Author Topic: When to go bigger?  (Read 4045 times)

ospreysup

  • Malibu Status
  • **
  • Posts: 62
    • View Profile
    • Email
When to go bigger?
« on: September 03, 2017, 06:12:19 PM »
We have had a few big days here in NJ over the past few weeks and Irma may be here this weekend with some big stuff. These past few weeks were my first venture in to head high or so waves. I have two boards same make and model.  Middle of the road performance boards that are appropriate for head high waves (I am holding back on make and model because I like the boards and don't want to make the question about boards). The bigger of the two is 1.7 weight to volume and the smaller 1.4. I started on the bigger board and like it now in the dead of winter with the heavier wet suit. I almost always surf the smaller board now and took it out on these bigger days. I really feel like I would have been better off on the bigger board. I handled myself well and see why we look for bigger days. So much fun. But I need to take off later on the smaller board which provides less margin for error on these bigger waves. I feel like I may have benefited from the extra glide and earlier take off. It was also much easier to bury a rail  with the extra speed that I felt like the smaller board was much more  reactive then I needed. Finally,  bigger=I was way more intimated and my turns were shallow and I could have gotten that performance from the bigger board. Curious if people tend to go smaller or bigger with their boards when the waves get to a certain height.

If it matters, I generally ride the smaller board as a quad with a nubster. The bigger board is an earlier model and is a thruster.

nalu-sup

  • Sunset Status
  • ****
  • Posts: 328
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2017, 08:50:54 PM »
My feeling is to to with the big wave "gun" approach. For bigger waves you want two things; longer and narrower. The length gives you the paddle speed you need to get into the wave and hold a fast line, and the narrowness allows you to set the rail at high speeds and not bounce out of control during huge drops. The straighter rail outline fits better for the faster more drawn out turns that you will probably need to be doing. As you found, short low volume boards make it more challenging to catch a large fast moving wave, but a lot of volume makes it very hard to control during huge drops and high speed bottom turns. On a trip to Mexico last year, I found myself on the wrong borrowed board dropping into double overhead++ waves on a 31" wide 140 liter board. It was easy to catch them, but the drops were totally out of control on that big a board. Went and got a board of about the same length but at 28.5" wide, and life was much better. Whether its SUP, prone surfing, or windsurfing in light winds; seriously large surf is best tackled by long narrow boards. Same thing in Costa Rica last week; I used a shorter 31" wide board for paddling around in some knee high mush, and the next day switched to a 9.0 X 29 for some seriously over head screaming fast walls.
For myself at home, I am likely to take my 8'7" X 30.25" Flow up to head high, and then go to my 8'10" X 29" Speeed for well overhead. These numbers don't quite tell the whole story, because the more pulled in tail on the Speeed also makes a huge difference in bottom turn control after big drops.
Same thing in skiing; short wide skis are great for maneuvering at moderate speeds, but if you are in a Downhill event going 80 mph, a pair of narrow 220's feels pretty darn good.
8'7" Sunova Flow  121 L
8'8" Blue Planet 'All Good' 120 L
8'10" Sunova Speeed 130 L
9'0" Tabou SupaSurf  145 L
16' S.I.C. F16 downwinder 323 L

surfcowboy

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 3587
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2017, 10:01:48 PM »
Yes, longer, less volume, narrower, if I could pick. Also, lighter. Less to throw around and easier to bury a rail.

Jaws and Mavs see a lot of quads these days.

surfinJ

  • Teahupoo Status
  • ******
  • Posts: 1694
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2017, 04:24:38 AM »
The prone gun has evolved, for someone my size at 6', from 9' to 10' since the resurgence of paddling in. The gun shape enables you to move to the spot, to get in early and to easily handle the speed you'll have. Long and narrow is the key and not too wide.
Here's my old mini gun 7-2, and gun 9-0; and my standup equivalents, 9-5 and
10-4x28.  I have a 9' Acid on the way to takeover for the 9-5. The blue board runs
as a quad.  I want to try the gun as a quad but I've been sticking to the trustworthy single fin with my smallest sidebites.




PonoBill

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 22767
    • View Profile
    • Ponohouse is for sale. Great house but it's time for new adventures
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2017, 08:43:06 AM »
My trend was shorter and shorter until I got my 10'4" Foote, more or less by accident. Now I'm stuck there. I ride shorter boards sometimes, but my goto is the Foote. I think this winter I'm going to ask Billy to make me a narrower 10'4". Not a lot narrower, just a bit. The 10'4" Triton is 34" wide, I think it would rock at 30" 0r 32". I'll talk to Bill about it.

But I know what you mean about the benefits of longer. I can take off on almost any wave I dare to, and feel comfortable and in control. My 8'8" isn't like that, I love what it does, but I always feel like I'm barely in control. Speed isn't the issue there, it's a Sims style, and it's the fastest surfboard I've ever been on.
Ponohouse is for sale: http://www.ponohouse.com
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.

SUP Sports ®

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 3216
  • Stoked For Life ®
    • View Profile
    • SUP Sports ®
    • Email
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2017, 03:52:34 PM »
ospreysup states that he's just starting to get into head high New Jersey surf...he's not talking macking surf...especially, not surf of consequence like Jaws or Mavs...

The simple answer is to ride your longer board providing it does have more glide and gets you in earlier...with no info on rider weight or fin setups...it's pretty difficult to go much further on recommendations...but, having a two board quiver does simplify the answer...;-)

I'm around 200# and ride sub-8' SUP boards in DOH surf as long as it's fairly clean and uncrowded...but, if it's DOH to TOH...wonky...big currents...crowded...etc...I'll start going up the ladder of my 9' - 11'11" gunnier round pin SUPs...

