Sunday, September 29, 2019

Sunday Afternoon Foiling - 29 September

I really wanted to try out the cutdown Maliko tail - but I was having too much fun riding the Iwa-Kai tail combo.

+1.9' tide (caught it right at the high), waist high (with some chest high ones on the sets) swell and a light chop on the surface from a light breeze.  I caught a ton of waves - with some really long rides.  There were a lot of people in the water - had to bob and weave around them, so I migrated to Fenceline.  Derek Hamasaki was out - doing flips with the new Go Foil GL180 - was pretty cool.  Damion was looking right at Derek when he pulled a flip - Damion looked at me and asked if I could do that (I say 'No').  Blah!!!!

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Rough Cut Maliko Tail

Cut up the Maliko tail wing.

I'll ride it this afternoon and see how it is riding.  If everything checks out, I'll fair in the cut sections and get it symmetric.  I have high hopes for this!

Friday Evening Session - 27 September

High tide was at 3:13pm at 2.2'.  The wind was up making the surface choppy and the swell was up - overhead on the outside.  The swell would break almost across the entire reef - but I was on the foil so I was on the inside anyways.  5'6" with the Iwa.  I caught a bunch of long rides with nice turns - so much fun.  Had to weave in and out of a bunch of people hanging on the inside.  Marlon said he was getting pummeled on the outside, so he dropped back on the inside.  This swell is supposed to stick around for a few days - I think I'm going to bring the shortboard out (gotta get these monsters while they are around!!!)

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Next Modification - Cut Down Maliko Tail

I've been reading the foiling forums and several posters are saying a cut down Maliko tail works better for them than either the stock Maliko tail or the stock Kai tail.  I have been having tons of fun with the Kai tail, and I did find the Maliko tail to be a bit too stiff (the whole foil felt different).  Might as well cut this one down (surfing setup) - nothing is supposed to last forever (except the glory attained by ripping like an ultimate surfing warlord).

Stay tuned

Humpday Celebration - Falling Tide Foiling - 25 September

I was jonesing for a session today so right after work I grabbed the repaired 5'6" and the Go Foil Iwa and headed to the beach.  Marlon had music practice (and he needs to catch up on math) so I did a solo mission.  The tide was falling and it was probably mid-ebb when I got there around 4:30pm.  I could stand up half way out to the break and I was neck deep - not bad for the Go Foil (27.5" mast, and a little more with the anhedral front wing) but I was still a bit more cautious to prevent a grounding.  The wind was pretty much dead (but a breath from the south - turning Konas).  And the swell was pumping - could have used a regular shortboard today.

But alas, I brought the foil (and love every second of it).  After the several waves, I paddled in and adjusted the foil back in the tracks - I had too much lift and was having trouble keeping the nose down.  After the adjustment, every thing was right with the universe again.  Lots of energy in the waves today - should have adjusted it from the beginning, but better late than never. Was able to snag several waves with long rides along a low wall, quick turn to keep in the pocket and a few tighter turns just to push myself.  This journey has been so much fun!

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Trying to Keep Up - 24 September

On this first day of Fall, I opted to skip another day of playing in the water in favor of trying to knock out some things that need to get done.  First was sanding down the ding repair on the 5'6" prone foil board - all done and back in the board sock.

Next was trimming the excess foam from the adjusted template on the 4'10" blank.  Easy Peasy.

And I kept looking at the foil across the board length - I figured a few minutes with the planer and I'd feel less tension.  Done!

I'm going to try and keep the volume in the center of the board and take more from the lower rail - lots of shapers are trimming the lower rail away so the board doesn't "stick" to the water if you touch down while riding.  Not sure if it really works, but might as well try.  I think paddling power won't suffer if I keep the board thick in the centerline area at the stern and gradually thinning out to the nose.  So in reality, this is not far from the finished volume (even though I just started foiling the back - I'll vacuum bag a sheet of divynicell to the top deck where my front foot will hit (because I hate pressure dings) and encase the board in carbon fiber for stiffness.  I'll keep the tail nice and fat so it picks up the push from waves when I'm paddling for them.  

