Thursday, December 24, 2009

We Felt the Freak

We understand what the Super Freak is all about now.

We windsurfed the Basin in 20-25 NE wind this morning. That folks, is dead off shore wind and gusty as hell by coastal standards. We rigged the sails for heavy wind and slogged to the wind line. We prepared to get yanked around, and have another frustrating session, as we try to adapt to gear 10 years advanced over what we rode last. To our total shock, the Freaks made the wind butter smooth and soft as a kitty. Like going from C kites to bow kites. Well done Jeff Henderson. No wonder all the locals ride Super Freaks.

We also dialed in the boards perfect too. I never would have thought moving the mast foot 1 inch would make a huge difference. These new super short boards are far more trim sensitive than boards were 10 years ago.

Monday, December 21, 2009

More Boards Coming

Coming this Spring to Surf House? Rusty hooks up with Boardworks to bring 3 models. 9'8 to 10'8.
Also coming are Dennis Pang's race boards.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Todays Downwind Run

The camera is mounted on my belt

Wool Lined Wetsuit

My wool lined wetsuit turned inside out below. This is one wild looking wetsuit.

Now for the story behind this suit. If you haven't been to the Surf House yet, let me warn you, it's the most expensive place you'll ever eat at. You'll understand that comment if you've been there with the wife. If you haven't, let me explain the genius behind the Surf House Cafe/Retail concept.

Every time you stop by for a bite to eat, the wife ends up browsing the retail section. $$$, she always finds some new item she wants. Genius huh!

Well yesterday my male will power against shopping failed me. This arctic blast we're having at the moment, combined with yesterdays huge swell, made me weak. I was feeling sorry for myself and my lack of desire to get wet in this bitter weather. With my will power barely in check, I decided to try this wool lined suit on. Just for grins and giggles to see what all the fuss is about. The plan is to not like it, because it isn't cheap! Then I could continue with my excuse for not going surfing in arctic weather.

Where the plan goes to shit. The suit felt like a cozy layer of my favorite snowboarding underwear. So warm, and so wonderful feeling. It slides on nice with the wool against your skin. It fit like a glove, probably better than any suit I've ever owned. The flexibility feels better than anything I've tried before. Maybe because it only uses thin neoprene due to the thick wool layer built in. Somehow it just felt so good I couldn't walk out without it.

If you're feeling the need to spoil yourself, you need to try this suit on!

The wool lining is thick and plush

Dual neck seals. Notice the inner and outer pieces you pull over your head.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

For the NY Crew

Us windsurfing the Finger Lakes of NY

For the Charlotte Crew

Me windsurfing Lake Norman in front of the place were we lived

The Good Old Days

Jacky wave sailing the real Corncake Inlet. Before hurricane Fran closed it. Corncake was windsurfing nirvana. Side off wind and clean rights all day long. She's using a Hot Sails Maui sail.

Smoke on the water at the Basin. Me on my custom Angulo

Our Competition Years

Jacky and Martin, mens and womens winner of the NC speed contest

The Islamorada Pro-Am contest from the air

The contestants take over the entire Holiday Isle Resort

Jacky hanging with Robby Naish and his wife

Jacky leading the women's fleet

This one's for Jeff H.

My Hood sail by Jeff Henderson. This sail was ahead of its time. Very cool looking material.

The Beginning

Jacky and I met hang gliding in 1979. This is me hang gliding above a sailplane at Harris Hill NY. Soaring Capital and home of the soaring museum. The black cord in the photo is my CB radio. It was the only way Jacky could find me after going cross country. During one cross country flight, she didn't find me until late at night sleeping along side the road freezing my butt off.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Now I Know

I've often wondered what it looks like to learn forward loops!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Windy Wednesday

Epic for windsurfing on Wednesday. Photo from the 4WD only Fort Fisher Recreation Area

Surf House Christmas Party

The party with live band....

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Accidental Stability Check

We had wonderful NNE wind at 20-25 this morning, but the temp was only 40. So I waited until late morning, hoping to time my downwind run just before the wind died and right as the temps rose.

That didn't work out as planned. The wind was about 0-3. About the worst conditions you could ask for, after a morning blow from the NNE. The ultimate balance challenge. Lumpy seas left over from the morning wind and no wind now.

Notice my feet almost hanging over the rail. At 26.5 wide, there isn't much room for my natural stance width.

The run is nothing exciting, but I am excited by the insane stability of my newest shape. I did the entire run without getting wet. I could go down to 25.5 wide without any issues on the next board. Crazy!

