Cabrinha Chaos 7m – 2016

Cabrinha Chaos - 2016 review Kiteworld Magazine issue 81

This test featured in Kiteworld Magazine Issue #81



While the FX and Switchblade both have freestyle application, the Chaos is Cabrinha’s all-out freestyle thoroughbred as a traditional looking C kite designed for powered, aggressive freestyle and wakestyle riding. Tuned to win competitions (helping Liam Whaley win the World Championship last year) and deliver results, it’s designed to provide bags of line slack for unhooked tricks and relentless freestyle performance.

The Chaos has been overhauled this year with the bridle removed and replaced by a four-line set-up with two additional arc support lines. Ultra modern, but it’s also as close to a traditional C-kite as possible and so some of its user-friendliness and depower has been reduced.

Cabrinha kites are solidly built and you always feel like you’re getting quite a lot for your money. They’re high-end with a definite feel of quality and the Chaos is well reinforced with carefully considered Dacron use in key impact areas around the leading edge and canopy. The Sprint airlock inflation system allows you to pump quickly and easily, locking directly to the main pump hose without the need of a nozzle and there’s zero air loss. The leading edge is reasonably narrow in diameter for a super clean air flow, and also means that the Chaos inflates in seconds.



A variety of set-up options offer quite a varied ride feel. Attach the front line as far forward as possible for maximum depower in high winds, on the middle setting for depower and decent line slack for handle-passes and on the back setting for a traditional, balls-out, C-kite feel. We found that the middle setting was the best one if you’re looking for a more manageable ride feel and balanced combination of depower, comfort and performance. Depower is obviously not the key trait of a C-kite and the 2016 Chaos has less than the 2015 model, but there’s a manageable amount on the middle setting. Fully powered you’re going to need to edge hard against it, but for advanced riders that’s when this kite really comes into its own. There are also two settings for the back lines which alter the steering responsiveness, although, the ‘A’ setting is really recommended for the bigger sizes and the ‘B’ setting for the smaller ones as they’re quick.



The pedigree C kite performance qualities comes across quickly once you launch the kite. For a smaller size the low end is very impressive and we were nicely powered on the seven metre when other people were out on eight and nine metre kites. Very responsive, there’s a lot of power through the turn and that combination takes some getting used to. The bar pressure is also pretty light, and it’s quite unusual in a C kite to have such a quick reacting kite without much weight going through your arms. Once you get dialled in, it’s absolutely electric.

Not all C-kites manage to bridge the gap between jumping performance and freestyle  / wakestyle ability but the Chaos does and when you line up a kicker and send it there’s awesome lift and quite surprising hang-time for a C-kite which allows you to touch down with reasonable comfort. Looping this seven metre in strong winds produces a proper C-loop with all of the ‘chug’ and body stretch you could hope for. As with other Cabrinha kites we’ve ridden this year, the airframe feels rock solid, so there’s no hint of you being dropped like a stone or trembling when ridden powerfully in high winds. The stability matched with the C kite agility is lovely.


Cabrinha Chaos - 2016 review Kiteworld Magazine issue 81


Riding this seven metre in Cape Town, we were well powered most of the time and a small kite like this isn’t ideal for unhooked trickery, though its freestyle credentials are clear. Even on this seven metre there’s explosive pop as the Chaos just loves to charge itself up as you edge against it and one of Cabrinha’s main reasons for adjusting the design was to create extra line slack.

The Chaos relaunches quite quickly with some technique, but it’s not the easiest and, without the back up of a fifth line, you’ll need some good handling skills to get it back up in lighter winds.


2016 Chaos Bar


The Chaos 1X Control bar is a six-line, lightweight system and it features a 26cm QuickLoop harness loop and a harder EVA grip than the rest of the Cabrinha range for aggressive riding. The Chaos also has Cabrinha’s smooth and easy TrimLite depower cleat rather than the Recoil trimming tab system. The chicken-loop safety release is the excellent design that Cab use on all their bars, but it sits on a much bigger freestyle chicken-loop for the Chaos. In general freestyle riders are going to love the simplicity of the 1X bar and it also comes with a longer, padded leash that is a bit softer against your body when you get a pass wrong.


The Chaos is designed with performance riding in mind and it needs an experienced hand to get the best out of it. There are a number of ‘modern Cs’ available that have plentiful depower and a user-friendly ride feel; the Chaos can be tuned to offer that to some extent, but it’s really designed for advanced riders kiting at a high level. If you’re good enough to unlock its potential you’ll love it but, if you’re looking for a kite for early freestyle progression, then there are other kites in Cab’s range like the FX and the Switchblade which you’ll prefer.


Robust build quality, unbridled C-kite performance, electric handling, surprising low end.


It’s really well finished and designed for super high level riding. So nothing to change, just be honest with yourself about your riding level before buying one!


Build quality: 9
Full package: 9
Low end: 8
Top end: 9
Steering speed: 8
Turning circle: 7
Power through the turn: 6
Bar pressure: 5.5
Water relaunch: 7
Drift: 8
Boost: 8.5
Hang-time: 6.5
Unhooked: 7.5
Cross-over: 6 – freestyle / wakestyle and boosting.
Ease-of-use: 9 for advanced freestylers / 6 for intermediates.

SIZES: 13 / 11 / 9 & 7m


Here’s the official Choas product video from Cabrinha

Chaos from Cabrinha Kites on Vimeo.


For more information on the Cabrinha Chaos, visit


This test featured in Kiteworld Magazine Issue #81

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