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What hydrofoil board to buy?

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What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby flixern » Wed Jun 28, 2017 10:36 am


I'm guessing quite a few people have asked this before. But what hydrofoil board should I buy?

  • I'm 65-70 kilos in weight.
  • Normally using a 12m or 10m kite.
  • Student on a budget.
  • Fast learner. Been snowboarding, wakeboarding and other activities since I was a young child.
After kiting for a year now with twintip, I think it's time to move on. I love powder on snowboard and therefor think that "surfing" would be much cooler for me than jumping and doing tricks. I was therefor looking into hydrofoils that I can use as both foilboard and surfboard, like Cabrinha Double Agent. The prices are ridiculously high at the moment. I'm guessing they will drop in the next few years, but I want one now ofc :D

So what hydrofoil board should a fast-learning-beginner look into at my weight? And where can I get one that isn't to expensive? Also, can most masts be used with every board? Do they have a standard mount like bindings does?

Thanks in advance! :)

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby Lokihel » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:09 pm

flixern wrote:
Wed Jun 28, 2017 10:36 am
blabla Student on a budget blabla The prices are ridiculously high blabla where can I get one that isn't to expensive?
I think you're in the wrong game. You will probably find your kites are not adapted to foiling as well.
Make sure you can afford it before getting addicted :lol:

flixern wrote:
Wed Jun 28, 2017 10:36 am
where can I get one that isn't to expensive? Also, can most masts be used with every board? Do they have a standard mount like bindings does?
Not really.
You essentially have two main types: plate mounts and box mounts.
And each is oddly specific (think hole spacing for plates, and box dimensions/taper for box mounts).
Most hydrofoil manufacturers offer some options though.

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby palmbeacher » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:20 pm

My recommendation: get a second hand MHL Lift foil (2015/16) and a slingshot alien air. Great setup to progress on and will get you out at low end. You should be able to find both online for ~$1100, is still expensive but worth investment. You can also get a foilmount that you can attach to any board.

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby stefarius » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:53 pm

Here some tips!

phpBB [video]

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby Mossy 757 » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:18 pm

I was in your situation almost exactly when I decided to buy a foil. Had been kiting a little over a year, wasn't an expert but was progressing, wanted to go fast and feel the sensation of flying.

I was torn between buying a "beginner" foil or a full carbon "race" foil. I think that distinction was a mistake, the real choice should focus around price and quality. Set a budget for yourself. Brand new full-carbon race setups run about $3k USD, used they're 1/2 to 1/3 that price. The cheaper aluminum stuff usually starts in the $1200-1800 range brand new depending on what you get but seems to lose resale value a little faster, typically 1/3 the price of retail.

If you're physically fit, a fast learner, have good kite control AND can do the other sports you mentioned, you should NOT be afraid of getting a race foils. Over the last 3 years the biggest advancements in race foils have been to make them easier to ride and more stable. I think I could prove to ANYONE that my Delta Hydrofoil race foil which can do 30knots+ is easier to ride than a Liquid Force Foil Fish if we did a back to back comparison, no doubt in my mind. Your first 10 hours might be more enjoyable on the cheaper foil because it's a LOT slower and therefore less scary, but you won't really progress beyond just toodling around on any of the entry level foils unless/until you start upgrading to custom wings.

THAT BEING SAID: if you never ever think you'll want to race your hydrofoil ever in a million years, ignore everything I just wrote and buy a cheap used Liquid Force and whatever floaty board you can get to go with it, I've heard the MHL board works great. The reason I say this is because once you learn you can sell the big board, get something small like a paipo or a pocket board then change the stock LF wings out for Stringy wings, the same ones that Greg Drexler from Boardriding Maui uses for his famous videos. Those wings on a little strapless paipo could be all the hydrofoil you ever need if you want to be 100% freeride oriented. If you know or suspect that you might want to get into racing or at least see what it's like to go as fast as a jet ski without using an engine, this advice no longer applies.