This should be a fun build.  I'm not going to shape the 4'6" blank yet - I'll see if the design elements are worth the effort over the standard flat boards (like the 5'6" and 5'2") before committing that blank.  

Monday, September 23, 2019

No Surfing on the Equinox - 23 September

It was raining for pretty much the whole day - it is never good to surf when that much water runs off.  Unfortunately all the oil and other residues get cleaned off the roads and drains into the storm lines and ends up in the ocean.  Well - I had a bunch of errands to do around the house anyways - cleaning up the garage, fixing some stuff that recently broke (Marlon's drone - which I broke), cut out another foil snuggly for the Maliko 280, and fixing the ding from yesterday.

Here is the ding with the bashed in glass trimmed off.  I used the Dremel with the carbide cutting wheel to grind the break off.

And here is the ding repair.  Used the "poor man's vacuum" technique from Jimmy Lewis to help get rid of the air bubbles.  I should be able to sand down the excess tomorrow and the board will be seaworthy again.

Dings suck, but being able to fix your own is an art.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Sunday High Noon - 22 September

The high tide peaked around noon today at +2.0'.  Marlon had music practice so I pulled a solo session.  Brought out the 5'6" with the Iwa - the swell was supposed to be a hair smaller than yesterday and the wind was light.  Bolting this foil on and getting my first rides, I can confidently say the Go Foil is more forgiving than the Slingshot.  The Slingshot is a lot more sensitive to position in the tracks, while the Go Foil allows you to compensate for suboptimal track position with body weight shifting.  When you get the position optimized on both of these foils, they both work awesome - but on a consistent basis it has been easier riding the Go Foil - but I'll only do that on a high tide (to take the dings and chips out of the equation).

Here's where I set the foil in the tracks today -

And since I was feeling confident, I was pushing the foil a little harder today - nice rebound turns off the approaching section, some steeper take offs on green waves, and a couple of lean back bottom turns.  Those last two were the problem today.  In both attempts, my front foot seemed to be off center and I wiped.  On the second to last wave, the board went back toward the wave and I went flying towards shore.  My right shin hit the board.  Looked like I got scratched.  I got back on, paddled back out and caught a super long ride with several turns all the way back to shore.

When I was lifting the board out of the water to head to the shower, I found my missing skin and some leg hair.  Ding repair time.

The 5'6" catches waves so easily - but it does stick to the water if I get close.  I've got two blanks on the rack right now - a 4'10" and a 4'6" - both will have a more rounded bottom rail on the front half of the length to help alleviate the stickiness, but it'll have the full back with sharp 90 degree rails to the back to help with catching waves.  With the high tide hovering around the middle of the day, I may use the next few days after work to fix the ding, skin the blanks, fair in the volume distribution, rout out the track reinforcement blocks - basically shape the two new boards.  We'll see how the week goes - at some point the tide will start to go high in the mid to late afternoon.

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Satruday Dawn Patrol - 21 September

Hit the pre-crowded surf just after dawn.  Waist to chest high swell, rising tide (+1.3' to 1.7').  Some wind, especially as a squall came through, but not so much that it changed my foiling.  I took out the same setup from the previous session - Slingshot Infinity 76 on the 24" mast and the 5'2" prone foilboard.  I was focusing on steeper takeoffs - using my front hand as a third foot keeping more pressure up front to keep the nose down.  These past two sessions I've been using the old "prime" setting that I had identified prior to me taking the 5'2" from rotation to fix the pinhole leaks.  I think I need to push the foil forward to get more lift now.

There was an old couple out - she was on a Slingshot H2, and he was on an Armstrong 1200.  They paddled to the far right on the outside.  I saw her on a few, but I didn't see any of his rides.  I really like those Armstrongs (but I don't like the price tag - I'll try and sell off what I currently use, then maybe get the 1550).

