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mrchocky



Joined: 14 Jul 2012
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 11:31 am    Post subject: Board for girlfriend? Reply with quote

My gf is keen to try windsurfing this season. That's great, but to put it delicately, she is a big girl (the physical demands may help improve on that). So first order of business is where can I find a suitable wetsuit? (she is a very strong swimmer)

Second, what board should I be looking for? The 130L I started on (and I wasn't a 100% noob even with that) is almost certainly too small. A local guy had a Starboard Go 180L, but his reluctance in naming a price, and rejection of my offers suggests to me he didn't really want to give it up. (I'm not against paying a fair price, wasn't trying to push a bargain).

I can't see anything even remotely similar on ebay/CL/here right now. Of course, the other option is to join local sailing club (Berkeley, CSC) and use their boards, and get the use of their gear.

Finally, I may also want to put my son on the same board later in the year (will be 9) with a kid's rig. 180L seems about the right size where a kid wouldn't have to worry too much about balance, etc.

Thanks in anticipation. You guys have always been helpful.
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jayturcot



Joined: 08 Mar 2004
Posts: 71

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Personally, if I were trying to progress some individuals, I'd lean a bit smaller and go for a wider 160L shape.. and rent at Alameda/Berkeley for the first day or three.
If I was taking different non-windsurfers out on a regular basis, I'd go 180L.

Unless there is an issue with getting to / sailing out of Berkeley I'd definitely recommend a club setting; either that or renting (Alameda is a good learning locale).

Why?
The progression of the ideal board/sail to use happens very quickly at the start. Sizing up / down sails for the current conditions is invaluable.
If your student is struggling one day, for any reason throw them on a bigger board. Time spent sailing (and not struggling) should be maximized!
Being around others learning can also be fun just from a social point of view (or a detriment if they don't like an audience, which can be a concern for some students).

I taught a club similar to CSC for 3 years and probably showed ~100 people how to get from uphauling the sail their first time to windsurfing comfortably upwind/downwind. Our conditions were way less than here, days with 3-4 up to 15.
We had 200L boards, 185L and 160L boards, but not enough to go around.

160L made for a tougher first day so I'd throw the macho guys on that. 185L/200L for heavier / weaker beginners... to maximize time spent on the board with a sail in their hands until they learn to use the sail to help balance
By the 3rd session most could handle the 160L, though some preferred the 200L.

Aside:
Light light wind days (like 3-5 mpg) are surprisingly helpful for teaching as to get the board to respond, you have to exaggerate sail steering... beginners can focus on good sail positioning and how the board responds without having to fight. Downside, if it's so light that there's no pressure, they can get turned around easily and backwinded.

Also... showing them that even as a beginner, there are days that are just too light (wishing for more wind) is a fun sentiment to share early on.
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 1128
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Board for girlfriend? Reply with quote

Well Mr Chocky, since you were delicate, I'm going to indelicately
guess that your GF weighs in around 200 lbs, since I sail with a
couple of women in the 160 lb range, and they're both pretty svelte
(and tall). I would call Promotion http://www.wetsuit.com/
I am sort of a twig man, and these guys have tailored suits to me
in the past, but you'll have to actually talk to them to see what they
are willing to do.

Or, try these guys http://www.liquidfit.com/

Or stick custom wetsuit in your search bar and have 10 or 20 possibilities.

I think a good wetsuit fit is important to a good windsurfing experience,
which means I have to try the suit on, but you may not be blessed with
the options I am, and may just have to throw measurements into the
wind (so to speak).

A 180 ltr Go is a great choice, and there are a lot of similar
possibilities for new beginner boards out there, but I almost
always recommend an old long board if you are on a budget.
Something like a Mistral Equipe, or a Fanatic Mega Cat can
be used to learn on , and can be pretty fun in wind as well if
you retract the dagger board. The issue learning on a longboard
is that they are a bit tippier than a Go, and the don't turn around
as easily. I'd look at anything upwards of 180 ltrs with a dagger board
as a possible learning platform for your GF and your son (though
your son could get away with something much smaller). Even a big
Kona could work, and you might even use that if you have some
wave action close.

