Sally and I will be going to Bonaire in the not too distant future, to windsurf with some friends. Amongst those friends will be Lily and Dana, Napeague shredettes whose wetsuits Sally has long admired. A couple years ago Sally told the Peconic Puffin "if I had the sleeveless shorty that Lily and Dana have, I would sail faster and with more control, and my jibes would improve." Thus began a two-year search for a particular Excel wetsuit in a particular size. Of course the thing was no longer made, but on the search went.
Yesterday Sally came home from work sporting a huge grin. It had been Found. Not only that, but when she tried it on, She Liked How She Looked. (She looked smokin, btw.)
It was a Great Day.
Now I'm wondering what will happen in Bonaire. I'm hoping Dana and Lily will be wearing their Excels and they all sail happily together. I wouldn't mind if they've got newer harnesses (Sally could use a new one, but when I've proposed this there's been no interest; apparently harnesses don't rate as an accessory.) What would be a disaster is if D&L are wearing identical NEW wetsuits, wetsuits that my darling wife liked better than her brand new one. That would be a frickin' nightmare.
I myself will be sporting a lycra that I bought in the '90s.
Windsurfing swap meet. Kiteboarding swap meet (if you must). Stand up paddling swap meet. Swap swap swap. This Saturday September 15th at Hampton Watersports. Now that the wind is back (thank you!) you need more gear! Sell your existing stuff and find something better! Find beginner gear for your friend (or yourself). Find expert gear with just a few scratches for a fraction of the cost new. Find something, and clear out your garage to make room (for more windsurfing gear.) Things to know:
-If you're selling, best to drop off your stuff this week, or bring it Saturday morning early (the swap starts at 9A.)
-If your gear sells, you get 100% store credit or 80% cash. I myself have never understood the people who take cash...if you don't find something you want that day (used or new) you're going to need something sometime. We're windsurfers, and s*** breaks!
-If you're looking for good carbon (masts and booms) arrive early. That stuff gets scarfed up quick.
-SUP boards and beginner windsurfing gear...the same is true.
-Store employees and volunteers (like yours truly) will help you sort through everything there to find the equipment that best fits your needs and budget.
-There are usually some closeout sales on new gear in the store.
-If you are a newbie (or a new gear only freak) FYI: Swap meets are fun!
Hope to see you there (early...then I hope to sail or SUP with you in the afternoon.)
Break your outhaul, and you can retie it in a minute.
Break your downhaul, it will take several minutes of fuss but you'll be able to sail back to shore.
Break your inhaul, whaddayagonnadu? Unhook your uphaul and lash the boom to the mast? I don't want to have to try it.
Futzing with the gear in my van one recent windless day I spotted the nick in my inhaul. Closer examination revealed that it was not minor. So out with the heat gun and a brand spanking new downhaul line and I'm back in business. If only there was some wind.
When was the last time you checked your inhaul? I check mine regularly, and have no idea when the line was damaged. Check yours!
You’re out on the water and a line breaks. Inhaul, outhaul, downhaul, uphaul, harness line…something you need snaps. You’ll be happier if you’re carrying a piece or two of downhaul line to put yourself back together. In twenty years of windsurfing this has only happened to me once (I’m fanatical about checking and replacing worn line) but the time it did I was two miles from the launch and my harness line tore off. Yes I could have flipped the boom (that’s fun to do in deep water) but instead I pulled out a piece of line, tied it on, and had an improvised harness line that worked just fine to get me back home.
When I bought a new harness recently I didn’t make a point of stashing emergency line on it (I usually have two downhauls taped behind the bar). But after Christian’s adventure at sea a few months ago I made a point of correcting that situation (as did Christian). He and I opt for behind the bar storage, but you can also stash line in the back pocket of your harness if you have one (I don’t want to take my harness off if I don’t have to) or put a piece in the luff sleeve pocket of every one of your sails (requires sails with pockets, and line in each sail).
Do this. And while you’re at it, replace all your downhaul lines for cold weather sailing (now is not the season you want to use your emergency lines). Cut off the worn portion of your downhauls and make them your new outhauls. Check boom inhauls (how often do you do that?) For super stud status, replace your lines with Formuline if you haven’t already, and glory in easier downhauling and longer line life.
(Looks a little silly, works great. My purple tape and Christian's blue line both call more attention to the set up than perhaps is necessary. I'm going to switch to electrical tape in the name of fashion! Note the orange bit on my rig...that's a safety whistle...less than $5 at Amazon. Photo by Jeff.)
