Author Topic: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil  (Read 4450 times)

digger71

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #15 on: December 23, 2016, 09:06:17 AM »
When I surfed yesterday at Cardiff there was a guy out with a GoFoil on a very small board. He was obviously experienced with foils and was catching quite a few of the mediocre waves and making them work. His takeoff looked surprisingly easy. Even well before the foil lifts the board completely from the water, it obviously reduces the skin friction on the board. That's an element that really hadn't hit home until then.

The only foil I've ever seen at Cardiff was when Zane was in town one day, but I'm guessing it was probably Chuck Glynn.  He is our local SUP freak (in a good way) and was foiling in a video with Laird at Hanalei just a couple weeks ago - he's a Laird team rider and somehow related to him.

And that is an interesting observation!  In my head the foil "engaging" was like falling off a cliff but it makes complete sense that its progressive - just not as noticeable at slow speeds.

PonoBill

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #16 on: December 23, 2016, 09:11:15 AM »
He looked familiar, but I'm not sure why--at first I thought it was Brennan Rose but he's probably staying in Maui where it's warm

« Last Edit: December 23, 2016, 09:12:56 AM by PonoBill »
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SUPbordndug

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #17 on: December 23, 2016, 10:57:03 AM »
I might not be seeing this correctly, but it looks like boards with GoFoils lie on their sides when they aren't being held by the surfer. You can see that in the tutorial video here, at 3:14. http://gofoil.com/tutorial-videos/  This implies that the GoFoil floats. But I may be misinterpreting pictures and observations.  Pretty funny to watch Alex's wife Karla screaming and foiling. I haven't seen to Alex in probably twenty years, but we know Karla pretty well, she's our real estate agent for Ponohouse.

Hello, I know that this is my first post after lurking on this forum for a few years, but I am very interested in foiling and have had a season with my Zeeko Kite foil.

The reason that the foil is on its side at the 3:14 mark, is that the rider has straps on his board.  The foil is not floating, and even if it did float, it would require a lot of flotation to keep such a large board on its side.

Cheers.

Doug.

PonoBill

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #18 on: December 23, 2016, 12:13:44 PM »
I see what you mean, I didn't notice the straps. It wouldn't take a lot of float to turn the board on it's side--a little float on a long arm (two feet, say) would tip a good sized board. The geezer foil is on a much bigger board (11'11" SIC) and it tips the board up on edge with a shorter arm. It's very floaty though--EPS foam core with carbon skin and an aluminum stiffener.

I still don't know the answer to the question of "does it float". Someone who has one will have to tell us.
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Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Beasho

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #19 on: December 23, 2016, 01:09:22 PM »
His takeoff looked surprisingly easy. Even well before the foil lifts the board completely from the water, it obviously reduces the skin friction on the board. That's an element that really hadn't hit home until then. It explains how heavier surfers like Sam Pae and Chuck Patterson can get these boards up in small waves. Lift increases as the square of speed, so accelerating to even a slightly higher speed than light riders will make the foil work. Of course, the heavy guys need to maintain speed, and probably can't gain as much with pumping, but it's an interesting phenomenon that somehow slid right past me.

I have been hoping this was the case but we have been starved for information like this.  When Kai Lenny was here in Half Moon Bay for the Titans ceremony I was asking him about the foil.  He was looking out a meek little inside waves and saying "You see those waves I could totally catch those on my 5' 6" board with the foil."  I knew that wasn't possible unless something 'otherworldly' was going on like you described. 

The foil is acting instantly to start reducing wetted surface drag.  As speed doubles lift quadruples and you eventually get lift off.  The math is there but the mind has yet to catch up.

Here is the training video referenced earlier:

 

clay

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #20 on: December 23, 2016, 02:02:35 PM »
Cool video, thanks for posting Robert!  By the way I like your blueplanet video intro and outro, they look great!

So I have zip, zero, zilch foil experience.

