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Old 01-09-2008, 09:19 PM
zenlikeme zenlikeme is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 36
Default Bored advice???

Bored? Ha.. well, I could use advice on that as well. But really, what I'm really needing is "board" advice. I have been riding a LF drop 136. I don't necessarily have any complaints against it but it was miserable learning to stay upwind. I think it might have too much rocker and may be too stiff. I think this probably comes from the fact that LF has predominately been a wakeboard company (though I know that they have seperate divisions for wake and kiting). Though I can now stay upwind on it... alot of the time that means just holding ground (unless I'm really really powered up and even then it's a ton of work).

I recently borrowed a friends Best float and noticed no improvement in upwind ability... granted I was underpowered and only made a few tacks with it. But was surprised because this was after riding my drop and I expected at least some improvement.

Here's the thing... Steve S (kite-4-life) lent me a board a couple of months ago for a session. Granted I was fully powered (and overpowered at times), but I was shooting upwind on it. Actually, I found that I had to intentionally direct myself downwind just to get back to my landing. I believe it was an Underground board but no idea of the model or dimensions (haven't had a chance to talk with him since).

So, even though I haven't tried to many boards, I'm convinced I need an additional board. I'm sold on the idea to tell you the truth. So I'm wondering what advice you guys have for our conditions. I'm really starting to get into the flat water riding but don't want something that can't handle the chop/mush.

I'll also welcome any advice on how to avoid the boredom of this season
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:22 PM
inferno's Avatar
inferno inferno is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: depends on where I land
Posts: 1,675

thats simple, keep the Drop for the waves and big chop, as for flat water riding.....
scott, would like to give him your recommendation (im thinking the blue one )
handle passes are easy...
at least i think they were.. been so long i cant remember
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Old 01-09-2008, 10:00 PM
Skyway Scott
Posts: n/a

No more blue ones. Sold out.
I think the last 130 went for 435.

I heard a guy got one on Ebay for 389!

I think that many of the new boards are getting awesome too, Zen.
More so than a kite, imo, a good board will make a huge difference in your ability to go upwind and get on plane, even as a new rider.
I have always placed more importance on the board than the kite, especially for going upwind or riding in marginal winds. It's a no brainer.
The analogy is putting a 200 Merc on a hull with barnacles on it.
You aint going anywhere, fast. Now put a 125 on a polished cat-hull.... zooom!.

The board makes a difference, for sure.

Buying a truly cheap board and not having a good one is wasting 200 bucks.
You will end up getting rid of it in hopes for a real board that feels nice and performs well.

My recommendation is to put a candle under Tom's ass and get one of his boards for 375 (or whatever he charges, complete). His boards are basically knockoffs of some of the best boards that people let him template. He has one that Colin is riding that is simply awesome. It's too bad Tom has limited time and can't make more than he does.

If you liked that Best Float, wait til you ride Danny's or some other guys boards! The Float is really good btw, but man... some of the 07 boards are like riding butter. It's amazing. And they will let you ride upwind and do other stuff easier than on many 05 boards, imo.
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Old 01-09-2008, 10:07 PM
zenlikeme zenlikeme is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 36

I'd def like to check out what Tom has got going on... actually been playing with making boards myself and noticed on a posting that he's already at it! Figure I could use a good proven board though until I catch up with Tom
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Old 01-10-2008, 09:23 AM
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bryanleighty bryanleighty is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: St. Petersburg, FL
Posts: 1,359

best has that new spark (or something like that).. think its pretty cheap..
there was a forum post about this by Tom w/ links to buy from a local rider (try to buy local if you can.. keep the funds cycling in our community)

that being said.. i LOVE my skywalker dimitri pro.. its perfect in size 130x40 and has minimal rocker and slight concave.

perfect for the flatwater / chop riding that i prefer..

if you love the waves.. its probably not the style you want to go for..

considering that 80% of the riding i do is at the skyway, backside, lassing or EB.. its a perfect board for me.

most boards that folks are raving about these days have these similar dimensions and characteristics.. the skywalkers have a bit more flex than some like.. but that eats up the chop on those nuking days that the skyway.. (anyone remember those...?????)
Your mother flies a C-kite.

