The Silent Sports crew were down in Cuba last week seeking sunny windy and warm. The week delivered 5 pretty good days ranging from 14m down to 8m, 1 cross off shit show and a light wind day that required a skimboard or SS Space Pickle powered by a Cabrinha Xbox 18 LW. The main boards used were the Shinn's, Dundee(135x44),Speedball(18W) and Supershinn (136x42)
The Supershinn has it all. Pop,Speed and Control is what comes to mind when riding this board. It can be used by pro riders right down to a beginner. In fact,our newest female rider was going upwind on the Supershinn on her 3rd day on the water.
I wanted a travel board that can cover a wide range of wind. That board would be the Dundee. I rode it with 14m in LW to wound up 8m. Granted it is pretty flat water at this spot, but this size for my weight(203 lbs) its perfect. Solid upwind performance and good off the wind speed. I found better pop and a more lively feel with pads on the wider setting. The Dundee is really manoeuvrable. This is a great freeride board,nice smooth ride,easy on my old knees.
From the moment I saw the Speedball I just had to take it for a ride. It was the 18W. Thats 132x47! This is a board I would recommend you try . It has a very skatey feel to it. This surprised me considering the Freeride finns are pretty large. Its really hard to nail this board down with a description because it is really different that any TT that I have ridden. I would not call it great in LW(the Dundee for me was better) but it planes pretty quick due to the width all over. The short rail length inhibits its LW upwind performance a bit compared to a little longer board but really, no issues going upwind. The Speedball is just so much fun! No problem riding toeside with width. Great wide platform when landing jumps. One of our lighter riders felt he needed the foot straps nearer the heel edge but his lighter weight he would be more suited to the 16W Speedball. This might sound vague, but I can't really nail this board down into a basic description. If you can try it, ride it for awhile( i spent 3hrs on it one day) and you'll get good idea if its for you.
We had the 3 versions of the Shinn foot pads. I have never had any issues with the older straps digging into my feet. The older model for me is the most cushy. The Straps of the Sneaker X(new version) are the same. The traction surface is different on the newest pad. Very easy to adjust, not only the strap,but if you want to ride more duck,no problem. All are super light.
Thats it, we had a great time,lots of kiting, lots of drinking, many shit shows(Kite on one side of the pier in water,rider on other) and lots of fun! The Shinn boards where very nice( we had the Red also but I did not ride it and those who did were to drunk to tell me about it),lol