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Mast Length?

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PurdyKiter
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Mast Length?

Postby PurdyKiter » Fri Sep 11, 2020 5:33 pm

Okay, I don't foil in shallow or weedy waters. Been at this for 4 years so I consider myself fairly skilled. My favorite days are big swell, deep carves, (Columbia River Gorge Oregon) not really drag racing.
I had a beach friend berate me for sticking with the 101cm mast versus riding the "preferred" 71cm mast.
My argument has always been that there's no gain to a shorter mast, and that my least favorite crash is the breaching crash on the leeward bowl of a deep swell. The 101cm gives me help with this .

So, beyond concerns for shallow waters what are the benefits of a shorter mast for an accomplished kite foiler?

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Re: Mast Length?

Postby tomtom » Fri Sep 11, 2020 5:37 pm

its much more agile. Its like more surfing in foiling. but 71 is probably too short. I vent from 90 to 82
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Re: Mast Length?

Postby grigorib » Fri Sep 11, 2020 5:41 pm

The new 72/82cm masts are much stiffer so you get better control (if of course you ride a 71 or 91cm noodlemasts)
I believe newer 101/111 have wood core and are pretty stiff.
Plus short masts are lighter and more compact to travel with - imagine a 82cm mast and 32” board - those could fit into a electric keyboard bag for travel, along with wings and fuselage.
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Re: Mast Length?

Postby Peter_Frank » Fri Sep 11, 2020 6:25 pm

If you can utilize the shorter mast for faster transitions (not carves/jibes but edge to edge fun if you like that), it makes sense indeed with a shorter mast, and only personal experience can tell you where it is.
Carving radius is the same, actually narrower with a longer mast as you can lean over harder.

Another difference I have noticed over the years is, that some dont mind the board touching down slightly now and then when riding waves, others hate it - so this is another very important individual difference regarding whether you like shorter or longer masts.

Besides experience of course, the more experienced, the shorter masts you can ride, without ever touching the water with any part of your board :naughty:

I have found my 83 to be too short, and my 100 cm and 91.5 cm to be perfect in waves, depending a bit on HOW rough it is.

My 91.5 cm by far the most used though, a good compromise between agility and loads of free room in choppy waves.

8) Peter
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merl
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Re: Mast Length?

Postby merl » Fri Sep 11, 2020 6:55 pm

Interesting topic. I have used a 75cm a lot and got used to it but felt that I ought to be riding a longer strut because that's what everyone seems to do. Switched to a 90 in the same alu and although it breaches much less and is forgiving in many regards, I feel that the 75 has a much more direct and playful feel. The 90 feels wobbly by comparison. Could that just be a question of stiffness?

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Re: Mast Length?

Postby Tony » Fri Sep 11, 2020 7:02 pm

It seems like with length, preference and location are big factors, I don't think there are right or wrong answers.
I ride a shallow soundside location most of the time.
I started with a 60cm mast and it worked but was a pain in stronger winds with bigger chop ... no margin for error, breaching was common.
But, recovery was easy from board touchdowns because you're hitting the water with the board relatively flat.
I got my Ketos setup with 70cm and 90cm masts.
70cm is a big difference from 60cm and have been using that all the time.
I have never used the 90cm and it is for sale.
I recently got an 83cm and if the water is up in the sound I can use it, 90cm would never be an option.
I went oceanside this past week with the 83cm and it was perfect.
Touchdowns are a little less forgiving as but more margin in the chop.
I don't feel the added 7cm of the 90cm would make much difference for me and I don't feel the need to go to 100cm.
I think you get used to what you ride most of the time and probably don't want to switch between masts that have large differences in length.
For me the 70 and 83 work perfectly.

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Re: Mast Length?

Postby Flyboy » Fri Sep 11, 2020 7:36 pm

It is an interesting topic. My impression is that masts started off long because they were initially oriented to speed & racing. Then a couple of years ago 70 - 75 cm masts became a trend together with much bigger wings ... & now the trend is back to 90cm masts again.

I've never used anything shorter than a 90cm mast (although I have a 65cm). My guess is that people adjust to the equipment they're using. Let's face it, when you're learning you are constantly breaching even with a 90cm mast or longer. Gradually you learn to control the height of the mast in the water. I imagine that people riding a 70cm mast just learn more precise control of elevation.

I am generally riding in small to moderate swell with sometimes quite a bit of chop. I'm very relaxed on my 90cm mast & very rarely breach. A couple of days ago I was foiling perfectly powered in about 15 knots & was doing some pedal-to-the-metal reaches. I've got to believe that would be a lot more difficult with a 70cm mast.
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Re: Mast Length?

Postby Kamikuza » Sat Sep 12, 2020 9:06 am

The three lengths I've used are 75, 82 (cut down from 90) and 90.

Smaller the wing, the longer the mast I like. Small wing + short mast and I seem to breach a lot more. Guess I ride differently depending on the wing.

Don't like the laggy vague feel the big wide wings seem to have on longer masts.

If none of that bothers you, then don't change your mast :D

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Re: Mast Length?

Postby tegirinenashi » Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:09 pm

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Re: Mast Length?

Postby tomtom » Sat Sep 12, 2020 9:59 pm

Peter_Frank wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 6:25 pm
Another difference I have noticed over the years is, that some dont mind the board touching down slightly now and then when riding waves, others hate it - so this is another very important individual difference regarding whether you like shorter or longer masts.
It was said here but and can confirm - boards are too big and too wide. Smaller board like 90x40 - give you more space on 80 cm mast than 120x45 on 90 cm mast. Both dimension are equaly important to give you clereance above water.
So you can have both - clearance and short mast. Of course you can have even more on longer mast and micro board


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