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Video - Longboards can still be exciting.
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gregnw44



Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 246

PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 7:43 pm    Post subject: Video - Longboards can still be exciting. Reply with quote

Longboards can still be exciting - at least to me !!
I've been sailing longboards for over 30 years, bought my first one in '81 (yes, I was a kid Smile
I've been sailing shortboards since '84... that was my first trip to the Gorge, when I learned how to waterstart. I have several shortboards that I like.
But I still like longboards. The raceboards (Equipe, MegaCat, Lightning, Bamba) between '90 & '95 were I think the best all around hi-performance design and build quality, of them all.
Here's a video from a blustery day in Seattle, last May. I'm pretty familiar with sailing raceboards in different winds... but this sail was brand new to me at the time. I had it rigged for low-end power, but the wind ended up being stronger than I expected, so I was way over-powered. Anyway, although I don't seem-to-be way OP'd in this... believe me, I was Smile
Lastly, it's a shame they can't make similar quality boards these days. This '93 F2 Lightning raceboard is all original and doesn't have any cracks or dents in it. It has been sailed for 30 years, from light winds to pounding chop, saltwater and freshwater.... with sails from 3M to 11M... by people of all different sizes (I'm 200, ok, 205 now)... it's been bumped into rocks and parking lots, tons of times... and loaded on and off roof racks on several different cars... and bumped around in many different garages. It's original shape is intact, there are no soft-spots, the adjustable mast-track works like new, as does the big carbon centerboard. It has the original CB gaskets, which are perfect (why can't the new raceboards, just copy the gaskets that Mistral, Bic, Fanatic and F2 used in '93). The original fin and finbox are like new, except the fin has gouges and nicks.
This board (249L and 12'4") weighs 30# stripped and 38# with straps, fin, centerboard, etc. like you see it here. Same weight as in '93, it hasn't taken on any water.
This board is worth $3000 to me... cause that's what it would cost to replace it with a new raceboard from Starboard or Exocet. The problem is, although those boards are very cool... and would "usually beat this one" in a race... WILL either of them still be sailable 30 years from now?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nExSHR9H0Ik
Greg Smile


Last edited by gregnw44 on Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:01 am; edited 1 time in total
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rangerider



Joined: 19 Jul 2009
Posts: 161

PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

definitely looks like fun, especially considering it is about 15F outside right now. That looks like a nice low wind combo. What sail is that? I loved my twincam 9.5M last year with my longboard but my board is a lower performance version which is at least similarly indestructible and old.
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gregnw44



Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 246

PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rangerider wrote:
definitely looks like fun, especially considering it is about 15F outside right now. That looks like a nice low wind combo. What sail is that? I loved my twincam 9.5M last year with my longboard but my board is a lower performance version which is at least similarly indestructible and old.


I'd just purchased that "used sail" a week before this session. It's a Sailworks 10.5M Retro.
I put a bunch of "info labels" on the video, using Youtube's video editor, and in one of them, I say what sail and board I'm using.
Anyway, I've learned from Youtube, that you can only see those labels if people watch it on a computer. If you watch it on a smart ph. you don't see those labels... I don't know why.
It looks way better on a computer anyway Smile

And, that 2 cam 9.5 you have will probably be a very decent sail for a longboard. If it's a newer design, like this 2003 Retro I'm using... they'll tell you to downhaul it like crazy. And that's fine for planing shortboards... but for longboards, you want power. And that means, a tighter leech, not a loose leech. So experiment with moderate downhaul and outhaul, to see if you get more power in light winds. And sure, if it's WINDY, than downhaul that thing so you can control it.
The day from this vid... I had much more wind than expected. And I would've done much better with a lot more downhaul (or a smaller sail, would've been the best). Of course, with lots more downhaul, I wouldn't have the power to move my 205 lbs and this raceboard in winds under 10 knots... like I do when it's rigged fuller.
Greg -
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rangerider



Joined: 19 Jul 2009
Posts: 161

PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My 9.5 is amazingly stable in gusts - I was just blown away with how controllable it was compared to my other sails. You didn't appear to be fighting the sail at all in the video but 10.5 is a big sail.

if it's windy I use smaller sails, I pretty much leave the 9.5 rigged for low wind but have sailed it in some gusty conditions. I would like to have a performance longboard / raceboard at some time. I am planning to get a windsup this summer to teach others to windsurf and also do some SUPing with on no wind days - I hope it is fun to sail with the 9.5 when I can't get the XCite-ride 145L planing.
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 1392

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant Greg. Some of us echo all you say about what we have lost in terms of construction, durability, and sheer allround usability in board design since those peak years, now so long ago. My Ace-Tec Bamba, despite all the knocks it has taken over 20+ years, will probably outlast me. (And the mast track won't be allowed to pull out ever again!)

