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Foil Help Needed: How to Waterstart Strapless?
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eric

Since 13 Jan 2006
1105 Posts

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PostWed Jul 19, 17 12:48 am    Foil Help Needed: How to Waterstart Strapless? Reply with quote

My single front NSI foothook broke up by Wells after a glorious 3 hour session and I needed to get going strapless. I ride a strapless surfboard, but this is a different ballgame. I'm on an Alien Air and the full length 36" aluminum mast. The challenge was to keep the board on edge before the mast would sink and flatten the board out. After several tries I found that if I held the skyward edge of the board with my backhand I could scrunch my 6'4" self and get both feet on the board. But, the instant I let go the board flattens before I can get up. I tried for about an hour before giving up and dragging back to the spit. To say I was tired is an understatement.

I want to foil strapless later this season so I'd like to start to get this sorted out.

What trick(s)am I missing? I realize a carbon mast and thinner board would help, but I'd like to keep my setup for now.

Thanks,
Eric

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eabmoto

Since 10 May 2012
78 Posts
seattle
 



PostWed Jul 19, 17 5:50 am     Reply with quote

I'm on a low volume board but found that if I hold the board on edge, like you described, and get just a little movement in the kite, it creates some pull towards the board. As soon as there is just a little pull towards the board it seems to stay on edge. Also if the board starts to flatten I've found that aiming the board straight down wind, or close to it, I can still dive my kite get up on the board.

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bob

Since 09 Mar 2007
105 Posts
Madison, Wi
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 6:04 am     Reply with quote

Hi Eric,

If there's one drawback of the hoverglide foil is the weight makes it want to dive straight down if you don't hold on to a strap or hook or get it on your feet super quickly.

Here are some things that might help.

If it's windy, it's easier and your back foot is key. Tip the board up with your front hand to 90 degrees. Get your foot low on the board with it tipped up and be a fricking ninja (legs super bent and still holding on to the board if you don't have enough pressure to keep it there). Dive the kite right away and try to get up. It's NOT easy.

One other method in less wind and less choppy conditions is to actually let the board be flat. Do a mini send of the kite and it can pull you right up on the flat board.

Hope this helps and I'm sure others will have some good suggestions.

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craz z

Since 01 Dec 2008
100 Posts
Montana
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 6:11 am     Reply with quote

I think you have the right idea its just gonna be a timing issue. I too want to learn this as my straps are preventing me from moving my feet for gybing.

Here is a video of an alien air in action looks like the smaller ones are slightly easier as are carbon setups. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anmTB__HNb8[/youtube]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anmTB__HNb8

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eric

Since 13 Jan 2006
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 6:40 am     Reply with quote

Okay, great tips. Will focus on back foot and using kite to put heel pressure on board. Iv'e heard about the board flat method, but that may not work for me as I like to be in the river swell now.

It sounds like the key may be to use kite to get foot pressure, then dive kite the instant you feel it.

Anything else much appreciated...

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wylieflyote

Since 30 Jun 2006
1096 Posts
Puget Sound & Wa. Coast
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 6:54 am     Reply with quote

Eric,
Thank You for asking this question. I am at this exact progression and I want to ditch the hook. I'm running with the single front hook on a Doyle with a heavy aluminum LF mast/fuselage.
Following. I have no fresh advice. I too have spent a whole hour with almost zero success.
I have friends who went to the carbon setups for this very reason, so the board will stay on edge during a water start. But submerged logs & carbon have me worried... also the $$$
Good Luck, Post your success please.
Kip

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kss

Since 24 Apr 2006
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pdx
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 7:11 am     Reply with quote

another piece you might add... is to push the mast under the water with your back foot to get the board on edge. then very quickly put your front foot on board, and then back foot, and pull on the kite before the board goes flat again. this method worked for me with the alien air. ultimately I moved on to a less buoyant board.

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Slappysan

Since 13 Jun 2012
160 Posts

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PostWed Jul 19, 17 9:01 am     Reply with quote

I ride the original LF foil on an old strapless LF twinskim. With the heavy foil and a mast full of water it's very challenging to get it to stay angled for water starts.

I can do it if I have to by using my front arm, I put the entire forearm against the board with my hand on the skyward rail. From there you have to be fast and it's doable.

But instead of deal with that crap all the time, I simply made an X out of tubular webbing across the top bolts of my foil mast and use this as a handle. Works like a charm.

With a track board like the Alien Air you don't have the mast bolts to use but I'm sure you could take 2 M6 bolts and large washers and make something that would work in some of the front foot inserts that wouldn't get in your foot's way.

