Wingfoiling

General discussions about wingfoiling: equipment, tips, problems, where to go, where you should have been, pump safety.
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MartyD
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Post by MartyD »

Great advice Juan!
I did get down to riding a 40L board(one guy was on a 33L) in the warm water, but I don't think I will do it anywhere but Nitinat. It is an absolute blast and feels amazing, but I don't think I will do it in the ocean here unless conditions are perfect. The reason being that even in warm water and "good" wind, I still got stranded twice drifting for over half an hour. This happened to everyone on tiny boards. It has nothing to do with skill, you just can't do anything in lighter wind.
I am 80kg. 125L LP is a super floater and feels like a barge to me now. I rode a 100L F-one rocket down south and that was still very floaty with lots of balance and forgiveness. 90L rocket was kneelable and easy to.stand on. 55L Stinger was a bit too small, but a lot of fun once up.
I am thinking about 65L would be a nice go to and safer option for me.
F-one Rocket is a very nice board if you can track one down and great for learning in the 100L + range.
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Post by jim mckenzie »

Excellent advice guys and thanks a lot. It's nice to hear from those who have been there.
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Post by smartang »

I'm thinking the same thing as Marty. In clear blue bath temperature water with a nice catch bay downwind I'd be experimenting with low volume boards. A dark grey barnicle covered columbia at 5C and sea lions shouting at me I'll take the quick up 96L (93kg in a wetsuit) every time.

Been studying boards for a while and finally decided to start making my own. I just want too many boards. 90L for cold water and light winds, 75, 50, and some sup foil and something ultra light weight just for trying to sup paddle up onto foil in flat water. After talking with some composite guys I think many pop out boards are way overbuilt, which means weight.

The shapes are quite varied. Some very carved bottom shapes and some high end custom boards being made with no concaves and no tail kick. Armstrong himself on something interesting in the latest high aspect wing video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_VK324c0L4
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Post by juandesooka »

Making your own boards is fun and addictive! I was always too intimidated to build a surfboard, but a foilboard seems easy, as the hydrodynamics matter only minimally (IMHO) since the board spends most of its life above the water.

You won't save much money building surfboards, but you can save a s**tload with wingboards....crazy how expensive they are, relative to materials cost.

Design-wise....Winging started out with SUP foils, but now seems to some divergence and specialization with wing specific designs. This podcast with Gunnar B (indiana boards) had some interesting points around 49mins:

https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/wi ... fay3ZUlDA/

With winging it's all about quick acceleration, he found that his kite racing foil board outperformed all his sups, so built in those designs: flat or vee bottom, mast farther back, flat tail with no step or chine. Makes sense to me....picture doing a wheelie, that's the water start.

Concaves seem controversial these days. Armstrong use them and deeper than anyone, but other designers argue they create suction at low speed and actually inhibit lift. Personally, I think the difference is likely minimal effect either way.
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Post by MartyD »

Juan I can say the concave makes a huge difference. My LP is beveled but no concave and felt fine when I was learning. After riding the double concave F-One rocket it almost felt "greasy" when waterstarting but in a good way. A couple of bounces and the surface tension just seemed to disappear.
When coming back to my LP and trying another 115L board with no concave, it almost felt like they were stuck to the water until I was up
and foiling. I know they have different shapes and weights, but to me it seemed like that was a big one. I may be out to lunch but it seemed to be the big factor.
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Post by juandesooka »

MartyD wrote:Juan I can say the concave makes a huge difference. My LP is beveled but no concave and felt fine when I was learning. After riding the double concave F-One rocket it almost felt "greasy" when waterstarting but in a good way. A couple of bounces and the surface tension just seemed to disappear.
When coming back to my LP and trying another 115L board with no concave, it almost felt like they were stuck to the water until I was up
and foiling. I know they have different shapes and weights, but to me it seemed like that was a big one. I may be out to lunch but it seemed to be the big factor.
That's what I mean about controversial. Lots of reports like yours, and then 100% opposite like this (https://www.supsurfmachines.com/foilsur ... -sup-wz62p):