Check out this thread and message user name "lovethepirk" if you want some advice, he just got into foiling as well... ... 0&start=20
Last edited by Mossy 757 on Wed Jun 28, 2017 5:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby juandesooka » Wed Jun 28, 2017 5:11 pm

You may be better off to separate out the two aspects of the sport.

For surfing with a kite, any surfboard will do to start out. You will be better off with something that is smaller than what you would paddle surf on, eg if typical surfboard is 6' to 6'6", typical kite surfboard is 5' to 5'6". A cheap beater board will do you fine, especially while getting it figured out. You don't need straps. Maybe helpful in first session while figuring out water starts, but most can easily figure it out without. You'll likely find that more experience on surfboard will be helpful once you try foiling.

For foiling, I agree with Mossy after the "that being said". :-) Get the cheapest complete foil you can find for learning. Once you figure out what you like, you can then upgrade and can likely pass on the learning model for what you paid to the next you that comes along. For me, foiling is a nice side snack, so it has to be kept reasonable cost. I went for the mix n match franken board: stringy wings and fuselage (as recommended above), a slingshot mast, and drilled holes in a cheap old kite surfboard. Good enough! (for me, straps/hooks have been helpful, but lots of people say to go strapless right off the bat too) (also there are DIY options for wing making, if you really want to go budget style)

Now, after saying all that, foiling has lately become more than a snack, seems to be the full meal ... really fun and addictive. Other than wave riding, foil is my focus lately. Turning downwind and carving around in the wind swells was a really nice surprise -- the wind sounds stops, it is silent, and you are semi floating -- the closest feeling to powder snowboarding I've found. Stoked!

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby coleman » Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:36 pm

i've got a local friend who is making them. he's been at it for over a year prototyping and has settled on some good designs that rivals his MHL lift in performance. he weighs about 260 and makes them extremely durable. charges 500 for people locally who want a foil and theres about 7 or 8 guys who have them.
i've ridden around with my buddy and they are plenty fast, I have an alpine foil. his foils keep up just fine.

if you are on a budget, this might be a direction to go. PM if you want to to get in touch with him for you.

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby DukeSilver » Thu Jun 29, 2017 3:28 am

A second hand combo like a Cabrinha Double Agent or a Liquid Force Rocket Fish will fit your bill I think. Cheap and durable. Good enough to learn and have fun on. Given how new you are to kiting, these beginner foils will keep you busy for a while before you feel the need to upgrade. When / if you want to upgrade, you'll be able to sell them easily as most beginners are after this style of foil. There is a LF Rocket Foil combo for sale for AU$1,100 in my local buy and sell. That would be around US$750 - $800 I think. The board can be used without the foil as a surfboard, so it fits your brief as far as being dual purpose goes.

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby revhed » Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:25 am

Mossy 757 wrote:
Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:18 pm
I think I could prove to ANYONE that my Delta Hydrofoil race foil which can do 30knots+ is easier to ride than a Liquid Force Foil Fish if we did a back to back comparison, no doubt in my mind.
YES :thumb:
Or any other well designed and thought build!

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Re: What hydrofoil board to buy?

Postby Topaz » Thu Jun 29, 2017 7:38 pm

I was there some time ago.
I went for a second hand Cab.Double Agent mainly because I found a good deal on a used one. I liked the Slingshot and the Liquid Force too.
I'm happy with the foil and my progression is ok.

First four or five sessions were kind of hard.
Session #10 I was foiling and touching down.
Session #20 I was going upwind and downwind.
I'm there now. Not tacking or gibing yet.

I started using a 12m C kite. I needed around 12knots to ride confidently.
Now I got a 12m strutless (Naish Trip) and i'm riding under 10 knots, probably 8/9 ktns average.
I didn't drop my strutless yet!

I think I'll be able to sell my Double Agent and my Trip with a small loss when I feel like trying something different.
My next step will be a freeride carbon fiber foil (I like the MHL/Slingshot) and a foil kite (I like the FS Speed)

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