Author Topic: Rule #1 for beginners.  (Read 12422 times)

Badger

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Rule #1 for beginners.
« on: December 17, 2021, 03:09:48 PM »
So I'm about 15 sessions in now. Maybe 10 with perfect wind conditions. It has been a struggle but I felt like I was making progress. Up until today, my longest run on the foil was about 100 feet. Like a lot of people, I started with the mast in the middle of the tracks trying to find a balance between more lift and less lift but avoiding the extreme ends of the tracks. I searched the internet, read tons of articles, and watched dozens of videos but couldn't find much info on where the mast should be for learning so I left it there and kept on trying. That all changed after watching this video.

For all those out there like me who didn't know this, rule #1 for beginners is, move the mast all the way back! It doesn't matter what board you have. It has nothing to do with personal preference or learning style. It's just basic physics. Moving the mast all the way back slows the up and down motion of the board to make it more manageable. It also slows down the turning so the board is less likely to take off into an out-of-control turn. Every person new to the sport needs to start with the mast all the way back.

In contrast, moving the mast forward loosens up the board making it more responsive, quicker turning, and better carving but only if your level of ability is able to take advantage of it. Instead of it saying <More lift/Less lift> next to the mast track, it should have three zones Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced.

In all the videos I've watched, I have not heard any mention of this simple rule. If I had moved the mast all the way back at the beginning, I could have easily cut my learning time in half.

I tried it this morning with the mast all the way back and it was like night and day. I was instantly up and foiling all over the place. My longest run of the day was over 1000 feet. The struggle is over. All thanks to this video.

https://youtu.be/Q3xbVlOFOMQ
« Last Edit: December 17, 2021, 04:13:09 PM by Badger »
Kalama E3 6'1 x 23" 105L
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seastudent

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2021, 03:43:50 PM »
I concur. The baby stepping aft worked wonders. This is the video and method I recommend.


surfcowboy

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2021, 07:18:47 PM »
Dude, glad you got it!

Interesting idea on the mast position. I'd say yes, unless you aren't able to take off. I know some folks struggle with that.

Also, some of your success is likely just time. But either way, glad you got it rolling and maybe add a link to this to my beginner thread so it's there too. Hoping to gather a solid how to.

burchas

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2021, 08:58:15 PM »
Good for you Badger. Youre on your way.

Id was given that advice my self and passed it on to 2 other friend following
My foot steps. It was bang on in all cases.

The other good advice one could give is, choose favorable conditions as wind speed and direction and chop size. Ive seen the most progress with my friends riding winds speed 15-20 cross-on shore in flat to small chop.

3-4 confidence building sessions like that and the progression is on.
in progress...

Dontsink

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2021, 10:52:47 PM »
Sorry but i do not really agree with this.
If it works for you keep using it but i would not call it  Number1 rule .

Most people (me ,my buddies) had lots of trouble and frustration getting up on foil and very little staying up on it.

I recommend putting the foil in the "right" place  per the KDmaui method from day one, and use a big foil with a big stab to learn with.And 15kt to 20kt :)

Badger

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2021, 04:48:55 AM »
One very important thing to take away from the video to go along with moving the mast all the way back is that you start off with your back foot over the leading edge of the front foil, then inch your way back. It seemed ridiculously far forward at first but to my surprise, I didn't have to move my foot very far back before the board started to lift almost like magic and I had significantly more control than when the mast was in the middle. All it took was board speed and foot placement. Nice and easy. No pumping was required.

While flying the foil, my back foot was ahead of where the foot strap would be. You need to have your back foot very far forward for this method to work. You also need to have the proper size foil because without the right gear you will have a tougher time with it. I weigh 175. My board is 125 liters and my front foil is 1800 sq cm. I will likely get a smaller board and foil at some point but this setup seems absolutely perfect for now.

