Thursday, February 16, 2017

Riding with ol' Murphy

Forecast let me down. Got to the beach about 3, launched the 12 but it was naff. Did one tack to the surf life club then halfway back. Gave up and went back to the launch park. Stood around a bit and it didn't seem like it was going to pick up, so I went for the Sonic2 18.

Set up down on the beach, much fiddling with bridles, lines on the new bar. Easy prefill--it was almost filling without help, good old batons. Got it into the air but the tips wouldn't open out. Hmm...ended up waggling the bar and that did the job.

So out on the water and Murphy's Law, wind has picked up. Crikey!

Bit hairy, but as I get used to it, I start to push it some. Narrow bar setting and line extensions slow it down too much in the surf, and it's so high AR it's not suited to sheet n go, so it was difficult but goddamn the hang time! Need to work on the technique to get the height. Drifts ok, cos it's so light, and I recovered an overfly too.

Couldn't sack up enough to land it on the beach by myself, so went over the dunes to the park and got a hand so that worked well. Long bridles, crikey!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Low tide goodness

Good session getting to know the SB, at the beach this time cos the tide is out. Waves make the great kickers, and it's good to note the kite drifts excellently. In fact, the light wind bump n jump is groovy too, surprisingly good height and hang. It's just not exciting...so far. Doesn't have that rip off the water that's exciting...

Wind was supposedly just over 20 knots...wanted more.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

A new toy!

Good forecast and the tide was right...and I had the time. So let's go.

Started out light and picked up but the kite was deforming so I landed and pumped it more. Better! Still a bit of a hiccup if I sheet out fast and rapidly...hmm.

Can't figure out how to jump it. Really seems I'm either out of touch with the TT or the technique has to be spot on, or at least very tight. Maybe 12m is still too big...

Had some fun, got the tricks flowing finally after a messy start.

After a very long time I headed back to shore to call it a day, and who should be there be Mr Axis?! Couldn't say no to a ride on the foil!

It's a prototype aluminum mast and fuse, flat G10 wing set. Board was a carbon stubbie. Whole thing was taut (like a toiger) and light. 600mm mast might have helped.

Easy to ride, great speed range, and stable but still fun to flick around. Adrian reckoned I was riding very nose up, but I was keeping the speed down cos I was overpowered on the 12. Low speed stall was gentle and no nasty speed twitches. In fact, I got a runaway on a gust that just kept building speed but I rode it out for a long time before deciding to bail. There was a bit of fish-tailing but Adrian said all the wing and fin holes were hand tapped and are wonky! :o Good ride though, I want it :D

Adrian reckons I need a bigger wing and is going to get the factory to make one :D hope he brings a 7 or 800mm mast too.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Season gets under way

Got out on the last of the tide to try put the new kite. Seems ok :D wind wasn't up to much put I got to play some...

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Rusty

First session of the year, first one in the whale scrotum. Goddamn I forgot how appalling that thing is, how way-too-thick it is.

Started out on the TT for a bit of a test run, as I was using the Ocean Rodeo bar to test the low V-split. I *think* it accelerates in a straight line a little faster, a little less pull in a loop and the jumps were strange, but that might have been me, the wetsuit or the conditions.

Seemed light so I went out on the foil, but very, very rusty. And I think I would have been happier on the 7m kite too :o but the HG runs at speed nicely so it wasn't so bad.

Back on the TT, but I'm getting tired from fighting the suit with every movement so I give it up . . . right as the wind picks up proper and I wish I'd brought my Angry Swallow. Typical.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Stupid winter

Great forecast, but the wind died right as I arrived at the beach. Turned gusty (lully) and inconsistent.

Had about 30 minutes on the TT trying to ride, but the only excitement was the micro-gust that took me stratospheric :o needed a heli loop but I was close to the shore.

Got a single powered tack on the Angry Swallow then just gave up on the silly show.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Frigid foiling

So, 3mm spring suits no good when it's snowing on the other side of the lake. Doesn't help when you can't find your boots either. Nothing froze, but it was cold. 7 degrees or less.

