View Full Version : Board choice for someone returning to the sport
5th May 2012, 01:33 PM
Hello, my name is Dave and I am thinking about getting back into windsurfing. I owned a 10'6" board with a daggerboard 20 years ago. I think i was moving into the intermediate level before I quit (i could beach start and was learning the jibe). I have sailed a few times since then during vacations. It would usually take 5 - 10 minutes during those trips to sail fairly well. I would like to get an all-around board where I can learn some new skills (jibes, water starts, etc.) but is still capable of using in light winds. I live in the Houston area so I will be sailing in salt water most often. I am 44 and weigh 225 lb. The Go Windsurfing model looks interesting but I am not sure if 171 volume is enough for my weight during the light wind Houston summers (5 - 10 knots). Nobody talked about volume 20 years ago (only length) so I am not sure how I should pick a board. Will a 171 sink under my weight? Should I go with a Rio with more volume?
5th May 2012, 01:57 PM
Welcome back to windsurfing. A 171 will not sink under your weight, it just won't be as stable or plane up as fast as a 200 liter board for your weight. For 5-10 knots you might consider the Rio over the Go because of the centerboard. In that wind you might also wan't to consider a modern longboard like the Rio XL or Kona.
5th May 2012, 02:49 PM
Thanks for the response. I have thought about a longboard but I would really like to work on advanced skills during the Spring, Winter and Fall when the wing picks up in Houston (15 - 35 knots). I guess I am looking for a board to help me learn the skills needed for a "short" board. I can see myself buying a freesyle type of board in the future but would like to keep this first board for the light winds during summer.
5th May 2012, 11:18 PM
I would suggest you take a look at the Rio L.
It's wide, has a comfortable EVA deck, a centerboard for when you want to cruise in light winds in the summer, and does very well as a trasitional board that's pretty good as a longboard, also pretty good and a very large shortboard.
If you want to stay on a short board, something pretty wide would be the call for light winds.
Where do you plan to sail in Houston?
6th May 2012, 12:23 AM
Thanks for the advice Roger. Based on Coachg and your comments, I think the Rio is the better choice for me. I live in the Clear Lake area south of Houston so I plan to sail in Mud Lake (an offshoot of Clear Lake), the San Joaquin beach on Galveston Bay and the levee near the Texas City Dike.
6th May 2012, 04:49 AM
I've sailed and taught in Mud Lake a couple of times, and been to the Texas City Dike at least 5 or 6 times.
The Rio L (at your 225 lbs.) should work well for you and help you to get onto a shortboard a little more
For a big guy, with some skills, you will need a fairly large sail.
Most sailors are using 1-2 meters larger than what you used 20 years ago.
The masts and booms are quite a bit lighter as well.
6th May 2012, 01:54 PM
Thanks again Roger. It sounds like you are familiar with the area. I did make a mistake on my last post. The beach on Glaveston Bay is called El Jardin Beach. It is a small man-made beach between Seabrook ans La Porte. I can't remember the sail size I was using 20 years ago. I was think of going with something in the 6.0-6.5 range. Any advice on sail size?
6th May 2012, 02:23 PM
At your weight, in the conditions I've experienced in your area, I would make the 6.5 m2 your small
sail and add something areound 7.5 m2.
Ultimately, I'm pretty sure you will need an 8.5 m2 or larger to suit the sometimes light wind conditions
in your area.
I'd suggest a 7.0-7.5 on the Rio L first.
You have the basic skills, so a really small rig isn't going to be needed.
6th May 2012, 08:24 PM
Thanks for all of your help. I now have a good idea on what I need to look for.
I think that for your lightwind summer you need a Phantom Race 320. It has quite a different drive and glide (fun!) in light vinds than a Rio. And for the summer you need an 8 m2 sail, to be complemented by a 6.5 m2 when it gets windier.
The Phantom will still work great in higher winds, and most likely it is only marginally slower than shortboards.
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