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Who are the foilers?

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grigorib
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Who are the foilers?

Postby grigorib » Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:05 pm

I have a very serious question here, maybe two, which might deserve their own thread:

Judging by what you see - what do you think are the percentages of foilers broken down between
- kite
- windsurf
- surf/SUP
- wake

Do you think there's a need to distinguish wings for above categories or "others" could probably piggyback on kite wing line (obviously mast/fuselage for windsurf is a different story)

From what I personally see windsurf/sup/surf/wake foils exist primarily on videos. I saw only two surf/SUP foilers and one windsurf foiler in past 5 years and I'm wondering how manufacturers justify expenses of separate molds to investors. (I'd assume non-kite foil lines are not making money either, rather otherwise)

We probably should all thank all those rare surf/SUP riders for making manufacturers bring large wings back, but we also knew we wanted large wings since they were massively disappearing back in 2014-2015

Again, I'm a kiter on a kiteforum, so objective is not an easy part, but there are thousands of us on water so we see things :)
Last edited by grigorib on Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:35 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby Toby » Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:24 pm

Kite 90%

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jumptheshark
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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby jumptheshark » Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:55 pm

Complete guess, but looking ahead 5 more years...

Kite: 70% could be more. These are the only other foils I have seen with my own eyes. OOps, I have seen a few Moths in the past. Apparently there is a windfoil in town but I've never seen it. We are not a big spot and were up to about 6 foils before a couple moved away. Will probably surpass that this summer as more have bought in and are just starting out.

Windsurf: 2.5% max I'm sure there are going to be a few, but its not as good a match as with a kite. Like everything windsurfing, its likely really difficult to get past the basics. The top guys are making it look great, but most will never jibe on foil. I'm sure the manufacturers are hoping it will breath some life back into a dead industry, but I think it might be beyond saving. A lot of the older windsurfing pop that sat out for a good decade are finally convinced that kites work and have taken up kiting in the last few years. The would be windfoilers are now rookie kiters and they seem to get the fever bad! Those dudes are stoked.

Surf and SUP are different: I think there is merit to SUP: 15% They can paddle out to the waves that make sense to foil and stay away from crowds. They already like a pretty sedate sport, so making just a bit more fun with more frequent longer rides will catch on. Surf.....1% There will be some pretty amazing videos, but your not going to see them in the lineups. Too much entrenched whatever you want to call it to accept the kook with a foil. You gotta be Kai to paddle out in ear shot of other surfers. I could be wrong, but I cant see them paddling out far enough away from other surfers to bother without going to a SUP.

Wake: 10% I see this one working . There are not that many people who actually wake anymore. Most just tube. The true wakeboarders are keen on anything fun. They have tried wake surfing and would do it all the time if it weren't sooooo much gas and didn't piss everyone who owns the waterfront off. Wake foiling will dial back the wake to reasonable levels compared to wake surfing, and will give it a new feel and require a lot less boat. They will buy in, they already have the cash and we will see some carnage, to boats, foils, people, etc.

Efoil: 1.5% Too expensive and lame cornering compared to what you can do on a foil with a kite.
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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby Foil » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:27 pm

In two years of kite foiling I have only seen one sup foiler.
Gunnar at fuerteventura. but many kite foilers, maybe 20 to 1 over 3 months at the beach
never came across a windsurfer foiler until I spent time in Italy and Switzerland, lake Como and Silverplanna, there were maybe 10 kitefoilers V 3 windsurf foilers on Como, but on Silverplana in Switzerland the balance was reversed,and the availability of windsurf foils for hire was huge at Silverplana/

Back in the UK I have only seen kite foils, although there is talk of one person who has bought a windsurfer foil in the north west, but as yet has not been seen by me.
another windsurf foiler came to Wales (Rhosneigr last week) but I missed him even though he was watching us kitefoilers (x2) having a blast.

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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby Peter_Frank » Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:59 pm

Windfoil has lived for the last 3 years here, and the last year it has grown, especially the young guys 14-18 are EXTREMELY good at this now, but all ages are represented.

Race are of course almost all going windfoil, but a quite small group here compared to the 90s where there could be 200 contestants at the windsurf slalom and formula events.