Some boards have the words More lift/Less lift next to the mast tracks. This can be deceiving. My board has just as much lift with the mast all the way back as it would with the mast all the way forward, but moving it all the way back gives you the optimal amount of control that you need for learning. You will be up and foiling sooner with the mast all the way back than if you had it more forward. Once you become proficient with the mast all the way back, then you can start moving it forward to loosen up the board and improve the responsiveness. As you do this, you will need to adjust your feet each time to be balanced over the foil.  Later on, if you decide to use foot straps, then you can fine-tune the foil placement to get More lift/Less lift.

I'm still a total beginner but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that this way of learning is universal for all boards and all people. I could easily be wrong but the method makes so much sense to me that I'm completely sold on it.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 05:45:26 AM by Badger »
Kalama E3 6'1 x 23" 105L
Axis HPS 980 / PNG 1300
Sunova Flow  8'10 X 31"  119L
Me - 6'0" - 165lbs - 66yo

Badger

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2021, 04:56:53 AM »
Sorry but i do not really agree with this.
If it works for you keep using it but i would not call it  Number1 rule .

Most people (me ,my buddies) had lots of trouble and frustration getting up on foil and very little staying up on it.

I recommend putting the foil in the "right" place  per the KDmaui method from day one, and use a big foil with a big stab to learn with.And 15kt to 20kt :)


You are right about that last part. Rule #1 should be to start with the right gear.

I'm not familiar with the KDmaui method. How do you find the "right" place to put your foil?

I wonder how your learning curve would have gone if you had started off with the foil all the way back.



« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 05:23:41 AM by Badger »
Kalama E3 6'1 x 23" 105L
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Sunova Flow  8'10 X 31"  119L
Me - 6'0" - 165lbs - 66yo

Caribsurf

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2021, 05:19:51 AM »
Large foil, larger wing in good winds makes it a lot easier to learn.  Originally had a smaller foil 1500 and smaller wing 4.0 and could get nowhere.  Went with a 2000 foil and viola, I was up on foil instantly..even with the 4m wing   While it might be intimidating, try and learn in stronger winds ..everything is easier in stronger winds.  Id rather crash in strong winds than suffer because I am schlogging
Hobie Raw 8'10"
Jimmy Lewis Kwad 8'7"
Jimmy Lewis Flying V foil SUP 611
Fanatic Sky Wing 5'4" 95 ltr
Fanatic Aero 1750 HA foil
CabrinhaMantis 4m 5m
Hobie 14' race board

Dontsink

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2021, 05:34:12 AM »
The KDmaui method is this:
https://www.blueplanetsurf.com/blogs/news/foil-board-setup-tips-board-foil-foil-placement-fo/

Gives you a very good starting position for maximum responsiveness of your foil/board combo.Then you fine tune, if needed.

I did start with the foil pretty far back Badger, after all the manufacturer had stencilled "more stable" on that end of the track...and i believed it :)

But it is not really true and i think it causes more problems than it solves.
The board's nose inertia will dampen deviations and this gives an initial feel of "easier" when foiling across the wind in small chop.
But when it does deviate (bigger chop,foiling upwind,beam reaching or carving a turn) it will be harder to correct and easier to overshoot the correction.
It gets very hard to feel the foil&water interaction because the boards inertia is oscillating up and down.


This drove me nuts in jibes in chop for example,  where you have to adapt quickly to the waves you cross.

Plenty of people have posted their first experiences with small(under 50l) boards...hard to start but once up they are so much easier because of the low inertia interference.All you feel is the foil.

With a big board the KDmaui method gives you the least inertia possible.

BTW look for the Stinkbug start at the Seabreze forum, wish i had known that one too.

Badger

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2021, 06:05:22 AM »
The KDmaui method is this:
https://www.blueplanetsurf.com/blogs/news/foil-board-setup-tips-board-foil-foil-placement-fo/

Gives you a very good starting position for maximum responsiveness of your foil/board combo.Then you fine tune, if needed.

I did start with the foil pretty far back Badger, after all the manufacturer had stencilled "more stable" on that end of the track...and i believed it :)

But it is not really true and i think it causes more problems than it solves.
The board's nose inertia will dampen deviations and this gives an initial feel of "easier" when foiling across the wind in small chop.
But when it does deviate (bigger chop,foiling upwind,beam reaching or carving a turn) it will be harder to correct and easier to overshoot the correction.
It gets very hard to feel the foil&water interaction because the boards inertia is oscillating up and down.