Just my .02

-Craig





mrchocky wrote:
My gf is keen to try windsurfing this season. That's great, but to put it delicately, she is a big girl (the physical demands may help improve on that). So first order of business is where can I find a suitable wetsuit? (she is a very strong swimmer)

Second, what board should I be looking for? The 130L I started on (and I wasn't a 100% noob even with that) is almost certainly too small. A local guy had a Starboard Go 180L, but his reluctance in naming a price, and rejection of my offers suggests to me he didn't really want to give it up. (I'm not against paying a fair price, wasn't trying to push a bargain).

I can't see anything even remotely similar on ebay/CL/here right now. Of course, the other option is to join local sailing club (Berkeley, CSC) and use their boards, and get the use of their gear.

Finally, I may also want to put my son on the same board later in the year (will be 9) with a kid's rig. 180L seems about the right size where a kid wouldn't have to worry too much about balance, etc.

Thanks in anticipation. You guys have always been helpful.
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mrchocky



Joined: 14 Jul 2012
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All appreciated. it's definitely more than 200lbs, but I'll look at the custom options for wetsuits. Or maybe someone's used one on ebay just to start out with.

Assuming I did get a 160/180L board, and assuming price isn't a particular problem (although I don't want to pay $1000+ for a brand new one), can someone point me at likely ones available for sale somewhere, since I sure can't see anything obvious.
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adywind



Joined: 08 Jan 2012
Posts: 201

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you considered a SUP? My own observations are that in general women are way more attracted to SUPs /simplicity? Easier to row and chat ? Smile/ . They are better for exercising and inflict less pain, many have the option to stick a rig in them. Downside- expensive Sad! May be the better long term investment after all.
PS: talking from my own expirience with my wife and observations at the local beaches.



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Last edited by adywind on Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 1128
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You definitely want at least 180 and a center board.

At the Naish pro center they have a rental 2009 Kailua 230, which
probably has a center board for $599 it's about 1/2 way down the page,
and would be a deal if they would ship it state side for free http://naishmaui.com/shopcontent.asp?type=specials

or there are lots of possibilities here

http://www.windsurfingclassifieds.com/Forms/processsearch.asp?Page=4&Type=Boards&Search=WHERE+%28+Gear%2EStatus%3C%3E%27DISABLED%27%29&Sort1=Volume&Sort2=Make&Sort3=Model

-Craig




mrchocky wrote:
All appreciated. it's definitely more than 200lbs, but I'll look at the custom options for wetsuits. Or maybe someone's used one on ebay just to start out with.

Assuming I did get a 160/180L board, and assuming price isn't a particular problem (although I don't want to pay $1000+ for a brand new one), can someone point me at likely ones available for sale somewhere, since I sure can't see anything obvious.
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mrchocky



Joined: 14 Jul 2012
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

adywind wrote:
Have you considered a SUP? My own observations are that in general women are way more attracted to SUPs /simplicity? Easier to row and chat ? Smile/ . They are better for exercising and inflict less pain, many have the option to stick a rig in them. Downside- expensive Sad! May be the better long term investment after all.
PS: talking from my own expirience with my wife and observations at the local beaches.


Right, yes. The interwebs have it that SUPs as windsurfers aren't so hot - tendency to go downwind, and I think a typical one is just a bit too big for my storage. Plus they are inded more expensive and/or the choices on 2nd hand with mounts seem very limited. I'm not ruling it out, but I don't think it's what I want to go towards.
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jayturcot



Joined: 08 Mar 2004
Posts: 71

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 230 Kailua would be a great deal.
And seconded on the : make sure it has a centerboard.

Before putting $ down for a board, head out and rent somewhere.
You'll pretty quickly see what she likes / doesn't in terms of volume. I'd lean on the larger volume side (180+).
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 13317

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't forget that a wetsuit doesn't need to be skintight and formfit. As long as the openings are snug enough to stop water flow, extra room in the rest of the suit means comfort and easy on/off. I buy my neoprene dry suits way oversize just for those reasons ... a Promotion XXL Short for my 5'-8.5" and 190-205#, with emphasis on chest and shoulders. The extra leg length in the suit (my legs are short) is not a problem.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2151

PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cal Sailing Club is still 75 per THREE months, or 25 per.
They have that 230 Naish board, like 5 of them.
They teach beginners on Sat. at 10:30 as part of the membership, so she can start with other beginners.
They are open 7 days a week, from noon to dark on weekdays, from 9 till dark on weekends.
And you don't have to transport that big board, store it, or guard it.
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