Gin are a Korean company who make top notch Para gliders... or so I was reliably informed over a pint in a bar on the west coast of Ireland. I looked them up and thought the new 'Yoz' kites they had developed looked rather interesting. Two weeks later and I had a 3.8m demo Yoz to play with. The full range is: 2.6, 3.8, 4.8, 6.2, 8.5, 10.6m
First impressions :
The rucksack they come in is the best I have seen yet. Sturdy with drainage mesh and removable Velcro sections for easy access and packing away. I have to admit though that I personally think rucksacks are a bit over the top if you are taking a lot of kites out. On opening the rucksack you are greeted by a white stuff sack with the Gin logo printed on it. Excellent... you can bung all your kites in their stuff sacks into one big bag !
The kite itself is as you would expect from a paraglider company; excellent quality Porcher Marine rip stop and cousin lines. All seams are well stitched and the openings around the vents are reinforced (no Mylar like the Ozone kites though). The cells of the kite have a V shaped underside which Gin claim increases stability and reduces drag. The overall profile of the kite is oval when laid flat.. somewhere between a Blade II and a Little Devil.
The lines are good quality although I would like to fly the kite for a few months to see if they equal Ozone quality. The handles are quite small which I think is a good thing in the Buggy. They have a unique feature whereby you can alter the length of the brakes quickly whilst on the move. The brake lines run through the handles from bottom to the top and are connected to the mains which have a small pulley. This allows the brake line which has a number of knots in it to move through a hole in the handle knot by knot which in turn lengthens the main. Or as Gin put it 'you can easily trim your four lines with your kite in the air and change the angle of incidence of your canopy'. The handles are joined by a short strop which looks like it is permanently attached. One other point of interest is that a Swiss company www.paraflysurf.ch has come up with a depower system for this kite which would presumably make it act like an Ozone Frenzy!
I took the 3.8 out in quite light winds for its first flight. Everything staked out, kite sitting nicely, grab handles and a gentle tug sends the kite immediately to the top of the window. A few figure of eights and I was pleasantly surprised by the stability even in light but uneven wind (local playing field with lots of big trees, buildings and turbulence!)
A week later I took the kite to the beach to let the local kite nuts have a blast. The wind was around 8-10mph and very clean. I set the kite up and took it for a run I the Vmax... wow!
This little kite develops some serious pull. I was conscious of the fact that all eyes were on me so I took it easy on the turns but this kite just wants to rip. After ten or so lengths of the beach I just couldn't hang on any longer so had to take a break. The kite was quickly snatched up by a mate who shot off down the beach at a serious rate. A few minutes later he was back exclaiming 'That bloody kite has more grunt than my Bora's!' Praise indeed.
Just about everyone who tried the Yoz was impressed at its stability and power and the swiftness of its turns. Gin is marketing the Yoz as an intermediate kite for buggy, snow and board. I would say they are somewhere between the Little Devil and Razor as far as power goes and definitely one of the most stable kites I have flown. Libre have begun selling them from their German website and if that's not a recommendation of quality then I don't know what is.
Pulls like a train
Excellent build quality
Some may find the trimming system on the handles annoying
You'll see a few of these at your local beach in the very near future.
By : Steve Porter