Freeride windfoil, lately also bigger low aspect wings for waves and fun are here now, not much experience but we will see how it goes.

Kitefoil is big, and growing extremely now, as everybody can see how much we ride, OR, that we can ride at all spots whenever we got time, meaning after work or when the family allows - in fact you can PLAN a day you want to go out, long time ahead, not possible earlier when we needed lots of wind, or it was boring just going back and fourth on lightwind gear.

So a lot of new foilers here and coming, from TT also, which for some odd reason have been very low represented in foiling, earlier :roll:

SUP and surf foil are also growing, not right here as not much swell, but for those of us going to the westcoast, and those living there, SUP and Surf foil is a hit now, eventhough not thaaat many yet.

Wakefoil does not exist - of course a few try to pull their kitefoil behind a boat, but just for fun trying it when no wind.
Mostly because wakeboarding does not really exist here, no history or culture, we are all surfers or sailors it seems, in Denmark.

Wings are very different, as SUP foilers use higher span wings quite big.
Surf foils are more like our kite wave/surf wings.

Windfoils are different as the trim is not as good for kite or surf or SUP foils, because it is tweaked towards a rear box usually.

So here we have 4 of the 5 foil types, it is only wakefoils that dont exist as such as a seperate type.

Kitefoil still by far the biggest, lots of racers and now even more freeriders, but windfoil is coming up, and SUP/Surf still relatively small but it is there.

8) PF

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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby ap888 » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:28 pm

999% foil .5%kite .5%winsurf/sup :rollgrin:

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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby Peter_Frank » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:08 pm

PS:

I noticed, when visiting CapeTown for 2-3 weeks around KOTA, that there were a handful of kitefoilers there early before the wind picked up, out in the waves, half of them visitors (I knew 2 of them).

At Muizenberg when we went there to surf, there were a handful of locals on surf foils, and a few SUP foils.

And I know that there are a dozen of SUP foilers taking long journeys from south up along the coast on the open wind swells.

So here the surf/SUP foils outnumber kitefoils.

And up North in Langebaan it is kitefoil land of course, flat water.

I have no idea about the rest of the year, but that is how it looked like here in 2019 in the summer.

8) Peter

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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby PullStrings » Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:27 pm

grigorib wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:05 pm

Judging by what you see - what do you think are the percentages of foilers broken down between
- kite
- windsurf
- surf/SUP
- wake
- kite 60%
- Windsurf 0%
- surf 40%
- wake 0%

Based on 3 kitefoilers and 2 surffoilers ...have seen them on rare occasions....it's not that popular....seeing actually a decline of foilers year after year
Many got bored...novelty wore off
They went back to their surfboards and twin-tips
It's just not catching on from what i see
Foilboarding may very well be overrated
That could be a new topic !!
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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby FLandOBX » Tue Mar 05, 2019 11:55 pm

Kite - 85%
Windsurf - 9%
Surf - 5%
Wake - 1%

Everyone's perspective varies depending on where they live and kite (of course). For example, I see windsurf foils more than surf foils because I usually kite near a popular windsurfing destination and I rarely go to surfing spots. Does that mean there are more windsurf foilers than surf foilers in the world?? Probably not.

I'm often at a lake that's popular with pro wakeboarders. There are pros who regularly go out with camera crews, etc. on this lake. Lots of wakeboarders, in general. But I've never seen a wake foil. So that's the foil-type that seems least popular in my particular "world".

As someone else noted, the kite foilers are usually out and finished with their sessions before the TT and directional riders show up. If you kite in light wind, you'll see a lot more kite foils than you will if you wait until the wind is nuking. From what I observe and from activity on this Forum, I'd say that kite foiling is still growing and is here to stay.

grigorib
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Re: Who are the foilers?

Postby grigorib » Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:41 pm

I forgot about e-foil completely.
Looking at calm summer waters of Lake Michigan I wish I could spend $2000 on mast-mounted motor, couple of board-mounted battery cases and a remote to ride around.
Maybe one day e-foils will get to remoteless control - a-la Onewheel.

I hope e-foils catch up. They will draw many people away from kitesurfing too.


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