Freestyle is the Most Shocking Difference in Windsurfing

My how windsurfing has changed in 10 years. Unbelievable. Sorry to my kiting friends, but this is way more fun to watch than handle pass twisty thingy tricks. Kitesurfing is struggling to reinvent the pro circuit to make it more interesting.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

I Love This!

No More Strap Toe Jam

Oh the agony of booties and straps. Thursdays windsurf session brought this memory back. With kiting, booties and straps are comfortable. But windsurfing, oh boy does it stink. The load on the straps windsurfing is nothing like kiting. Imagine a supermodel in high heels with pointed toes, then you'll get an idea of what it feels like. The sail load drives your toes into the booties with high force. TOE JAM!

Vibram Five Finger booites prevent the dreaded strap toe jam. The catch is, you have to widen your screw spacing big time. The Vibram bootie is very wide at the front. It spreads your toes, so the front of your foot is very wide.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Sunrise Windsurf Mission

Rigged and waiting for the sun to rise. The wind switched on just after 8am, but didn't get great until 9:30. I've been waiting 2 weeks for a good basin day to get the new gear dialed in.

Wow, I've Been Discovered

Jeff Henderson wrote about me on his blog. Jeff is the owner and designer of Hot Sails Maui. I'm a fan of Hot Sails going back to my prior life as a windsurfer. I owned one of Jeff's original sail designs from Hood Sails when he lived on the east coast. He took the knowledge he gained in sail design as a young man and followed his dream. He moved to Maui and created Hot Sails Maui. That was like 20-25 years ago? I like sticking with a sail designer with experience! I avoid sail brands that change designers like they change underwear.

That old original Hood sail was redesigned by me into a camber induced sail, right when the camber inducer was invented. I wrote an article about how to make your own camber inducer and modify the sail. The article was published in a magazine and they gave me a lifetime free subscription for it. The mag folded a few years later.

Here is Jeff's blog

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Wide Tails

Photo from last weekends Miami Pro-Am windsurf race. Believe it or not, these are the latest designs for light wind racing.

Jacky and I did a SUP ocean downwind run today. The new boards are so much fun.

Friday, November 27, 2009

The Hatteras Ferry Terminal Today

Jacky trying to sail a 4.7 with wind gusts to 42 showing at the terminal. That doesn't work! We heard about the wind readings after we finished windsurfing.

Me taking Jacky's 4.7 for a spin

The view looking up and down the beach

Thursday, November 26, 2009

This One is a Freak

My latest race board finally gets wet. Tested in this afternoons SW wind of 8-10 mph.

At 26 1/2 wide, it's as stable as my original (personal) 28" wide yellow board. That board and this board have wide tails, with this one having an "extra" wide tail.  Wide tails rule for down wind runs in my opinion. All my wide tail boards excel at staying on a plane while walking the deck to trim the nose. Pin tails don't have that luxury. Wide tails just run and run, like the Energizer Bunny.

I'm claiming this one as my personal board. My next and final board, will be Jacky's. It will likely be 25 1/2 to 25 3/4 wide. Then I'll retire from board building until next Winter.

Thanksgiving, Like Summer at the Beach

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Wonderful Memories

Ah, the joys of windsurfing I had forgotten about.

1) Don't kick the fin when water starting
2) Be prepared to loose skin during light wind water starts

It's good to be back.....

Enhanced Oldies



Saturday, November 21, 2009

Sexy Beast

My sexy new 5.8 Hot Sail Superfreak getting tested by CB1 this morning. Wohooo......
It's fun to be back into windsurfing after a 10 year absence.
The North End was rockin

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

A Real Race Fin

This is my new race fin. Custom made by Maui CNC. Maui CNC is the company making fins for the world tour pros (windsurfer) under various brand names, including Tectonics, MFC, Maui Ultra. These are the best built fins you can get. They specialize in fast turnaround of custom CNC G-10 fins made in Maui. I heard Ken Winner once ordered 2 or 3 grand in custom fins for race board development a year or so back.

These are so much better than the junk surf fins made from 3/8 fiberglass slabs that some guy with a grinder rounds the leading edge and tapers the back. Leaving the middle un-foiled and dead flat with no regard to anything resembling a proper foil.

Will it make me faster?  Probably not, but at least I'll know my fin isn't slowing me down.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

New Race Board Done

Race boards number 4 and 5 completed. On the left we have 14'6 x 26.5 with extra wide tail. On the right we have 14'6 x 27 with wide tail.

Wide tail model

Extra wide tail model