A wide flat or concave bottom, sucks the life out of a foil board. It sticks, instead of bouncing off the water. A foil board should feel like it is allergic to water. Think about what’s really going on here, we actually foil up “before” our boards ever, have a chance to plane up. So a concave planing bottom does nothing other than create suction and sticking at sub planing speed. Dave Kalama has the same thoughts as I do on this subject. He did a little test to prove it. Check him out on the Progression Project Podcast here https://soundcloud.com/progressionproject

I don't know the answer, but I can say with confidence that both of the definitively opposite viewpoints can't be correct. ;-)
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Post by smartang »

Thanks for the podcast links. Looking forward to some new work headphones listening. So far I'm not saving any money. Just hoarding rolls of carbon and blocks of eps.

Fone has a unique curved rocker and is one of the lightest production boards so that may have helped. Add a 1lb weight to the nose of the rocket wing v2 and I bet it doesn't unstick as quickly. The top F-one foiler (Titouan) has a custom downwind sup foil with no double concaves for early lift as seen on his instagram. Same with Dava Kalamas custom downwind sup foil boards. And wingers don't need anywhere near the ease of takeoff as a downwind sup.

Fanatic makes their light wind wing boards with no concaves for early lift. So clearly it's not for low speed lift.

Maybe the double at the front softens touchdowns on wave faces which is the only time you'll ever touch a board down parallel to the water surface at high speed.

Even though I think they're a placebo, I still want them for some reason.
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Post by juandesooka »

smartang wrote:
Even though I think they're a placebo, I still want them for some reason.
There's no definite proof either way...so go with sexy! Whatever turns that crank is the right answer :-)
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Post by tempy »

Not strictly wingfoiling related .... but my windfoil frankenboards all preform really well without any distinct rocker; chines, bevels or concaves.

I personally think all the hype and tech into the specialized shapes are just that and any marginal value is not felt by a newb like me.

Look at what kitefoil folk are doing - really just bolting a foil to small piece of wood.

To mangle a Lance Armstrong quote: "It is not about the board", but rather ALL about the foil.

The board is a platform for your feet and weight.

My small frankenboard has no rocker. There is no "touchdown". When I breach or come off, my nose pierces the water and comes up again if I adjust my weight correctly.

When I was using both front and back footstraps I would routinely plow into and through the water; hang on, and come up the other side. Or have a spectacular crash!

Without a back strap it is more challenging, but still doable if I get my body in the right place early enough.

Having said that, I haven't winged with the board, even though I have a track installed. Maybe this summer I can borrow a wing and see how it wings.
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Post by UnusuallyLargeRobin »

smartang wrote:Maybe the double at the front softens touchdowns on wave faces which is the only time you'll ever touch a board down parallel to the water surface at high speed.

Even though I think they're a placebo, I still want them for some reason.
That's the theory I've seen from a few shapers, that concave on small boards are there to soften and re-launch/pop the board off the water at speed on splashdowns to keep flying. It seems to work for me on my board (Fanatic SkyWing), there's been many times I've skipped off and kept flying, as long as you don't stuff the board at too great an angle and deep!

They're not there for initial foil flight from standstill. With a proper size foil you get flying way before non-foil board planing speed. With that said, I don't think the bottom shape to get flying is relevant for wing boards, it's more a factor of enough volume to get forward movement without excessive drag ( I.e. a non-sinker), big enough wing to propel you, good pumping technique, wind strength, and a adequate size foil. In combination with all that there seems to a sweetspot factor of length and weight for a board to be able to break surface tension or whatever it is. My 5'0 seems way easier to initiate flight than my longer,wider, heavier 6'6 (both with concaves). It may all be in my head, it's very subjective, and kind of "splitting hairs". If you could put a speed gun on me in both cases it's probably a fraction of km/hr board speed, and a second or two before flight difference (if any)?