I do have many years of wakesurfing experience.  What I learned from this is that being pulled by the rope and riding flat water is counter productive to learning to surf.  When being pulled by a rope a beginner's stance, foot positioning and weighting are all way off and wrong for surfing.  The rider has to get into the wake to the point that the wake is doing all work and the rope has gone slack, and then be able to stay on the wake.  At this point the rope is only used to recover from mistakes and can be let go of.

I remember the early days of wakesurfing being excruciatingly frustratingly difficult.  All that changed with improved boards, ropes, boats, and technique.  And with the right board and technique just about any wake is surfable.

My question:
Does this apply to foil surfing behind a boat?  Do we need the equivalent of a fully weighted wakesurf boat to teach us how to foil surf?  In other words the rope doesn't make us fly, it's catching the wake that gives us enough speed to lift off and fly???  I can think of plenty of potential problems, maybe the most obvious is running into the boat?

Has anyone tried this?
Aloha, I welcome and appreciate all responses of positivity and good feeling.

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blueplanetsurf

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #21 on: December 23, 2016, 03:46:28 PM »
I went out again this morning, my second paddle session on the Go Foil and caught a bunch of mellow waves.  I was actually able to foil for 10-15 seconds a few times and it was super fun. 

I'm no expert by any means but here are some of the things I learned during my first two attempts:  the foil does create extra lift and can make it a little easier to catch a wave before it gets steep even on a shorter board.  You do need enough speed to create that lift though, so it does have to be about steep enough to catch on a longer SUP.
Your feet need to be balanced right on the center line of the board.  My back foot is just behind the mast, my front foot stays pretty far forward, right in front of the handle of my 8'0 and I have a really wide stance.  You have to pump it a bit and lift up the front foot to get it to foil but as soon as it starts to lift you have to lean forward and really put pressure on your front foot to keep it flying level.
I highly recommend practicing this while towing behind a boat or jet ski before attempting to do this in the waves.

I repeat: the hardest part is to keep the foil flying level and as the board speeds up you really have to lean onto your front foot. 

Once you are foiling, it speeds up and there is almost no drag, an amazing sensation and it does not take much of a wave to keep it going once you are foiling.  If you go straight down the face, you just outrun it and drop off the foil so the trick is to stay high on the slope and go down the line diagonally and you start to move significantly faster than the wave.  The waves I was on were sloppy and barely breaking but I had a blast and felt like a grom catching his first wave.

The foil adds drag to the board when paddling but it's still pretty easy to paddle even over longer distances.  It adds a little stability but to start you should use a board you could easily balance and catch waves on without a foil.  The foil is 24" deep so you have to watch where you go and it will not work in really shallow spots.   I have a prefect wave for this close to my house with mediocre sloping/ reforming waves that go unridden most of the time and I would not attempt to use it at a busy break.

By the way, PonoBill, if you put the board on the side the foil sinks, it is quite dense and does not float.
Clay, I think surfing it on a wake would be challenging, it seems to need a good slope on the water to make it work and it would be hard to keep it in the right place at the right speed I think.  I'm sure it could be done by a very skilled rider though.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2016, 03:53:43 PM by blueplanetsurf »
Robert Stehlik
Blue Planet Surf Shop, Honolulu
Hawaii's SUP HQ
http://www.blueplanetsurf.com

clay

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #22 on: December 27, 2016, 07:01:26 PM »
Thanks for the report Robert and glad to hear you are getting it wired.


I asked a question and YouTube sent me answer.  At 4:37 in this video they are towing behind a pontoon boat.  He eventually gets into the wake and lets go of the rope, to my eye his riding goes from struggling to doing really well.  Most videos I have seen of someone being pulled by the rope scare the crap out of me, it seems like the foil has a really narrow balance point and the slightest pull on the rope can upset the whole apple cart.  Once the rope is ditched it seems all that changes and a natural balance seems to take over.  At least this is how it looks to me.  Again I have never foiled just going off how it looks.


Aloha, I welcome and appreciate all responses of positivity and good feeling.