It's that time. The wind is returning (fingers crossed) as are the waves. If you need new gear it's time to clear out your old. If you need newer gear it's time to pick up somebody else's stuff. Windsurfing, stand up paddling, Vaderboarding, what have you...it's all happening Saturday September 17th at Hampton Watersports.
Even if you don't need anything or have anything to sell, it's still good fun to see your sailing friends in street clothes and chat about fall plans. Long Island rocks in the Fall...do you have the gear? (wanna sell me a sweet quad wave board, 85ish liters?)
In the 1990's the Peconic Puffin was a three page weekly newsletter, published May-October, which recounted the windsurfing exploits of a crew of windsurfers and their friends ("the Puffins"). One feature in the newsletter was "Puffin Poetry," essentially the quote of the week. I just saw this in the Yahoo Long Island Windsurfing Group bulletin board, and the Puffin Poetry bell rang at Peconic Puffin World Headquarters:
"Over the winter I bought two 3.3's (both great deals so I had to...)"
-Chris (who has neither masts nor booms to rig the 3.3's)
Windsurfing, kiteboarding, stand up paddling...it'll all be getting swapped Saturday at Hampton Watersports, 9pm - 4pm. Buy, sell, shmooze! This is what the store's website says:
Buy or sell used Standup paddleboarding, Surfing, Kiteboarding and Windsurfing gear.
Buying: Closeouts available, specials on closeout '10 equipment, and loads of used gear to choose from.
Selling: Please drop your used gear by the shop from May 7 to May 14 (swap day) before 9am.
Rain or shine, windy or not, swap will run. See you then.
Here's a Peconic Puffin tip: Park in the parking lot of the Japanese restaurant immediately to the east of the store (if you're bringing or buying gear you'll have an easier walk to your vehicle and an easier re-entry to Rt. 39)
Ely of the Yahoo Long Island Windsurfers Forum recently posted the following loop video (who he credits to his friend Darryl in Maui). Describing itself as a Loop DVD trailer, it's a loose, fun collection of loops and loop drills...plus all of two and a half seconds of a loop simulator (go to 2:34 if you're in a rush.) Perhaps they're saving a full explanation of the simulator for the DVD. In any event I'm intrigued. I was going to type "I'll try anything" but as anyone who has tried forward loops knows, the trying is trying. Scarifying and whatnot. So I can use any and all steps to get me closer. I must try to figure out how to rig this up:
I’ve been hearing about them for years, but it looks like this year you can actually buy a hydrofoil windsurfer. AHD is introducing the AFS 1. Check out the massive vent in the nose! And the Xtra-cool looking foil!
It seems to me that the big thrill must be in straight line reaching. Most articles and speculation I’ve read suggest that the hydrofoil means greatly reduced wetted surface, and therefore the potential for more speed. But I look at that foil, and there’s a whole lot of surface to it that is underwater. And a conventional board, when ridden back on the fin, doesn’t have much surface in the water at all.
I think the benefit is the smoothing out of bumps. The surface “carrying” the rider is no longer the hull bottom (which slaps into every irregularity on the water’s surface) but instead is cruising below the water like a submarine, where presumably le disturbances are far less. Smooth sailing (unless you broadside a bluefish.)
Check out the video (particularly if you speak French.)
After starting a discussion about the turbo tunnel fin in the Aussie windsurfing forum Seabreeze some people posted shots of these fins. The tubed windsurfing fins and split fins are taken from finmaker Deboichet's website. I don't know the provenance of the unusual wooden surfboard setup. Meanwhile discussions about the turbo fin seem to conclude that the fin is good on longboards for noseriding, but creates way too much drag for windsurfing. So I'm thinking "what about putting one on a windsurfing board and sailing it fin first?" Bizzarro freestyle possibilities?
This skeg was spotted by Jeff out at Montauk a few days ago. It’s called the Turbo Tunnel Fin,
and there are surfers who say the thing does many wonderful things…helps
maintain speed through turns, improves nose riding, provides lots of drive and
of course I’m wondering what this design would do for a windsurfer.
And if I should plug one into my SUP
board (not that I’m remotely good enough to be able to evaluate SUP fin
when I started windsurfing there used to be some experimental or otherwise
unusual fins advertised in the back of windsurfing magazine. I remember a fin with small holes
running through the fin (to “channel water to prevent cavitation,”) a asymmetrical
fin that would change shape depending on the reach it was on, an aluminum fin
and so on. But this is the
freakiest thing I’ve seen since the football fin, but unlike the football fin,
it seems to have some fans.
(Top photo by Peconic Jeff. Bottom photo from the Turbo Tunnel web site.