Boards like this have been in my go to wave riding quivers as the surf grows in size for over 4 decades...simply because I can depend on them in most every heavier water condition to work...no reason to try and reinvent the wheel...;-)

Mahalos...{:~)

WARDOG ®
Owner/CEO  StandUp Paddle Sports®  &   SurfingSports®.com, Inc.

(805)962-SUPS (7877) store
(888)805-9978 toll free

Retail Store:
Standup Paddle Sports, LLC
121 Santa Barbara St.
Santa Barbara, CA 93101

beached

  • Rincon Status
  • ***
  • Posts: 242
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2017, 03:54:37 AM »
it seems that the concept of 'narrower' is relative here. Some say going to 30" wide is narrower, others talking upper 20"s. I know i cannot even stand on a board in the upper 20"s. My under-DOH board go-to board is 8'*32" Simmons style, but i do find it too fast sometimes. Then, if I need to slow it down a bit, I go to  8'10"*32". The latter is definitely slower and therefore more controllable on steeper faces. So just saying 'go narrower' doesn't seem to necessarily resolve the issue, especially for balance-challenged folks like me.   

Badger

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 2187
  • Seacoast NH
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2017, 04:25:41 AM »
I've had this hole in my quiver for a couple years now. My 8'10 x 31" doesn't always have enough stability for me on choppy overhead days.

I've been contemplating a board around 9'5 x 32 but almost everything that size has way too much volume for my 170 lbs. It would have to have good glide and responsiveness. It can't be a small wave beginner board or one designed for heavier riders.

I can't afford a custom right now so I've been shopping the used market for something suitable and there just isn't much out there.

.

« Last Edit: September 05, 2017, 04:49:52 AM by Badger »
Jimmy Lewis Super Frank 7'6 X 31" 115L
Sunova Flow 8'10 X 31" 119L(Low volume version)
Tom Carroll Outer Reef 10'6 X 32" 165L 
Me - 6'0" - 175lbs - 62yo

JimK

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 2118
  • Big Guys can have fun too!
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2017, 05:28:19 AM »
Being a Jersy Guy I know what you are facing a solution is sticking to similar size as your "winter board"  as we get most of our good surf in the winter. The "Key" is THINNER RAILS and refined rocker that is harmonious with the rail.
Lots of brands probably can meet this req. but the brand that comes to mind for me is  SUNOVA. These are strictly high-performance boards with very precise rails and they tend to run "a little" longer which won't hurt either

This is what I find that works in NJ Going "Full or Semi Gun in NJ is kinda overkill. Give me a call(484 515 5758) or PM me here to discuss

JimK
Extreme Windsurfing

mrbig

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 2420
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2017, 08:19:02 AM »
The Monsterpiece. 9'4" x 30 5/8" x 4.25" x 127 liters. Awesome big wave geezer board from King's.
Really thin tail, plenty of rocker, carvomatic baby!

Ian Cairns has one as well! Really!!!!
« Last Edit: September 05, 2017, 08:41:16 AM by mrbig »
Let it come to you..
404 Go Go 14'
404 V3 12'6"
SMIK 9'2" Hipster Mini Mal
SMIK 8'8" Short Mac Freo Rainbow Bridge
Infinity 8'5" RNB
SMIK 8'4" Hipster Twin
King's 8'2" Accelerator SharkBoy

surfcowboy

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 3587
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2017, 06:40:06 PM »
Clarifying since it was called out. Not suggesting that he's surfing Jaws or Mavs, just that on large waves the trend, as all here suggest is longer and narrower.

That is of course relative to your size, but note all of the folks offering the thin rails and lower volume notes.

Pono's small board would be my gun and his 10'4" would be too much board for me to manage safely I'd expect, at my size.

I also think that Wardog has a great perspective on the clean and uncrowded waves. Conditions matter a ton. I like some stability when it's big and funky and I like to be able to get out of the way but I struggle with the weight of most production boards, again, at my size. It's all relative, which is probably why you see people here talking about "narrower" as oppose to 32" or 27" or whatever.

outcast

  • Peahi Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 771
  • Ambassador for Nihilistic Surf
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2017, 03:21:08 PM »
Had to add my new stick as appropriate to thread
Yes, longer and thinner for bigger days for me anyway

Asked AJ Finian (Cannibal) for an East Coast semi-gun  OH to-Whatever we can get

No intention of using it on Cape Cod...wrong wave even when bigger...Same would hold for Long Branch NJ 
It's for some rocky points

9'4 x 28.5  I'm 200#....Asked for thin ...came out at 112 liters....

This is a minimum for me, as usually around here when it's big, there's alot of water moving, and prob some wind
I get why wider is ok for some....i just wanted velocity

Worked pretty well during Gert....scary fast...

Asked the Painter for Black Sabbath/Muscle Car.... Purple, Black with Chrome stripes...He went sideways not long, and  put in some pinkish stuff, but NBD...
Too many for the rack
Some in the shack
Some under decks
Some have straps

Biggreen

  • Peahi Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 540
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2017, 04:23:09 PM »
For myself, when it gets bigger I go longer mainly because the inside break can be so brutal and busy that I just want the glide and speed to get past the onslaught. Once outside I wish I had a crank to roll in the length a bit.

surfcowboy

  • Cortez Bank Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 3587
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2017, 02:24:41 AM »
Mean looking board, outcast. I like it.

outcast

  • Peahi Status
  • *****
  • Posts: 771
  • Ambassador for Nihilistic Surf
    • View Profile
Re: When to go bigger?
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2017, 07:05:38 AM »
Thanks Cowboy.
I'm all about Aloha....but on those choice days i just want something that says..."leave me alone" 


 
Too many for the rack
Some in the shack
Some under decks
Some have straps