lengths can use the kite without fear of dropping the bar and not being able to reach it.
In the lighter winds the kite flies very well all around the wind window, creating some solid power from its speed. Due to its light weight the Catalyst has a very impressive low end. There is also a suitably impressive high end for this kite. Often you get one without the other, but the Catalyst can be held in very strong winds, and with the excellent high-grade trim system you always feel in control.
Due to the predictable nature of the kite, beginners will reap the benefits. It stays where you put it, and the smooth power delivery means those first few rides are controlled allowing faster and easier progression.
Once up and riding the Catalyst seems to drift you upwind with minimal effort, everything is so mellow before you notice you could be going the fastest you have ever been, but in such a calm manner that you simply do not realise.
The Catalyst appears to float you in the air for what seems like ages when you jump. It does not shoot you into the sky, rather gently pick you up and let you hang around admiring the view before slowly floating you back down to reality.
For those looking for a kite to progress into the sometimes painful world of unhooked moves, this kite will make things just that much more pleasant. Stunningly constant power delivery allows you to concentrate on what you are doing rather than the kite when you are trying to flip yourself all different ways at once. It does not want to rip your arms out as some more aggressive C shape kites do when you unhook, rather it sits dutifully waiting for you to pop and holds the power throughout. And if you crash, no worries, the relaunch is one of the quickest we have found when nicely powered allowing you to be back and trying tricks again and again. If the wind gets too strong for unhooking, even after employing the impressive depower, that’s when looping comes in! Again this kite just inspires confidence and will allow you to start small and just get bigger and bigger with your loops.
We have the beautiful Atlantic Ocean to play with here, so no test would be complete without a few hacks on some waves, and again, the Catalyst worked wonderfully. Some good drift, coupled with a quick turn and impressive depower mean this kite is a worthy contender for those looking for an all-round kite with good wave riding capabilities as a bonus.
A true do-it-all, suitable for everyone. A kite that not only performs impeccably, but is also made to the highest grade and will not let you down in the years to come.
Its hard to find anything really wrong with the Catalyst, it really does tick all the boxes as a do it all kite.
Due to the squarer and more freestyle orientated tips, in super light winds relaunch can sometimes be tricky, but once you learn to find that sweet spot there is no issue.
The Catalyst seems to excel in all you throw at it, whether you are a complete beginner or someone looking for a kite they can do a bit of everything and really excel with, the Catalyst will take you as far as you want to go.
This review was in Issue 51 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Ozone