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Directional board recommendations
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Post new topic   Reply to topic    Northwest Kiteboarding -> Gorge / Portland / Oregon Coast
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Bear

Since 16 Feb 2013
30 Posts
Tacoma
 



PostSun Jul 31, 22 9:58 am    Directional board recommendations Reply with quote

I’m a decent twin tip rider that wants to move up to a directional board with foot straps. I’m 5’11” and 184lbs. I kite in the Gorge but primarily in Baja at Los Barriles. I’m looking for board recommendations. A friend loves her Duotone Whip but she rides strapless. I don’t think the Whip has foot strap inserts. Thanks

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knotwindy

Since 25 Sep 2011
573 Posts

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PostSun Jul 31, 22 11:51 am     Reply with quote

You can put foot straps on any board with stick ones from NSI. They work.
And there are a lot of boards that will work to start with. Any board 5’5” to 6’3” and about 18-20 “ wide will be fine to learn on. Flatter planes up faster and is slightly easier to learn foot switch. More rockered turns better and is more fun on the wave face. But they will all work to learn on while having fun getting wet.
You will get lots of other opinions about folks ‘favorite’ board. Try lots of them to see which style you like best.

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shred_da_gorge

Since 12 Nov 2008
1150 Posts
Local, not Low Cal
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PostSun Jul 31, 22 5:02 pm     Reply with quote

Lots of great advice on surfboard progression in previous threads found with the search feature. I still have the Slingshot Converter for travel and it's the board I learned both kite-foiling and surfboarding (well, Angry Swallow, it's predecessor) on. Just saw one at Pure Stoke for $500 but you can definitely get cheaper surfboards.

I don't agree any surfboard will work, and it depends where and how you'll ride. If you plan to learn in the Event Site area start with a wide board with little rocker and less of a traditional surfboard shape. The Whip is like the Slingshot "T-Rex" style which I believe is what you'll learn fastest on, and if I'm not mistaken they make two versions - one with inserts.

I'm 6'4", 185# and ride the Slingshot Mixer in the 5'8" length, which would be OK for you to progress on (it's called a "groveler" board, designed for smaller and mushier surf). The Converter and Angry Swallow were 5'4" and a bit more snub-nosed like the Whip. Windance has a variety on closeout but some of the narrower boards I think you'll want to stay away from. In my opinion, your learner board may become your light wind board, but I think if you eventually want to try foiling the Converter, or Cabrinha's equivalent to it, would be a good value for learning both. (Cabrinha makes some really nice surfboards, IMO, I've just never owned one).

Good luck!

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Bear

Since 16 Feb 2013
30 Posts
Tacoma
 



PostSun Jul 31, 22 5:46 pm     Reply with quote

Thanks for the good suggestions. I will be primarily learning in Los Barriles. There are decent small to medium waves there that I have lots of fun on with my twin tip. That is what has inspired me to try a surfboard. I'd like to find a good used one if possible. I will look around the shops in Hood River next week.

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shred_da_gorge

Since 12 Nov 2008
1150 Posts
Local, not Low Cal
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PostSun Jul 31, 22 7:47 pm     Reply with quote

Celero/Celeritas may be a good one as well, especially for medium size beach waves. If you're learning in the ocean on breaking faces, a little more rocker is fine. Your other decision is whether to ride with three fins or four. I'm a quad guy, but most people I know who ride the coast prefer thrusters. (My original Angry Swallow let me ride with three or four, like several boards out there, and I just grew to prefer four).

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user124

Since 02 Aug 2012
384 Posts
Portland
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PostSun Jul 31, 22 8:00 pm     Reply with quote

Celero/celeritas is my favorite board for Los Barriles. The swell can get pretty good size there but isn't super steep and doesn't need that much rocker. For the Oregon coast or even big days at Rufus I like something with a bit more rocker.

Of course everyone has an opinion when it comes to kite surfboards, and people often don't agree. There are so many different styles of riding so you have to find what works best for how you ride. That's also half the fun, and may lead you to end up with a garage full of different boards.

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Bear

Since 16 Feb 2013
30 Posts
Tacoma
 



PostMon Aug 01, 22 12:27 pm     Reply with quote

What would be a good length for my size and Los Barriles?

