A little help here please. I just did my first day on a brand spanking new zeeko spitfire. For background I'm 190lbs and can ride a directional strapless jibing both directions. I have experience on a borrowed SS HG over the last year able to foil both directions but no transitions. After research I went with the spitfire and OMG. I'm learning all over again. I couldn't get it to foil consistently and when I was up I went down almost immediately. I get on the water a few times each month. Is it worth sticking with or change to a more traditional foil?
Make sure you are putting a lot of pressure on your back foot. Unlike the SS HG the lifting wing on the Spitfire is the back wing so you will need more back foot pressure.
Do you have the standard wings or the XLW wings? If you are learning the XLW wings will be much easier than the standard wings.
Probably the standard wing as I wasn't aware there's an option. I'm not so much interested in going fast as to have the sensation of flying over the water. My sense was I needed a lot of speed to get the foil up. The weight distribution and back foot pressure was in my thoughts but it just didn't manifest. Eugene at kitesurferstore.com has bee awesome to work with. I'm in deep $ wise and I'm not getting younger. Time on the water is limited so a larger wing is a consideration. Thanks for the feedback!
I had the Zeeko spitfire for about 18 months and it definitely likes a bit more speed to start flying. With practice you will be able to ride it slower but this takes time. I found it quite sensitive in terms of setup too - Zeeko publish some recommendations on their website about where to put the mast in relation the the front strap (ie 370mm) and for me this made all the difference.
I note they also publish a takeoff speed of 9 knots (16.6kmh) as opposed to 7 knots with the XLW wings. This also matches my experience. If you want to plod around slowly and catch a few waves, you might consider a Surf/ SUP foil for kiting. (Zeeko Blaster ?) Most brands have a surf foil in the lineup now.
To ease learning, you need XLW wings. Standard wings are a challenge at first for even more seasoned foiler.
As for whether Spitfire is better for you rather than classic foil, this is personal preference. I’ve been riding on it over a year and still like it. Owned 2 other foils before. It does take a bit of time to get the best out of it
Appreciate the help and info! Yes, I've looked at the Blaster and it remains an option. Also put an inquiry into the distributor as to the availability of the XLW wings. I have the board (Zeeko) set up with one hook to help with starts but no straps. I can ride all day on the water but needed speed for it to foil. When it did it often bucked up and out of the water. I'll work with it some more. Won't get out again for a couple weeks.
The Spitfire needs to be held down that little bit before letting it lift. It will lift fairly early, with std wings, but is very pitch sensitive at slow speed or without wave power to assist.
Being patient at start brings the rewards.
if you are using a spitfire standard, it is same lift as a 500 to 550cm² conventional foil front wing area.
If you previously ride a SS HG, wings are bigger and are closer to the XLW wings of the spitfire.
If you never ride any foils, you'll learn very safely with the Spitfire and you will enter in the real world of carving.
Still yesterday I was equipped for surfoiling and tried some surfoil (with my surfboard 6'8) and what was the difference!!! the Spitfire XXLW (for surfing) was way way more easier to ride and turn.
Here is a pic of the prototype I was riding yesteday, and for me no way to ride any other foil for carving and surfing if I have a spitfire on hands!!!
We sold out all the XLW wings but it will be back in stock mid of june approx.
I like the conventional prototype there.
It seems like it would be a good option for those who already have a conventional zeeko foil and want to use it in small waves, or to teach a friend, etc.
I often ride in light wind and shallow water, where it would be best to be able to start straight onto foil.
To do this with my carver or standard wing, I have to have more power. A big wing would make this easier in light wind.
I know, it must not be as "performant," but there is a market...