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Formula fun factor
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speedysailor



Joined: 11 Sep 2007
Posts: 841

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LeeD wrote:
Can anyone recommend Formula gear who hasn't tried it?
The sensation is totally different, almost like kiting to windsurfing.
Most formula sailors can barely ride 58 cm slalom boards, taking at least 30 jibes to feel comfortable. OK, some young guys who sail 120+ days a year can make the switch pretty easily.
Do you get 120+ sailing days a year?
You just don't jump from a 120 liter freeride board with a 7.5 and sail away on a Formula board. It's a whole complicated adaptation process, one you start well in advance of your first ride.
Why IS it so different? Well, booms higher by an average of about 8-10" for one thing. Track position forward by at least 4" over a freeride board.
Width of straps easily 2" wider. Boom about 9lbs now. Sail around 14.
Now I"m not saying to poo poo Formula, but this thread was about FUN factor, not whether it planes in lighter winds...it does.
I wouldn't be so discouraging. Formula boards may be hard to sail in an expert way, but I found mine was fun from the start and easy to manage. Sub planing they can be quite enjoyable. I used an 8.0 and could actually jump it in small waves!!! Of course I had a lot of experience with sails sized up to 9.6 before I obtained my Formula board.
LeeD wrote:
Here in Berkeley, land of light winds, Formula with sails 9-11 seem best for 13-28 mph winds. Some of the better guys can handle more, but don't go out if it's averaging 26+ when they show up. They wait for lesser wind.
Even the 200lb'ers on a 9 at gusts of 28 are right at the max limit for any kind of control or fun. It can be done, but only to make it back to shore.
Formula, coupled with one slalom board and one bump board should cover down to 3.5 condition, starting at around 12 mph for little guys or great pumpers.
I would say that you are stretching it quite a bit here. At 240 lbs I could hold onto an 8.4 up to 25 m.p.g. I was recently told I had it up in gusts to 28, but I told the guy that that gust didn't hit me. Finally as to cost, the only piece of equipment that cost me a lot was the carbon boom. My alu was too soft for an 11 meter sail. All my equipment came from Sandy Point. They are the bomb!!! The 11 meter sail only cost $100 and was brand new, but had sat in the warehouse for 6 years or so. The board was used and repaired, but sails well. They even cut me a lot of slack when it came to the shipping costs to Cape Cod.

Last edited by speedysailor on Sat Oct 13, 2012 6:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 1123
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the scale read out in Knots ( say 28 ) then the MPH would have
been even higher (like 32MPH), so your suspicion goes the
wrong direction.

-Craig

speedysailor wrote:
At 240 lbs I could hold onto an 8.4 up to 25 m.p.g. I was recently told I had it up in gusts to 28, but I just didn't believe the guy. I suspected he had a scale in knots and not m.p.g..


Last edited by cgoudie1 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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WindsurfUtah



Joined: 08 Jul 2006
Posts: 86

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, this year I started using a Starboard Formula HWR.
I normally like to attempt freestyle or even light wind freestyle, so this is quit a change for me.
Now when the wind is light I sail the formula board with a 10m cammed sail.

Here are my thoughts:

Formula sailing is it's own beast, it is not free riding. I think it is more like sailing a really fast small sailboat. Not a comparison to big sail freeriding.

Learning curve - many windsurfers have told me they tried Formula but it was too hard, especially downwind sailing. It gets easier with time on the water, and very soon it is really fun to blast deep down wind.

Workout factor - much better workout then the other windsurfing disciplines.

Conditions: if you want to sail in really light wind then consider a Phantom 295 or 380 (long board).

Josh
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13266

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WindsurfUtah wrote:
Workout factor - much better workout then the other windsurfing disciplines.

