Dropping down in board size

Aug 23, 2020
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Just made the move from a 5' board to a 4-6. I'm 195 lbs. Dang- knew there'd be a big difference- but shocked how much the board disappears- how much less lift is needed, the turns. I went from having the mast 1/2" from all the way forward to... after some trial and error/catapults... almost all the way in the back. Thinking I need to change to a smaller stab.

I know it's all about time on the water but... any tips/feedback on your experience making this transition? Paddling/position on the board, gear/foil changes? Bit of a challenge which I knew- but I'm pretty psyched at what this will open up in performance- turns- and I hope my pumping.
 

juandesooka

OTF status
Jan 12, 2009
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I am on a 5' and have used a 4'9"....really like the smaller feel while on waves, but the paddling is tough. Just slightly less float, feels like I am pushing water ... after an hour my arms are pooched. So I've reverted to the 5' as the best all-rounder when paddling is included. Even with the 5' I find it preferable to walk back after long rides...at least for the 2nd and 3rd hours of the session. ;-) I am 165 but sadly have another 20lbs or so of 5mm wetsuit. I figure my 4.9 or smaller will be for the tropics, when that option opens up again.
 
Aug 23, 2020
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5mm can be brutal. Mummified. I'm 3/2 in the winter here (So Cal)- thankfully trunking it currently.

My 4-6 is the same volume- 45L as my 5'. There is a difference in paddling, but it is not huge as I would have thought- mostly notice on the paddle back out rather than catching waves. After one session- I have noticed I can't cheat to the shoulder as much as I could on the longer board. I like the shape of the board a bit better- more width in the shoulder- it seems to plane-release and drop into a wave easier once I'm paddling in.
 
Mar 22, 2020
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Just made the move from a 5' board to a 4-6. I'm 195 lbs. Dang- knew there'd be a big difference- but shocked how much the board disappears- how much less lift is needed, the turns. I went from having the mast 1/2" from all the way forward to... after some trial and error/catapults... almost all the way in the back. Thinking I need to change to a smaller stab.

I know it's all about time on the water but... any tips/feedback on your experience making this transition? Paddling/position on the board, gear/foil changes? Bit of a challenge which I knew- but I'm pretty psyched at what this will open up in performance- turns- and I hope my pumping.
What foil do you use ? It has also a lot to do with the box positionning, some shaper put the boxes more at the back, others for forward.
 
Aug 23, 2020
19
9
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What foil do you use ? It has also a lot to do with the box positionning, some shaper put the boxes more at the back, others for forward.
I'm on Axis. Would love to try the new HA 910.... am currently on the 900 w/ 390 stab. May try shimming it for less lift or pair it w/ 370 next time. I also own the flat 460 stab and a 400 I never use which I am considering chopping.

More than anything I know I need more water-time on the shorter board to get it figured out.... which I'm really looking forward to. Was complete rubbish- flat and blown out today. Tomorrow.
 
Mar 22, 2020
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I'm on Axis. Would love to try the new HA 910.... am currently on the 900 w/ 390 stab. May try shimming it for less lift or pair it w/ 370 next time. I also own the flat 460 stab and a 400 I never use which I am considering chopping.

More than anything I know I need more water-time on the shorter board to get it figured out.... which I'm really looking forward to. Was complete rubbish- flat and blown out today. Tomorrow.
What board do you use, how far is the box froml the tail ?

I like the 900 far back, on my 4'6 it was 12cm from the tail (all the way). On my 4'1 it was also all the way far back at 7.5cm.

Now with my Signature 165 (less lift) I need to put it far forward on my 4'6 18 to 20 cm depends on the waves.

Mast positionning regarding the tail is really important I think, couples cm make a big change.
 
Aug 23, 2020
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Thanks! That helps.
I've got a custom 4-6 shaped by Steve Ford / ford Surfboards in Carlsbad/S.D. Pretty psyched how it turned out.

Nice to know you've got your 900 all the way back as well and it's not a matter of me not being used to a shorter board. My one time on the new board I went out w/ a wrench in my pocket- started in the middle- got launched and slid it back a few times, ended up with mast almost all the way back. Don't know the exact measure- but prob 15 cm-ish from the tail. Just want to make sure I'm in the ballpark as I adapt to the new board. Prob slam it all the way back next time out.

Curious what stab are you using with your 900? Have you tried the 910?
 
Mar 22, 2020
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Thanks! That helps.
I've got a custom 4-6 shaped by Steve Ford / ford Surfboards in Carlsbad/S.D. Pretty psyched how it turned out.

Nice to know you've got your 900 all the way back as well and it's not a matter of me not being used to a shorter board. My one time on the new board I went out w/ a wrench in my pocket- started in the middle- got launched and slid it back a few times, ended up with mast almost all the way back. Don't know the exact measure- but prob 15 cm-ish from the tail. Just want to make sure I'm in the ballpark as I adapt to the new board. Prob slam it all the way back next time out.

Curious what stab are you using with your 900? Have you tried the 910?
I like the 370 stab with the 900, it also depends if you put a shim or not, you can play with the power of the lift par shiming.

Yes I did try the 910, more lift, less gradual at the take off, slower but more glide and forgiving at low speed, turns as good I would say.