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jblum

Since 13 Jul 2008
285 Posts
Hood River
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PostTue Aug 02, 22 9:06 pm    Duotone Whip SLS Reply with quote

Hey Bear-

I ride LB all winter and the Gorge all summer. I LOVE my Duotone ProWhip (now called Whip SLS). I'm 6'3" and 190# and ride the 5'1". For learning, the 5'3" or 5'5" might suit you better for a bit easier water starts, transitions and learning the moves on a directional.

There are a lot of SS folks in the Gorge, and Slingshot makes nice boards, but I think that the Duotone boards are superior in construction, weight, shape and performance. Also, you mentioned riding strapped, and that's cool, but I think that most people eventually move toward strapless. I don't think there is a good reason to ride surfboard with straps in the gorge or LB if you eventually want to go strapless.... save yourself the trouble with the straps and just start with a strapless board!

The Duotone boards are more "freestyle" influenced than some of the other ones out there, but if you've been riding a twin tip a lot, I actually like the shape of the board better and find it more comfortable for learning directional moves like tacks and jibes. The more "surf" influenced shapes move faster on the water and are less forgiving for making transitions, so if you're learning, I really think the Duotone designs are better in that arena. Happy surfing!

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Bear

Since 16 Feb 2013
30 Posts
Tacoma
 



PostWed Aug 03, 22 9:56 am     Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice and Whip recommendation. Regarding strapless, I really like jumping and getting air on my twin tip. I'm not great at it but getting better. I don't want to give that up by going strapless and don't want to be body dragging all over looking for my board. I totally get the transition to strapless and just going strapless has been recommended before to me.
I appreciate your thoughts on this.

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knotwindy

Since 25 Sep 2011
573 Posts

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PostWed Aug 03, 22 11:17 am     Reply with quote

When the waves are good and the wind is from a good direction strapless is great fun and the best. But for me when it is choppy or gusty and I want to jump straps are the way, especially on smaller boards where you can’t really move your feet much anyway. I’ll never be as good as the guys you see on the vids who ride all the time and get new gear for free so I choose what is the most fun for the conditions for me.
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craz z

Since 01 Dec 2008
129 Posts
Montana
Stoked



PostWed Aug 03, 22 12:35 pm     Reply with quote

Quote:
Thanks for the advice and Whip recommendation. Regarding strapless, I really like jumping and getting air on my twin tip. I'm not great at it but getting better. I don't want to give that up by going strapless and don't want to be body dragging all over looking for my board. I totally get the transition to strapless and just going strapless has been recommended before to me.
I appreciate your thoughts on this.


I had this exact mentality many many years ago and always struggled to transition to newer disciplines. These are only my opinions that worked for me you might get it first try.

If you are going to learn something new leave your crutch (twintip) at home. Until you get the hang of it. try to remember how hard it was learning to ride for the first time and staying upwind its about to start all over again. At least this round you know how to fly the kite

If your goal is to jump with a surfboard. Step 1 is learn how to ride it. Taking the straps off is absolutely the key to moving around on the board and will get you familar with it the fastest. there is 4 screws they can be put on and taken off anytime. You can even start practicing with the TT just move your feet out and try a waterstart.

If you struggle at all with heel to toe riding on a twintip straps will frustrate you to no end.

If body dragging and self rescue is an inconvenience then directional and foil is not in the cards for you. The good news is unlike a twintip when you lose it either on a jump or whatever its sitting pretty close to you waiting for the next ride. TT are usually 25-50 yards away setting the tone for the not wanting to body drag.

As time goes on and you get comfortable body dragging and self rescue you will learn to appreciate it and will use it almost every sesh.
Dont want to wreck your kite in a dicey landing. Self rescue will never wreck your gear. If you ever want to foil body drag is the first part of the day to get in the deep end of the pool.

Last on the list is board choice. Obviously there is one extreme to the next so pick something in the middle. Many have pointed out great options to start. No matter the cost either rent, demo, or borrow whatever you can before you plop down the larger stash for something you really really like. First thing is to learn how to do it.

All I can say is I've watched so many struggle for the magic gear or bring their crutches with them or buy something outrageously expensive like an Efoil, or gimmicks like short masts and still refuse the learning process. They all posses the stuff and never use it cause they are afraid to learn and I still see them riding the crutch.

Embrace being uncomfortable take your licks and dont give up and go back to the crutch. after a few weeks maybe even a whole season put those straps back on and send it.

