Slingshot Key (2010) Hot
The Slingshot Key is the newest kite in the Slingshot line up featuring the Hybrid Delta canopy. Benefits to the freeride minded rider are unmatched range, superb upwindability, easy water relaunch, instant 100% depower and safety in a clean uncomplicated package. Bundled with the Keychain control bar and the Ignition twin tip board this package represents the best quality, performance and value today.
User reviewsView all user reviews
Average user rating from: 6 user(s)
Slingshot key 7 10 13
Once I got the kites tuned I found them stable and intuitive with great upwind ability. Be careful with the back line tension its a delta and pump it up hard! The relaunch is kids play with an easy relaunch after dropping to safety.
Big bang for the bucks.
Not for beginners, imo.
I thought I would do a beginner's review, since this is what this kite is marketed toward anyway.
First, the good. The kite is built really well and seems like it can take a beating, which is great when you're learning. The safety system is a very simple push-away system like on other slingshot kites, and reassembling the chicken loop after you release it is so simple. Personally, out of the kites I've seen and have tried, this is the simplest, uncomplicated system that just works.
Hitting the quick release also depowers the kite in a way that it just falls out of the sky, rather than others I've seen that kind of twirl and loop on their way down. I've used the quick release a lot to self land, or when the kite is getting beaten by waves on the shore, and then it's just a matter of grabbing the center lines and walking up to the kite. It will sit there with no power and wait for you to grab it. Works great.
Relaunch is the same as most delta kites, just pull on a rear line and it goes up. I've self-launched this way from the beach a few times as well, it's very simple and beats having to find something to tether the kite to while you go fold sand on the wingtip and all that crap. Not needed with this kite. Supposedly you can reverse launch it straight downwind as well, but I either haven't figured out how to do it properly yet, or we just didn't have enough wind. Seems like it's easier to walk it to the side of the window or just hit the quick release and swim in if you're close enough.
What I don't like:
Though the bar has 100% depower, it feels more of like an on/off type thing. It's difficult for me to figure out how to walk upwind efficiently, or even just sitting in one spot on the beach with it, because it's hard to find the sweet spot where it's depowered enough to walk around or stand in one spot. Because the upper stopper ball is only to keep the bar from going all the way up to the kite, if you push the bar forward a bit too much, the kite not only has no power, but will just fall out of the sky. I guess that's great if you're giving your kite to someone who has never flown a kite before, but once you've been at it for more than an hour it gets kind of annoying.
The kite backstalls very easily when there is too much tension on the rear lines. There's a compromise for this, as you can just move the rear lines down a knot lower than the middle lines. This solves the backstalling issue, but unfortunately makes the kite very slow and unresponsive. On this setting (this is the one recommended by slingshot), I didn't feel safe venturing into the water, or even flying the kite on the beach, because it's hard to tell what the kite is going to do. I'd honestly rather just stick all lines on the same knot and if it backstalls, just go from there, because it flies like a piece of crap on any other setting. Maybe that's just a delta design thing.
Speaking of the delta shape, the kite pivots on its edges without any power if you decide to fly it that way. For me, learning on regular SLE kites (more c-shaped), the way that it flies is very strange, and harder to figure out how the kite is going to deliver power. Combined with the on/off depower, it's like the kite either flies very aggressively when you dive it, or it has no power and just pivots around and flies to the other side of the window.
For me, these things are a dealbreaker. I want something that is predictable while I'm trying to learn, and makes sense in the way it flies and is stable. This kite feels like it has the opposite characteristics.
I purchased this kite to augment my wind range thinking that it's a back up plan for my future quiver. I'm a beginner but having flown ( in lessons) Cabrinha, Best, F1.. This kite is fantastic for the price and for beginners.. It's extremely stable in the air, relaunches with ease, and made me feel confident about using it. I got up immediately on the first pump and rode with confident both ways and when I pulled the safety ( on purpose) at the end of the ride, it did what the video says it suppose to. Very very happy so far.
Used this kite for the 1st time today, conditions should've been ideal at 20knt xxoff, but boy this kite was poor, from far too cut down bar to be useful (why not the usual CSS to tune 'stopper') cost over-cut, to LE lines that appeared as thin as cotton :o\
The strut quality was ok, usual SS dealio there, but the de-power function seemed feeble no matter how we tuned it.
Felt pretty unsafe taking this thing to sea really.
Try riding one side by side with an RPM you'll understand.
Maybe it was us, our needs demand huge amounts of power all in one bucket, which thus far the RPM's Fuel's & old REV's have delivered in buckets.
A great all around kite from beginner to advanced kiter
Bought this kite in 10 m as it was sold with a board (crisis 134) for a verry good price.
I was affraid it woould look like the T3 but i was amazed how it's way different. The kite is light in the bar and have a great depower. Turning speed is good for a 10 althought if you won't thow kiteloop like with the RPM.
As a bow kite (it's called delta shape but i call it bow in opposition with C shapes), the kite turn on it's ears and loose some power so it's not the best kite for waves and hardcore freestyle. But if you like cruising and most of all big, huge jumps, you'll love this kite.
I weight 75 kg and used the 10 from 12 to 30 kn. The kite lift slowly but hight in the air and longer than the RPM at the same size. So you have plenty of time to rotate or make a board off.
kite is very stable, more than the Octane. You can fix your biddings, look the girsls on the beach and your kite stays cool in the air.
relaunch is a child game. pull a rear line and the kite flyes; the security system is different than the SLINGSHOT CSS but works perfectly when needed. Can have some troubles in strong wind to relauch if you use it.
So if you want to fly hight and long, and be secured, don't look for another kite, take the KEY!!!