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Topics - ninja tuna

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Foil SUP / Dead start Sup foiling
« on: August 01, 2019, 08:08:24 AM »
Just found this video and found it informative.  I see this also as helpful practice for getting going in waves.

Apparently there was one on Kanaha says the internet

also on Alex Aguera's facebook page

I would have thought all these companies could have planned the introduction of these sooner in the year.  They hit the instaeverythingbook pages mid April and everyone went nuts.  They were supposed to be out in June for the pre-orders and now hearing that most places are not getting them until July.  Now it seems like most of them are sold out if you did not put a deposit on the first batch.  If you live in the tropical latitudes, you are fine with getting one later. But the people in the northern latitudes could be out of luck until the next year.

Are any of these going to be available this summer to anyone who has not put a deposit on the first arriving batches.  I know Pono mentioned a place having a bunch of the 3m ones available but I think most people would be looking in the 4m-5m range.

Gear Talk / Smik hipster and infinity RNB
« on: April 23, 2019, 08:16:25 PM »
First step in having a problem is admitting you have a problem… ;D hehehhehe
I am a board whore.

Ok, so I have been talking with another member about a comparison with the smik hipster and the infinity rnb. I told him  I would get back with him after I went out and did some direct comparisons between the 2 boards.
These are both great boards but different animals.  These are my opinions on the differences between these 2 boards.  I do not consider any of them to be negatives, but differences.  The results could probably even different for some one with a different surf style and / or different waves in comparison to the waves I am riding.  So lets have some fun…

 Me; about 5’10 and 193lbs  (178cm and 87kg) surfing eastern central Florida. Beach break.  Good waves but generally on the fatter side with a little mushy kinda aspect to them.  I have times of steep longer waves but have not have those sandbars break while having these board.


Infinity RNB “round nose blurr”  8’2”  x 30 “  x  125L

Smik Hipster twin    8’3”  x  31”  x 123 L

For me these shorter wider board seem to work better for me in the waves I surf.  I have longer narrower type board also, like a Jimmy Lewis stun gun, and I barely use them and am selling them for this reason.  The wider boards give me the additional stability for  digging hard to catch the waves when they are mushier.  Also, I surf a lot next to an inlet and get some moving water bumpiness a lot of the time.

So,  questions were :

How does it compare to your Infinity RNB?  Is it good in small waves?  I'm in South Carolina and about your size.  Trying to figure out if the RNB or Smik Hipster Twin would be a better everyday board.  I like a more traditional shape so the Smik appeals to me a bit more.  I've been riding the JL SuperFrank 8' Lean which is another great board for our conditions but I want a size that is in between JL's 8' & 8'6" lean models.  Your 8'3" custom Smik looks like it may be the perfect size.  I like a lively board but need to make sure it goes well in our smaller conditions. 

Can you give me an idea which board is more stable for you between the RNB & Smik?  Also, does the tail of the RNB seem a little wide for our conditions?  Is the Smik lighter?

We had some fun waves today in the waist to chest high sizes.  A little mushy getting into them but once on most of them, some decent faces opened up.  I took out the rnb first and it seemed like I was in the wrong place at the wrong time most of the time.  I did get a few waves to get the feel for the board again.  Got a few waves on the rnb and was able to get some turns though.  In comparing it to the smik, it feels like it on a rail, but not in a bad way.  It goes where ever I want.  It makes me feel like I am power surfing.  But I was still able to slide the tail a little in coming off a white water lip. On purpose, not accidental.  This board gets very fast very quick.  Getting back on the tail is crucial to make this board lively.  The speed aspect I guess makes it feel like it is on a rail when turning.

Now when I switched to the smik, my wave picking luck increased a bit so I was able to get a few more waves with it.  Nothing with the boards, just my dumb  luck.  When digging to get in to the mushy waves, the wider nose of the of the smik seemed to add a little more stability compared with the rnb.  But I did take the 2 boards out on the river the day before for photos and in a flat water comparison, the rnb was slightly more stable and seemed like it paddled a little faster. In the flat water the smik seemed a tad twitchier and a little slower.  This also seemed to be true out in the surf. But like I said, when digging after a mushy wave, I would step forward up on the wider nose of the smik and it seemed a little bit more stable compared to the rnb.

