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Old 14th October 2008, 12:17 AM   #1
Per
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Default How small sails and fins on formula?

Today I had a great experience. Being a little overpowered on my F159 10.3 sail combo with a 70 Drake fin, i made a funny experiment and switched the sail to a 8.5m2 7 batten no cam freerace sail and the fin to a "tiny" 55 cm deboichet custom....
The result was excellent. Pointing was of course less than with the traditional set up, planing only suffered slightly in the lulls, but the control and speed really made me fly. Reaching and downwind was seriousely faster than normal. I flew past some kiters I normally struggle with in complete control. The board was surprisingly stable even in what seemed normal 6.5 conditions. My question is how many formula sailors experiment with their equipment in this "slalom" motion and where's the limits. Will it work with a 7.5 sail and 45 fin in really rough conditions. Big sails/small fins? What about speed? My guessing is that i averaged 3-4 knots faster downwind than normal. That's a lot, but probably not enough to compensate for the loss in pointing on a race course.
;-)
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Old 14th October 2008, 04:29 AM   #2
sergio k
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I've done a lot of experimenting int the last 8 years, I go as small as 52-56cm fin,
less will spin out too easy, on sail size, some FW boards you can go as small as 6.5 m2,
but later, wider in the tail models do like a bigger sail, so >7.5 m2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Per View Post
Today I had a great experience. Being a little overpowered on my F159 10.3 sail combo with a 70 Drake fin, i made a funny experiment and switched the sail to a 8.5m2 7 batten no cam freerace sail and the fin to a "tiny" 55 cm deboichet custom....
The result was excellent. Pointing was of course less than with the traditional set up, planing only suffered slightly in the lulls, but the control and speed really made me fly. Reaching and downwind was seriousely faster than normal. I flew past some kiters I normally struggle with in complete control. The board was surprisingly stable even in what seemed normal 6.5 conditions. My question is how many formula sailors experiment with their equipment in this "slalom" motion and where's the limits. Will it work with a 7.5 sail and 45 fin in really rough conditions. Big sails/small fins? What about speed? My guessing is that i averaged 3-4 knots faster downwind than normal. That's a lot, but probably not enough to compensate for the loss in pointing on a race course.
;-)
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Old 15th October 2008, 01:54 AM   #3
Ken
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Per,

I have been racing formula for 6 years at the local level. On a few occasions, I have gone down to a 6.5 on my F160 and F147 a few years back in races with winds to 30 knots. I am an older guy and when necessary I go into survival mode if I must. I have used a 7.5, 8.4, 9.2 & 11.0 while racing on my formula board, but for fun sailing, I will jump on my iS 111 as soon as it's blowing 15 knots.

Before I bought the iSonic a year ago, I stayed on my F160 for free sailing on anything under 20 knots and occasionally used my 8.4 and 7.5 because I did a lot more reaching.

As for fins, if you are racing upwind and down wind, you can stay with a larger fin. I found that the Drake was a handful when it got windy, so I almost alway use a Deb R13 70M which gives me a lot more control. I have a custom Curtis 68 that I use when it gets really windy but it doesn't point well unless I have a lot of speed. If you are going to do a lot of reaching, then a smaller fin - 60 or 65 should would work fine. Going below 60 does't seem necessary. A lot depends on your weight. I weigh 79kg.

Good luck,

Ken
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Old 15th October 2008, 12:32 PM   #4
Per
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Thanks Sergio and Ken..
I don't really compete, except for fun, but I like a good blast at max speed with power. What I'm into is how far up the wind scale I can comfortable go on my formula before I switch to something smaller, in this case my S-type 126. Yesterday I tried my new set up against a friend on "normal" formula gear. I did blast pass him, but with a surprisingly small margin, though the "feeling" of speed seemed huge (I would have survived longer than him as my stand was more relaxed). On my ST 126, I had no problem passing him in comfort on a deep reach, but my pointing was horrible...
Maybe I should go for a big iSonic to get both the feeling and the real speed (and some pointing). Does any of you have any experience with bigger iSonics compared to formulas, speedwise, when not going deep or high?

;-)
Per
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Old 15th October 2008, 11:49 PM   #5
sergio k
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I've tested i133 (new one), feels real fast, fin 50-52cm, doesn't need as big of a sail
to get things going, was very impressed with overall performace, of course it will not point
as high
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Old 16th October 2008, 04:37 PM   #6
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I saw a guy race "gorge slalom" in Hood river using a K46 and 9m sail and a formula board against guys on 6.7's. he did pretty well. I used a CR15 55 on my formula board in a fun race w/9.8 and it was a blast.
Go ahead and try all combos...
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