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Purchasing Carbon Tubing

Phil in Ottawa

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I broke a lower spreader spar today.

For someone in North America, where is the best online place to buy replacement carbon tubing?

Should I replace both bottom spreaders to make sure they are the same weight? Or is most carbon tubing about the same weight so I can just replace the one side?

Also, is .230 inch the equivalent size I should purchase to replace 6mm tubes if they don't list the metric size?

Anything else I should know about buying carbon tubing?

Thanks for your help.

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When you say "lower spreader" I assume you refer to a dual-line delta.

All carbon tubing is not the same. Some is straight, some is tapered (thinner at one end). Some is stiff, some is flexible. It is best to replace with original equipment, but if that is not possible, or the manufacturer of the kite is unknown, replace both sides with tubing that is of similar diameter and stiffness, making sure that the outer diameter will fit into any fittings snugly. If you know the maker of the kite, contacting them for replacements will get you the right stuff. Replacement spars are usually not very expensive, so replacing with the original type is preferable.

6mm is about .236 inches. If you use SAE to replace metrics, or vice versa, things won't fit quite the same. Not impossible, just not the same. Fit will be a very small amount off, always. Best way to get the feel for it is to try it. Generally, carbon tubing is measured by inner diameter. The thickness of the wall is what makes it weaker or stronger, so the outside diameter will vary. The fiber is laid up on a steel mandrel, and the number of wraps determines wall thickness and strength. The angle or combination of angles in relation to the length of the mandrel in which it is wrapped will determine the flex (springiness) qualities of the finished tube. In most cases, a protective coating is applied to the outside of the tube, and this too will affect the properties of the tube, depending on type and thickness.

If you would like a lot more information, just Google "carbon tube manufacture".

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The kite is a Skydog Freebird. Their website does not seem to mention anything about replacement parts. I'll contact them to find out if they do sell them.

But in the event that Skydog does not sell replacement parts, I'll have to purchase from a third party dealer.

Looking at North American dealers, I haven't yet found one that carries metric-sized tubing. If you know of one, please let me know.

From the research I did, .230" is a common size. That equates to 5.842mm. I am wondering if the 0.158mm (.006") difference between .230" and 6mm is going to have a noticeable impact on the kite. I guess the way to know will be to try it.

But hopefully Skydog sells replacements and all this will be a moot point.

Thanks for your help everyone.

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Does the Freebird have a ferrule inserted into both ends that go into the centre T? My Jammin does. Might need some ferrules as well as 6mm rods.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

No, there are no ferrules.

I contacted Skydog and got a reply from Phil Broder from Fly Market Kitemaking Supplies. I can get my tubes from him.

So I'm good to go.

Thanks again for your help everyone.

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