We test out Mystic’s premium hardshell harness
THIS TEST FIRST APPEARED IN KW #99 IN MAY 2019
Words: Chris Bull
I have lots of harnesses in my life, I’m a lucky boy. Soft shells, hard shells, first versions up to the most recent. In terms of fit, this is the most comfortable I’ve had because, while it’s firm, the Bionic Core frame isn’t totally rigid. I also never have to make adjustments to re-tighten it on the water, which is great when I’m out for a long session. I’ve always found that different manufacturers use different thicknesses of webbing for their straps. Thinner straps make it easy to tighten your harness up very well, but sometimes loosen off after a while on the water and you find yourself having to come in to re-adjust. Mystic never really had this problem, though perhaps they have thickened the straps up a bit, as this year there’s never any slippage and the Majestic stays nice and tight.
Mystic have their own clicker pin system for opening and closing their spreader bar across your body. Super strong and secure, there’s a nice rubber grip on the outside to pinch the pins together and release the spreader bar, making the harness really easy to get on and off. It makes a difference to your experience; clicking together cleanly, is well designed and really strong. The spreader bar also doesn’t ride up into your chest, even when you’re lit with the kite overhead; it secures down in position very well.
The soft edges on the Majestic would make riding it without a wetsuit comfortable. The low profile side sections also tend to cup under your ribs and above your hips well. Generally, for a hard shell, the Majestic experience is quite soft as there’s also a lovely supportive cushion for your back on the inside.
During long sessions on really wind days I have found that some hard shells feel like they’re digging into my kidneys a bit. As the Majestic fit me so well there’s no pressure on my lower back and I’m three months into having lots of sessions with this harness. I’ve got no qualms with it at all and looks like it will last well, too.
Mystic may not have been the first to the hard shell game, but the Majestic is right up there for experience. Great spreader bar design, sturdy, strong build, a very easy-to-access knife and the ideal mix of stiffness and softness. So I’m really happy with that. I also have the pretty green colour and lots of people have commented about wanting one. I’ve had a lot of good feedback, which is always nice.
Overall, it’s about fit, and both Jim (a slim 31 inch waist) and Chris (33) had the same small sized harness and the fit was ideal. Very comfortable feel around the edges but with the firm support of a hardshell in the middle and no slippage during your session. That’s what you want, isn’t it?
Great looking, comfortable and snug.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
Nothing really and it’s available in all sorts of colours!