View Full Version : iSonic Speed for Lightweight Rider

29th October 2009, 01:09 PM
Hi all,

So far I have a one board solution, 106l F-Type AHD. My first board was 130l Bic freerider but this summer it was pretty clear that the board was simply too big for powered up conditions.

My 106l board has been fine up to now control wise, with the exception of a bit of spinout due to the relatively small fin (31cm generally sailed in chop with a 6.0m).

I've never tried a smaller board volume wise and I was wondering if, for my weight 52kg, an iSonic speed special board could be used pretty much as a normal high wind board?

I think the 82l would be fine for me, at that volume I guess uphauling doesn't happen. For my weight could I get an even smaller model for high wind?

Does anyone have this board? Does tacking become very difficult? Also, how do these boards jibe?

Thanks, I really think this would be an awesome high wind solution board for me.

29th October 2009, 05:09 PM
I haven't sailed the big speed special nor the iS86 slim (also 82 liters) but based on my experience of the iS86 and the mid sized (49) speed special I think the iS86 slim will be a more all round board. Easier jibing and more stable platform overall.

But I must also say the is ss49 is indeed surprisingly easy to sail and gets going very early for its size. You can for sure crank some fast jibes on it too. I suppose this goes for the bigger ss also. But the ss is 10 times more edgy and require much more precision from the rider.

So if its ultimate control relative the size you're after and if you are the more experimental type that like to challenge you skills a bit, sure the big speed special could be an option. At 82 liters it's uphaulable for you, its just a matter of balance. The iS86slim will be much easier to uphaul though, despite having the same volume.

But maybe someone with more experience on the particular boards can chime in. I'm also a wave sailor that use these "go fast boards" sort of like freeriders on my local lake. So on hand hand I'm maybe using them like you want to do, but on the other hand I spent a lot of time on really small wave boards over the years, which may help when it comes to handling also the small speed boards.

29th October 2009, 08:15 PM
Thanks for the advice. I definitely want to try any sort of board <100l just to see how much more input it requires. The idea of these demanding, and yet high speed, boards is very enticing.


mark h
30th October 2009, 04:49 AM
Hi Agrelon
I can't comment on the W58, but I have had the W53 for a while now. Although the W53 brief is not XS slalom, it does work very well in rough conditions. Last week-end I spent the day on my sonic 100/6.8m in gusty 15k to 35k with messy harbour chop. I used the W53 for the last hour and it was way smoother than the Sonic 100 accross the chop. Im 194cm and 105kg, so I would imagine that you would be good for either the W53 or W58 as dual high wind slalom or speed. The iS86 slim is 81ltrs and Im guessing that its very similar to the older iS76, the iS76 (which I used to have) was really very smooth accross rough water, but it might be a bit big for your weight???

30th October 2009, 10:34 AM
Thanks again for the advice. Again, I see guys who are so much bigger than me go out on 85l boards when I'm stuck on my 106l. I'll try to test a smaller board just to see if I can handle the smaller volume, but i think it shouldn't be a problem.

30th October 2009, 02:50 PM
Would the Futura 93 be small enough for me in high wind? Has anyone tried this board?

31st October 2009, 05:28 AM

Sorry I can't comment on either the iSonic speed W58 nor on iSonic 86 slim, but can do so on iSonic 76 and iSonic speed W53. Both iS 76 and iS speed W53 are 2 different animal, mostly depending on the water state as found on your home spot with high wind.

If your high wind spot is relatively flat water with max 20 cm chop or flat water between 50 cm swell peaks, both are nice to go, althought iS speed W53 is easier to run pedal-to-the-metal with a higher Vmax and better accelerations in gusts (owing to her much smaller water footprint). This is why I finally choose the iS speed W53 instead of iS76 for max speed on flat water with both a 6.6 m2 (and either a Deboichet 26 cm speed fin for flat water or the stock Drake 30 cm fin in choppy water) and a 7.7 m2 racing sail (stock Drake 30 cm fin or Select Elite S03 32 cm slalom fin). A pure speed deamon with my light weight in the 12-22 knots wind range.

If your high wind spot is full with steep chop and almost no piece of flat water, a pure dedicated high wind slalom board such as iS76 or iS86 slim is the way to go IMHO. Rounded rails make jibing easier to initiate and to keep track during the entire turn, while the wide tail helps a lot to jibe with higher speed exit. A small Kode might be a good alternative to keep top-notch control, especially if the spot looks like a minefield.

Any speed board (and the iS speed W53 is no exception to that) will become difficult to control in heavy chop. Short and low scooped nose, pretty narrowed tail with boxy rails and small fin makes control a real challenge in well- to over-powered conditions when water conditions worsens a lot. This is why I don't use the iS speed W53 with a sail smaller than 6.6 m2 because chop and swell are getting way too heavy in 6 Bft wind and higher on my home spot. I much liked to take a tiny wave board and a 5.4 m2 wave sail and go ripping the increasingly growing swell.

Finally for your 53 kg, I feel I would rather choose the iS speed W53 because she will still be a floater with her 74 liters for your weight (it's a sinker for my 65 kg) to still be able to uphaul your sail in case of a sudden lull. Since this speed board runs at its best potential only when in well- to over-powered conditions, the extra volume of the iS speed W58 is useless and constitutes just unnecessary ballast for your weight in high wind.



1st November 2009, 09:23 AM
Thanks for the info about how different boards react in different conditions. My local spot definitely gets very very choppy in high wind so a more maneuver oriented wave board might indeed be more appropriate/controllable.

1st November 2009, 04:05 PM
Yes, something like a Kode 68 should be perfect for hardcore freeriding in heavy chop and nice swell for your light weight : in high wind, the smaller, the better.

What high wind range are you aiming for and what sail sizes do you have or plan to get ?

Cheers !


1st November 2009, 04:41 PM

I have 2 sails at the moment, a 6.0 and 4.5, i know i really should have a 5.2ish somewhere in there but I'm moving soon so don't feel like extending my 'quiver' of sails just yet.

I use the 6.0 up to a regular bft 5, anything above and I need the 4.5. During typhoons here (in Hong Kong) the 4.5 is good at which point the wind is 6-7, that's when I need a board that is ready to take a chop beating and stay under control despite the conditions.

I too think that a Kode, with a single back strap, would be good for these conditions.

7th November 2009, 08:23 PM
Today I tried an 88l carbon slalom board in force 3-4, even in these conditions it was fine volume wise. The main thing I noticed during the occasional gust was that it 'coped' with chop much better than my 106l freerider. It didn't seem to be hitting the chop as hard which is probably due to a straghter rocker and a thinner profile. I want to try it again in high wind when it will really start to perform.