The smik was very fun in the waves today though. I had a blast on it.  With the twin fins, hip, and small trailer fin, the board seems like it fits tight in the pocket.  It did not develop the immediate speed the rnb did.  Maybe not as fast either.  The turns were sharp and in control with no out of control sliding.  Just not as fast as the rnb.
For the small wave question, that could be a good conversation, but the location you are surfing has to be taken into account. My Florida mushy waves don’t have a lot of power where other places waist high waves have some good push to them.  For me I would not take either of these boards out under waist high.  I have other boards for that.  I could. Yes. But I would want something with a little more float.  It becomes a fun question.

In the smaller waves I want to just play around and have more fun and not worry too much about performance.  I would surf my Foote board that is a like a big fish shape. It is 8’6”  x 32” wide.  Don’t know the volume but guessing mid to upper 130’s.  I have ridden small swell waves in the knee to waist high range and had  blast. Also overhead waves. This is why I have multiple boards.  If I was going for a small wave board, my choice would be the smik over the rnb.  But I would go a size or 2 up just to have the additional floatation and stability for trying to dig to get into the smaller waves.  It is mentioned he is riding a Jimmy Lewis super frank lean in 8’0” but did not want to go to an 8’6”.  For smaller surf I would so go with the 8’6” wide version.  But that is just me and from my experience.  Another type board would be the jimmy lewis destroyer which seems like a wider profile board with a pulled in tail. Looks like it could be fun.  The thing about the smik is it is designed to be a twin fin board and have the characteristics of a twinny.  I do not know if the just riding any of the jimmy lewis boards would have the same effect.  Someone commented that he had ridden the superfrank as a twin and had fun with it so it is a possibility.  The wider tail of the rnb works well for the stability but it develops speed fast and makes the turns a little more drawn out.  It would also give a little more float for riding smaller surf compared to needing a little more speed for a smik type shape with the pulled in tail.  Maybe a custom rnb with and asymmetrical tail could would work well too for smaller waves.  But again in my opinion, a few inches bigger and slightly wider catering to smaller surf.
My smik is about 2 lbs lighter than the rnb, but the rnb is the pvc construction which is  not as light as infinity’s carbon or custom boards.

Both of these boards are a blast, but just different.

I hope I answered everything, any other questions, let me know.

Rnb vs smik

Water rnb

Water smik

rocker comparison

Rail comparison

Tail comparison

my Foote

Bill foote


SUP Gear Reviews / Newly Acquired / On Order / Smik Hipster Twin
« on: April 08, 2019, 06:52:09 PM »
I can’t believe it has been about 2 months since I got this board.  In the past week, I have finally had a chance to ride.  I had been reading about these and it struck a cord with me.  I have a regular VonSol shadow 7’0” fish that was a blast riding with 2 big twins and a small trailer.  I could not believe how loose it was and easy to throw around.

So here is the Smik hipster twin that had the actual research in to making it a dedicated twin.  I decided to support my habit by getting one.  Mr Big was a great help in talking with Scott wo shapes them. Decided to go with the 8’3” x  31” by 123L version. I wanted a tad additional float for dealing with the softer waves in Florida.  Board came with 2 big twin fins and a trailer. Good quality fins.  I was able to get a T-shirt with it too.   Scott was  great to deal with.

Finally was able to not be at work when there was some surf.  So my stats for reference, 5’10” and 192 lbs (178cm and 87 kg). First session out was basically wind chop/ semi wind swell.   Not great conditions but I wanted to try it.  Waves were not that good.  Got a couple of drops in the chest to slightly overhead range.  Once I got the foot placement down.  Had to stand a little more forward while standing around.  Once on a wave, and you get back on the tail and this board is just FUN!

Second session out was waist to chest semi glassy swell left over from some wind swell.  Much better conditions.  Found the sweet spot for standing on it.  The board was nimble and fun.  I will be getting a lot of use out of this board.  Able to slide the tail out on a turn if I want to.   I was riding the board with small trailer fin it.  I will eventually try it as a twin, just want to get a few more sessions in with it before I start playing around.