Nephew Got a New Board

La's sister's son ask me to check out  aboard he was interested in buying - a 7'6" Torq funboard.  Needless to say, he got it.  Taught him how to properly apply wax (we'll see if that lesson sticks - it didn't with Marlon...)

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Thursday Evening Foiling - 19 September

Late evening session - Marlon on his longboard and me on the 5'2" prone foil board and the Slingshot Infinity 76.

The waves were waist to chest high, the wind was on the low side (still a little texture on the surface), and the tide was a small high tide at 1.0' - the primary reason I had the Slingshot out - 24" mast.

It took a while for me to get my bearings on this foil again - I caught several, but it wasn't until the end of the session where I was able to ride a wave all the way from the main break in the middle all the way back to the beach.  This is definitely a fun foil once you get it dialed in.

Switching from the Gamma to the Iwa to the Infinity 76, makes riding challenging as all of these ride differently.  That said, what I give up on instantaneous gratification, I gain in a deeper understanding of flying the different foils (so if I get a chance to try out other foils, I can do it faster than if all I surfed was a single foil).

Marlon did a cannonball launch dismount and loved it.  4' above the back of the wave as it passed.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Catch Up Post - 16 September

Marlon and I hit the evening surf - 2-3' swell (waist to chest high), light trades (side chop - textured surface), and a 1.7' tide.  I decided to try something different.  I brought the 5'2" and the SLingshot Gamma with the 24" mast.

I caught a bunch, but only on about a third of them did I fly the foil for any appreciable difference.  I brought this rig to see about being more stable on steeper takeoffs - it wasn't until near the end of the session where I was remembering how to takeoff on this shorter board.  I had to use my front hand like a third foot as I transitioned from prone to standing.  After I figured that out, things got better.  I also beached once and set the foil more forward in the tracks to get more lift - helped, but I still wasn't flying with ease.  Not sure how much the choppy conditions and constant rollers impacted the quality of the rides or the efficiency of the foil, but I think next time I'll set up the Infinity 76.

Marlon was getting rides all over the place - there is something to be said about having one board and sticking to it - but I can't help myself - if there is something to be learned, I'm there.  Even if it means feeling like a kook sometimes.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Tide Driven - 14 September

Since I moved back to Oahu, I have avoided surfing in and around the midday sun.  I'm not a spring chicken anymore and I'd prefer not to have to deal with any health issues - so out of the sun it is for me.  Well - foiling has its requirements, particularly making sure the water is deep enough - which in turn has made me pay way more attention to when the high tides are.  Well - the high tide was just before 3pm yesterday.  I foiled and wore a long sleeved sun shirt and a hat.  I caught some long ones, but with the swell coming in above waist high, I ate it bad on some takeoffs - too much speed, too much lift and in the white water - cavitation and down I go.  Probably should have used a smaller front wing...

High +1.7', light trades, mixed up swell from the SE and SW.  Go Foil Iwa, 5'6" prone foil board.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Solo Thursday Full Moon Session - 12 September

The moon is full for the next few days - that means really high tides, which means foiling without the fear of scraping the bottom.  Marlon was busy so I went on a solo mission.  The tide was high at +2.1', the wind was marginal but not enough to blow me around while up on foil, and the swell was waist high (maybe a little bigger on the sets) - perfect conditions for foiling!

I felt like I was ripping!  Got some nice hard turns in and even snugged up to a breaking wall - so much fun!  I noticed the longboarders fading off waves, that I would then pick up and ride all the way to the beach.  Where have these surf foils been all my life???...

I've had the foil in the same setting for the past several sessions now - dialed in for sure.  Just to mix things up again, I may have to start using the Slingshot again, or drop down to the 5'2" (or maybe both of those).

