Installation and assembly instruction leading edge kite bladder
Open the end of the leading edge.
Attach a flying line at the end of both sides of the Leading Edge. Make sure the lines are attached correctly in order to pull the Leading Edge out and at the same time the flying lines in.
Pull the Leading Edge from the middle of the kite (zipper) out while pulling the flying line in. Remember to do the same on both sides and leave the flying line in for easy assembly of the new Leading Edge.
On the left you’ll see our bladder finder. We have tried our best to list as much data possible to help you pick the right bladder. Is your kite not listed? Please contact us or read the manual for more tips.
Leading edge bladders are measured from tip to tip as illustrated above. If your leading edge bladder has been removed from the kite you can measure the original bladder from tip to tip. If you don't have the original bladder or the bladder is still in the kite, you'll can measure the kite. Follow the instructions below that apply to your kite's set up.
Leading edge bladder with wrap around elbows.
Open the ends of the bladder sleeve. Measure the leading edge/wingtip sleeve from end to end. Measure around the outside of the arc formed by your leading edge, be sure that the measuring tape runs around the outside of the elbows where your leading edge turns onto the wingtip.
Leading Edge Kitebladder with separate wingtips
Open the ends of the bladder sleeve. Measure the leading edge sleeve from end to end. Measure around the outside of the arc formed by your leading edge.
Choose a leading edge bladder that measures the same length or longer than the measurement that you came up with. If you are at all unsure of your measurement, round up to the next size offered. An oversized bladder works, an undersized bladder will not work.
Remember that you can always use an oversized bladder in a smaller application. When traveling we recommend taking a leading edge bladder that is long enough to fit your largest kite. Should you need to use the bladder in a smaller kite you can invert the bladder ends back inside the bladder until it is the desired length. Inverting up to 8 feet at each end is perfectly reasonable if you don't have access to a bladder that is the correct length.
The U-STICK bladder system allows you to assemble a bladder to fit any kite. The system is quick and simple regardless of the number of valves your leading edge uses. Follow the illustrations below to see how to determine where you should place the valves when assembling a leading edge bladder.
Make sure that the U-stick bladder is larger than the original bladder in both length and diameter. You can easily confirm that the U-stick bladder is larger by laying the original bladder on top of the U-stick bladder and centering it.
Mark the exact location(s) of the valve(s) with a felt tipped marker. use the original bladder as a guide to decide where to place the valves in relation to the sides of the bladder. once the valve position(s) are properly placed you can attach the U-STICK valves according the the valve attachment instructions below.
Placement of multiple valves on a onepump style leading edge bladder is very simple. as with any leading edge, lay out the original just above the AIRTIME bladder and transfer the locations of the valves. using the original bladder as a guide, mark the exact location(s) of the valve(s) with a felt tipped marker. if an original valve is centered vertically on the leading edge you will want to center the U-STICK valve on the U-STICK bladder as well. once the valve position(s) are properly placed you can attach the U-STICK valves according the the valve attachment instructions below.
You can still assemble a leading edge for a onepump style kite even if the original bladder is missing. take measurements from the center of the kite out to the valve holes. transpose these measurements onto the AIRTIME bladder. to double check the measurements, we suggest you measure the distance between the valve holes and make sure that this corresponds with the distance between the marks you've placed for the valves on the U-STICK bladder. once the valve position(s) are properly placed you can attach the U-STICK valves according the the valve attachment instructions below.
After you have setup the precise places of the valves. Carefully cut out a small hole where the valve will be placed. Be careful not to cut both sides.
Wipe down the area around the marking(s) with the alcohol wipe provided, ALLOW TO AIR-DRY. the peel and stick valve will not adhere to the bladder if it hasn't been properly cleaned with the alcohol wipe provided.
Peel the release paper off of the base of the valve. Don't touch the sticky backside.
Stick the valve(s) to the bladder paying attention to the marking(s) and the valve arm position. Always put your bladder on a sollid flat ground. Watch out for wrinkels. Or the valve could leak on the side.
Work around the perimeter of the valve base firmly pressing the valve onto the bladder. flip the bladder over and continue to press the valve on from the backside. work all the visible air bubbles out from below the valve.
If the U-Stick bladder is longer than the original, you can shorten the length of the bladder by inverting the ends of the bladder back inside themselves.
Start at the center and stack half the bladder like an accordion leaving the bladder end on top. place the stacked bladder in front of the bladder access opening at the center of the leading edge.
Run a flying line in a wingtip of the leading edge sleeve and out the bladder access opening at the center of the leading edge. Tie the flying line off to the end of the bladder.
Pull the bladder into the leading edge by the flying line, watch that the bladder feeds in cleanly. Repeat this and the previous two steps to install the other half of the bladder into the other side of the kite.
Make sure the bladder ends extend all the way to the end of the bladder sleeve and that the bladder ends are properly secured when the sleeve ends are closed.
After seating all the valves in their holes slowly inflate the leading edge. Watch for any soft wrinkled areas that could indicate a twisted bladder. If the bladder is twisted or the ends not properly seated the bladder may be damaged upon full inflation.
How to install a Leading Edge with elbows?
A wrap around leading edge bladder not only inflates the leading edge but also the wingtips on either side. Most often there is a hard 90 degree corner where the leading edge bladder wraps around from the leading edge to the wingtip. If the bladder is not properly positioned in this 90 degree corner, or elbow, it may be damaged upon inflation.
Remember that the shape of the sewn sleeve dictates the shape of the bladder. It is for this reason that your bladder is straight and doesn't have the 90 degree elbow that the sewn sleeve has. You'll notice that the original doesn't have a 90 degree corner either. Install the bladder normally according to the leading edge bladder installation instructions.
most kites with a wrap around leading edge offer a small Velcro/zipper opening on the inside of the elbow that is just large enough to fit a finger in. Use the opening to accommodate the bladder as it makes the corner.
You want the bladder to run around the outside of the elbow. this will ensure that there is sufficient bladder to fully inflate this area of the sewn sleeve.
You DO NOT want the bladder to "cut the corner" or be pulled tight to the inside of the elbow. this is because the bladder will need to stretch to fully fill the elbow and reach the far side of the sewn sleeve. Inflating the kite without accommodating the bladder in the elbow will almost always result in damage to the bladder.