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Video - Longboards can still be exciting.
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SPQR



Joined: 18 May 2004
Posts: 203

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I never sailed a raceboard, but I learned to windsurf on a standard windsurfer in the late 70's, then a Rocket 99 and then glass short boards and production short boards. Greg, I think it's great you are still sailing your old board. When I read posts by Windward 1 who sails the Santa Cruz area I think even I would be interested in a Kona so I could sail on the outside in the Santa Cruz area. Nice - keep up the stoke.
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 1309

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote. ....'Euro Trash boards are for sailing at weekends, in light breezes, and to look cool atop your car.'

An astounding statement. So that's where I (a Euro trash user) have been going wrong all these years. I'm mortified, and hang my head in shame! Shocked

Please don't attempt to improve on that. I don't want to laugh myself to death next time I'm on one of those extremely boring 10 mile island hops, on my 20+ year old Euro trash Bamba.
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gregnw44



Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 245

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the thoughts – SPQR, w8n4wind, isobars, and gurgletrousers !!!

And zirtaeb… yes, I agree… to each his own.
And thanks, you make some good points.
Regarding some of what you said. I’ll add this novel (sorry) most of which is my own experience and also, things I’ve read that I trust –

My boards (the ones I bought new locally in the Seattle area… and the ones I bought used) have been sailed primarily in freshwater Lk. Washington here in Seattle… and less so, in the Gorge. Yes, we also have lots of saltwater sailing here… but for where I live, it’s most convenient to sail in the lake (or summer hi-wind stuff in the Gorge, 4 hours away).
And windsurfing boards, especially longboards and “even more especially” raceboards (with their adjustable masttracks, big centerboards, finboxes, and SEVERAL footstraps… which is a lot more hardware than a shortboard).. these boards last a LOT longer when they’re used primarily in fresh, not saltwater.
Of course, most the windsurfing in the world, takes place in saltwater. And they’re all built to take that. I’m just saying that longboards used in freshwater will last longer, cause all the constant salt (and sand often near those locations) causes wear and corrosion more than freshwater does. There’s almost no sand at any of our lake beaches… just like most spots in the Gorge where I sail, almost no sand there either.
Also… all my boards have always been stored in the garage. They’re seldom out in UV light. And even though I’ve always been a solid 200#... I try to take care of my gear.
So yes… I think it’s all those reasons, that my boards have lasted so long, and in very good condition.
Certainly, longboards that are sailed mostly in saltwater… and are kept outside more than mine… in locations closer to the equator than Seattle… and maybe used harder than I have… are going to “age” and wear out faster, than mine.

Next – Not that you asked… but you implied… anyway, I’m 55 “years young” Smile
And – Yes, I agree about my video, it does “look boring” sailing in a straight line for a long time. I probably shouldn’t have posted it to iwindsurf. There are so many professional looking, awesome vids with guys doing amazing things. But I’m a very low-tech guy, I’d just bought this used GoPro cam from a friend a couple weeks before “that day”. And I was just playing around with it, trying to learn how to use it. And that day… I was also trying to figure out, how best to use a new-to-me used Retro 10.5M sail. And then, I kinda accidentally started off across Lk. Wash. And it was windier than I planned for, so I ended up crossing the lake OP’d… barely able to stay in control… yet didn’t crash. This is only interesting to some Seattle windsurfers, and certainly not to anyone else in the country. Anyway, I just recently figured out how to edit Gopro stuff a bit.. and how to add music to it. And then, I’d been reading recent iwindsurf posts… and I thought there were a few people that might like to see what a raceboard could do.
So many people say… longboards are just for beginners… and I disagree with that. And then, there was a thread about how poorly the new longboards are being built. And how they just don’t last. So, I decided to post it… to try and show another perspective and some more info for newer sailors.
Anyway, yes… the circumstances around that vid (which I explain in it and other vids) are only maybe interesting, to “some” Seattle sailors… so, in the big picture… I shouldn’t have posted it. (It’s certainly low-tech amateur hour, compared to the very cool vids that are everywhere. And yes, I know that Smile

Next -
You said… “And build quality, are you kidding me? Every finbox, every mastrack, every gasket, some footstrap plugs, most daggerboard wells, FAIL, within one season. Not to mention split seams, delamed decks, ......
I was 145 lbs mostly in those days. I guess I"m just to strong and big for those euro trash boards to hold up.
And amongst the BayArea raceboard crew, we all were constantly working on the underbuilt overhyped long boards.”

