Hydroflex Lost Rocket 5’8’’ Review as a Kitesurf Board
Rider 85kg – Alan Bennett (no affiliation to any brand or shop)
6yrs Kitesurfing experience
2yrs totally strapless (haven’t been on a TT/straps since I broke my ankle)
Usually out on the water min. 2 sessions / week, throughout the whole year.
Previously owned kitesurf surfboards
I have included this list to indicate that I have ridden a broad selection of boards and to show that I can give a fair review of this board in comparison to other good quality kitesurf boards.
F-one signature 5'10
Slingshot SST 6'0
JC -SD3 6'0 (surftech)
FireWire quad 6'0 (kite version)
Slingshot Celeritas 5'8"
I purchased this board after reading / researching many reviews and advertising bumpf online. I was looking for something for East Coast waves in Ireland. Basically wind generated swell, knee to shoulder high with on/cross onshore winds. I wanted something light in weight, NOT rigid, responsive, low entry rocker for fast acceleration, thruster fins (I just prefer them) and a concave bottom, basically I wanted a version of the Slingshot Celeritas which was more responsive and lighter.
Hydroflex website states the following about their technology –
• Superior performance and responsiveness
• Exceptional wave curve / face / surface adaption
• The optimal application of internal force vectors guarantees maximal reset momentum
• Optimal flexibility and acceleration
• Highly resistant to dents and dings without feeling rigid or hard
• High strength to weight ratio, no delamination, less breaks and buckles
• Completely customizable shapes and glassing
• Easy to fix and recyclable
Hydroflex website states the following about the Lost Rocket Shape–
The Lost Rocket is a runaway success! This surfboard features a wide forward outline with round forgiving rails, flat deck and a wide “rocket” tail. The rocker is extremely low in the entry, for instant speed, with an exaggerated kick in the tail for tight arcs out of turns. It has actually much more tail rocker as any board in the Lost Surfboards line. Coupled with a deep concave throughout, via a straightened stringer line, this shortboard is a small to average wave all-rounder that can be effectively ridden 4" to 8" shorter, 1/8" thinner, and just slightly wider than your normal shortboard without sacrificing any of the carve or drive.
Firstly, out of the box this board is light, and I mean, very light. Initial thoughts were that it would be too light for kiting in heavy winds. This isn’t true, just make sure you hold on to it though ☺.
It is a beautiful shape and the finish is impeccable. Length, width, concave, rocker, rails and tail where just what I imagined/wanted.
Inflating it for the first time takes quite a while, as it takes a while for the air to filter through the foam. So much time I thought my pump was broken.
The fins supplied are FCS, but they are the cheap plastic versions. I was surprised by this, as at £669 this is not a cheap board.
The important stuff – For the conditions I wanted this board for, it is probably the best shape of surfboard I have ridden. It’s really fast on our east coast onshore waves, really responsive underfoot, It rides a bit higher in the water than say the Firewires, and I thought it might be a bit ’corky’ on my first session, but this isn’t the case, it rides nearly perfect for what I wanted it for. I’ve put a good few sessions in on it in varying conditions and truly love this board shape.
The technology makes this board super light and it’s really responsive. I kept the pressure between 4-6psi, once it started to register on the pump guage, as I didn’t want it too stiff or overly soft/flexible. I would need to ride it at different pressures to really judge if the pressure does make that much difference to it. I intend to take it out in bigger surf at a higher pressure when I get the conditions.
The only downside to this board is that even though I’ve taken it fairly easy on it over the last month (no punting or jumping) I have cracked it in the front foot heel area.
I had put a deck pad in this area but none the less, it has still cracked. Note should be taken that this is a ‘surf’ board and it hasn’t been advertised as a ‘kite’ surfboard. I knew this when I purchased it, but I am actively trying to find better solutions to existing problems and I thought this tech could be a great option for kiteboarding. That said, the crack is about 6inches long and can be fixed easily. I intend to add another layer of 4/6oz glass over the main ‘feet’ area of the board and re-apply another front deckpad. Although this will add a bit of weight, it should add more strength and durability and allow me to continue using the board as a kiteboard, and to be honest, a bit of weight to the existing board mightn’t be a bad thing.
I hear some of you say, ‘why didn’t he just go for the PU board (cheaper) and glass it up?’ My response is, ‘I’m prepared to try something new and maybe contribute to movement forward in kitesurfboard development’ (just don’t tell the wife about the price difference)
For small to medium on-shore waves, this board is truly brilliant to kitesurf. Its responsive, fast, goes upwind great, stable at speed, grip when you want it, but skatey when you want that also. I have been looking for this type of board for a while now and am really happy to find this shape and tech. All it needs to be great as a kiteboard, is an additional glass job on the top deck and a small deck pad for absorption of those heel bumps when riding to get out the back.
Mmmm, and a decent set of fins wouldn’t go a miss, especially at the cost its sold for.
Obviously all the above is just my opinion, but for anyone considering this as a kiteboard, I hope the above helps.