With regard to back foot in straps on old racing boards, that is one area where my 'modern' Kona 1 (now quite old itself) really does score. Admittedly, it's more an all round funboard than an out and out racer, but with tweaked fin and straps to match my weight and size (180 lbs and 6'3") it is extremely comfortable planing in them. The board may even have that old durability built in? (So far, so good.)

I only wish the best version of the Phantom could be built with all that expertise and first class materials from those halcyon days of old. I'd buy one tomorrow, regardless of cost!
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gregnw44



Joined: 23 Jul 2008
Posts: 246

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rangerider - Yeah, I'm like you... when it's windy I use smaller sails (and boards) too. The day of "this video"... I didn't expect this much wind. And I was very excited to try out the big used Retro I just got. I've had an Aerotech 11 M Jumbo race sail for a long time, which is the best, for light winds... that I always use for light wind racing. But I wanted to try this newer designed 10.5 Retro in slightly higher stuff. It's not as powerful as the 11M in very light winds... but I knew it would handle 10-20 stuff better.
Anyway, in the 15-25 mph winds I had... the big Retro was very backwinded whenever it was above 20 (we had a few short gusts to 30 that evening). So, to keep the sail from crashing down onto me (when it got backwinded) I had to push away hard with the front hand. Yeah, the Retro could've used more downhaul... then it wouldn't have backwinded as much. But then, I'd lose low wind power.
Oh well... it all worked out... and became a cool little adventure.
Greg Smile
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14481

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greg, your video, music, comments, and editing brought us along with you without even having to drive and rig. I sold my last longboard decades ago, and you brought back memories, all of them good, of the whole genre. One biggie is the ease with with one can slog a longboard back as long as there's one knot left in the wind.

Example, in case you want to try it: try getting some air even on perfectly flat water when barely planing simply by lifting the entire windward rail so the wind can get under it as you then suck both feet up under you.

Another inefficient but fun cruising stunt with all them feetstraps on them boards is, on a board like my Equipe with two or three in-line back straps on the centerline: put your two feet in the two rearmost straps, even though they're designed for back foots only. The nose comes up, so the planing threshold increases, but in the puffs there's little more than fin in the water. It's probably not the fastest path from A to B, but it is something different, usually welcome on flat water.

Mike \m/
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2431

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, to each his own......
I'm about your vintage (64 long years), started on shortboards in '83, owned Equipes, Lightnings, Cats, Christman's, and Seatrend long boards.
Looks boring, going in a straight line for 10 miles.
And build quality, are you kidding me? Every finbox, every mastrack, every gasket, some footstrap plugs, most daggerboard wells, FAIL, within one season. Not to mention split seams, delamed decks, ......
I was 145 lbs mostly in those days. I guess I"m just to strong and big for those euro trash boards to hold up.
And amongst the BayArea raceboard crew, we all were constantly working on the underbuilt overhyped long boards.
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w8n4wind



Joined: 12 Nov 2008
Posts: 275
Location: canada

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^^
wow dude, you must be super hardcore.
my old equipe is 20 yrs old, still going fine.
(although, the seams on my megacat are finally starting to come apart.
and its only 19years old.)

greg..awesome video!..nothing like being powered with 12' of board under your feet.!
just a different kind of ride.

_________________
i like longboards.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2431

PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Every single sailor who raced on longboards constantly worked on their boards, all the things I said, and I'm sure, + some more.
EuroTrash boards are for sailing on weekends, in light breezes, and to look cool atop your car.
And all of us had multiple shortboards, wave, bump, and slalom, to complement the occasional use in a raceboard course race.
Doubt most of us even sailed our raceboards more than 50 days a year, as time is needed to use the other boards, and sailing an Equipe at ebb tide CrissyFields in 24-35 mph winds are just not the smartest ideas ever thought of.
The longboards were pretty good for sailing at Berkeley, and even there, everyone needed to tuttle the fin box's, replaces the gaskets, fix the tracks that broke every two weeks, replace inserts, fix delams and split rails constantly after the 2 month honeymoon period.
God help the big boyz like BradDuffy (245 lbs.), FerrisHamilton (235), or DaveLeahrs (245). They broke boards during practice before the first heat.
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