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TOPIC: Super Lightwind: who has tried one?

Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #1

  • Gregory
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I was wondering if anyone owns or has tried a Super Lightwind board, like:
  • JP Super Lightwind 165 L
  • Starboard Ultrasonic 147 L
  • RRD X-Fire Lightwind LTD V2 150 L
  • Fanatic Falcon Lightwind 159 L

    What's your impression? Fun?
    How much wind to put it on a plane? What size sail / fin?
    How physical it is to sail?
  • Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #2

    • Ady
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    There is one guy /Jim I think was his name/ that sails on Wolf once in while and has a 2015 RRD Lightwind. He told me that he's disappointed. He said that he can't make it plane in lighter wind and once it gets strong enough to plane he has a hard time controlling it. I think those boards have a very narrow wind range and his problems specifically come from him being an old school windsurfer /started in the 80s I think/ and doesn't know how to actively make a short and super wide board plane . Also he had to use a weed fin, because the original fin is too long for the Wolf shallows and occasional weeds. On the other hand sailing this kind of a board in the Lake Michigan swell would be a recipe for disaster.

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #3

    • Gregory
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    Hey Ady. Thanks for sharing.
    Maybe Jim needed to put a bit more time getting use to the gear to get the most out of it? The main and only purpose for these wide board to exist is their ability to plane fast in light wind. At least that's the claim. So, this teased my curiousity because I usually need at least 13 knots on the 124 L AtomIQ and a 8.5m2 to bring it to plane. It appears the Lightwind boards are capable of planing someone my weight in as little as 10 knots with a 10m2 race sail and a 60cm fin. Considering that there are a lot more days with 10-13 knots than days with 13 and above during the season....
    In 10 to 13 knots on Lake Michigan on my usual launch spot, there's a bit of chop but there's no swell unless at the tail-end of northeast or southeast days above 15 knots. Sailing in 10 to 14-15 knots with a Lightwind board, then switching to the 100 L for conditions above seems tempting, hence my post to find more about this kind of boards! B)

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #4

    • Ady
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    Greg, if you are 25 years old I'd say go for it, use 12 m sail if you want. But you are not and neither am I :( Instead of killing yourselve with that kind of monstrosity you may think of moving to a windier and warmer place for example. If moving is not an option then longboard would probably do a similar or better job with less sail real estate . Why don't you check out that Wind Power windsurfing store in Fond du Lac- www.windpowerwindsurfing.com . I think the owner is an expert in longboards like Kona. He may be able to give you the right advice. He visits the forum once in a while btw. www.windsurfillinois.com/index.php/jomso...156-benjamin/profile

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #5

    • steve
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    Ady wrote:
    Greg, if you are 25 years old I'd say go for it, use 12 m sail if you want. But you are not and neither am I :( Instead of killing yourselve with that kind of monstrosity you may think of moving to a windier and warmer place for example. If moving is not an option then longboard would probably do a similar or better job with less sail real estate . Why don't you check out that Wind Power windsurfing store in Fond du Lac- www.windpowerwindsurfing.com . I think the owner is an expert in longboards like Kona. He may be able to give you the right advice. He visits the forum once in a while btw. www.windsurfillinois.com/index.php/jomso...156-benjamin/profile

    This suggestion is the reason I have kept my Mistral Superlight all these years! It weighs the same as the Kona, yet is 30 cm longer, about the same width, and 40 L more volume. Makes for great fun in light winds.

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #6

    • Gregory
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    Thanks both for the advice. :)
    Yep! My brain says "I'm 28" while my body is not. You got that right!
    I've seen a few people doing >10' longboard around where I am and I wasn't too impressed with early planning-ability nor speed. To move around the water it's fine, but I got the taste of speed and that's my medicine! If I'm being told I can sail at speed of >20 knots in 10-12 knots of wind, that sounds pretty cool to me. This seems to be what can be expected from sailing one of these big boards. I need to go somewhere I can try/rent a big kit like that and experience how physically demanding it can be.
    Anyhow, If more people reading this thread have sailed on a modern Super Lightwind board, plz share!
    Thanks

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #7

    • Ady
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    I suspect you can squeeze some more low end out of your big kit. By placing your boom at the second mark top to bottom of the cutout or above it, setting the sail with moderate downhaul and almost neutral outhaul and using some bad ass fin you may be able to lower the planing threshold to below 15 mph wind. The AtomIQ certainly has lots of potential built in, you just need to work more to unlock it because it lacks volume.
    You've probably read this article already, but just in case you hasn't here it is:
    www.windsurf.co.uk/peter-hart-up-and-riding-in-a-flash/
    One trick Ive discovered in the last hour of the last time I sailed my 94 after getting pissed off by numerous catapults and slow planing issues is to look hard at the mast foot for few seconds until the board is about to release , while doing all the other right things at the same time aswell. I use that trick when waterstarting, but for planing I felt it also helped me , by making me push more down on the boom with my arms, sailing at a better angle off the wind, keeping the sail upright and open and somehow stabilizing/focusing/ the whole system-rider, board and rig really good. Haven't tried it yet with my big kit, but I don't see a reason for it not to work the same way because it basically makes you focus your mind and body on the right spot-the mast foot area.

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #8

    • Gregory
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    Yes, I know I can do better and sail in a more active way. I'm a lazy sailor :whistle: and for sure I know I should be able to release the board sooner and more frequently in flucky conditions. If I pump a little it helps, if I "read" the gusts coming my way on the water it helps, if I wait to bear till I'm on the wave face rather than it's back, it helps. If I use the correct fin it helps. If I put my front hand back a little and transfer the power through my front foot, it helps too...

