RE: Board quiver advice for an intermediate
I kind of agree with Mike here.
The boards you have are (in my opinion) good for a fairly large range.
You don't state specifically what your primary goal is here.
Light wind planing with your 8.5 ?
Better higher wind performance than your Bee 125L?
Easier learning curve for jibes and chop hops, etc.?
Something a little wider than the Nova with a better fin would help with
early planing, but may not be the easiest to jibe.
The Carve 133 is not going to plane as early (35% of your sailing time) as the Nova, but will be alot easier to gybe.
Maybe with really good technique, the Carve 133 will plane up within a knot or 2 of the Nova, so that may be an OK choice.
Have you fully explored all the potential with your Nova?
Bigger fin, footstraps all the way back and outboard, etc.?
I might suggest one of the larger Isonics (133 or 145) if pure speed and early planing were your primary goals.
Even a GO 155 might provide a little advantage over the Nova, but not much.
So, I'm going to "read between the lines" here (until we hear back from you) and suggest maybe adding only one board to your quiver.
The Kombat 97 or an S-Type 104 or Carve 101 would give you great jibing potential, chop hopping potential, and much better, smoother high wind sailing and control.
It's really about where you want to put the emphasis on your near term progress as to whether you need to replace the Nova and Bee 125L.
Wider boards, with less volume and larger fins/wider footstrap offset should help with your 8.5m2 rig and you may even want to invest in a 9.5 m2 or larger rig to get the full marginal wind potential out of a wider board with a larger fin.
For marginal wind performance, my experience is that width is more important than volume, but since the majority of your sailing is on fresh water, that needs to be a consideration in your choices.
The board that works great in Hatteras (salt water) may not get going quite so early in the gustier winds and fresh water around Montreal.
The S-Type 104/Kombat 97/Carve 101 might be wonderful in Hatteras, but a little short on volume in marginal 6.7/5.5 m2 conditions on fresh water near Montreal.
Lots of things to consider here,
I have the Kombat 97 and Carve 101 in my demo fleet so if you are in Hatteras late in April (April 19-21, 2007) you can come over to the Windfest and give them a try.
Hope this helps,