Area Launches:
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Old 01-10-2008, 09:38 AM
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kite-4-life kite-4-life is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 195

Zen- The board you were on is a Skywalker Riders Series (RS)138, its a little narrower than the Dimitri Pro and almost a pound lighter. Its about 100 bux cheaper and also available in a 144. (Its a great all around board for the money, ask Toby for a current price.) This is my "high wind" board and I usually dont break it out unless its windy (over 20)
For going upwind, I prefer the SS Glide, and yes, I sleep with it every night....(not kidding) I have used and abused this board for 3 seasons and will be looking for another one if anything ever happens to it.
The board is important as Scott says, but I think proper technique plays a big role in upwind ability also, especially when its really light. Hard to explain, but here ya go:
Building board speed is step 1, so dive the kite hard and point slightly downwind when water starting. Think of your front foot as the gas pedal and back foot as the brake. The downstroke is where you want to get power and upstroke is speed. On the UPSTROKE come off your edge a little to build speed by pressing on your front foot, and ease back into your edge before the downstroke.(*always maintain tension in your lines, and if you're going to give up ground, do it on the upstroke.) Dont kill your speed by turning too far upwind, make sure to ease into your edge.

Shoulders/hips pointed slightly upwind. Find a point to focus on thats slightly more upwind of where you want to go.
Keep front leg straight with toes pointing up and 70% of your weight on back foot. Once you are cruising,(kite parked on edge of window) you can shift your front hip forward and down to turn more upwind. Pressing straight downwards on the bar(towards the board) seems to give more upwind ability by lowering the center of gravity and giving more edge pressure. If you start "schlogging" press on front foot a little(steer downwind) until you get back up to speed.
Kite position should be at 45 degrees or less, and keep in mind that a kite sitting more forward in the window will give better upwind performance. Some kites are better at this than others, so try different kites and experiment with the trim systems on each to find what works best.
Like I said, this is hard to explain on paper, but I would be happy to show you on the water and let you try some different kites/boards.
Smack Talk:
I am still wanting to have an informal "light wind challenge" if anyone's interested.(my current W.M.D.=15m Vicious/Glide/180lbs.)If you are heavier than me, I will wear a backpack full of slim fast to make it fair! bring it, beeotchezzz-
(Just kidding everyone, just trying to bring back a little fun to the forum!)
Steve Sadler
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Old 01-10-2008, 09:55 AM
Whitey Whitey is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 263

I'll give it a try Steve. But your gonna need a pfd to keep your ass above water with two cases of slim fast in a back pack.

One tip that Steve mentioned should not be over looked. Pushing down on the bar is like hitting the NO2 for going up wind in light air. Push it down towards the board until it makes a slight bend in the main line that runs through the bar. This changes the point load on the board and allows it to plane off much quicker.
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Old 01-10-2008, 10:18 AM
zenlikeme zenlikeme is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 36
Default Wow!

Thanks guys. Super helpful. Can't wait to put the advice it to practice....... hopefully TOMORROW

Steve- Makes sense about the 138 board being your high wind board... We were blazing that day! Things even got hairy at the end if you remember

Whitey- thanks for reiterating pushing down on the bar. Makes sense come to think of it but was definitely an aspect that I've never a thought about.

And thanks to everyone else for board recomendations. I've definitely heard alot about the Skywalker boards in this area. And apparently I like them too! Although I love being in the waves, I'm really starting to get into the flat water (especially since I'm now to the point where I'm wanting to learn tricks). Actually, I'm starting to prefer it as I think it's helping me progress much faster. Plus it's so much easier on the knees and to stay upwind!!

By the way, concerning Steve's "lightwind challenge"- He let me demo his 15m Freak Dog and though I don't have much to compare it too..... I didn't know it was even possible to ride in such light wind! Or that slow!! Not much faster than walking speed but still tons of fun. Definitely an eye opener :shock:
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Old 01-10-2008, 11:12 AM
Skyway Scott
Posts: n/a

Yeah, sub 7 knots, even if you CAN ride, sucks.
Walking on the beach or paddling a canoe are more fun.

My Glide has lasted a long time too, Steve.
I will probably get a Spleene when/if my Glide dies.
Or, I will beg Tom to copy my Glide's outline for me!
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Old 01-10-2008, 12:38 PM
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Danimal8199 Danimal8199 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Clearwater
Posts: 634

I'm glad to see everyone helping Zen out! I think that whether or not Whitey knows it or not he was the first one to explain to me how to ride upwind at Honeymoon.

I also ride the skywalker Demitri Pro. Mine is a 135 x 48, its a fatty, and I ride it in all conditions. I probably weigh the same as Bryan but I think that I am a little taller at 6'2" so I like the extra length.

just my 2 cents!
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