In 2012 the Nomad kite gets further refined in the freestyle department. Cabrinha wanted to take its landmark turning speeds and unhooked abilities one step further. The result is a highly-tuned kite that keeps its forward flying speed up even when unhooked. You can count on a constant steady pull whether you are passing or just throwing a massive raley. When it comes to kite looping the Nomad delivers, accelerating its power when flying through the radius of a kite loop. Big or small the Nomad completes the loop with plenty of time to climb to the zenith to cushion your landing. It's no wonder that the Nomad is the pro's choice for world tour level freestyle competition.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
Where else is there to start with on a Cabrinha kite than the build-quality? Phenomenally strong and robust the Cabrinha is top of the food chain in the survival stakes, from canopy details down to the bar. Cabrinha have a special Sprint pump system, featuring a wide valve with a cap that screws in and holds your pump nozzle in place. It's all very posh and user-friendly and there's no expense spared. Cabrinha's fantastic QuickLink control safety system and IDS (intelligent depower system) give you three levels of security. For any level of rider the Cabrinha bar is amazing. Advanced riders will appreciate the grip and feel and the spinning leash attachment, while more inexperienced riders will find its clean, simple and functional design really easy to get on with straight away. Cabrinha deserve a lot of credit for their bar – you can't just develop a set-up like that overnight, it takes time and lots of evolution; it must be one of the cleanest bars on the market with nothing dangling anywhere, even when you have loads of trim pulled on as the Recoil spring keeps it all neat and tidy. If we have a slight niggle, the balls on the ends of the trimming lines are quite small and difficult to grip easily with manly or cold fingers.
Cabrinha kites all have a certain feel about them. Strong and confident, they're a bit like a Range Rover. The Nomad would be the sports version – happy to cruise, but slip it into sports mode and you can take on the motorway and back country with its balance and handling. Silky smooth through the sky, the Nomad isn't overly quick, but while it's rapid enough, it's the delicious delivery of power that's unmistakably Cabrinha and stands out about this kite. Providing good juice in the lighter winds the Nomad is very comfortable low down in the window and, when you combine that with the excellent bar and its feel, you've got a really good wake-style kite. The kite doesn't falter at all when you come out of the loop, maintains position and feels very steady and assured in the sky with very little trimming. Less twitchy than a C kite, it's just rock solid to edge against, delivers oodles of pop at the bar and then steadily pulls throughout the trick. We didn't find the Nomad whippy enough to wang over your head fast for that really explosive pop of C kites but the float and smooth trajectory of the jumps was all very refined. What's also nice is that the Nomad keeps an element of power, so you get a constant feeling of lift as it moves over your head. Steady and efficient your downward journey is as smooth as you climb. One area we have to say we did find a bit tricker than on other models was the relaunch when the winds were lighter. The leading edge is quite flat for quite a long way round the kite until it gets towards the fairly swept back tips and we did end up having to do a bit of an old school sharp swim towards the kite to encourage it to roll over rather than tugging on the side line as we've become used to with Cabrinhas and other kites.
Rock-solid in the sky, you could drive a bus into this kite and it wouldn't go anywhere. Silky smooth, assured and requiring an assertive amount of input, the Nomad is a fine package for the freestyling gent as well as the more feisty wake-style warrior.
The sublime bar system is only complimented further by the unhooked qualities of the Nomad.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
The slightly sticky relaunch.
13, 11, 9, 7 and 5.5m
This test is inissue #57