Nice time on the HG, getting to grips with it, having more success with the foot changes . . . still need a strap.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Digging the Draft

Started out light and picked up, but I tried to get going with the Flite first . . . a bit unsuccessful, and when the wind came it just pulled me downwind on the surfboard. Thought I'd give up then remembered the Drafts in the shed and thought I'd have a giggle.

Big giggles! Bar pressure is appalling but my god, it goes big and floats like a foil! What a hoot, I enjoyed that.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Foilin' again

Dedicated foil day.

Super light to start with, struggled to water start without a front strap, then the wind came a little and I got up and riding. Starting to get the feel of the HG and adapt to its more aggressive low speed handling.

Good day, but I put my thumb through the 3/2 full wetsuit :(

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Culture day satisfaction

Forecast looked great, wind was great when I arrived then rapidly dropped off. Decided to commit to the Hover Glide and just stick with it . . . or maybe the TT if the wind picked up.

Phew, like starting over again. Fucking strapless starts are a pain in the ass, especially when the wind drops. Got a little bolder with the wave play, but still haven't made a successful foot change. Jibes are getting better but still not a patch on the old foil :(

Wind picked up and I thought about going in for the TT . . . then it dropped off and I had to fight to keep the kite in the air, then loop it to get back to shore. Just made it!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Autumn unawesomeness

Got a half hour of good fun on the AS then it dropped off and just sucked ass. I could ride the AS but I wasn't having fun.

Fall squalls

Good boosting session for a half hour or so, then light cruising on the AS. Nice. Started off on the SB 14 but it showed a lack of class when the wind picked up, buckling in jumps . . . it's gotta go.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Angry Swallow is happy

Finally, a chance to try out the new 2015 Angry Swallow! Got it real cheap, as it's a two-year old model now but the last of the 5 fin box models. And purple and green trim :)

Now, it's probably the most travelled board in history, without even getting a single drop of water on it. Shop accidentally used my old address and I didn't catch it until after Japan Post had tried to deliver it . . . then sent it back to the US. So, the board went China - Oregon - Japan - Oregon - Japan . . . before it ever got used :o

Which is a shame, cos it's great. I ran it as a quad (love FCS-II!) which was kinda strange after the Duke but clearly has more bottom end.

The differences I noticed:
The AS is a little more slappy through the chop (duh) if you stand with rigid knees, feels less crisp but is snappy rail to rail, stable for dancing around on, tends to sink the tail during a jibe if you're heavy rear-footed, carves smoothly, rips upwind--especially with the board flat.

All seems to make sense, given where the area and volume are distributed for each board. Which is better? Well for our conditions, I can see I'll be on the AS a lot, but will still love both boards. Very happy with the AS, that's for sure . . .

Miyachi had a run on the Duke and didn't want to give it back. Seems to go better for him than the Naish Skater, North thing and the Naish Global too: he struggled to get upwind on them but rocked out the Duke. Heh . . . 

Friday, October 21, 2016

First!

Had to get out with the new board today.

Wind was light, so i thought I needed a foil. Mistake. That made it harder to get going do to the way the kite worked. After the long-ass bodydrag out as far as possible so I wouldn't slam the bottom, I finally managed to get up and riding away from the shore.

Much better with the new board, much easier to ride. Obviously more stable but different enough that I could barely manage heel to toe, and toe side riding.

Then the wind picked up and I thought I'd try the TT but it was barely enough, then newbie guy fell off and got washed into marina bay, without his board.

I secured the board before it ended up in Otsu, then had to body drag back to our beach, but managed to ride back upwind some, which was a surprise, but then the wind died off again and I gave up.

Managed not to destroy the board, but stood on it by mistake and chipped the nose. Le sigh again.

Monday, October 10, 2016

One thing and another

Thought I'd give the LF a run and assess whether it's worth taking it back to NZ in Feb as is, or do some work on it.

