I've been riding the Firewire 5'11 for a while now in a variety of conditions and have been asked to give a small review on my experiences on the board.
I test kites and boards for Airush and a local surfshaper called Geragthy surfboards so I get to try alot of different stuff.
The 5'11 looks great out of the box, super sexy shape and very good finish - just one look and you know you want one.
But looks can be deceiving so I tried to put the good looks out of my mind on my first run.
The initial feel of the board is that this is something different, the flex which seems to run throughout the board makes for a super smooth ride and absorbs chop like no other board I've tried. Even my poly boards don't feel this way. This gives you the confidence to put your power down and you power upwind on this board - in fact I wonder whether the FW technology would work in a courseracing board as it feels like getting well tuned shock-absorbers on.
So it goes straight pretty good - how about the waveriding?
Like most boards it likes a cleaner face, but it can handle a fair amount of chop with out bouncing out. Bottom turn is adjustable trough out which is a characteristic I like. It also gives a fair amount of carry allowing you to climb back up the face of the wave without stalling. I did find that the supplied PC3's were a tad small for my weight (85kg) and board worked better for me with larger fins - but that will be personal preference. IMO my weight is the max weight for this board and I'd probably prefer same board in a 6'0 or 6'1.
Top turn can be done any where on the face but like most boards it gets better the steeper the section
Aerials are pretty sweet too with predictable behavior throughout so it pretty much does everything you'd want out of a waveboard.
Will it last? Mine is showing no signs of stress so far, its light and does seem to ding if dropped on the floor so needs to be looked after but that would be normal.
All in all a great board which is on par or ahead of many current production waveboards. I have been on boards that bottomturned slightly better or had an even sweeter top-turn, but I haven't been on many (if any) that combined all manouvers in such an effortless package as the Firewire 5'11 - well done!