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surfcowboy

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #23 on: December 29, 2016, 02:53:16 AM »
Great video but a dang loose definition of "have a blast." ;)

Not to be a hater but "a blast" = "do frantic squats/pumping?" Only for Zane.

I'm gonna say you need a little more than a party barge wake. But in good news, looks like just a little more would get you there.

Clay, the reason not to drop the rope while getting the feel down is that picking you back up and getting you going again  after you drop off foil or dip down is a real hassle. Better to just play at the end of the rope for a while.

In good news (or a strong reality dose) a single 10 min on foil behind the boat will be more ride time than we get in half a year of surfing. I'll bet you get it fast relative to learning to surf. Then when you drop that rope you can glide as long as the driver will drive.

digger71

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #24 on: December 29, 2016, 10:47:53 AM »
Saw video online from that same Starboard meeting in San Diego of those guys foiling being towed by a bicycle and then by a windsurfer.  Crazy stuff!

Kookalicious

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2016, 01:40:11 AM »
Aloha Foil Fans,

Just some thoughts from a first time foiler here on Oahu. I was a bit hesitant on which board to mount the tuttle in and after speaking with Zane, he said to go as short as possible so I went with my 7-7x27 SB Pro and had the tuttle inserted 20" from the rear of the board per Alex Aguera.

My first session was just a paddle test, I wanted to get the feel of pure paddling before I tried some small waves. The board felt solid, maybe more stable than the quad setup. I was hoping to try it behind a boat/ski first but when armed with a new toy, I had to just give it go asap!

Got lucky on my second session which was today, smooth waist/chest high and nobody out. I used all of the info available so far via videos as well as tips from this forum and Zane…weighting the front foot, trying to center the back foot over the mast and pumping.

I caught at least 3 fun glides but I couldn't tell how high I was off the water. It didn't feel like 2 feet though, maybe 6-12 inches. They were probably 5-10 seconds with a great feeling of silent, frictionless gliding and also a low humming sound. I did fly off the back a few times which I believe were due to front foot placement/weighting. It shoots up high out of the water and thus pretty dangerous!

Pumping turned out to be the most important element to me so far. Waves I couldn't get into sup surfing the 7-7 were now doable just by some good pump action. I haven't had to pump a lot while surfing so this was new to me but it turned out to be instinctual and necessary once I got the hang of it.

One other note, must of the guys foiling in the videos either have no leash or a coiled leash. I used a regular 8' leash and it found its way tangled in the foil a couple of times. I'm going to get a coiled leash asap.

Anyway, I hope that helps a bit and I'm looking forward to more insight and reports from everybody.

-Scott


TonyGring

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2016, 12:01:30 PM »
Cool.  I'm close to entering the SUP Foil arena. Go Foil came a week ago.  Tuttle box a few days ago.  It will be mounted into a Naish Raptor 7 X 28. ( I weigh 155 ).  Handful of friends in my area doing it now. So, I'm watching , learning.

They and myself have been riding foils using kites for the past couple years. So, I know the " foil feeling".
That said, SUP foil is a different thing with the pull of the kite being eliminated. Front foot pressure is very important.

They are all using coiled leashes.  Haven't really seen any haters from surfers so far.  Just amazement and asking questions about it.

Brave new world..........

blueplanetsurf

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2017, 12:17:59 PM »
We are slowly learning to use our foils.   Here are a few short videos of Sam Pa'e, Jeff Chang and myself using the foils on the East, South and West sides of Oahu.  Once you get the hang of flying over the surface, it's really an amazing sensation and totally addicting.







Robert Stehlik
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Hawaii's SUP HQ
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Bean

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2017, 12:59:12 PM »
Robert, about how many waves did it take for you to get your first solid ride?

That just looks like too much fun.

DW

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Re: First impressions of GoFoil Kai Foil
« Reply #29 on: January 31, 2017, 01:19:15 PM »
Robert,

Can we get the crash reel?

I think that would help us understand the process better.

 


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