If you can't make it work with two bolts then you could try a single bolt with a bit longer strap. That for sure wont get in your foots way and will still allow your hand to easily hold the board to your feet.

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wylieflyote

Since 30 Jun 2006
1096 Posts
Puget Sound & Wa. Coast
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PostWed Jul 19, 17 12:58 pm     Reply with quote

kss wrote:
another piece you might add... is to push the mast under the water with your back foot to get the board on edge. then very quickly put your front foot on board, and then back foot, and pull on the kite before the board goes flat again. this method worked for me with the alien air. ultimately I moved on to a less buoyant board.


I'm trying to visualize this so I might try it. Sounds like an almost "hands free" method where both you hands are instantly ready to power the kite. Of course, my Doyle is less-buoyant making your method easier.

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patdaniels

Since 29 Jul 2015
71 Posts
Seattle area
 



PostWed Jul 19, 17 5:56 pm     Reply with quote

Having learned foil strapless from the start, I can tell you it's not as hard as most think. Overused phrase from local Oregon company, just do it!

What helped me the most was developing a feel for diving the kite aggressively with front hand to get forward movement, then bringing kite back up quickly and either transferring bar to rear hand or simply adding rear hand to bar while coming up on foil.

That forward movement and quick, confident hand work with bar gives you space to balance your body on top of the board as you get settled on foil. Proper foot placement on board (while in water holding board on rail with rear hand) prior to diving kite with front hand is also important.

And watch out for smashing the nose of your foil board with your bar....

You can do it!

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burton420

Since 19 Aug 2007
35 Posts
Kelowna,BC,Canada
 



PostWed Jul 19, 17 8:02 pm     Reply with quote

I ride the LF original foil on a small wooden board that I made myself. You have to learn how to dive your kite with one hand and always use your back hand to hold the board.

WARNING!!
Be very careful about diving the kite too much and having the board get away from you. This happened to me and the board went over my steering line. Before I knew what was happening my Kite looped and twisted around the board and the mast of the foil. Now each time it looped I got pulled under water. To make a long story short, after the being pulled under 5 or 6 times I finally released everything and lived to Kite again, but it was close. Now I don't ride without a helmet life jacket or whistle. And know your safety releases and how to use them. You may never need to use them but if you do it's your life you're playing with. Strapless foiling is beautiful, enjoy!

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dcfordo

Since 19 May 2011
53 Posts
The Dalles
 



PostThu Jul 20, 17 7:19 pm     Reply with quote

Dive the kite with your legs off the board (straight down in the water) while holding the board in position. Then put your feet on right when the kite pulls. Like said earlier "it's not as hard as it sounds".

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Slappysan

Since 13 Jun 2012
160 Posts

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PostFri Jul 21, 17 9:23 am     Reply with quote

Here is a pic of my strap setup

   IMG_4735s.jpg 

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wylieflyote

Since 30 Jun 2006
1096 Posts
Puget Sound & Wa. Coast
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PostFri Jul 21, 17 10:08 am     Reply with quote

Slappysan wrote:
Here is a pic of my strap setup


And here's my solution.. so far:
[img]

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Kip Wylie

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user124

Since 02 Aug 2012
215 Posts
Portland
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PostFri Jul 21, 17 10:26 am     Reply with quote

Slappysan wrote:
Here is a pic of my strap setup


INteresting. So you use the strap to leverage the board up against your feet with one hand, and then dive the kite with the other?

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burton420

Since 19 Aug 2007
35 Posts
Kelowna,BC,Canada
 



PostFri Jul 21, 17 12:42 pm     Reply with quote

I like your setup Slappysan.
Mine is very similar.
I'm guessing you use the straps to start out and then just ride with your foot on top?

Dcfordo
Do you mean have your heals on the board flat in the water then dive the kite with both hands?

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Slappysan

Since 13 Jun 2012
160 Posts

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PostFri Jul 21, 17 1:19 pm     Reply with quote

Yeah, I hold the strap with my hand to keep the board on an angle and stuck to my feet. I can just sit there for as long as I wan flying the kite with one hand and holding that strap with the other hand.

The strap is for my hand only, never would I put a foot in it.

For that picture I lifted the straps up off the board but 99% of the time they lie flat against the board. I could stand on top of them and hardly notice but where they are placed isn't a spot I naturally put my back foot at all.

When it comes to diving the kite, I start the dive with just one hand but then let go of the strap and use two hands on the kite as you get 1-2 seconds before the board falls away and once you get any kite power at all the board will be stuck to your feet by water resistance.

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