Twitchier than I remembered it used to be when it was equally bent...got used to it but it kinda sucked a lot. Might have to risk straightening it and cutting the mast...

Which was all fine and well until the other side of the board broke. Then I discovered the head of one of the bolts holding the mast to the plate has snapped. So there's all that to deal with and think about too. Le sigh.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Rebel rebel

Wind was on and off so it kinda sucked, but the North guy let me out on his Rebel 15 which was actually fun and boosted well when the wind was on. Bar pressure was like a Switchblade so it was bearable...miss the foil.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Another weak-ass typhoon

that failed to deliver. Again. Had to borrow the Naish foil from the shop, and while I initially struggled a bit to get back in the groove, got there in the end. Strapless is hard to get started when the wind is light...

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Broke the dry spell

but "gravy" is overly generous. It was squally and crap when it wasn't.

But I got my eye back in, and go to try the Cabrinha board Squid Launcher. Too wide, have to ride the board and then fly the kite. Too bouncy in the chop too. Hmm.

Miss my foil . . .

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Saved by the grandad

and his Naish foil. Insisted I take the whole set up for a test drive, after I'd given up trying to ride the 15 and the TT. I don't think it's quite right yet still, and the wind was shit.

But the foil was fun. Definitely slower but more stable than mine, and the length and mass distribution of the board makes it "heavier" to swing around. Riding strapless wasn't as much of a challenge as I thought it would be so that's nice.

Got a brief play with the Reo 12 which didn't really improve my opinion of them (gutless and slow), but as the wind dropped off I guess it wasn't fair. Relaunch was easy though.

So, thanks Grandad, you saved my day!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

RIP Foil Fish

Due to the turmoil at home, I decided I'd brave the forecast and escape to Tsu again. Supposed to be big wind but was pretty much a repeat of the last time I was there.

Which wasn't a bad thing. I really got the gybes dialed in and started going harder and faster, with more power and load on the foil.

That was all good and well until I got too close to shore and slammed into the shallows so hard I gave myself whiplash. Sore neck at the time, stiff the following day. That I could live with . . .

. . . unfortunately, the fuselage is bent again and the mast rounded. That I could almost live with . . .

. . . but the big deal is the crack in the board. Guess I really nailed it hard :(

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Surprisingly good . . .

. . . session today, despite the summer wind and my pig-headed determination to use the 10m kite. The weather station said 10 knots when I got off the water and that was when I was feeling ok powered.

Basically, I was totally shocked that I could ride at all, as the kite just stayed in the sky and I had a rough time relaunching--had to swim some to get the kite to the edge of the window and carefully jiggle the line to get it up :o

But had a nice time riding around. Really notice the difference already, between the LF and the SS foil . . . am thinking, if I can tame the SS it might be epic. I noticed the lack of pitch stability today.

Funny thing . . . I was on the 10m tube, and the other guy on the LF foil was on an 11m Sonic and we were well matched :D

Friday, August 19, 2016

Sucky wind may be to blame

Just a little wind, but maybe enough to try out the Hover Glide.

Urgh, everything they said is true. Monster lift, really leaps out of the water and is a battle to get enough weight over the front. Especially when your strap isn't forward enough. Very stable and a solid platform, as the waves have little effect. Glides along nicely, gybe attempts were nice until I fucked it up and fell over, then I had to dodge the foil :o

Wind sucked ass, could barely get out of the water, but if I managed that, I could ride easily. Meant I got stuck in the Marina beach after dropping the kite and fighting for a while to relaunch . . . boy that really sucks now they've screwed around with it. A tough body drag to get out, and I got a little more riding in, then I dropped the kite again and just gave up on it.

Fucking anti seize gel doesn't keep bolts tight :o and I now need an Alien Air. Cos I'm not loving the HG.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

3 boards, much joy

So-so forecast, so-so wind reports . . . great session!

Started out playing silly buggers on the TT, which was nice.

