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Skate vs. Wala

ebrogren (RIP)

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Yes, there's a pretty significant difference between the two. The wala is built with a curved spine, and a tight sail. The Skate is build with a streight spine and looser sail. You will alos notice that there is a significant difference in the shape of the sale. In flight, I found the Wala to be a bit more agile, but didn't have quite as nice of a glide as the skate.

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The Skate is a true "indoor glider", while the Wala can be used both indoor or out!! The Wala is built like a tank, it can handle a lot of abuse! You can make a few adjustments to make the Wala glide "better"! The Skate is one of the most popular gliders made!

I flew the Skate as my first glider and fell for indoor flying!! Bought a Wala as a cheaper alternative to the Skate, it can be "glided" , but the Skate will be a lot easier to use indoor!! If you're looking to get a Skate, you'll have to wait for ITW to release the new version, or buy one used!! The Wala by Flying Wings is at almost every kite store!! Personally the Skate is a better choice if you can wait for it!! IMHO !

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Superior depends on what you want to do...

The Wala was my first single line glider, can take a TON of punishment, will fly indoors and outdoors (in some stiff wind), and if something were to ever happen to my Wala I would replace it with another one immediately.

I don't have a Skate, but I have a Horvath Hybrid 200 that will out glide almost anything (likely including the Skate from what I've seen) blindfolded, flies in some surprising wind for such a seemingly fragile kite and just flies some mind bending lines. I love it's near endless gliding, but I'm more of an indoor/outdoor/urban guy and the Wala fits that bill better. The Hybrid is more a pure indoor kite.

Value for money, the Wala is tough to beat. The Skate cost extra because thats what it takes to make it that much better at gliding, etc versus the Wala. Pick the kite based on what you need to do, its pilot skill that matters most.

For what it's worth, in an indoor environment I can easily use up my 20-25 foot line when gliding on my Wala and I certainly am no mystic master when it comes to single lines ... so I feel the Wala is plenty good enough at gliding and agility as an atribute I value in my kites.

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Guest Patrick Tan

I love indoor kites, especially indoor SLKs.

I do have a soft spot for the Wala, it is my first indoor glider kite.

There is a HUGE difference in performance, the Wala is not designed for very long slack line glides but it more than make up for that with its agility and acrobatics.

Here's a video of the Wala in action in semi-indoor condition:

I have not flown a Skate enough to make a full comparison, but having watched my friends fly it, I would say it is certainly a long distance glider.

In terms of acrobatics, I doubt it can do much.

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  • 3 weeks later...

i have soft spots for both.

skate is the first for me to fall in love with windless gliding.

wala is the almost all around kite i can count on (very fun to fly in low and changing wind, and can hold its dignity in outdoor high wind).

wala is a fun toy for young at heart. it can do fun tricks like a dolphin, and still can glide (just need a bit energy to get it started), not long but it does have the wide range ability to suit the kiter's mood.

the advantage of its moderate pricing, wala has been used in high school program... very forgiving and covers enough range of flying for 22 teenage in one class. i would not use skate for my group lessons with teenagers but it is a suitable kite for people who are more sophisticated in their touch.

they are pretty different in their flying characters.

for specialty kites, each one reflect the designer's personal flavor.....

single line gliders.... ah... so many kites, so little time.

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Ditto most of what's been said. I wrote a comparison more than a year ago when they first came out. Cut and paste here:

Somebody once asked about comparisons between a Focus Kites Design's Skate and a Flying Wings Aerobe (now known as the Wala) and I did reply with some of my thoughts.

Here's a copy and paste of what I thought, and still think today. I think both of these kites are superb compliments to one another and if you are into highly maneuverable SLKs with great outdoor and indoor capabilities, these 2 kites are probably all that you'll need.

I think the Skate is best in true no wind environment as its gliding capabilities are simply awesome. It has more of a slo mo character. I wouldn’t fly it outdoors as a single line kite in 10mph-ish winds as well as the bow from the micro carbon across the spreaders can look pretty scary.

The Aerobe/Wala to me, is a much more versatile kite compared to the Skate. It looks more rugged and I'm not afraid to fly it outdoors in 10mph-ish wind. A nose dive with the Aerobe/Wala can be more re-assuring compared to a nose dive with the Skate. The ability to tune the Aerobe/Wala by switching the cross spreaders either to the front or back of the sail plus its multiple bridle tow points for tuning is also a plus point.

Obviously the Aerobe/Wala would need a bit more minimum wind compared to the Skate outdoors as a single liner as it is heavier. I would think the Skate would be great in super lab grade outdoors smooth SUL level beach wind though.

In short, I think the Aerobe/Wala is definitely value for money. It has a very high price to fun ratio, plus its versatility and its ruggedness to me is worth it.

Indoors, the Skate requires lesser effort. The ability to tune the nose weight using coins gives you multiple characteristics which can be extracted out of it as well. The Aerobe/Wala can still be flown indoors too, though a more active approach is required. I don’t think you can (unlike the Skate), set it up for momentum for a flat horizontal glide and just drop the line. You need to tend the tension all the time

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however, there are a lot varieties( even in SLG/ Single line glider) being brought into the world since skate/wala comparison was in the buzz.

all the X -flyers and wonderful kites make the beauty of the SLK world.

the spectrum is what we we are looking into.

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  • 1 year later...

I was at an indoor "thing" Friday and heard Wala was much heavier than the Skate. I just weighed my Wala against a borrowed Skate, both of which have recently been flown on the sand (it always gets into to some pocket or crevice) and my rough findings are Skate = 62 g and Wala = 95 g. That's roughly 6 US nickels (not necessarily $0.30 though) of weight difference.

They are both good kites with very different aerodynamics. Perhaps life is too short not to own every glider kite out there :blue_smile:

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What's more important than weight, is how do the kites perform??
Exactly, no 2 kites react the same...whether its a glider or not...and no 2 people will agree as to how each kite reacts.. its about what feels comfortable and pleasing to you! I have never flown a skate....so cant reply on that.

But, I do fly Wala and xl on a regular basis and love them both.

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