I presume that's said in jest. I know that holding down 10 meters of sail in 30 mph winds is work, but doesn't proper use of the harness, gravity, and squats in the gym greatly reduce the strength and anaerobic demands? Compare holding down a sail on a broad reach, for example, which fries one leg, to DTL wave sailing or comparable B&J in big terrain, where dang near every muscle in our bodies except maybe our pecs is screaming for more oxygen and fuel most of the time?
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PeconicPuffin



Joined: 07 Jun 2004
Posts: 1137

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Down the line wavesailing in particular, which adds being unhooked (rare agreement with Isobars alert.)

isobars wrote:
WindsurfUtah wrote:
Workout factor - much better workout then the other windsurfing disciplines.

I presume that's said in jest. I know that holding down 10 meters of sail in 30 mph winds is work, but doesn't proper use of the harness, gravity, and squats in the gym greatly reduce the strength and anaerobic demands? Compare holding down a sail on a broad reach, for example, which fries one leg, to DTL wave sailing or comparable B&J in big terrain, where dang near every muscle in our bodies except maybe our pecs is screaming for more oxygen and fuel most of the time?

_________________
Michael
http://www.peconicpuffin.com
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 1247

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

May I point out that my huge Mahalo tandem board loaded with minimal camping gear is also great fun in lightish winds. And boy, does it track upwind with that huge dagger and fin, and heck, neither is it slow when the wind picks up, and .... Why did Summer have to end so abruptly? I get all carried away just ogling the huge beast in the garage.

Dammit, can't wait for next years adventures!!

P.S. What have m.p.g. (miles per gallon) got to do with Brucies formula board? Has it got a hidden motor?
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bred2shred



Joined: 02 May 2000
Posts: 617
Location: Jersey Shore

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, sailing formula gear can be incredibly physical and I would put it as POTENTIALLY on the same level as wave sailing. Just like wave sailing, or any other discipline of windsurfing, it all depends on how hard you want to push yourself. In reality, you can hook in and just cruise on any size gear without breaking a sweat if you want to.

In variable breeze, formula sailing can force you to be very physical by pumping to get on or maintaining a plane (out of the hook of course), constant adjustment for puffs, lulls, and course changes. Yes, it can be very physically demanding and rewarding at the same time, especially when you manage to plane through lulls and jibes that others do not.

Sounds like a lot of assumptions being made in this thread from people that haven't ACTUALLY sailed formula gear. The bottom line is, if you sail in light/variable breeze often, formula gear will get you planing in the straps more consistently than any other type of gear. It will also force you to look around and to visually recognize lulls/puffs/shifts in ways that many high wind only sailors don't. And this will make you a better sailor overall.

sm
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13266

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bred2shred wrote:
visually recognize lulls/puffs/shifts in ways that many high wind only sailors don't.

We don't have to. Strong winds, and Gorge winds in particular, are so steady that fluctuations don't affect our sailing ... unless, of course, one counts those audible, tactile, frequent, instantaneous, square wave, 10:1 power spikes and holes commonly encountered near a shoreline, or when/where the wind doesn't line up with the river, or when it just dang well wants to be gusty, slamming experts into their equipment and dislocating shoulders and breaking ribs. Wink

And don't think, Puffin, that DTL wave sailors have a franchise on sailing unhooked. Most swell sailors do, too.
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LeeD



Joined: 12 Jun 2008
Posts: 969

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

er... there is a SKILL level question floating around here...
Speedy, do you think your skill level is equal to the USNational's GrandMaster's of 2007"s? I doubt you are much better than ME on a Formula board.
Both MikePercy and SteveSylvester used to sail their L-5's thru L-8's in wind gusts well over 32mph, making every jibe no problem on 9 meter sails. I cannot do it, and neither can you. This is deep water, end of a 14 mile fetch. Rec sailors were out on 4.2 sails and 75 liter bump boards.
No exxageration needed.
AlMirel and Sohiel are seen at Crissy duck jibing their 10's, sailing along side rec sailors on 5.0's.
Our pond is pretty big, where we sail.
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LeeD



Joined: 12 Jun 2008
Posts: 969

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As for "physical"....
It depends on your conditioning and the conditions for the equipement you sail in.
Either can kick your butt, when something is not aligned.
Either can be a walk n the park, when everything is dialed.
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