I'm a total convert now - I'm glad I didn't have a huge quiver of surfboards that I'd have to sell off now (and I will still cross train on the two boards that I do have in the active lineup - and I'll try to get the other two boards in the mix as well...).  Sheer perfection this thing is!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Hump Day Follies - 11 September

May the families of the victims of 9/11 be at peace - especially on this day.

Marlon and I hit some seriously small surf today.  Looks like he was working hard for each and every wave.

On the other hand - I was riding waves all the way to the beach!  Milking riding energy is so much easier with a foil.  I'm sure I would have faded off the waves today if I was on the longboard.  I think I'm pretty much at the second nature point - I was able to take pictures and video while riding the foil.  I made turns at will, swooped across long walls (albeit tiny), and got to turn off the back of the waves (the start of learning to pump back out).

There were a few other foilers - two on SUPs, and two on Armstrong 1600s.  The prone foiler on the Armstrong was doing a heck of a lot better than the SUPer with the same foil.  The other SUPer had a Signature (but I didn't find out which one).

Nice way to wash of the week so far!

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Midday Solo Mission - 8 September

Marlon was at music practice and the tide was at +2.1' - I couldn't help myself.  I pulled a solo mission in the middle of the day.  I usually don't surf in the middle of the day - sunburn, blown out surf and crowded parking lot are enough to keep me away.  The wind certainly was up - 15 to 25 mph - definitely made riding tough.  The wind did push me around when up on foil - I figured how to lean into it towards the end of the session to keep foiling (and not falling).

I caught 6 in 45 minutes (couldn't stay out too long - still had errands to run).  The first few I got blown off like I said earlier - the last 3 were long with a bunch of turns and zooming along the walls.  I love foiling!!!

Saturday Evening Shortboarding - 7 September

A lot windy (trades are back - finally), low tide (+0.5'), and a decent long period swell made for fun SHORTBOARD surfing on Saturday evening.

It was a hair crowded when we got there, but the group thinned out as time marched on.  My last three waves were pretty fun - head high walls that stayed open long enough to get a few good turns in.  Marlon had several good waves.

I opted to surf the Beaver mainly because of the low tide - the moon is just passing waxing quarter - another week and we'll be back to dual high tides.  Funny thing that surfing has become cross-training for me.  Used to be that everything else was cross training for surfing... still - good times on the Greedy Beaver!

Monday, September 2, 2019

Sunday Garage Works

I took a break from the surf on Sunday in favor of BBQing and getting some other projects knocked out.  I got the prone foilboard templates cut out and sanded.

And then I proceeded to get the blank(s) templated and cut out.

Also went to our friendly neighborhood Lowes and grabbed a bunch of lumber to make some plant benches La has been asking for.  I'll also build a new shaping rack (to shape these short foil boards).

As I am writing this entry on Sunday, Marlon and I did go on a dawn patrol this morning - 1.7' tide with a chest high swell pushing in - good fun!!!  I had several long rides - one was tracking along with a wave standing up and just about to pitch a lip.  Another with banking turns back and forth between sections.  A couple of waves I popped up but my feet didn't feel like they were in the right place - I rode out the wave anyways and just compensated with weight shifts.  At the risk of sounding cocky - this is second nature now.  I even had a few green water takeoffs - steeper than I prefer, but too much fun!

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Saturday Foiling and Longboarding - 31 August

Marlon and I hit the evening surf - full tide and a lully swell were the conditions.  We had the GoPro out and managed to get a few pictures.

Catching waves is getting easier, and correcting foot placement mistakes and off balance takeoffs is starting to become second nature.  Banking turns off  oncoming sections is quickly becoming a favorite.  I got several rides all the way to the beach on waves I know would have been challenging to catch and ride on a longboard - foils take milking wave energy to a new level!

When you are dialed in, foiling is so much fun (but getting there has been one of the most frustrating rides - this activity also seems to randomly humble you by making you look and feel like a total kook).

Marlon had a bunch a fun rides as usual.

Another fun evening surf session