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TOPIC: Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler

Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 5 days ago #13

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Somebody on WatrSpotr checked in yesterday at a launch near Seattle. Looks like the weather there runs in the low 50s, but boy there is hardly ever good wind up there in the Northwest. I remember from the times when I was active on IWindsurf the guys from that area were always discussing light wind equipment. Fast longboards were a prized possessions and I guess foiling must be very popular nowadays in Seattle.
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Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 5 days ago #14

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The German SURF magazine is finally online via app , so I purchased few editions that have attracted my attention with tests and articles. I still speak the language a little bit, good enough for reading but far cry from when I was almost fluent in my teens. The 07.2016 edition I purchased specifically for the Lightwind boards comparison in light of the foiling craze. I’ll post pictures of the whole pages for “diese die Deutch verstehen :) “ but I’ll explain in a nutshell what it’s all about. The boards have been separated in few categories and compared to one another and to foiling. They have not given much space for the established top early planers like the formula and the long boards, because they are too technical to sail , take a lot of space etc. and instead have focused on the more mainstream and practical offerings currently on the market.
First category deals with the easy planers-freeride boards with longer /old fashioned/ dimensions which have a decent glide in displacement mode and start planing gradually without much need of bearing off or pumping. I don’t think Lorch is available to the US market but boards like Tabou Rocket, Bic Techno and the bigger freemove boards inclding the new CarveIQ at 246cm long fit this bill. I’ll get back to BIC later because it gets interesting by them. The long and wide freeriders plane early and without too much effort as long as you use big enough sail but in general they feel a bit dull and slow once planing.
The next category are the sportier specialized light wind boards like the UltraSonic and especially the JP Super Lightwind which are still relatively longer and still easy to put on a plane -the JP, but also can be very fast at the same time-the Starboard.
The third category are the slalom shapes with exhilarating acceleration once planing but a lot more technical to put on the plane because of their short length and not as comfortable for long rides like the boards in the previous two categories .
The target wind speed has been the 10-13 kts and the sails used were between 7.5 and 9.5. The conclusion has been that with the early planing boards currently on the market it is absolutely possible to achieve this low threshold and the only advantage that the foil offers is using a sail of 1-1.5m less for the same conditions, but the trade off is much more complicated sailing technique. From what I understand on a foil you have to avoid doing the same stuff that you are used of doing on a board with a fin, because it is counterproductive and makes the foil do crazy stuff. On top of that you still need to rig at least a 7.5 to have a chance of lifting it in 10 mph wind and pray the wind doesn’t pick up all of a sudden-the point of foiling is lost to me.
Now back to BIC windsurfing and the “legendary “ Techno line. Turns out the Techno have been always foiling ready with their Deep tuttle fin base, tough construction materials and longer length that makes them glide and lift into plane slowly and gradually as I was able to observe this summer on lake Andrea when I borrowed my friends Techno 148 for a run. On top of that they pop up on Craigslist for cheap and my friend bought his 2 years ago for 200$. So BIC have realized the foiling potential of their old but still relevant shapes quickly and are offering already a full carbon foil optimized for early planing and ease of use specifically. At 1600$ it is priced very competitively and I would recommend considering it to those interested in foiling. One detail that grabbed my attention right away is the fact that the otherwise budget minded and price conscious BIC have chosen a full carbon mode foil as the one and only offering. In another magazine edition they explain that no aluminum model met their expectations and they have decided to use only full carbon mast and fuselage. If BIC don’t trust aluminum masts it means they are really, really bad!
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Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 5 days ago #15

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Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 4 days ago #16

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Ha! For a moment I wondered if I landed on the wrong site! So thanks for taking the time to translate/summarize!

If the inexperienced windfoiler has to get 13kn of wind to be able fly, I still see 2 potential advantages foiling might offer:
1 - Sailing with smaller sails in lightwind days, thus saving elbows from tendinitis and other ailments due to pumping and wrestling a giant 9.5 cambered sail. Of course, not everyone finds fun to try to put a board on plane in 11kn anyway. And I guess those in their 20s and 30s probably don't have much issues with their joints yet! Still, a good workout yes, injuries no thank you!
2 - Discovering new sailing sensations and learning something new, because hovering 2 feet above water at speeds in the 20-25 knots has to put a smile on one's face! It has to! Maybe monotonous after a while but still looks cool!

To me, it's worth a try, especially because it doesn't really compete with windsurfing since foiling's sweet spot is lighter wind conditions mainly. The only thing lightwind foiling really competes with is a couple of beers at the neighborhood bar! ;)

If foiling is as fun as it looks, I could see how it would simplify a bit the stuff I carry around: for lightwind sailing, I could trade a large 9.5 sail + mast for a foil that I would power with an existing 6.5 or a 7.0 that also finds its purpose in a higher wind classic windsurfing quiver anyway. Not necessarily a bad tradeoff...

Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 4 days ago #17

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Here's an interesting perspective on foil from Peter Thommen. If you don't have time for the whole interview, check the part starting a 8:10. There are a few more funny, realistic and sarcastic bits as well before the part on foiling...

Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 4 days ago #18

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Yeah, light wind is a bitch. For me the WindSUP reins this segment with its simplicity, utility and safe, healthy fitness. The only downside to it is the bulk of the hard board of course . The inflatables have come a long way, but I doubt they can ever get as good as a hardboard in waves and breaking waves is where the WindSUP makes the most fun. My point is that since you have an easy access to breaking waves in Sheboygan sooner or later you’ll realize what you’re missing. I just wanted to spare you the wandering and unnecessary expenses. WindSUPs epitomize for me the very essence of sailing and surfing combined-you just can’t go wrong with that. The Zen of the sport :)
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Stumbled across... Hobie Trifoiler 2 weeks 3 days ago #19

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