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craz z

Since 01 Dec 2008
129 Posts
Montana
Stoked



PostWed Aug 03, 22 12:50 pm     Reply with quote

knotwindy wrote:
When the waves are good and the wind is from a good direction strapless is great fun and the best. But for me when it is choppy or gusty and I want to jump straps are the way, especially on smaller boards where you can’t really move your feet much anyway. I’ll never be as good as the guys you see on the vids who ride all the time and get new gear for free so I choose what is the most fun for the conditions for me.


There is a purpose for straps. Very Happy

I'm curious did you learn on them or add them later after you could ride any direction you wanted?

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Slappysan

Since 13 Jun 2012
304 Posts

Obsessed



PostWed Aug 03, 22 4:39 pm     Reply with quote

Bear wrote:
I don't want to give that up by going strapless and don't want to be body dragging all over looking for my board.


Well one thing you need to understand is body dragging looking for your board is only a TT thing. Once you are on any surfboard with a bit of volume (ie. NOT a Shinnster) then it's easy to see and catches enough wind that it comes right back to you.

I would suggest you try and pick up an older OR Jester for the style of riding you are describing. The green ones had strap inserts and were really nice boards for powered wave riding (but dogshit at unpowered surfing). The current offerings from OR only the Duke has inserts but it's a tad big IMO.

If you are willing to forego straps you can always upgrade to the Wave Bandit Performer 4-10. Especially if you are flying to Baja as it's the ultimate air travel surfboard. This board only costs $200 and absolutely shreds, especially at strapless airs. Once I switched to this board I sold all my $1k epoxy surfboards.

The Wave Bandit also has this advantage: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=haa12j4r4yI


   WaveBanditAir.jpg 

Last edited by Slappysan on Wed Aug 03, 22 4:55 pm; edited 1 time in total

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knotwindy

Since 25 Sep 2011
573 Posts

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PostWed Aug 03, 22 4:49 pm     Reply with quote

craz z wrote:
knotwindy wrote:
When the waves are good and the wind is from a good direction strapless is great fun and the best. But for me when it is choppy or gusty and I want to jump straps are the way, especially on smaller boards where you can’t really move your feet much anyway. I’ll never be as good as the guys you see on the vids who ride all the time and get new gear for free so I choose what is the most fun for the conditions for me.


There is a purpose for straps. Very Happy

I'm curious did you learn on them or add them later after you could ride any direction you wanted?


Started with them but the board was large so I had to take them off right away. Played that way for a while and when I got the smaller board for higher wind and tighter turns I found I could put them back on to jump and ride like a hooligan again. Very fun. Now I do whatever the conditions suggest. Good waves, larger more rockered board strapless. Chop, junk, gusts, smaller flatter board straps. Occasionally smaller board strapless in the junk. Why not do what feels best to you?!?!

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Bear

Since 16 Feb 2013
30 Posts
Tacoma
 



PostThu Aug 04, 22 9:43 am     Reply with quote

Some great info here. Thanks so much. I am actually pretty good at body dragging but didn't understand that a surfboard will usually not be very far away.

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kwalshpc

Since 24 Oct 2014
138 Posts

Stoked



PostFri Aug 05, 22 7:18 am    Directional Reply with quote

My 2 cents - just get one and start riding it. Probably around 5'8" and around 18.5" wide.

You shouldn't have to spend much. 2-3 hundred. You will see what its all about, decide if it's for you and have an opinion on what your next board should be. You'll probably be able to sell the first one for a few hundred.

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McLovin

Since 11 Sep 2017
240 Posts
Corbett
Stoked



PostFri Aug 05, 22 5:32 pm    Be YOUR OWN BEAR... Reply with quote

Hey Bear!

Most of what the regulars have said is good advice...kind of

Here is another way to go --->. JUST SAY NO to the constant pressure to do the NEXT THING. This type of lemming behavior will have you WING'IN in no time short.

IMO - Straps are the best part of kiting. TWIN TIPS have some major advantages. They have 2 tips which is four times more FUN if you count toe side, which can give you 8 times the creativity in your transitions, this leads to 16 times more fun with aerial moves, inverted tricks lead to another 32 dimensions of movement, with friends you can achieve 64 times the smiles and eventually 128 degrees of bliss.

Just sayin' be your OWN Bear - Nick Jacobson rides a twin most of the time. Not sure who is crashing with their board 50 yards away from them? - Nothing else Butter slides like a good TT - ride smooth - ride fast - flow like water.

So funny how there is a cult of anti-Twin Tip thinking out there - try a good one and you'll see just how FUN a TT can be...

There are MANY PATHS to follow - make your own...

My .02

Mc


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