Sunday, July 26, 2009

Kiteboarding- Home Made Ply Board

1/2" Baltic birch plywood, mahogany handle, 152 x 44

I put the finishing touches on my new board this week. I was excited and anxious to try it out. It looks like a real kite board but I had no idea if it would work. I kept thinking about all the things that could go wrong- the board shape and weight could make it unable to plane, the home made fins could spin out constantly, the brass footstrap inserts could rip out, the wooden handle might break and cut my hand, the board might snap in two right down the middle, it might sink, or worst of all I might get separated from it on my first run and never see it again.

None of these things happened. I was amazed. It didn't feel as grippy and easy as Frank's door 64, but it worked. Nothing broke off of it. In fact I got my best rides yet, going far enough to feel like I was sorta kiting for the first time. That felt great!

The maple fins seemed to work, I think

Kiteboarding, what worries me a little- What if the wind changes suddenly? I know I can swim it in if the wind dies, as long as I'm close enough to shore, but I still don't know what it feels like to be overpowered when kiting. Can I get back to shore safely if the wind jumps to 25 or 30 MPH in 60 seconds?

Signs of progress- I could really shoot upwind bodydragging with the board! This technique is a confidence builder. I did some deep water relaunches with the board. I had thought that these were going to be impossible but Des had told me to do them with the board on my feet. It works. It even makes it easier to get the kite out of the water because you can use the resistance of the board to pull against the kite. I think I've graduated from kite practise to sorta kiteboarding. Next, I need to learn to go upwind.

Waquiot Bay, Kiteboarded, S, SSW, 10-18, 12M kite/ 152 ply board, Frank, Sammy, Ed, others.


Jean said...

Does this board have any rocker?

scooper said...

Jean- It has a tiny bit of rocker. It's mostly flat.

Snowy Guy said...

Your board looks better than some of the homemade ones I've seen at WB. The Jr. Olsen did rather well with his when he was starting.

Scott said...

My kiteboarding is definitely on hold while I'm on Maui. It's been very windy (4.2 all week, probably 3.7 today); the gusts have been huge (typical day is 28 average, but ranging from 16 to 38); the chop has been out of control. Trying to kite with a teeny, fast kite on a tiny little board in these conditions seems like a recipe for failure.

It's nice that you're having success!!

scooper said...

Scott- I don't blame you for not kiting in Maui. After all, you're in the best windsurfing conditions in the world! I doesn't make sense to waste it working on a new sport. You aren't missing much here.

Cabrinha Convert IDS said...

Your board looks so cool, I loved it, it's got to be one of the best home made board I have ever seen!


MDF Board said...

i have seen you share awesome pic.

MDF Board | Veneered MDF