Well, I respect your opinion… and you’re entitled to it. But I always question “absolute statements” like this. “Every (so and so)… FAILS within one season.”
Sorry… I just don’t believe that. Unless, maybe you’re talking about 80’s boards… cause yes, those did not hold up in hi-winds. But I think I was pretty clear in my posts, I’m talking about raceboards built between ’91 and ’95. Brad Duffy’s not going to break, an off the shelf, Bamba, MegaCat, Equipe (regular model), or Lightning built during those years (I’m not talking about other smaller brands.) Although yeah, if he raced it a lot at Crissy… yeah, he’d sure wear it out faster than the average guy sailing most places in the world. Also, if he was sponsored by Mistral in the 90's and they gave him a very light Carbon XR Equipe. And he raced it on a Nukin’ Crissy day… and you told me he broke one once. I’d believe you. But that’s not a normal situation.
I’ve only been able to sail in your area one time (but would love to come back)… it was for the US National’s in 1990 at Crissy Field (I think it was July). Tons of competitors from all over. It was prime-time Crissy I suppose… very WINDY all week. And yeah… I get it… those conditions, in that place, is going to be hard on gear.
The Gorge is also very hard on gear. But I think the Bay area would possibly be tougher in some ways, because you can have some very windy days… and the saltwater and sand… more UV… and a much longer sailing season. All that, would really wear out gear for an avid sailor. Anyway, I don’t live in the Gorge… I only visit there a couple times a summer. And sailing in Seattle, is NOTHING like the wear and tear you’d get in the Bay area.

But you and I don’t agree, on the “build quality” that I was talking about in my earlier posts. And that’s fine. (Unless it was a misunderstanding, cause I was talking about early – mid 90’s boards. And maybe you’re talking about 80’s boards… cause then, we’re not so far apart.
Anyway, here’s why I still believe what I said… even with your Bay area expertise comments. There have been several threads on iwindsurf and on other forums around the world, this week, and in the recent years… where people have purchased expensive new boards from the biggest, most popular, current board builders. And many of them have had the horrible problems that you mention above, on their new prized boards. Most all these folks aren’t in the Bay area. They are using these boards in normal conditions, and they are having these issues with brand new boards. For example, boards out of the box, with centerboard gaskets that don’t allow the CB to be extended. And if you can… then you can’t retract it later. And other CB gaskets… that fall off in less than a year.
I have followed many of these threads in recent years, cause I’d like to buy a new raceboard. But will not, for now. I’m lucky I don’t have to, since I have a good “old” one. But there are many around the world, that want a raceboard, so they buy a new one. And then immediately have issues with it.
And what’s amazing is… there are so few windsurfers sold these days… compared to ’85 to ’95. It’s amazing that it seems almost all the new raceboards sold, have some issues.
I’m sure there were some issues with some boards, back then as well. But, there were many thousands of raceboards made during those years… and I never heard of major issues with new boards (from the 90’s).

