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Screamer 25th August 2006 05:20 PM

A couple of questions for Tiesda, or other team members.

Last week, when the forecasted wind failed to arrive on a local lake, I had a go on an olympic Lechner with a triangular sail in 2-4 knots "gusting" to 7-8. I haven't sailed that board for more than 10 years, and I admit I had a blast. So my questions are:

-how does Serenity compare to a Lechner re. min / max wind range?
-how do you sail it on a broad reach / dead downwind without the retracting daggerboard ? (that's how Div2 boards are normaly sailed)


scotty 25th August 2006 06:56 PM

RE: Serenity
-also how does the upwind / downwind performance compare?


Ian Fox 10th October 2006 05:10 PM

RE: Serenity
Hi Screamer and Scotty,

C/W a real Lechner, I've no idea, as I never sailed one.
I'm 99% sure the same for Tiesda.

The wind range for the Serenity is more governed by water state (no, that is not dodging the question ;) ) as in flatter or very short chop conditions, the Serenity is still actually pretty fun (if a bit challenging) in winds up to around 15 kts. Most guys would consider a reasonable limit is probably around a tru e 10-11 kts. Lower wind range is basically zero, although with obvious issues at that speed, however again on still and flat water, it's actually quite navagable with a reasonable pumping (maybe more fanning) technique- yes, it is slow in that mode, and yes current etc can have a significant effect also). Bigger issues are popping cammed sails etc in no knots ;)

Running powered and broad with the centrefin(board) also takes a little getting used to, and maybe benefits at higher speeds from a slightly more assertive (or committed) style than typically "pleasurable" Serenity sailing is all about, but considering its nature, Serenity does get the job done a lot better than expected. Absolute dead downwind run is more challenging with any serious speed, the centrefin lift can get a bit much as the speed increases.

Upwind the angle is very good c/w FW or upwind short boards, however lacking the rear fin/centreboard combo (as per true DivII boards) the Serenity would not quite have the same upwind extreme as those old pure raceboards.

But remember, the magic of Serenity is a lot more than competition and being first or fastest. There is a huge element of satisfaction in just going out and relaxing on that board (something Serenity probably delivers even more than a classic DivII racer)- the performance factor on Serenity is as much in the pleasure of actually sailing it as any form of racing.

Yeah, I know, get a bunch of guys and board together and we have to have a race blah. But don't miss the point of this board, it's a cruiser, not a drag racer.

Cheers ~ Ian

Ian Fox 11th October 2006 05:07 PM

RE: Serenity

And just in this afternoon, see Eddy Patricelli's thoughts on Serenity @

Cheers ~ Ian

steveC 12th October 2006 12:51 AM

RE: Serenity
Hi Ian and Tiesda,

I've asked this question a number of times, and unfortunately, I've never ended up with an answer of any kind from Starboard. Maybe one of you will tackle it now.

How does the Serenity work with a weedfin?

Although I realize that the board will not work as well as the standard 70cm vertical fin, the locations where I sail are loaded with floating kelp and eel grass, so the 40 to 45 degree rake of a weedfin is a real necessity. With planing board designs, it's incredible how much performance and tracking suffer when one gathers just a small amount amount of kelp or eel grass. Also, it's quite frustrating to have to repeatedly jump in the water to clear the fin. Given the likelihood that waterstarting is out of the question in super light wind, a requirement to climb aboard and uphaul all the time after clearing the weeds would greatly limit the potential for fun.

I'm aware that the Serenity also comes with a shallower 40cm fin, but my assumption is that it's configuration is still vertical in design. I realize this is a tough question, especially if the Serenity's performance is hindered greatly by less than a vertical fin. Still though, many folks like me live in weedy locales, so I'm sure that I'm not alone in my concern about this. Your honest candor would be appreciated.

Screamer 12th October 2006 08:41 AM

RE: Serenity
Hey Ian
Thanks for the reply. I've never thought of it as a raceboard, although I'd like to kick certain Formula guys a*s on a local lake ;)
I think this is THE thing for light wind sailing, not Formulas, not even raceboards/longboards. For the latter two, there is always a point (too often) when it becomes slogging = no fun.

PS Excellent article on windsurfingmag. (Wood version looks like a work of art). I have an idea what to expect, but I'd still like to hear comments/comparison from an ex div2 racer.

Ian Fox 12th October 2006 03:13 PM

RE: Serenity
Hi Steve,

Honest candor is we never tried. I guess we need to make up a 45' Drake70 and take it for a spin. My feeling is the loss of efficency at relatively low/er speeds will be more noteable than planing speed weed fins (I have some rather "fast" weed fins not overly lacking efficency :) ). Another interesting Thai test centre observation is that in "typical" Serenity conditions, the normal fin does not pick up trash in anything like the same manner as a "planing" fin. In fact the majority of trash (and there are plenty of weed similation objects, along with most other imaginable- and a few not so imaginable - objects - most typically sub surface plastic bags) that would normally be attracted to a vertical race blade like a magnet seems to slide on past the Serenity. That may not work so well with kelp. Don't overlook the potential to sail the Serenity backwards (true) to clear the fin - this is not only doable but almost practical with a little no wind experience.

Hi Screamer,

Yeah, the best thing is windsurf mag don't pull any punches on stuff like this with us, so to see a test like that is pretty positive. Yeah, the Serenity in Wood looks like a work of art: too good to sail - but too good not to sail too :)

Cheers ~ Ian

steveC 12th October 2006 11:34 PM

RE: Serenity
Thanks Ian for the response, and I really do appreciate your honesty about it. I never thought about sailing backward to clear the fin, but of course the fin position is much more centered on the Serenity than on standard boards. My first board over 20 years ago had a daggerboard, but frankly I rarely used it, so I can't really remember whether the daggerboard tended to gather weeds. If you do have the opportunity to try a weedfin on the Serenity, I would very much like to read your findings. Again, thanks for tackling my question.

Roger 13th October 2006 09:14 AM

RE: Serenity
Hi steve C,
I've sailed the new Serenity with a 42 cm Tangent Dynamics "Reaper"
weed fin in Pine Island Sound in Florida.
It worked really well and the upwind angle and speed in very marginal conditions with a 7.5 m2 Retro was nothing short of incredible.
I see no problem using weed fins in the Serenity.
I'm going to try some larger and smaller weed fins as soon as I get back on the water in Hatteras.
I tried a smaller 58 cm DeBoichet Concept and a 5.5 m2 Retro last weekend and compared to wider boards that were only able to plane at the height of the gusts, I was cruising right on by them most of the time.
The Serenity was by far the fastest board on the water in the 7-10 knot winds on Sunday.
Hope this helps,

steveC 13th October 2006 11:32 PM

RE: Serenity
Hi Roger,

That's great news that the Serenity appears to work very well with weedfins. Frankly, that tends to clear up a major obstacle in my mind regarding the board's performance. Also, the fact that the board performs well in very light winds using a relatively small sail is unexpected and very encouraging. I would be quite interested in how your testing goes with larger and smaller weedfins. If I recollect correctly, you have some of Lessacher's weedfins. I have two Duo Weed fins (28 and 34cm). While the 28 is most likely too small, I wonder about the viability of the 34. Any feedback on your future testing would be greatly appreciated.

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