Sunova SUP / Sunova travel bags
« on: February 02, 2019, 07:42:58 AM »
Hey Creek,

After seeing your comments about shipping your boards to Portugal in the sunova bags, I wanted to comment but thought a separate thread would be a better option for a possible discussion.

I find sup travel bag selection to absolutely suck in my opinion.  Yes I could go custom with vitamin blue.  But looking at those sunova bags, those look great.  Sunova needs to improve the sizing and descriptions on the website for them.  I think that is a niche that sunova could exploit, especially in the 7'6 to 9'6 range.  There is very little selection in that size range and that is the size that most people will take on a surf trip.  The bags look robust and with a good amount of padding.  Get Tino to explore that a little more and see if it would be worth it.  I did not know that sunova even made bags until you posted the photos of yours.

SUP Gear Reviews / Newly Acquired / On Order / Infinity RNB
« on: November 29, 2018, 08:26:20 AM »
I had been drooling over one of these for a while.  Infinity did some PVC construction production boards that were a little cheaper.

I grabbed the bright white  8'2 by 125L as soon as I saw it.  Me between 190-195lbs and 5'10 surfing Florida east coast stuff.  I bought this back in spring and with work have missed all the swells we have had so far.  I took it out in weak gutless surf about a week after I had it and it was nothing to write about.

Thanksgiving gave us some good surf and I was dying to try this thing out.  I got 2 days with the first day being head to overhead and the second day only a little smaller.  Short answer: I wish I would have bought one sooner and some of my other boards will definitely be up for sale soon.

Like usual, took a few minutes or so to find my balance point on the board.  The swell had an offshore wind component to it which, Florida, can hold you up a little but this thing would take off. I am 4 weeks out of knee surgery too so my turns were not as aggressive as I could make them.  Also the waves gave me a ton of speed too. Some of the prone surfers were even talking about having a hard time hitting the lip because of the speed they getting.  This board held any line I wanted on the big faces.  I was easily getting on/catching the big set waves too.  On the smaller shoulder sections I could dig the board in for some harder turns if the waves did not mush out completely.  Nothing like going to do a turn off the top and the wave just flattens out on you. Splash. The deck grip is pretty rough. Good for grip for riding, not good for the skin on other parts of the body.  I whack the rails here and there to and I did notice some black streaks from my paddle  but no chips or dings in the finish.

I have read where people have gone down drastically in size with this shape.  I can easily see that after 2 surfs.  I prefer the little bigger size for the waves and conditions I have where I am.  If I was someplace that had glassy conditions with some power i would definitely consider a smaller version of this board.

Gear Talk / The new Portal Phantom
« on: October 24, 2018, 11:27:40 AM »
Looks like it surfs good.

Foil SUP / Carrot for additional push
« on: September 28, 2018, 09:47:28 AM »

General Discussion / dolphins hate regular surfers too
« on: July 31, 2018, 05:25:42 AM »

Foil SUP / Mr. Dave Kalama talking about the channel foil race
« on: July 11, 2018, 11:05:43 AM »
very cool read.

Here's what Dave Kalama had to say about his experience.