I’ve read here recently… you telling others in some posts about your incredible involvement and in-depth experience in our cool sport. And that’s great… you should put the most important parts of it, in your “profile signature”… so others know right away, about your background. It would give your answers more credence… and you wouldn’t have to explain it.
Anyway, I was also very involved in the industry… no, NOT to your level. But much more than the average windsurfer. And I just don’t remember hearing about all the problems, that you say were so common. Perhaps they were in the Bay area… but not world wide.
More proof about build quality, is what I said in my original post. It’s all true.
More proof – In Europe, raceboard racing still goes on. And the new hi-tech designed raceboards from the big current brands do very well (after all their issues are fixed). But what’s amazing is, how many 90's boards are right up there in the top 5 and top 10 and 20 places. There aren’t very many sports, where… current, fit, highly skilled, very close athletic competitors… could compete against each other on the same course, venue, at the same time… and even “be in the same ballpark” using 20 year old gear against brand new gear. The fact that this gear has lasted… and is in good enough shape… and can still be competitive is incredible.
More proof – Here in Seattle, we have a little longboard race series (this one, is in saltwater) that still goes on (but nothing like it was, “back in the day”). And there are no new raceboards (cause no one’s bought one yet). All the boards used, are around 20 years old. None of them have any reliability issues… they just keep on working. If we had all bought new, current longboards in the last couple years… (from my research) the majority of us, would’ve had some quality or function issue with them.
Last one Smile Two years ago in Aug, I went to Oslo Norway to visit relatives. While I was there, I met up with the Oslo Windsurfing Club. (Note – All their sailing is in saltwater, BUT they have a very short season and not much UV there.) Anyway, it’s a very alive and well attended group. They are very active, have lots of events… it’s very big group (for these days)… and they use lots of longboards and FW and shortboards there. They have a ton of early to mid 90’s raceboards. They also have members that have purchased the new longboards. And not all, but many of them have had issues. Meanwhile their 20 year old raceboards, just keep on going.
I’m sure that you don’t care one bit about all this. I’m only writing it all, since you made some authoritative statements that I don’t think are true. Or, if they are somewhat true for the Bay area… they aren’t true for the rest of the world, for sure.
Or, if we’ve had a mix-up.. and you were talking about some 80’s boards not holding up to lots of hi-wind use… while I was saying that raceboards from ’91 – ’95 were well built reliable boards. Then yes… we’re mostly talking about “apples to oranges” cause they’re very different.
Sorry for the novel.
I gotta go hang up my sail now. Today was a very rare hi-wind day in Seattle. Sunny and 50* and windy 25 to 35 all day… but geez, Lk. Wa. is still freezing. And I (200#) sailed like crap… although it was fun to be on a 83L board with a 5M sail, so close to home… without driving 4 hours to Hood River.
Greg Smile
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gregnw44



Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 245

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gurgle... That's great that you're still sailing your Bamba once in a while!

I have a lot of miles on Bamba's Smile
I was sailing for Bic back then (no, not a big national deal, just a small local deal)... and (besides all the other boards)... I had every model year of the Bamba... from '89 through '94.
I know them very well, and was still using my '94 Bamba up till 2008 (and that's when I bought the '93 Lightning in the vid).
Back then, I was also on the water with all the other popular boards during those years... and reading everything... and giving clinics... running races, etc. But was mostly on Bic and UP (Ultra Profile) products.

And no... none of those early to mid 90's... big brand, quality boards were "trash". I mean, sure... in a certain competition, in a certain location, a local shaper could build a board that could be better. But for an all round, world-wide, well built product, that might not be the best at one certain thing... but would do many things "pretty darn well"... those boards were very good. And they still are.
Greg Smile

PS - BTW... I am not saying that new boards suck !! No, not at all. Most of the new boards are awesome. And there are some new moves, that you can do on windsurfers now, that you couldn't do years ago. And that's because of new designs.
* All I'm saying is, that not all longboards are beginner boards.
* And, some of the boards from the 90's can still be VERY fun these days. And depending on what someone wants, one of those boards might just be the "right thing".
* And that, many of the major 90's boards were very well built. More reliable, and functional and with better quality than many of the new boards. Again, how many current boards will still be fun and functional to sail 20 years from now. Because if you know what to look for, you can find some very good 20 year old boards on ebay or craigslist, that can be very fun and reliable for certain people.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13804

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gregnw44 wrote:
The Gorge is also very hard on gear. But I think the Bay area would possibly be tougher in some ways, because you can have some very windy days… and the saltwater and sand… more UV… and a much longer sailing season. All that, would really wear out gear for an avid sailor. Anyway, I don’t live in the Gorge… I only visit there a couple times a summer. And sailing in Seattle, is NOTHING like the wear and tear you’d get in the Bay area.

But you and I don’t agree, on the “build quality” ... I was talking about early – mid 90’s boards. And maybe you’re talking about 80’s boards… cause then, we’re not so far apart.

