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Could someone let me know if it is a must have item.

I have seen them priced anywhere from $17.00 all the way up to $260.00.

Will the cheaper ones work for me?

If I need one what would you recommend and why?

Thanks Mike

Or should I just wet my finger and stick it in the air the way I did it as a kid. LOL

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Well, I'll give you my thoughts, for what they're worth. I thought about getting one, but the only time I really ever worry about wind speed is when it's low. That's exactly when those things are at their worst. Then there's the money. Now that I have a zero wind kite (Prism 4d) I can use that in low wind, and put up a full sail Rev if the wind is higher. If it gets to be too much for that, I put up the vented. The way I look at it now is for the money I'd spend on something good, I could buy another kite. I actually have access to a weather station at the observatory that I'm a volunteer at, and it helped a lot to look at the wind speed and check out the wind and fly. I found that with race rods my full sail doesn;t really fly well 'till it hits 4 mph and gets fun at 6mph.At 3mph i'm backing up. My Vented "B" with 3 wraps needs close to 10mph and flys well with 12. At 15-20mph it's the most fun I've ever had with a kite. I'm waiting for a 15 mph day to fly my new Hpnotist with the 100' tube tail.

If I got into kite surfing I might get one to choose how big a kite to use, assuming I had multiples, but for now I know how the wind is blowing by how my kites fly.

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Bought a nice Kestrel wind meter years ago for winter backpacking. It has been useful for kite flying at times, especially when I first started flying. I would use it at the start of each session to decide which kite to try & which lines to use. Now I don't use it too often as I am more accustomed to watching the trees or flags to monitor the wind conditions. It has it's place in my bag & I will use it in any high wind conditions so I can understand what it took to break my line or spine or spreader & so on. I think it's fun to always be estimating the wind speed by observations then verify it with the little meter. Others don't like them but I personally enjoy mine.

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I'd vote for skipping the wind meter.

Calibrate your "head" by flying your kites. Fly a kite, decide how well it's flying in the current wind, and then look at the trees, tall grass, a flag, or anything that will give you a "feel" for the wind speed. Do that for a couple of months and you'll be able to instinctively pick the correct kite every time. Plus, our Midwest winds are changing all the time anyway. Measure five mph and by the time you have your kite set up the wind will have either quit or doubled.

I own two wind meters. One an inexpensive ($20) generic unit that works well. And, the other a rather expensive, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_p_ujTgyUQ'>Kaindl wind meter that I highly recommend if you just plain love gadgets and HAVE to have a meter. My meters are seldom used ... once in awhile when I'm going to fly a large SLK I'll drag out the Kaindl.

My wind meters get used more when someone says the wind is blowing at XX mph. Then the meter comes out to settle any bets. My observations are that many folks, who can ALWAYS pick the correct kite and frame set to fly, can't correctly judge wind speeds. They have calibrated their awareness of the wind and choose the correct kite to fly, but don't have any real comprehension of actual wind speed.

If you have a smart phone, you might consider a wind app. Several folks that I know swear that they are reasonably accurate. And, the app is much cheaper than a good meter.

Cheers,

Tom

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I wanted one as I have always felt the need to quantify everything. After some advice I held off getting one for a couple of months. In that time I was able to read the speed much better. I spent the money on a feather banner instead.

Put it off for a month or 2 and just rely on feel. A Beaufort scale helps.

Posted Image

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I came with a wind meter - My neck!!! I was a sailor and can pretty much judge the winds in low to medium ranges! Still over guess when it's higher! I tend to watch my LE (I fly Revs mostly), if it bends too much - put in something stronger! No bend - go lighter!

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I bought , lower end of the price scale, when I had ordered a kite from ITW , it was the piece that turned my shipping free.so in my head it was free, I have used it twice, Made me realize I was severely off on my wind speeds.

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Get good (fast) at setting up and repacking your kites. After all, it is which kites will fly enjoyably under present conditions that you are interested in, not some number.

OTOH gadget junkies like me can't seem to get along without them. If you do decide to get one, get a good one. They are much more accurate in lighter winds. I have owned three of increasing quality, and have liked every improvement.

The wind at ground level is not where you will be flying your kite unless you are flying a quad on 20' lines. A useful meter might be one with a radio telemetry sensor that you could send up with your kite.

Lastly, every minute spent watching a meter is a minute spent not flying a kite.

