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Old 20th October 2010, 01:50 AM   #51
Join Date: Aug 2006
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Well, diversion was not the intention. For the record, while on one hand I think we all need to understand marketing is marketing, not to be confused with objective description of the boards; on the other hand I do believe in "respect the rider" which for example means it's not a good idea to give intentional mis-information.

In short, what I want to say is:
1. Board development is mostly an empirical endeavor that at best is generally guided by some principles of physics.
2. A designer may still want to "explain" his design, for example try to explain how this years model is different to last years model and what the effects of the ride are.
3. Due to the nature of the development, the understanding the shaper has of the "why" of shaping may be a tacit form of knowledge so when the shaper tries to explain to someone else there may well be a fair bit of "physical hand waiving" (in both senses: actually waiving the hands and at the same time making sweeping references to physics).
4. When marketing departments get ahold of this it may become worse...

I reckon that (at least up to point 3.) this can still be honest work. The shapers tries his best to shape the best board then tries his best trying to explain what he did and why it works.

And in the end, I think the best thing is to concentrate on what claims about actual on water performance that are made and if the boards fulfills them. Claims about _why_ the board fulfills the requirements might be interesting to shapers and some other nerds, but in the end, I think most sailors will rather have a good boards that comes with a bad argument than a bad board with a good argument.

Personally I'm working for good boards with good arguments, but you can't always have it all.
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Old 20th October 2010, 03:52 AM   #52
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Thanks for sharing....
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Old 20th October 2010, 04:00 AM   #53
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Thumbs up

Think Ola`s last post is one of most honest I`ve seen on here. I`ve been critical of SB (and others)approach to marketing for a while but if there are other folk in SB thinking along these lines I`m a convert !!

Nice one Ola !!!

Interesting thread; Darko Z also excellent post !!!
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Old 21st October 2010, 10:49 PM   #54
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Dallas, Texas USA
Posts: 799

Good post Ola-

One thing that I have experienced is that when jumping on to a new board for the first time, it never immediately feels like a great board, regardless of what the shaper or marketing dept. has said. It takes some time to adapt to the new design and get comfortable with the feel and handling of the board as well as learning how to tune it to my style and size. In most cases, my new boards have turned out to be better than the previous ones, but not always.

Sometimes, I think the testing of a new design doesn't discover the shortcomings until after the board is in production. This clearly has happened a couple of times in the history of the Formula boards. This is a by product of the need/desire to come up with a new & improved design each year, but with relatively little time to reach that goal. On the other hand, some designs have been carried over and not changed every year other than the paint jobs, which is generally a good thing for the consumer, but it may not increase the profit margin for the company.

However, I think the "art" as much or more than the "science" of board design has contributed to the amazing progress in windsurfing equipment over the last 39 years. Not just boards, but fins, sails, booms, etc.
Formula 160; iSonic 111; HiFly Move 105; Tiga 263; '85 Mistral Superlight.
Maui Sails TR 11.0; 9.2; 8.4; 7.6; 6.6; Maui Sails Switch 6.0; 5.2; Maui Sails Global 4.5; 4.0.
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Old 22nd October 2010, 09:21 PM   #55
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Something I appreciate in SB is that the boards I tried almost immédiately felt great. It took me very little time and tuning to get good feeling in many aspects of the ride. Maybe I was lucky and picked the right ones for my weight & skills but I suspect this is also due to hard work at design stage. Good boards, sometimes with questionable arguments.
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