All my longboards were early 80s. When I mentioned to my Mistral dealer that my Comp had "bun dings" from throwing both legs out to the side and dropping onto my butt on the deck (the things we do to relieve boredom!), he refused to believe it. I called him over to my board on the beach, pointed at it, and said, "Believe it". He looked at the pair of dents, looked at my butt, shook his head and laughed, and said, "I believe it". They were purely cosmetic, so they stayed, and after a few more such whacks the impacts got even softer.

I do the same thing on short boards when they hit a vacuum and start sinking, but I make (DAMNED!) sure I clear the tail of the board rather than landing on the deck. Some board tails might take a spreadeagled hit in stride, but *I* wouldn't!

Sounds like you might want to get to the Gorge more often. Its season is comparable to, maybe longer than, the Bay's; it probably gets more uv (at least east of HR); and it probably gets stronger winds more often.

BTW ... as you've said and apologized for, your posts are reeleyreeley long. HOWEVER, I'd rather read yours than your closest competitor's, because you have not yet called everyone a racist, distorted or totally rewritten everything they say, or dodged questions, and you add to, rather than detract from, the stoke. Keep it up.

Mike \m/
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 1309

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greg. .... It really is good to hear somebody enthusing about Bambas, and Bic. As you say, they certainly made an astonishing step up in the very late 80's, and through the 90's with their Ace-Tec/Race-Tec construction and fittings. (Even if they wouldn't fit a carbon dagger board.)

My board is the first of the Mike Eskimo psychedelic graphic batch (it grew on me Laughing ) and, as you know, I neglected to ever remove the mast track to check for corrosion around the alloy screw holes, with obvious result. That is refixed, and will be on the regular check list in future.

With your in depth knowledge of all the Bamba models, what is your advice with regard to checking the fin box security? Mine has the black racing fin in the alloy box, and since it has never ever shown any looseness or movement I've always just left it alone. Should I remove the fin and check, and if so what should I look for?

I will never part with the Bamba. I know it's not the greatest board in the world but it holds many happy memories of hotly fought (and cursed at) club racing sessions, and scores of great island circlings, when you were never quite sure of what you would be faced with around the next headland.

Stepping on that board at the start of a cruise is like like going back in time for me, and I don't care what others say, we NEED to remain connected to our past!
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2292

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, keep your head under the sand, the world is nice and peachy from that point of view.
Those early '90's raceboards never got better. I know a 74 year old who had track, insert, split seams, finbox problems with the big Equipe, switched to Mega, and had almost all the same problems.
You must just sail 20 days a year, and never in 20mph averages.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2292

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And what I say is not conjecture, wishing, or thinking, it's EXPERIENCE, which you don't have, in real world windsurfing venues, and the EXPERIENCE of over 30 other racers, who use their longboards only 1/3 of the season.
I'm not one with little experience in the matter. I worked at the biggest Mistral dealer in NorthAmerica, which owned 3 stores. The Mistral rep kept me in boards to race on, usually 3 of the same each season. My buds included several Mistral team riders, a couple of Fanatic riders, including long time bud Buck (the rep), and Bic rider's. The F2 riders worked at a rival shop, were friends and practice partners.
But keep your head in the sand, it's better that way.
And don't ever believe a guy who's got 15 years experience with raceboards.
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DelCarpenter



Joined: 06 Nov 2008
Posts: 164
Location: Cedar Falls, IA

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gregnw44, thanks for the video and the long posts. (I'm looking forward to a longboard video approaching the skyline of Seattle.)

Windsurfing is many different sports: longboard sailing, wave sailing, bump & jump, slalom racing, formula racing, longboard (raceboard) racing, plus at least three current varieties of one design racing. I also count the use of a windsurfing sail rig on different surfaces, adding ice sailing, snow sailing, & land sailing. Thats 12 different windsurfing sports. Not all of them are as different as baseball & softball. They are different enough that I use 6 distinct varieties of "boards" in my practice of windsurfing. We have the huge variety of windsurfing equipment because the conditions and the sport are so varied.

My favorite windsurfing "boards" are a Kona One Design (it helps me be more competitive in racing) and a Mongoose mountain board for land sailing (which greatly increases my "sailing" time in cold weather).
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SPQR



Joined: 18 May 2004
Posts: 203

PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Del, what characterics on the Kona One make you prefer it? Dan Weiss above has made some interesting comments above. How are Kona One's in general for durability?
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