2009 Griffin Kite First reviews and More pics

The 2009 griffns have arrived… in Puerto Rico… And France , but not yet for us. Our order is currently held up in Gatwick airport , with the promise of a delivery on 8th of November. Quite a few of you have placed pre-orders , on faith or previous experience alone. After all Griffin have told us these kites are the best they have ever made , but I am yet to see any kite manufacturer exclaim at the launch of their latest efforts , that it not as good as previous models. And such is the hype that surrounds kitesurfing products. Any one remember how good the best hell fish was, before it launched. Of course when customers got their hands on the so called kite of all kites , it was a very different story.

Reviewers reported the thin leading edges just folding in half during flight , and relaunch in waves was reportedly impossible. Then came kites falling apart at the seams and it gets worse from there. Thankfully best recalled the kite not too long after release , never to be heard from again.

A lesson learned , don’t believe the hype. As a retailer of certain brands , we publish the material sent to us from manufacturers before a product has been launched , but always like to add in our view that this is manufacturers blurb. Of course once we have tested a product it then becomes much easier to review or pass comment.  For example it is not uncommon for forums and competitors to comment that griffin kites are no good , after never having even seen one. It’s a simple assumption made , because they are inexpensive. You get what you pay for… But we know that this just isn’t true. In a technical sport , many wanna-be experts will put 2 + 2 together and come up with 5. “This kite is the most expensive , therefore it is the best” , or “this kite is the latest model therefore it is better than its predecessor”.

The simple fact is , kitesurfing equipment is so hyped up it is almost impossible to wade through all the hype and marketing talk to find out what a kite is really like. i prefer to lsiten to what real riders who actually own the equipment say, and nothing beats a demo.

Which leads me to some promised reviews , from which you can draw your own conclusions. The first is from the Puerto Rican distributor who is clearly stoked about his new kites, but I dont thinks he would say too much against them either. But the rest of the comments are from those who tried the kite or just looked at the build quality.

Hi everyone,
I just received brand spanking new Griffins and have spent the whole week testing them, they are really the fastest most smooth-flying kites I have ever flown!!


-Bar feeling: The bar pressure is perfect for my taste. The feeling is super direct with no delays. It keeps the same bar pressure all the way in the windrange and even when pushing the bar away and depowering the kite significantly the kite still responds and turns how you want it. This made it perfect for waveriding! I could put myself just where I wanted in the way to make that perfect drop and still have good control and feedback. The kite is very predictable and doesn’t make any weird stuff in the air.

Spent most of my time in the 9m. In 14-21 knots. Using a 6.1 surfboard and a 136 Recoil with bindings. I weight around 73kg or 155 pounds.

The kites have seen such a great improvement from last years, the guys at Griffin sure put a lot of thinking and testing with them. They have made a superb kite, with what I believe unmatched flying characteristics when compared to other kites in the market.

-Turning: Awesome clean loops and turns with no flapping. I believe this has to be the most smoothest and fastest turning kite in the market right now. Unhooked loops felt so nice, almost easy, the kite recovers super fast and gives you nice smooth and fast landing. I like to loop with the kite lower at around 45 angle, just because I think they look much better, and they felt so nice and powerful, no twitchy power at all, everything very smooth throughout the whole turn.

-Range: The kite has a very nice windrange, I havent had the chance( or wind! ) to test the top end but its low end is very impressive. I would have to give this to the smooth turning of the kite. Moving the kite is super efficient I think mainly because of the smooth turning of the kite. One good dive I was up and planing early. Upwind is also very nice.

-Wake: I tried the kite for some wakestyle (a la scoop) kite low and powered and the kite works very nice, once unhooked it has lots of grunt and still keeps that direct smooth turning. Loves the way it handle and the pop and stop I got, but personally I prefer the way C kites work. For those like me Griffin is testing a wakestyle bridle to make the kite perfect for us that want THE perfect SLE wake kite, the bridle will make the arc much more C and offer the ease of unhooking with no trimming needed C kites have. Im personally giving input to Christian, the designer, he’ll be sure to release a great wake performance kite for powered, unhooked riding. The bridle is really just to give the kite more ease of use when unhooking, the smooth turning and bar pressure is perfect as it is and I believe all will agree once they test the kites out. More info will be avaiable soon.

-The performance of the kites is just so good I cant believe they are priced this competitive. I don’t think I have found anything I didnt like about the kite. Everthing from the single point inflation systems to the way it behaves in the sky was perfect.

