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Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby Foil » Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:21 pm

kit choice is the main thing to have right,
something many newbies get completely wrong when buying cheap, so may well struggle as a result.
this includes- kite choice, board choice, and of course foil choice, get them all wrong and a newbie may just be put off for good.
the next element to get sorted is skill.
easier for some, but harder for many others.
get everything right early on and its happy days.

skill is hard work and practice based with a good dose of dna and natural ability. you can't buy it.
great hydrofoil kit is expensive compared to some of the cheap rubbish currently available on some for sale sites.
(have you seen there is an original carafino foil currently for sale, complete, blimey, great for a shops museum corner, but for a newbie?)

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby jakemoore » Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:32 pm

10 knots /= 10 knots

It is tough to compare light winds on an international forum. For example 10 knots measured at the beach on a handheld or 10 knots at the government station on a 10 meter pole? In our locale, 10 knots south wind is doable but 10 knots on a north has lulls that will drop a light foil kite.

There are some things that have to be learned to help light wind hydrofoiling a lot. Flying footswitches and tight radius turns to keeplines tight open lower wind barriers.

One of the biggest barriers is body-dragging to deep enough water and keeping the kite in the air. A little wave in onshore wind can slack the lines and you are done for.

It’s pretty cool to not even consider a 21 meter kite any more.

I would consider 12 knots + ideal wind for learning and for a flysurfer guy that’s jumping twintip wind. You will have to give some of those days to hydrofoil.
Last edited by jakemoore on Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby tomtom » Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:37 pm

There must be some problem with 10 knots definition for sure. 10 knots is even twintipaple wind. For HF it is perfect wind. No advanced skills needed at all

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby grigorib » Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:39 pm

In 10 knots I'd foil under 7m Rally on 30m lines (maybe 9m Rally but I don't like large kites for foiling anymore - I'd rather trade power for agility). The kites are reasonably light and work magic. Experience counts, relaunches in 10 knots could be a trouble but I'm not aware of any kite relaunching better than 2015-2019 Rally.

It's fun!

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby edt » Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:12 pm

light wind hydrofoiling is all about the transition. Doesn't matter too much which kite you use. It might take a little bit of trouble to get up and foiling but once you are foiling you have plenty of apparent wind and can keep kiting as long as you want. If you botch a transition tho you lose your apparent wind and that's when you swim. So yes, it's very hard! At least for me. I always end up botching a transition eventually. If you get a letter perfect transition every time there's no reason you can't just keep kiting as long as you like.

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby Eduardo » Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:33 pm

jakemoore wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:32 pm
10 knots /= 10 knots

It is tough to compare light winds on an international forum. For example 10 knots measured at the beach on a handheld or 10 knots at the government station on a 10 meter pole? In our locale, 10 knots south wind is doable but 10 knots on a north has lulls that will drop a light foil kite.

There are some things that have to be learned to help light wind hydrofoiling a lot. Flying footswitches and tight radius turns to keeplines tight open lower wind barriers.

One of the biggest barriers is body-dragging to deep enough water and keeping the kite in the air. A little wave in onshore wind can slack the lines and you are done for.

It’s pretty cool to not even consider a 21 meter kite any more.

I would consider 12 knots + ideal wind for learning and for a flysurfer guy that’s jumping twintip wind. You will have to give some of those days to hydrofoil.
I agree that it's hard for us to know if we have a calibrated and representative wind meter that is representative. And currents and gusts/lulls are also a big impact. So yes, a steady 10 knots according to the best nearest wind meter for me, would not be a problem unless I'm getting pushed back on shore and can't get out, also as pointed out above.

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby juanpasala » Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:40 pm

I d say it is very difficult from 5 up to 8 knots, as long as you have more than 8 knots the kites should keep to the zenith as long as you dont botch a tack.
Just avaoid using short lines ( less than 15 mt) up until you re confident in your transitions, and make good use of the kiteloops in order to get going.

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby Peter_Frank » Fri Nov 08, 2019 7:36 pm

Yes, it IS hard, when you are new, and using your normal tubekites.

When experienced, no problems riding in 10 knots with tubes between 8 and 12 m2.

Disagree you need to keep foiling, or avoid crashes in transitions, doesnt mean a thing when experienced, you can easily keep the kite alive as long a you know what your kite is doing, no problems :thumb:

The thing is, when you have just learned to foil a tad only, you WILL drop the kite too often, and most often not possible to relaunch, at least not easy in 10 knots which is even less at the surface, so yes, it IS hard.

Then you can get lighter kites, one or no strut, which makes it easier yes, and actually needed in sub 10 knots.

But you can ride in lulls with normal tube kites also, when you know how to.

12 knots is where it gets very easy to keep the kite alive, if a normal tubekite, even for the beginners who can ride a bit.

I recommend around 14 knots for the very beginner, in order to learn hydrofoiling, 12 knots is too low for the very first times.

So what you see is correct, many will drop their kites and suffer in 10 knots, and others will ride effortlessly, even with the very same kites and gear :rollgrin:

I think many answering here only speak for themselves, and not for those who are fairly new :roll:

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby jumptheshark » Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:07 pm

Well said

10 knots /= 10 knots also speaks to me. Certainly I've never put 10 knots and twin tip in the same sentence! Oops. There goes that! I always felt It took a solid 15 knots for any fun on a TT. Could make a go of the right small wave board in 13, but needed 14 to have fun. Those were bare minimums so most of the time spent working upwind until a couple knots more.

Foiling is awesome, There is none of that. Once its actually on, it's on. Upwind is not the hard part as long as you don't want to ride in sub 10kn. As Peter said, it might be a bit of a learning curve, but eventually 10 is the on switch regardless of your size, and eventually yes, it will be pretty easy.

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Re: Hydrofoiling in 10 knots - Is it that hard?

Postby bigtone667 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:39 pm

I refined my equipment as learned for light wind riding....

5 years ago...I started with 600cm2 wing, a fish style board, 23m lines, 19m kite. It worked okay. I did not often drop the kite, but I did not often foil either.

Moved to a 800cm2 wing, thinner board, 20m lines, 17m kite and struggled.

Moved to a 800cm2 wing, skim style board, 20m lines, 17m kite and improved because the board could plane.

Moved to a 1500 wing, skim style, 32m race lines, 17m strutless and I am over-powered in 10 knots.

These days I ride a 2000cm, little board, 32m race lines, 10m strutless in 10 knots.

The single item that made the biggest impact for me was 32m race lines.


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