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Freeride Boards for a Newbie
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tmonty



Joined: 10 Sep 2012
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understand what you all are saying about the learning curve being somewhat steep, but I also believe that everyone is different. For example, I didn't mention that I have been on a windsurfer before because I don't feel that going out on Sandals' Mistrals over the period of a week as giving me experience. I will admit also that I found it quite easy to pick up, but will say that the boards were probably in the 10' long range and the sails were probably no bigger than 6's. So to me, being a newbie, that tells me that there was a lot of volume that will remain under powered for those of us that travel down to Jamaica for a vacation so as we don't kill ourselves going out on these things with no experience.

So from what I read here, it seems that most of you would recommend getting some older/bigger equipment to learn on. I can understand those thoughts, but I think I would rather struggle with the equipment that I would end up riding for years to come than to learn on something that may be easier, but then have to relearn how to ride something completely different again when it came time to transition up to the more high performance free ride boards.

At this point, I think I will start looking at the Carve 151 or 171 and the Shark 165.

And as far as kiteboarding being way easier than windsurfing...maybe so, maybe not. All you have to do is imagine your sail attached to 25m lines 20 feet above the water...I think that paints that difficulty in kiteboarding for most. It isn't always easy to concentrate on the water conditions while having something that is 25m away from you flying through the air. That isn't to say that windsurfing isn't difficult either, I'm just saying.

All in all, at the end of the day, it's just about being out on the water where we all like to be!
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KevinDo



Joined: 02 Jul 2012
Posts: 336
Location: Cabrillo Inside

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with the others. Don't want to see a nice board get too dinged on the front when you learn to plan Very Happy. I windsurfed several times at resorts before buying my own gear. Got way to ambitious and had to get an easier board to learn on Very Happy
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speedysailor



Joined: 11 Sep 2007
Posts: 841

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tmonty wrote:

So from what I read here, it seems that most of you would recommend getting some older/bigger equipment to learn on. I can understand those thoughts, but I think I would rather struggle with the equipment that I would end up riding for years to come than to learn on something that may be easier, but then have to relearn how to ride something completely different again when it came time to transition up to the more high performance free ride boards.

At this point, I think I will start looking at the Carve 151 or 171 and the Shark 165.

These guys do know the sport of windsurfing, tmonty. Kiters start out learning how to fly the kite, not how to stand on a board. Now, a kiter may not spend enough time with trainers as he or she should (I suspect it's more the he's and less the she's), but they do bring the board out only after they can do some body dragging. It's really the opposite for windsurfing. You might do better with a SUP at first as it gives the rider a sense of how to balance without holding onto a support like a kite. At 200 lbs I started out with a big, stable 12 footer, had fun, got bored and sold it after a year or two. That is the best way to start i.e. with a beginner board not something you expect to ride for years to come. Boards designed for beginners are not only much stabler than Freeride boards, they are much more durable. The fact would be that not only will you struggle with your Carve or Shark, you will fail to learn anything with it (Excepting how to eat crow) and will probably destroy it. Now, when I first started selling sporting goods (and I'm retired now), I was told that most men over-estimate their ability and most women under-estimate theirs. You may fall in that cloudy middle area between men and women, but I suspect you aren't much different than the average guy.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13265

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably one of Speedysailor's finest, most accurate posts ever, tmonty, and it saved me some typing. Even if you are far superior to the average WSing student, pay attention or you will regret it, guaranteed. Do you have ANY idea how many hundreds of man-years of WSing are represented here? We've seen 150-pound ranked professional windsurfers using exactly the giant boards you should start on to practice their freestyle when the wind was too light to plane in on the gear you're aiming for.

How would you like your crow cooked?
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tmonty



Joined: 10 Sep 2012
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, ok, I get it. I joined this site and posted to hear the truth and I believe by golly that I've heard the truth. LOL.

It leads me to a question of another nature now then...sails. Not sure if I stated it prior in my post or not, but I am looking at the North Sails S-Type for sails. I know they make a quality product and I won't have the ability, like most, to just buy sail after sail trying things out. So the question now is, if I buy new sails like the North's, will they work with the older boards?

Second question, please give me some ideas on boards you would buy or at least look for if you were in my position?

