Tuning Tips by Tiesda You
The first thing to consider when setting up your footstrap position is to decide if you want to have them inboard or outboard. The smallest Futuras, like the Futura 101 and 93, also offer a centre-line position for the back footstrap. The widest Futuras, like the Futura 133, 144 and 155, offer outboard, inboard, and one extra row that is 'very inboard'.
Very inboard is for riders who look for the easiest possible footstrap entry. Inboard is for riders who like to ride with more manoeuvrability, more comfort and easier planing. Outboard is for riders who look for maximum power and speed.
We definitely recommend using matching settings for the front strap and back strap. Otherwise it can be very awkward to have your front foot 'very inboard' for example, while your back foot is outboard.
Once you've decided on whether to use the outboard, inboard or very-inboard positions, it's time to screw the straps in to place. Always start with the back straps. You'll notice that the inserts for the straps have two or three holes. This allows each strap to be adjusted forward or backward. If three holes are present, the middle hole is the one we recommend - this is the position we've been using when we test the boards and it's the position the majority of our team riders use. If you select the hole in front, the board would give you more control and planing is easier. If you select the hole behind the centre hole, you will get more power from the fin but control will be more difficult. In many Futura models, we have chosen to only have two holes to help save weight - in this case the back hole tends to be the option we use and therefore the one we would recommend. The front one would be used if you need more control and easier planing.
Each strap is fixed via one screw at either end of the strap. If you are going to use the middle hole for example, always make sure you use the middle hole for both ends of the strap - it'll give you a strap width of 15.5cm - a common width that works for many people. Of course, if you have very small feet, very large feet or wear boots while sailing, you can select a different hole that would increase or decrease the strap width by 2.5cm.
Remember to place the K9 insert in between the board and strap - it will greatly reduce the chances of the strap twisting. Also ensure that you fix the strap with as much screw tension as your arms can apply. Many people under estimate how much screw tension is needed, which means that the strap will sit loose, twist and over time, also undo itself. In the worst case, a screw can shear out and leave you with a damaged hole.
So now your back strap is set.
For the front strap, we also recommend the middle hole. If there are only two holes, we would recommend the hole that matches the one you selected for the back foot, whether it's the front or back hole. If you are particularly tall or short, or if your riding style requires a shorter or longer stance, then you can select a different hole that would increase or decrease your stance in 2.5cm increments.
So your straps are set, now it's time to fit the fin.
Because our Futuras are fitted with the Tuttle fin box system, you don't have to worry about the position of your fin - it's fixed. However, do consider carefully what size fin you will fit. It's importance is often underestimated, and by a lot. See it this way: in different wind conditions, we tend to change sail size. Well in different wind conditions, you should also be changing fin size. Yes, it's that critical, and the wider the board, the more critical.
Note that the Futura 155 has a Deep Tuttle fin box system. This allows the boards to use normal Tuttle fins and also extra large, extra powerful fins that normally come only with a deep Tuttle head. Fit one of these into a Futura 155 and you can be sure to have huge power reserves to get you planing and speeding upwind in lightwinds.
For mast track positioning, we simply recommend the middle position. This middle position is clearly marked on the board and just to make it as clear as we could, we even printed recommended position' next to that mark. When we test the board and when our riders use the boards in competitions, we all tend to place the mast track on that mark. Our board design evolution has lead to that exact position and not surprisingly, that is why it's the centre of the track.
Some adjustment is of course possible. This will allow the board to adapt to your personal preference or the prevailing conditions on any given day. If you need a bit more control in overpowered conditions, moving the mast track forward a little will help. If you want more power on the fin, moving the mast track backwards a little will help.