For the past few weeks, I have been using my home build, which is about 33 inches x 15.5 inches x 1 inch. I have used it flat water, small chop, and small waves.
I had never ridden strapless before, and it took a couple of sessions to get the waterstart dialed in. In chop and waves it is more of a challenge if underpowered, like I like to ride, but looping it a few times usually does the trick. It doesn’t really plane to speak of, but if I can keep pressure on the back foot, I can usually make it, even if the board is still under water after the first loop. 9kn is probably my low end on this board with my current equipment (10m LEI). I can probably get 1kn lower with my prior board (42 inch Dwarfcraft).
Once up and foiling, it is awesome. It is very light and turns very quickly. Because the board is so small, my stance has narrowed considerably from my prior board. I find this to be a huge benefit. My foot switches have gotten so much faster and more precise and my turns feel like I am carving more. That latter point is hard to explain but maybe because my stance is narrower I have to carve more by leaning than driving the board with pressure from my feet? Not really sure about the physics of it all, but the turns just feel better, even if I can’t crank it as hard as with straps.
For my style of foiling—Greg Drexler wannabe—I’m sold on smaller boards. I will only go back on super light wind days, huge chop days, or if I’m going to practice a new maneuver.