    Tuning the rig according to the conditions is another one. I rig it for mid setting and forget about it. That's not helping! And moving the boom up a notch is a great idea that I know I've underestimated. So, thanks for sharing Peter Hart's article. This is definitely helping

    Despite their ability to plane at lower wind speed, I found that big kits also tend to "stick" to the water a lot more than small and narrow 95/100 liter boards for some reason. This is counterintuitive when you think about it!
    So, working harder my big kit, I will surely get more time planing and less time schloogging in the critical12-13 knots conditions. But, I doubt I would lower the sailing threshold significantly or closer to 10-11 knots. For that I would need more power (bigger sail) and a wider board to support it. The next question really is whether a SLW is worth the cash and suitable for the conditions in my area. According to some, it seems it made a big difference in how many more good sessions they were able to fit in a season.

    Anyhow, I wish I could try one of these Lightwind board to find how they perform on the water.

    IMG_0458.jpg

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 3 weeks ago #9

    • Ady
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    Man, Im so predictable - one look at that red hot Falcon in the picture and Im ready to swipe the plastic...if I didn't have a mountain of debt that is :blush:
    Im starting to warm up to the idea and the price tag seems very reasonable compared to what I got used to see the last few years. In the various forum discussions I visited to educate myself on the topic it seems the consensus about maximum sail size is 9.5, wich is also the maximum that they use in PWA slalom and RS:X olympic classes I think. So if the Superhumans consider 9.5 to be big enough then 8.5 is for us mortals as good as it gets and you are perfectly set in the rig department with your Ezzy Lion then, which is probably too big for the AtomIQ anyway. A 3-board quiver starts to make sense... in theory at least.
    Meanwhile I also recalled another person with an Ultrasonic-Mathias. He is a member of this forum but I haven't seen him or heard of him in a few years so maybe he moved. Anyhow, he was praising the board and planing in winds I wasn't able to plane in with my then 9.0/136L freeride combo. Of course he was much better then me, he is an expert level windsurfer and probably lighter then my 170 lbs and always making himself as light as possible by sailing only in a wetsuit without anyvests, hoods, gloves or even boots, barefoot in the coldest weather! Weight is king in the lightwind category, so he was willing to freeze his ass off for top performance. At some point he bought himself an Exocet slalom board though and said that he may sell the Ultrasonic for the right price. That was the last I heard from him.
    As for the technique you seem to know the lessons really well, you just need to get out there and put them to use . And yes, boom hight is HUGE for early planing!!! Im much shorter then you at 5'7" and the very few times I had my booms as low as the middle of the cutout has been when Ive been extremely overpowered and there has been nothing else to do, but try to sail back to shore for dear life! I consider myself lucky for reading the Guy Cribb technique articles very early on in my windsurfing progression and making an use of them. Those 2 will help you better understand the importance of boom hight I believe:
    issuu.com/arcwindltdpublishing/docs/cribby_ws319
    www.guycribb.com/userfiles/documents/All...en%20are%20equal.pdf

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 2 weeks ago #10

    Jumping in on this thread a bit late, but yes I do own an Ultrasonic 147L. I purchased it 3 years ago and it was the most expensive piece of windsurfing equipment I've purchased in 35+ years of sailing. I believe it was about $2,500 with board bag and two fins new. Was it worth it? Yes. It's a board that has added probably 20% more "planning days" to times I would not be able to plane (Although there is a very strong argument to be made about the great enjoyment of longboards in light wind....I have one which has been a blast to cruise various lakes, coves, and inlets}. This is a board I will keep for the next 15 years or so. If you break that down per year, the cost of these "added days" is about $165 a year. Maybe that's my justification for such a purchase, but if you get an added 3-5 days of great sailing a year, is it worth it? For me it has been. As far as the performance of the board, it's my "go-to" choice 85% of the time here in St. Louis. I'm probably 190+ with wetsuit, boots, harness and with an 8.0 Sailworks Retro, I can get it to plane in the 13-14 mph range. I'm running their standard 58 cm Drake fin (Which is very good). I have to admit the first 2-3 times I sailed the board, I thought I had made a mistake in buying it. I just wasn't used to sailing something that resembled a short wide door. The biggest surprise was the upper end wind range on the board. I've been able to sail it with a 6.5 well into the 20's on our small local lake. I've also had it on Carlyle with a 7.0 into the low 20's as well. You have to pick a "correct path" through the swell, but it really does stay nailed to the water if sailed properly. You won't break any speed records (The top speed I've seen is 32mph on GPS) but you will certainly increase your planning time on the water. I can't say how it compares to the other boards, but the Falcon looks very similar. It would be fun to demo all these boards, but until then I'll go with the Ultrasonic.


    IMG_1195.jpg

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 2 weeks ago #11

    • Ady
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    Hi Chris, what is your next size down board?

    Super Lightwind: who has tried one? 9 months 2 weeks ago #12

    • Gregory
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    Hey Ady,
    You were my last hope to convince me I didn't need this "red-hot falcon" but looks like your skepticism is a thing of the past. Chris is also adding a dose of optimism (thanks for sharing :) ), so how can I resist the urge to throw some hard-earned cash to a large piece of floating French toast. Got to get that toy! Oh-well, we only live once and my son will have to work harder at McDo to pay for college, ha!
    The idea of a meet to sail someplace near Chicago would be cool. I sail mainly by myself (and with the kites, but that's not the same). Sailing + beer + junk food with grownup men in wetsuits sounds fun! :woohoo:
    Anyhow, I'll update later...
    Cheers

    Btw, great articles! Thx
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