Had been out a while when I spotted Hironobu wading out with Grandad's ugly old surfboard that he bolted on the shop Naish foil. I had promised to test it for them but hadn't wanted to spend the good wind fooling around . . . so I swapped boards with him and dragged out to deeper water.

My first time strapless on a foil, on Grandad's dodgy board. Hmm. After a mis-start and a crash into the bottom, we were under way! Foil felt much the same as mine, just a bit slower and more stable. Or more resistant to being wiggled around. Board was horrid, really noticed how long it was.

Too much wind, to close to being horribly over-powered, so after some gybes and water starts, I rode back to shore. I suggested Grandad move the mast forward about 200mm, cut the tail where he planned and cut the front about 100mm ahead of his line. We'll see :D

Went across and had a drink of water, then swapped for the Duke and had a nice time for a change. Rode it out till dark. . . .

Monday, August 8, 2016

Robbed again

Crappy summer wind. So-so session; failure to ride the Duke, underpowered on the Limited and just riding on the Flydoor. Now I remember why I gave up on that board . . . maybe the old one would be better.

And I need to repair that depower line . . .

Some guy got himself a Sroka foil. God, that looks cheap, bulky and draggy! Short mast too, and seemed flexy. Should have asked for a ride.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Showing off for the uninitiated

Off to the ocean. Good forecast didn't arrive, but I got some just-powered foiling. 10 knots in summer is only just enough.

Had a swim with mother, then tried the TT as the wind had picked up . . . under-powered. Oh well.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Nailed it! Railed it!

Rate this an epic session, not because of huge phat airs and wicked tricks, but because I had such a great time on the foil. Really hooked up some fabulous, razor-sharp carving gybes and generally felt very impressed with myself . . .

S3 15 is still out of whack though, I'm going to have to go full retard on the fiddling . . . at least I know where to start.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

2 boards, more joy

Really wanted to ride the Duke, but it's just not a low-powered board :( didn't work well with the faulty 15 and I basically could jump straight on the TT and ride upwind better :( :( So I did that and had a nice time getting back in the swing of swinging around at the end of the rope.

The bar is in dire need of reglueing though . . .

Monday, August 1, 2016

3 boards, not a lot of joy

Testing out the repaired 15 . . . hmm, something very wrong. But I got out on all three boards trying to get my groove on. Just not feeling it today, but stuck around trying to ferret it out for 3 hours . . .

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Angry on my mind

Made up some A-main's for the 15, went to the lake to sort that out, but by the time I'd swapped the QR on the 21, the wind had filled in. I took the foil and Duke and 21 to the beach, but the wind kept coming so I took it back and got the XB13 and the TT then remembered the depower rope is fraying, so just rode the Duke.

It was ok, but I was fully trimmed and wondered if I could ride the 10. Borrowed the Pivot and it was ok, but I needed more wind.

Had a nice time jumping the Mako though, think I'm getting that sorted.

But the whole time I was thinking about the 2015 Angry Swallow 5' 6" that's on the way to me. . . .

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I know I went but . . .

. . . can't remember precisely, don't think I used the foil even though I took it to the beach. Do remember landing the 10m though . . .

Monday, July 18, 2016

1 kite, 3 boards . . . but wait, there's more!

More wind, that is. Marine Day delivers the goods!

Was some wind but the forecast wasn't for a lot more so I didn't know what to do. The lack of 15 is making itself painfully felt. Took the 10m and the foil and Mako Duke over to the lake, as others were on 9 to 14 and various non-foil boards.

Had a lively and tentative time on the foil, riding way out into the lake then riding the swell back in.

I thought the wind had picked up a little so I went back on the Mako and it was ok-ish for a bit, then I took a break. Brought the TT back over for a joke, and gave it a go and it was actually ok! Bit of bump and jump for a while then when the carnage had died down and the herd thinned out, I took the Mako out and it was good.

Whoever the non-local's were, were dicks. Chairs and buckets all over the beach, bad manners on the water and the guy who cut in downwind of me as I was getting off the water--next person who does that, I'm looping my kite into you. You have been warned.