-Quality: Contruction wise the kite looks bomb! They have put so much attention to detail, it really says a lot about the quality. Multi panel layout, molded rubber bumpers in each bridle connection point, thin struts, compact and low drag bridle lines, quality bridles, kook proof connectors, fast-slow settings, bar pressure settings, single point inflation with neoprene covers, everything is top notch and still very light weight. I received a prototype fo the bar wich didnt have all the features of the 09 bar but still everything was very simple and clean. Could see some improvement in the chicken loop and release but they are working on a new pushaway that will be perfect for unhooking, so wont say much about the bar right now. Will post another review once I get ahold of the real 09 bar.

-I think this is the first kite in the market that offers two separate setting for bar pressure and turning speed. This is a huge plus for everyone and makes the kite perfect for a huge range of riders, types of riding and personal preferences.
I like strong bar pressure others dont, I like slow kites others want super fast kites. This kite fits every need and flies perfectly evry way you set it up, something that is very hard to accomplish.

The kites should be at all shops in no more than 2 weeks, be sure to try one before buying your next kite. Im sure you’ll love them. Great kite for those looking for a one kite quiver or a two kite quiver to kite pretty much all year long. Definitely THE kite for waveriding, boosting, freeriding, and course racing. And the perfect kite for hardcore wakestyle with the upcoming wake bridle.

Here are a couple pics of the kite in low wind! Next Ill post more action pics on bindings but I need more wind!

So , its a bit over the top , but he does seem genuinely impressed which is good. Now a few comments from the guys who are not trying to sell them.

 too had the honour of checking ou the new griffins with christian at the beach 3 days ago and im too very impressed with what i saw. I didn’t get to have a fly regretably due to the lack off wind and time but i did get to have a good look over the kites. From what i saw of the people who did get to test the griffins,, they are very powerfull and jump like a dream

Very good looking kites indeed. and the construction seems imaculate. I should also add that the 09 Griffin kites have a new bar. Very clean setup in a spiffy black and white http://www.griffinkites.com.au/image-gallery/343.html . With kite prices going through the roof these days the griffin is also extreamly affordable.


I had a go on the grifin yesterday in 25 gusting 35 knot winds. I was riding the 9 metre. I was quite impressed with the way it flew. Easy to use in gusty wellington weather. Only thing wrong for me was the turning speed was little on slow side. Probable something you would get used to with time. Im told the new bridle will speed things up abit. Keen to try again when he has the new bridal on.I am a takoon furia rider, so used to faster kits. Dollar for dollar these kites are bargains.Anyone able to review the nano and griffin .. Nano is an impressive kite to. I have a 08 6metre nono, what a rocketship, unfortunately broke my ankle on it yesterday playing silly buggars to close to shore .Cheers Steve
More ….

I tried the 9m in very light wind, when everyone else was flying 11’s, 12’s and even a 16m. Very good low end, easy to fly, steady & super fast relaunch. Very nice graphics and awesome bar!!

And thats it…

I believe these comment to be genuine and they can be tracked at www.kiteforum.com

For us….well we are very excited to get them on the water, but we are doing our best to step back from the marketing hype. Lets not forget these are cheap kites at £619 for a 12m complete compared to the £900+ of most , so as long as they are stable with good wind range, Relaunch well , Have good build and will launch you hig into the sky then float back down ,they are good value no matter how you look at it. But if they are really as good as i keep hearing, then they could well be leaving a few kite owners wondering why they shelled out £980 on a new kite.

For a full list of features , pics and prices visit









3 Responses to “2009 Griffin Kite First reviews and More pics”

  1. I have been riding the 09 14 Griffin for a couple of weeks now. Great low end, lots of power and pull, incredible loft and hang time. The new bar is excellent and well thought out….the center lines never twist up. It has to be ridden to be appreciated. I can’t wait to ride the 12.

  2. haha I wrote the review, but its really genuine…after I wrote it I noticed it really looked over the top but I was being completly sincere!
    I started dealing with Monkey Kites about a year ago when they were releasing the 08 range, in 2008 the kites flew ok and did what its supposed to be but nothing out of this world that really impressed me for my riding style, still and amazing value. The 09 Griffins are a completely different story, they are kites that have very nice flying habits and are very predictable..something that needed work in the previous models. You really have to try them to experience them,but the thing that I loved the most is the smooth and very fast turning…to give a simple comparison, having tested most kites from other brands prior to writing the review, I can compare the Griffin feeling to a SS Rev, in the way way it turns, the bar pressure and feedback. The griffin is the kite for waveriders, not the best kite for wakestyle but still manageable..the new wake bridle will kite wakestylers a very nice kite setup for unhooked performance.
    Good winds! Francisco @ http://www.soloviento.com

  3. we have had them out now, and i must say i was impressed too. Will post up full review as soon as we get some time.

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