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I bought , lower end of the price scale, when I had ordered a kite from ITW , it was the piece that turned my shipping free.so in my head it was free, I have used it twice, Made me realize I was severely off on my wind speeds.

I recently had a really good wind day (for this area) and spent a bunch of time flying my full vent B at the observatory. My wind speeds were way off, too. Now I'm better after comparing with an accurate anemometer. 8 mph is windy. 12-15 mph is a strong wind. 5-6 mph is a stiff breeze. Before doing these comparisons, I would have told you that the wind was 10 mph when it was only 6. I was probably estimating 12-14 mph to be 20 mph. I commonly grab and rip off the tips of some grass and toss it up to see wind direction. I'd say it only takes 2-3 mph for it to fall at a 45 degree angle.

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Hope you are getting your consensus . . . here's my two cents.

I don't own a wind meter, and I just don't feel like I need one. I'd rather spend money on kites than a meter. I think Jeepster is right - wind meters mostly get used to prove to other kiters that the wind is a lot less than what someone is claiming. When there's enough wind to fly, I think many people (myself included) overestimate the wind speed. IMHO, there's either enough wind for you to fly, or there isn't, and as your flying skills improve, the amount of wind needed to fly a sport kite goes down on just about any sail & frame (full or vented). The actual wind speed doesn't really matter as long as you can select the right sail for your skill level based on feeling the wind. There are times I've struggled to keep a full sail in the air in light evening wind while the guy next to me was flying a mesh rev with no problem at all - skill made a huge difference.

For big show kites, a wind meter makes sense because there are going to be upper limits you don't want to exceed due to the size & power of those kites. Off to find video of kites dragging trucks down the beach . . . .

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I too feel that wind meters are probably, not really necessary, for the average kite flier. But do I have one ? YES indeed ! And I carry it every time I fly. It may be habit, it may be unnecessary, but I do like to pull it out when I'm getting ready to set up, just because I like gadgets, and I do like (but don't need) to know the number. I can't really say why, because it rarely changes my mind, as to what I was planning to fly. Never-the-less, I do like my wind meter. I have a Kestrel 1000, and it's just such a cool little tool, I've just got to flip it out, every now and then. But as Jeepster (Tom) so clearly stated, most folks can pick the correct kite and frame set to fly, but they really can't correctly judge the actual wind speed. Somehow, they just know it, they feel it, and they pick the kite, even though they don't know the number (wind speed). I suppose it's all relative to how you feel about it, and if it makes you feel better to know the number, by all means, get yourself one, but get a decent one. On a personal note, I have found the Kestrel 1000 to be a pretty accurate little instrument. I base this on a few short trials, which involved holding it out the window of a moving vehicle (you're not supposed to do that, especially at high speeds), as well as comparing it to readily available weather data. I vote yes...........but shop around.......as prices do vary. Again, I'm not endorsing, nor condemning........just giving you my opinion, which is worth exactly what reading this post cost you ! The meter will cost you a bit more......... :g:

http://www.kestrelmeters.com/products/kestrel-1000-wind-meter

post-4670-0-49112400-1373729040_thumb.jp

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I use my wind meter to confirm what I all ready knew. It doesn't come out of the bag very often, but it's fun to measure the wind at the extemes. Like when you're flying in low wind, get out the wind meter to see that it can't even register, but you're still flying. Or when you register 25-35mph, it confirms that the wind is abusive.

Here's my favorite... when the wind's really good, you can measure how good....

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I bought , lower end of the price scale, when I had ordered a kite from ITW , it was the piece that turned my shipping free.so in my head it was free, I have used it twice, Made me realize I was severely off on my wind speeds.

I recently had a really good wind day (for this area) and spent a bunch of time flying my full vent B at the observatory. My wind speeds were way off, too. Now I'm better after comparing with an accurate anemometer. 8 mph is windy. 12-15 mph is a strong wind. 5-6 mph is a stiff breeze. Before doing these comparisons, I would have told you that the wind was 10 mph when it was only 6. I was probably estimating 12-14 mph to be 20 mph. I commonly grab and rip off the tips of some grass and toss it up to see wind direction. I'd say it only takes 2-3 mph for it to fall at a 45 degree angle.

That was my problem

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I've resisted buying a wind meter... and now I don't feel I need one. I watch the trees, the grass, and just generally have developed a sense of when to fly and what to fly. I did download "WindAlert" on my iphone and check it before I go out. After that, I am one with the wind.