Again, thank you for the responses...I wouldn't have asked if I didn't want to hear the answers.
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tmonty



Joined: 10 Sep 2012
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 5:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What about the Starboard Start?
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 5433

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like to clarify my earlier comments. When I stressed getting a little time in on a beginner's rig, I meant renting something, especially since you mentioned having a friend that was focused on teaching and learning skills.

As far as the North S Types you were mentioning, they undoubtedly would be good sails for you once you've got some time under your belt, sails that big in the beginning would be frustrating. Now, I'm not suggesting that you go out and spent a lot on a beginner board and small sails (maybe 5.7-6.0 for you), I would reach out to the windsurfing community in your area for a little support. I think most would lend you an older sail that would be suitable for learning. I know I would.

One thing that would be good for you is to consider looking for good components that will serve you well over the long term. What I'm talking about is the universal, mast extension and boom. Of course, a boom suitable for the 7.8-9.5 range isn't going to be viable with sails in the 5.7-6.0 range, so again borrowing or renting a smaller boom would be best for initial learning. You would be surprised how much support you can receive offering a 6 or 12 pack of good brew.

Lastly, I'm glad you're now considering a wider/higher volume board. Believe me, you won't regret it in the long run. However, it should be emphasized that boards of the same line often come in different constructions. If I were you, I would buy the more durable construction for now. While it will be a bit heavier, it will more reliably stand up to the punishment of learning, and it will cost less overall. Trust me, you won't really notice or appreciate the difference in the first few years. The important focus is a good performance design.


Last edited by swchandler on Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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beaglebuddy



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 500

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It makes no sense in my opinion to buy a brand new beginner type board, it's gonna get all dinged up.
Buy a used one and you can likely sell it for exactly what you bought it for, that is if you ever want to sell it.
Where do you live? If there is a place that gives lessons somewhere nearby they probably have old beginner gear they would sell you for cheap.
I would hold off on buying new sails because you will need a tiny sail at first then after a while you will have a much better idea of what EXACTLY you want and need.
You can also have a board repair guy slap a mast track in a SUP for about $100, so if you already have a SUP that will get you going really cheap, that's what I did and the board is still useful for goofing around in little waves.
You need a board you can uphaul, well over 200L.
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tmonty



Joined: 10 Sep 2012
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I completely agree that buying a carbon board would be not a wise decision for my first board and probably even second board. I usually spend my money pretty wisely and although I love technology, I would always choose the tougher layup for a board over the lighter/cooler looking factor of the carbon layup.

With respect to the sail question/comment, I am simply looking to purchase sails that I would keep and use for a few years. I have the money to spend, but I also have a family that I need to take care of too, so I typically try and keep the selfish spenditures down on my part. Hence the reason why I would more than likely buy two size sails and one board. I know having quivers is good, but again, family comes first. That is why I am asking because I want to basically just make one purchase of gear.

As far as renting goes...my friend is from the South and I only see him about three times a year. Up here in Michigan, I haven't really come across anyone that teaches. There are some websites for clubs and such, but most of them haven't been updated for years. I think the closest lessons would be about 5 hours North of where I live up in Traverse City. Kiteboarding has pretty much taken over the Great Lakes State. In other words, I don't really have the opportunity to rent gear or even try stuff out. If you look back at a previous post in this thread, I asked where I can even purchase the gear here in the States? It seems there is only about 3 websites that actually have current inventory or even the ability to purchase online. And most of them are only selling older equipment, which isn't a bad thing, but it seems that they aren't updating their equipment for whatever reason.

Thanks
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beaglebuddy



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 500

PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is how WS compares with KS, it takes quite a bit of work and practice to actually get underway on a KS board, but once that hurdle is cleared you can advance fairly quickly and easily.
WS is the opposite, most anyone can get underway on a small sail and big board the first day but progressing into planing on a smaller board and bigger sail in the footstraps is a very high hurdle to clear.
On those little boards you are talking about skipping uphauling and going straight into waterstarting and at 250 Lbs you will probably need 20 knots wind.
From what I understand one can KS down to about 8 knots, in the harness being perhaps partially on a plane.
WS at 8 knots you are slogging, probably not in the harness and holding the sail up with your arms, not a lot of fun.
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