It seems all the top race boards these days are maximum wide (70cm) with 3 big fins. As an owner of a North race ltd 2010 (4 small fins and a relatively narrow board), these new boards looked intimidating and I didn't know whether the big investment was worth it. So I tried my hand at making one, put 3 windsurfing fins on, and ...
Its fantastic! Why did no one tell us these new boards are so nice! My one has the wrong rail shape, is badly finished, and must be the most ugly, unprofessional board ever made, but it still rides really nicely. I can just imagine what a decent board would ride like! The big, wide body makes tacking and gybing so much easier, and I can now get just about all my turns right in any conditions, whereas I was only getting 25% of my turns on the 2010 board if the conditions were good. It is also way more stable in a straight line. And the low wind performance is incredible.
When the 2012 boards start coming out, I am definitely going to invest in a good 70cm wide raceboard. It is just so much better than the narrow old boards like the 2010 (for me anyway, people in more windy areas might disagree?)
Maybe not the nicest paintjob ever seen on earth, but on the other hand no doubt this is custom board A few questions, I hope you will answer:
- Are the front fins canted /angled ?
. The board seems a little short, what is the length ?
- How about rocker and bottom shape
I'm considering to build one myself, and just to have quick plan, before I start shaping
- The fins are straight since they are windsruf fins, BUT I canted the fin box inserts. One only needs about 2 degrees it seem, so it does not distort the bottom of the board that much (for a first board anyway- the next one must be perfectly flat underneath). I think my angle is close to 2 degrees, which is enough if the board is fast, but since my rails are wrong, I am only getting the board to lift and go fast in more than 13 knots of wind. I think more cant would help on the slower boards?
- Length is about 1.8m. Fits in the vehicle nicely, but maybe a bit short yes by 10cm. I will find in in more chop I suppose.
- My rocker is wrong. I went flat bottom to past halfway, and then curve up slowly and then a lot at the very tip. Next time I will start about halfway, and then curve up faster, but with less curve at the tip.
Make sure your rails are flat at the bottom! Mine stated flat, and then while sanding become rounded and that is a speed killer. I tried to fix it afterwards, but not a good job. Mind you, If you want a slower super easy board to ride, the rounder rails will probably make it much easier.
Best board inspiration site: kiteracing.com
Hope your board comes out well! It great fun to ride your own board, even if it is far from perfect.
Board looks great. It would take me about 2 years to build something like that.
I had the same experience :re: size of the board. Once in the water they are smoother, and feels more controllable. I didn't build, but I did buy the large Naish board. Much easier to tack, and ride around. It also floats me once the the wind completely dies, so it easier to restart once the wind tries to return.
I would not worry about riding a smaller sized backfin...that seems to be where things are moving.
I am actually surprised how comfortable the board rides with such a small back fin. Only 30cm (and narrow), versus 41cm front fins. Every now and then I think that it just looks out of place, and maybe a bigger one will be much better. I suppose the back fin is only for stability, and if not needed then the smaller fin means less drag.
I've put a smooth layer on the bottom (hot coat- previous was rough glass) and the board now easily planes in less than 10 knots of wind.
Right on Christoff. Can I ask what foam you used for the blank?
I built one using stacked sheets of XPS insulation foam from Home Depot. The widest I could get with this foam was 56cm though, unless I glue 2 stacks together (next time). The cost for foam was way cheap (30$) compared to other options like hacking up a SUP blank or something.
My board is a bit squirrely...I rode a 70cm Mike's lab board and it was like riding on a cloud compared to my board. Also I messed with fin cant a bit. First tried 4 degrees, then 2 with the same fin template. The board seemed much more stable with less cant.