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I've resisted buying a wind meter... and now I don't feel I need one. I watch the trees, the grass, and just generally have developed a sense of when to fly and what to fly. I did download "WindAlert" on my iphone and check it before I go out. After that, I am one with the wind.

Aw, come on Pen. Be a sport. You know your want one. Hi tech, cool gadgets, iPods, iPhones, Apps, Kestrel Wind Meter (?) :cat_lol:

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Aw, come on Pen. Be a sport. You know your want one. Hi tech, cool gadgets, iPods, iPhones, Apps, Kestrel Wind Meter (?) :cat_lol:

Come on guys ... if you have to have one ... and what self respecting gadget freak doesn't need at least one ... then go for one of the best ... Kaindl's Windtronic 2 unit. The price has come down enough that even Amazon is selling one, with case, for only $99. Stop goofing around and buy one ... you can also help out John by buying through Amazon.com.

Geez,

Tom

PS ... I notice that even Sears is selling them now. Check out this website for a review.

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Come on guys ... if you have to have one ... and what self respecting gadget freak doesn't need at least one ... then go for one of the best ... Kaindl's Windtronic 2 unit. The price has come down enough that even Amazon is selling one, with case, for only $99. Stop goofing around and buy one ... you can also help out John by buying through Amazon.com.

Geez,

Tom

Aw Tom, I don't need another gadget, but I'll have to admit, that one looks pretty cool, but the Kestrel 1000 is still a pretty neat little gadget, too ! I would think that they are both, somewhat, on the same level, so far as kool, geeky, neat, etc. Now as for accuracy, I suppose that's up in the air, or wind ! Wish we could compare them - side by side. I do love gadgets..............especially if they relate to flying kites............ :ani_wallbash: NOPE, I'm not buying another wind meter. I'm not, I'm not, I'm not. So there :ani_victory:

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I love gadgets, but I have to weigh every penny I spend. I'll probably get one someday, but... I recently bought a prism 4D. It's my first low/zero wind kite. That's the choice I made. I can now fly when that wind meter wouldn't read anything, or I could have spent the $100 on the wind meter and it would tell me I couldn't fly. For now, I'll take the kite, but someday...

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When I bought my first torque wrench I opted for the dial readout ... it was a couple of percent more accurate than the click kind. Then I discovered that you had to both pull on the wrench and position your eye in just the right plane to take advantage of that accuracy. Since then, all torque wrenches have been the click kind.

With wind meters, the same thing holds true. You have to position the "fan" type meters exactly perpendicular to the wind or they'll be off a little. With a shifting wind, leaving the unit stationary to monitor the wind introduces a lot of inaccuracy. With the Windtronic 2 unit, it doesn't care where the wind is coming from ... it simply reads it. That was the deciding factor when I bought the second unit.

Hmmm, maybe John could talk the Windtronic folks into donating one for a future drawing ...

Cheers,

Tom

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You have to position the "fan" type meters exactly perpendicular to the wind or they'll be off a little. With a shifting wind, leaving the unit stationary to monitor the wind introduces a lot of inaccuracy. With the Windtronic 2 unit, it doesn't care where the wind is coming from ... it simply reads it.

Dang it ! That makes sense, perfect sense, and I see your point. Ok, I suppose I need to go to Amazon.com, and take another look. Hmm - Windtronic 2. Sheesh.............why did I bring this up? Oh, I didn't. I can blame this one on Michael :cat_lol:

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Yep, the WindTronic is the one I ended up with after buying a couple of others first. The "directionless" aspect really appealed to me.

Now in the low wind range, there is nothing quite like a bit of down glued to the end of a length of very fine thread. If it stirs, you have a wind that you can't even feel on your face (but may be able to feel if you wet a finger and hold it up). Beaufort uses smoke (rises vertically) to indicate zero wind or "dead calm".

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Yep, the WindTronic is the one I ended up with after buying a couple of others first. The "directionless" aspect really appealed to me.

Now in the low wind range, there is nothing quite like a bit of down glued to the end of a length of very fine thread. If it stirs, you have a wind that you can't even feel on your face (but may be able to feel if you wet a finger and hold it up). Beaufort uses smoke (rises vertically) to indicate zero wind or "dead calm".

And this would be called, "Pete's DownTronic" wind meter :cat_lol:

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