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Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

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Beardytello
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Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby Beardytello » Wed May 31, 2017 4:50 pm

Whats the difference between a kite specific surf board and a normal one?

I'm a way off needing one but eventually I'd like to try strapless surfboard for a laugh.

Just interested really, are there differences?

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby tmcfarla » Wed May 31, 2017 5:00 pm

Ignoring that some kite specific boards have inserts for straps, the main difference is strength. Kite-specific boards are built stronger (and heavier). If you are relatively light weight and don't do many strapless jumps, a regular surfboard will probably work fine for quite a while. The other difference is size- kite specific boards are generally made in smaller sizes than would normally be paddle-surfed.

If you have access to a cheap regular surfboard, definitely give it a go. It is a lot easier than it sounds. Board length a couple inches shorter than your height is a crude rule of thumb for regular surfboards. If you are going to actually spend some money on it, get kite construction as you are less likely to break it.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby knotwindy » Wed May 31, 2017 5:05 pm

They try to build kite surf boards stronger and that tends to make them stiffer and heavier. A regular surfboard is a bit delicate for kiting but if you don't jump them and take it easy on them they are really fun on a wave. Generally more flex and feel but this is slowly changing for some of the newer kiteboards. Also, kiteboards sometimes have inserts for straps.
For a starter, any cheap used surfboard the right size will be fine. You will ride it a bit, break it and repeat with different shapes to see what you like best. Then once you know what you like, maybe get a more expensive kiteboard or just stick with the regular.
Yea, just wrote this and saw above, same stuff.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby Beardytello » Wed May 31, 2017 5:16 pm

Ace thanks!

As I said, probably not a problem for this year, just wanted to know really! There's a guy selling an old surfboard locally...thought about pissing about with it...but I should probably get up and riding well on my TT first!

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby Starsky » Wed May 31, 2017 6:02 pm

For sure, but if I could go back and do it all again, I'd have gotten a surfboard earlier. It really expands the sport to have different boards for various conditions.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby FLandOBX » Wed May 31, 2017 6:10 pm

Agree with prior posts. Pick up a cheap used regular surfboard, not too large, just a beater. You can use it to kite in light wind when others are on the beach waiting for wind to pick up. It'll improve your board skills and it's fun.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby Matteo V » Wed May 31, 2017 7:40 pm

My recommendation - get a small to mid sized quad. Quads really come alive with a kite. They can have a difficult to overcome learning curve vs thrusters if you have prone surfing experience on either configuration.

Durability is an issue in kiting as the forces are much higher than prone surfing. Riding strapless can minimize the forces on the board as you concentrate on loosing kite power instead of gaining it. If you pick up a cheapie surf specific board, it is super easy to throw an extra layer or two of glass on the deck. You can get 3 times the life if you do this.

For the real difference between kitesurfboards and surfboards, look at Doyle kiteboards. Thin (low volume), shorter, and solid core (no eps).

http://doylecustom.com/

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby NorCalNomad » Wed May 31, 2017 10:25 pm

Like everyone else says, they have a higher strength...which make them heavier and have less flex. But don't worry about the weight or flex if you haven't been surfing and kitesurfing for a while.

Other stuff
1. Another endorsement for buying a cheap shortboard and just riding. $100 or less is perfect.
2. Don't bother with straps.
3. Don't worry about thrusters (3 fins) vs Quads right now.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby Starsky » Wed May 31, 2017 11:14 pm

Some advice when checking out the used bin.

You generally want a board designed for small waves and sized for someone 20-30 lbs lighter than you.

Less pointy outline with lower rocker and a bit of width, especially in the tail. Fish, thumb, or at least squashed tail. More fun in less wind.

The pointy little round pin tails look sexier, but you don't want to start there. They are designed for sizeable surf. Too much rocker and not enough width for what you want to learn. They need too much power to be any fun in light conditions.

Ideally you want your first surfboard to be fun in a few knots less than your main TT. You get lots of practice in the light stuff gaining the confidence to ride bigger and bigger conditions.

Then you get a round pin.

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Re: Kite Surfboards vs "normal" Surfboards

Postby danidr » Wed May 31, 2017 11:25 pm

NorCalNomad wrote:
Wed May 31, 2017 10:25 pm
Like everyone else says, they have a higher strength...which make them heavier and have less flex. But don't worry about the weight or flex if you haven't been surfing and kitesurfing for a while.

Other stuff
1. Another endorsement for buying a cheap shortboard and just riding. $100 or less is perfect.
2. Don't bother with straps.
3. Don't worry about thrusters (3 fins) vs Quads right now.
I never surfed paddling, and know not a lot about fin configurations, but I find quads quite "stiff" and not very playful. My two surf/kiteboards were thrusters and every time I use someone else's board and it's a quad, I don't like how it carves and behaves. Anyone care to explain?

I also bought a nice (expensive!!) set of fins and they made quite a lot of difference. I'd go with everyone else's advice, get a cheap board, and go strapless. It will definitely open up a new world kiting. And after that get a foil and you have 3 sports in 1, for basically any condition out there in the water!


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