With a standard kite the kite tends to stop at 180 rather than doing the extra 360.
It isn't a slack issue, so I'm wondering if I need to pop slightly earlier with a heavier kite?
Popping early - sounds dangerous - like the kite may start going into a fade, perhaps cock-eyed as you are also trying to flat-spin it.
I believe that it is just a matter of getting enough spin for the kite to go around over 360 degrees (why not 1.5 times = full 540? well near the end the lines are being picked up to recover the kite, and that can help with the very last bit of the turn).
So how to get that spin? - If the pop is applied while the nose is fully away, the direction of pull at the upper leading edge attachment point passes close to the centre of mass of the kite (which is near the centre tee). So some of the pull gets converted into moving the kite towards the flyer. It would be nice to convert as much of the pull as possible into flatspin rotation, and for this, the distance between the centre of mass and where the line of pull comes closest to the centre of mass should be as great as possible. This distance is near its greatest when the leading edge's wingtip is pointing back to the flyer.
So the trick is to pop when the kite has already rotated enough that the leading edge's wingtip is pointing back to the flyer. All that throwing of one arm in front of the other together with stepping forward with the leg on the side of the arm being thrown forward is (partly) to give the initial rotation that will turn the kite far enough that the leading edge of the side to be popped is facing in the right direction. (I think that the other reason for all that throwing forward is that this gives a good start to the spin.)
- The above method also explains why I have to angle the kite a little away from the horizontal in the flatspin. When the line is popped, the line is running very close to the leading edge, and is just asking to tangle with it (even if the pop is followed by lots of slack). Angling the kite so that the wingtip is slightly above the line helps avoid an otherwise likely tangle.
- Perhaps this is much easier to explain with a few diagrams, but I haven't drawn them yet.
So why are lighter kites easier to 540?
- Well are they? Or is it just that older style flatter sail light wind kites are easier to flatspin?
Generally speaking, with axels and flatspins, it is good to have some angular momentum (which is roughly speaking, weight towards the edges of the kite) to carry the spins around. The kite is being slowed down by the air it is spinning through, so more angular momentum for the same size of kite is a good thing. - i.e. for the same design of kite: standards are better than SULs for 540s.
But taking a nice flat light wind kite like a Benson Inner Space, its sail is flatter so that it cuts through the air better and needs less angular momentum to carry it around.
Maybe the problem is that everything happens faster with a standard in heavier winds, and so timing is more important??