As long as you're able to get flying it's all great fun!
Last edited by UnusuallyLargeRobin on Fri Mar 26, 2021 8:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
Me: 85kg(187lbs)
FoilBoards: Fanatic 5'0 SkyWing(75lt); 6'6 BP(116lt); WindSurf: Tabou Pocket Wave (80lt)
Wings: Naish S25 5.3m, 3.6m; Sails: NP Combats
Foils: Axis 1000(1310cm2)/370 rear/short fuse/90cm mast; NP GlideSurf L(1486cm2); BP L(1750cm2)
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Post by grantmac »

You can put me in the camp of thinking there isn't much going on with board shape. My inflatable pool toy seems to get going just fine.

Although I do think having a narrower outline plus some chines to help break the surface tension might help but will also make for a more challenging board to balance.
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Post by smartang »

So for a light wind 90L board keep it flat since a dab at LW speeds shouldn't slow you much.

I'm really liking the one sup wingboard shape for a light wind. Should be an easy shape to copy.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CK2ll5HnTYY ... _copy_link

Then maybe start adding gradual double concave for 75L 15+kn board since it that wind I'm not worried about being able to get on foil. Full spaceship for a 50L
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Post by UnusuallyLargeRobin »

I even seen a few wing board shapers questioning the need for a wedge/kick tail as a wing board primarily uses the wing for forward propulsion to achieve speed and flight. I think it was originally from SUP surf foiling, where the thought was that the back wedge allowed for an easier pivot to lift the front foil angle when weighting the back, and for a wave to have a surface to impart a "push off" and aid in gaining speed for lift off
Me: 85kg(187lbs)
FoilBoards: Fanatic 5'0 SkyWing(75lt); 6'6 BP(116lt); WindSurf: Tabou Pocket Wave (80lt)
Wings: Naish S25 5.3m, 3.6m; Sails: NP Combats
Foils: Axis 1000(1310cm2)/370 rear/short fuse/90cm mast; NP GlideSurf L(1486cm2); BP L(1750cm2)
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Post by grantmac »

The concave deck looks like it would make for a better platform riding strapless.
I agree with ULR that the tail kick is not needed unless trying to take off on a wave.

New Armstrong and Starboard stuff seems to be a bit longer and thinner but with the foil quite forward. Perhaps some waterline length helps and so long as the nose isn't too long you don't lose too much performance?
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Post by juandesooka »

Looks like a simple easy board Smartang. Personally, for a wing-specific board, I am giving extra thought to not angling the tail, as per Gunnar B's suggestion that a flat tail gives leverage for quicker popup. Angled tail is described as more of a sup foil attribute, to better fit into to the curve of the wave face when dropping in (without touching tail and creating drag). I am also going to try a vee nose on next one ... initial testing on my surf foil, seems effective, though hard to identify for sure. (sunova Casey Aviator has super tricked out bottom....but it ends up a v nose)

Robin: I think the magic in that Sky board is the exceptionally large rocker...I was surprised when I measured it, I think it was 5" which is a lot in a 5' board, especially compared to more traditional sup foils. That buys a lot of potential recovery in high speed touchdowns. I think it also helps get the nose out in water starts especially in chop. I ride chop 90% of the time....and it is super frustrating to have the nose dig in just at that tentative almost getting going stage knee starting. I am getting PTSD thinking about the temper tantrums last summer. :evil: :lol:

Tempy: with speed and especially with straps/hooks, I have found that a nose plow touch down can be ridden through. But rocker helps for sure. I have a DIY barge with a 5" flat nose....that thing digging in is pretty much full stop. :oops: I think wing boards are only partially comparable to kite foils.....kiting has power to spare, you can literally ride a cafeteria try or a 2x8. Winging is more just-barely-powered, requires a little more finesse. Even one strand of eel grass on your foil may be enough drag that you can't get up.
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