Im interested in the Slayer- anyone ridden one yet ? i like the strapless approach and pad set-up. I am sceptical to the stepped planing area, and generally shy away from gimmicks.
I tend to agree, but I understand why they have done it as I've been seduced by 60 wide ultralight wave boards in the past and when you compare them with a sector they are highly inefficient with even the smallest amounts of rocker and still dont go round corners well.
Alternative is the Sector V4 54- i would want to ride it without straps, but might try going to straps to do some jumps. I would not use the racing fin set-up- have too much seaweed.
I used this most of last season in the wave when the light winds were strong enough for it. It was the only solution for me in good surf when the wave board wont go. With the stock tri carver setup it's still a way off the 60's ability to plane and point.
What i am wondering is what the difference is between these boards in terms of upwind ability, chop ability, and carving/turning ability.
Ive had the Slayer's and Sectors for nearly 2 months now and run 4-5 demos at various days around the UK and Ireland. They nearly always get out at demos for somewhere in the weekend the wind will be light..
Slayer will ride waves pretty well, though it rear foot turns, you can't bury the nose of the board, you have to drive it from the tail, and it does very well in waves up to shoulder height, anything more than that and things start getting a bit fast and sketchy. Saying this, both the 54 and the 60 are miles ahead of the sectors round corners. I've had some excellent sessions with them in good lined surf, the likes of which the sector (even 54) would never be able to come close to...
It's not a full on wave board, I grant you, but you have to remember what these things do... they take a normal weight rider and give them the ability to plane and charge upwind with half the power of anything else.. In that they get you into condition you normally wouldn;t touch, and some good days at that. They might not be epic days, but I've had some beautiful sessions in conditions that others can only watch...
As to early planing and upwind. W just came back from a demo in Dublin, where the morning saw the lightest of onshore winds, and with all the demo kit on the beach we started to experiment.. Lithium zero 18, VXR V2 18 LW, VXR V2 17, Sector 60, Slayer 60, Slayer 54, Twin tips..
Sector 60V4 is highly efficient, and with the new Li18 zero you have some technique to master in building apparent wind, but when you do it's quite surprising what you can get going in.
That said, with a normal kite (14-17m) the slayer 60 is not far behind, and it's a very comfortable place to be. It's not electric in terms of top speed or full on carving ability, but it does the job well enough to enjoy the conditions. If I were you I would try one of these if you can. The 54 is a more aggressive board, but it's closer to a big wave board, so if you are going for a light wind option, there is no reason to talk you out of a 60, as it's making a much better job of what it's designed for.
Strapless it's very easy and smooth, (hence ideal for freestyle stuff) upwind significantly better than the 54 (which is important in a break of moving water). It's also go option to mess around with fin size and placement... It's the board I would have as a quiver board having spent 2 months poking around the range...