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Alternatively sourced line reels- Geared Electric Fence Reels
Bits and Pieces
I live in farm country. It occurred to me that a geared electric fence reel may be a locally available option for me. Does anyone have experience using these for kiting? If so, what brand and how did it work out?
edited January 2017
I used geared fencing reels a few times, they work fantastic as deep sky reels for light line. I have flown kites over a kilometre up off these reels at kite festivals (with UK CAA approval) and the wind-down was such a breeze. That was just thirty years ago! There was a model that had great gearing and a brake, and a ratchet arrangement. Loved using it with soaring deltas.
This was the sort of thing :
These look similar to what is shown on some of the kite fishing websites.
I stopped at 3 different farm supply stores today but found only lower end reels. The geared reels were what I wanted to see. It is nice to be able to handle the stuff before taking the plunge.
There are a few more stores in our area to check.
Thank you for sharing your experience with these reels.
edited February 2017
Here's my electric winch solution. Note that I typically Into the Wind 12 and 16 foot delta kites, so there's a lot of pull.
1. For the motor I got a high-torque 2-speed cordless drill, and I switch it to the low gear setting.
2. I ended up making my own reels. These have evolved over the last couple of years, but I made the ends of wood, used 4"x4" electric box plates, 3/8" threaded steel rod, and lots of nuts. I began by using 1/4" rods, but they are too weak and break after a while. I ground a hex pattern onto the end of the shaft so that the drill won't slip when attached to the shaft. As for the shaft between the two ends, I initially used something from an electric wire reel, but that eventually collapsed under the torque, so I have replaced one with metal pipe, and I will replace the other one with PVC pipe.
review this thread
covering both the Stratospool (my favorite) as well as a number of others including Frank's Crane Reel. The thread has several links to YouTube videos to show you the details.
There are many other discussion treads on this subject - search for reels.
I like the geared electric fence reel. Please share how well it works.
Thanks for the suggestions.
I had thought of using a right angle drill but was unwilling to buy one only for kiting.
I had never thought of using a regular cordless drill.
The spool on the drill looks pretty straight forward.
I am working on a pvc version of the stratospool. I have a couple of days off and plan to work on it some more
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