The Sculp is a high-performance kite for intermediates to experts, offering huge variety, from freeride to unhooked freestyle and from racing to charging in waves. A three strut and four line SLE delta, the Sculp has instant turning response and, due to its speedy profile and light weight, cuts extremely fast through the air, generating loads of power. With such quick response and speed, powered kite loops or huge hang-time is easy. The simple relaunch makes the trick learning process much easier and with a huge wind range and excellent upwind abilities, keeps you on the water for longer. The Sculp is all about fun, power, speed and performance.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
Out the bag the CrazyFly is fairly well kitted out, with one pump a couple of options on the kite for set-up – it's got everything well covered. We can't comment on the bar as we know a nice new carbon one is literally just coming out, which will be a big step forward and will have the trimming moved above the bar, which we like. So keep an eye out for news on that. What we will say about the bar that came with this kite was that it was quite small, which is nice on a nine metre. Compact and not bulky in front of you, it keeps the steering nice and steady.
We reckon black kites look good, full stop. The Sculp is quite a muscly looking kite, like it's got broad shoulders; deep and stocky. The standout thing about it is that it jumps well. It goes boing. We tested it in up to 38 knots apparently - after checking the reading later - and it was a proper aeroplane at some times, which a nine metre should be in strong winds, but this also brings up the topic of its top end. Very, very impressive. You have loads of depower on tap and not once were we concerned (but we're not saying you should be riding a nine metre in 38 knots. You definitely shouldn't, but it's nice to know that if the wind does suddenly jump up, you're going to be able to make your way back in safely). So it goes up and down nicely, but you also get a fair amount of hang-time. The Sculp is controllable and not sluggish at all, in fact it's at the top end of the nine metre grouping in terms of turning speed. It's not a kite loop monster, but it drives forward, and gets round quickly. It's very front wheel drive, if that paints a clearer picture for you. The turn is also quite tight, rather than drawn out and powered
Moving on from there, another very good thing to mention about its top end is that you can also unhook on it quite happily in a lot of wind, much more easily than a lot of nine metres, which would be pulling your arms out. Yes, you need to trim it heavily first, but it means you can have a nice boosting session, mixed with some unhooking, which makes for a lot of fun.
The bar pressure leans towards the light side and the kite's very easy kite to throw around. Some may argue it lacks a bit of feeling down at the bar, but a lot of people really love that light feel. Perched forward in the window, there's no doubt it's got good upwind performance.
There's nothing wrong with the bottom end on this, but the standout performance characteristic is the top end of the Sculp. Driving forward, it's a lot of fun for going fast on and for throwing big airs. Its' tight, fast turns and huge depower will make it a good kite for cross-onshore wave riding and the almost automatic relaunch is also very good. 2011 is the first year CrazyFly have produced kites. If this first offering is anything to go by, then CrazyFly will be producing some excellent kites over the next few years.
Excellent top end and jumping performance.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
Add a little more feeling at the bar.
13, 11, 9 and 7m
This test is in issue #52