This drove me nuts in jibes in chop for example,  where you have to adapt quickly to the waves you cross.

Plenty of people have posted their first experiences with small(under 50l) boards...hard to start but once up they are so much easier because of the low inertia interference.All you feel is the foil.

With a big board the KDmaui method gives you the least inertia possible.

BTW look for the Stinkbug start at the Seabreze forum, wish i had known that one too.


I used the KDmaui balance method right from the beginning but I didn't know that's what it was called. Being a fairly large board and foil wing it put my mast just a bit forward of center. That's where I have had it for the last three months. It wasn't a good starting position at all and I struggled the entire time.

Having the mast all the way back is just to get you up and foiling. If you are out in "(bigger chop, foiling upwind, beam reaching or carving a turn)", you have graduated well beyond needing the mast to be so far back. That's when you would want to have it more forward.

IMO, the KDmaui method is not for beginners. It's for those who are already capable of foiling.

You should only need the mast to be all the way back for the first few sessions or until you are able to fly the foil in a straight line without crashing. Once you have mastered that, then you can move it forward to wherever it feels right for you. But first, you need to get used to just flying the foil.

The way I'm seeing it, mast placement is a progression. You start with the mast all the way back and move it forward as you progress. When you are comfortable with it all the way forward, you have reached the expert level.




« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 07:02:21 AM by Badger »
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PonoBill

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2021, 10:43:07 AM »
It's great that you've found something that works for you, but I don't agree with your general conclusions. For a beginner, the important part of mast position is simply that you come up on foil with your feet in a position that lets you control the foil, both for pitch and roll. You need your feet close enough together so you can shift weight forward or back without bending at the waist--so no stinkbug position. That means you need to be able to stand in a position that is reasonably stable when the board is floating on the water, and that position needs to be workable as you come up on foil.

In other words, the foil needs to be positioned so you can stand in the sweet spot while floating, and control the foil when you come up without moving your feet.

All that the KD method does is let you approximate that position by locating the center of lift over the center of mass, which is roughly equivalent to the center of buoyancy. Moving the mast to the back of the tracks means you need to move your feet back further to control the foil. If that works with your particular board, that's great, but it's certainly not rule #1, nor does it confer more stability for every board. Mast position determines foot position--that's about all.

Most folks who have been doing this more than a year or two learned on boards with Tuttle mast attachment. Back then the discussion was all about where to put your front foot, since the gospel was that your back foot needed to be directly over the mast. If you look at any of those old boards the Tuttle location is generally about fully forward on a board with tracks.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 10:53:52 AM by PonoBill »
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Badger

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2021, 11:43:17 AM »
It's great that you've found something that works for you, but I don't agree with your general conclusions. For a beginner, the important part of mast position is simply that you come up on foil with your feet in a position that lets you control the foil, both for pitch and roll. You need your feet close enough together so you can shift weight forward or back without bending at the waist--so no stinkbug position. That means you need to be able to stand in a position that is reasonably stable when the board is floating on the water, and that position needs to be workable as you come up on foil.

In other words, the foil needs to be positioned so you can stand in the sweet spot while floating, and control the foil when you come up without moving your feet.

All that the KD method does is let you approximate that position by locating the center of lift over the center of mass, which is roughly equivalent to the center of buoyancy. Moving the mast to the back of the tracks means you need to move your feet back further to control the foil. If that works with your particular board, that's great, but it's certainly not rule #1, nor does it confer more stability for every board. Mast position determines foot position--that's about all.

Most folks who have been doing this more than a year or two learned on boards with Tuttle mast attachment. Back then the discussion was all about where to put your front foot, since the gospel was that your back foot needed to be directly over the mast. If you look at any of those old boards the Tuttle location is generally about fully forward on a board with tracks.


Why then, after making so little progress with the KD method was I able to become an instant foiler with the mast back method?

I did a lot of sessions using the KD method with the mast more or less centered in the tracks. Every time the foil came up I was out of control and always ended in a crash. It took a lot of effort and concentration to go 20 or 30 feet. My record was about 100 feet.