Sour grapes never tasted so good! Let me explain, this past weekend I competed in the Molokai Holokai. A race from Maui to Molokai’s Kaunakakai harbor ( 26 miles), consisting of mainly SUP and OC 1 & 2, but this year they added foiling, the discipline I competed in. I believe it was the first official channel crossing race for foiling and it was a doozy. Monster open ocean swells, rain storms that prevented any type of visual reference, and very strong winds, most of the way. ( that’s where the sour grapes come in to play). In any case, the race provided some all time career high lights for me, I had the fastest glides I’d ever had because of the extreme efficiency of the Go Foil Maliko 200 I was using. I rode the biggest swells I’ve ever ridden in the open ocean. Because of the limitations of SUP and Outrigger canoes, you simply cannot go fast enough to ride those behemoth swells to completion, but with the foils you can, and they do, if you have the weight and gumption to track one down, talk about having a tiger by the tail. I also had another personal best, in that I stayed up on foil for approximately 23 to 24 miles, more than double my previous personal record. This wasn’t a solo endeavor by any means though, my fellow competitors( although we felt more like team mates, because we were all jumping off this channel crossing cliff together) were Mark Raaphorst and Alan Cadiz, Zane Schweitzer, and my son Austin Kalama ( his first channel crossing of any kind) .
Off the start I fumbled a bit, was plagued by the confusion of the boat wakes ahead of me, and just general anxiety and stress. I did eventually come down off my foil about a mile into the race. Frustrated, I recognized that I had better hit the reset button and calm down, if I wanted to have any chance of enjoying this experience. To give you some reference of how much I enjoy being out in these channels throughout Hawaii, let me just say, I’ve paddled every major channel in Hawaii at least twice, some as many as 38 times( Kaiwi), Pailolo at least 20, and I’ve even paddled Maliko to Ala Moana (115 mi.) so I know my way around out there, and I also know that the key to success in any crossing is channeling all that nervous energy in to a focused point of calmness, and then finding your rhythm. Once a rhythm is established that’s when the magic starts to happen, and that’s just what happened for me. I took off like a rocket, I realized that the giant swells I’ve always daydreamed about catching were now rideable on a foil, it was literally a channel junky’s wet dream. I not only caught back up to the leaders, but then proceeded to put the hammer down and roll right on by. The internal joy and happiness of this experience put it right up there in my top three days ever on the water. Two of my top three days are in this channel, the other being a 6 man canoe race, and my best day as you might assume is a big wave day at Peahi. Now that I had established a lead I could relax even a little more and truly absorb the pureness of this experience, which in turn creates a freeness to flow and be in the zone even more. At about the half way point I remember passing a unlimited SUP racer, I think maybe Cody but wasn’t sure, we were about a 100 yds. apart, but it gave me an understanding of how fast we were all going. (SUP had started approximately 40 minutes ahead of us). Things continued to be amazing, surfing from swell to swell with a flow that felt more like a epic surf session than a downwind race. At about 7 or 8 miles to go my boat told me I had somewhere between a half mile to a mile lead. I thought to myself don’t get ahead yourself and start thinking about winning, just stay in the moment and keep flowing, so I did, and at about 2 miles to go I noticed the wind beginning to lighten quite a bit but still enough. It wasn’t time to panic yet, but very quickly after that thought, BAM! It went completely still, no wind. I was in trouble, there was still a little a little bump in the water, enough to barely fly but at a much higher energy out put than I could muster. Plop! I went down and I didn’t have the energy to get back up or the bumps necessary to give me a chance. The attribute , that helped me establish the lead ( my size and strength) were now working against me( it certainly didn’t help that I hadn’t done any formal training in the past 8 months because I’ve been so busy building Kalama performance foilboards for everyone. What a shameless plug😂). I had become a monster truck in a 250 cc motocross race and that 250 was coming up my back end. A few minutes later the inevitable happened, Zane went flying by me like a dandelion in the wind and there was nothing I could do about it, other than sit down and have a big gulp of my sour grapes and slice of humble pie. The cherry on top of my humble pie was that not even Zane made it to the finish up on foil, but he sure made it a lot further than I did, so you have to hand it to the kid, he won. And while I was floundering in my pity, I was glad for him, he’s such a good kid and a real testament to how great his parents are. And speaking of kids, one of the days most special aspects was the sharing of this crossing with my son. I’m so proud that he did it, and hopefully someday this channel will bring him some of the joy it has given to me.
I purposely waited a few days to write this so that my sour grapes had a chance to sweet’n a little bit. Am I disappointed that I didn’t win? You better believe it! I have to keep reminding myself though that my time at the throne has come and gone, like the generations before me. It’s time for the next generation to have their turn at the helm. I do take some solace in acknowledging I’m almost 54, am not able to train every day like I used to, and was still able to mix it up with the best of them. Mahalo to my crew on the boat, my coach Bruddah Chris, Brent Deal for making happen, Quickblade paddles for the best you can get, Matty Schweitzer for some insane drone flying, Clare for putting on an incredible race, and my fellow Flyers Alan, Mark, Zane and Austin. Enjoy the wins, enjoy the losses and enjoy a glass of sour grapes now and then. Aloha

General Discussion / Surfline making everything premium now.
« on: July 10, 2018, 02:58:51 PM »
guess they are desperate for money.  All the good breaks now need to be paid to look at.

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