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walter 1212 26th February 2011 02:46 PM

Improving going upwind
Hello sufers!

I want to improve my knowledge about settings going upwind.

Although planing itīs hard going upwind. Which settings are possible (mast, boom).

Thanks a lot


Roger 26th February 2011 10:45 PM

Hi Walter,
When going upwind, planing on a shortboard, slalom board, or formula board, how you set the rig is
not the only thing you need to "set up".
For sailing upwind you need your sail fairly flat, the boom fairly high, but most of all you need to get the
side to side (roll axis) of your board set correctly so you go upwind on lift from your fin.
Having the correct fin can make a huge difference.
Tip your board very slightly lee rail down and really push with your back foot "across the top of the board"
and maybe even "pull" a little bit upwind with your fornt foot.
This will cant the fin over slightly so the upwind rail is very slightly higher than the downwind rail.
You will go upwind really well as you are using the "lift" from the fin to take you there.
If you have a small fin or a curvy wave type fin (made to be "loose" but not spin out) you will have to tip your board so the upwind rail is lower than the downwind rail and use the shape in the bottom of the board
to take you upwind.
Hope this helps,

Ken 28th February 2011 11:23 PM


To add to what Roger said:

Regarding the "side to side (roll axis)".

1. As Roger said, the fin size will make a difference on how you "roll" the board.

2. However, speed is the most important point. Regardless of fin size or lift, it you don't have much speed (slow plane), you may still need to "tip your board so the upwind rail is lower" to get upwind. If you have really good power and speed (regardless of fins size), then "tip your board very slightly, lee rail down".

I think the key to going to windward on short boards is speed, and most novice and intermediate sailors aren't comfortable with the speed necessary to "ride the fin" and raise the windward rail. It takes time and practice to discover how this works, but you will be surprised at how well you can go upwind on a small board.

Anytime you think you have good speed, try to head upwind by sheeting in a little and pressing with the toes on the back foot to roll the lee side down. Do it for short bursts to get a feel of "riding the fin". You will know when you are getting it right since 3/4 of the board will be out of the water. If you immediately slow down and begin stalling, you don't have enough speed. If you point too high into the wind, you will stall no matter how much speed and power you have, so it takes practice to find the point where you maximize your upwind performance without stalling the board.

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