Within an hour after moving the Mast all the way back, I foiled over 1000 feet, easily lifting off and touching down. What is it that I'm not seeing?

I'm kind of getting the impression that many of you learned to foil the hard way and now you can't picture that it might have been a little easier had you started with the mast all the way back.

You said - "Moving the mast to the back of the tracks means you need to move your feet back further to control the foil." 
-
No, just the opposite. With the mast at the back of the tracks, your feet need to be farther forward on the board to control the foil. My back foot is actually forward of where the rear foot strap would be. Roughly over the forwardmost foot strap screw hole.
 



« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 12:40:52 PM by Badger »
Kalama E3 6'1 x 23" 105L
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Dontsink

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2021, 12:33:01 PM »
The KDmaui method does not put your foil in the middle of the tracks.
Depending on what foil and board you are riding it can be in the middle,all the way forward or all the way back.Recommending a mast track position as general rule is pointless, a Takuma foil on a Naish board will be very different than an Armstrong foil on a Fanatic.

As Pono says,since board weight and volume are distributed pretty much in the same proportion your "floating" feet position will work when up on foil with little or no adjustment if board& foil are balanced.It is all advantages.

But like i said, if it works for you and you have made a big leap in learning it's cool,do not make any big changes right now :)

Just telling you what i wish i had known at that stage, my main hurdle at first was getting up on the foil thing...that Gong  "spaghetti leading edge" V1 wing did not help :)

Have fun!

Badger

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2021, 01:02:19 PM »
The KDmaui method does not put your foil in the middle of the tracks.
Depending on what foil and board you are riding it can be in the middle,all the way forward or all the way back.Recommending a mast track position as general rule is pointless, a Takuma foil on a Naish board will be very different than an Armstrong foil on a Fanatic.

As Pono says,since board weight and volume are distributed pretty much in the same proportion your "floating" feet position will work when up on foil with little or no adjustment if board& foil are balanced.It is all advantages.

But like i said, if it works for you and you have made a big leap in learning it's cool,do not make any big changes right now :)

Just telling you what i wish i had known at that stage, my main hurdle at first was getting up on the foil thing...that Gong  "spaghetti leading edge" V1 wing did not help :)

Have fun!

Okay, correction. Using a level, the KD balance method puts my mast one inch back from all the way forward. I forgot that I moved it aft to the center position hoping to gain a little more control. It did help but not much.

I agree that finding this balance point is a good place to have the mast once you are capable of flying the foil but I don't believe that it's the best location for initially learning how to achieve and sustain flight.


« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 01:31:53 PM by Badger »
Kalama E3 6'1 x 23" 105L
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Sunova Flow  8'10 X 31"  119L
Me - 6'0" - 165lbs - 66yo

ninja tuna

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Re: Rule #1 for beginners.
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2021, 03:53:23 PM »
Hey Badger,

Just speculating here that you have to have the foil back so far to feel steady....

To me from your description it almost sounds like you are riding too much back footed.  This is allowing the weight of the front of the board to help counter act that. You need to make sure your weight is almost centered if not even little front foot biased while you are learning. Yes, a little back foot weight to get the angle to get flying for a few seconds but then you need to level out and control. Shifting your hips forward.  To me it a similar feeling to snowboarding.

IT is Great that you are getting longer rides now, but you need to learn to control your elevation now in beginning so it becomes like second nature later.   I have used everything is in this video to teach  myself and about 20 other people to foil.  Granted it was behind a boat which made things easier, but the principles could still apply if you are using  a wing. Just will take longer and  you will be learning multiple things at once.  I always tell people where to put there feet in the beginning but follow it up with they will feel pretty quickly once they start flying where to adjust there feet based on the feel.  I start them on a 6'4 sup and if they progress, than to a smaller kite foil board.  Only on the kite foil board do I move the foil all the way back and then progressively move it forward. On my SUP, I put it where I have it tuned.

https://vimeo.com/287989390?embedded=true&source=video_title&owner=8391844


 


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