F-one IC6 V2
Ok so I recently got my hands on the latest entry level foil from F-one and was keen to find out why this foil has been selling like hot cakes in Europe. The Ozzie foil market is just starting to pick up and we can now see that all the main stream brands have at least one foil in their range. For newbie foilers, it can be a bit daunting to choose their first foil.
When I started foiling about 4 years ago, we only had access to high end expensive carbon fibre foils which were a lot more difficult to learn on. These days, you can pick up an entry level alloy foil for a 1/3 of what we used to pay for the carbon foils a few years back.
The Fone IC6 cost $1250 which I think makes it the most accessible quality foil out there.
Upon unpacking, it clearly stands out from the rest of the competition (probably on par with the latest Axis though...). The finish and machining is outstanding. All the fittings supplied are Torx (which should be a standard but apparently most are focused on cutting cost and would rather save a few cents rather than make their product more durable).
The Plate has a rubber pad which will protect the board and also allow for tighter fit when mounted on the board.
The fuselage has a very nice and smooth profile with a built in "heel" that connects onto the mast for a stiffer connection.
The front wing connection is via a conical insert (alloy) that connects onto the mast. F-one advertise it as being the stiffest connection on the market. Worth noting than last year they had troubles with the same connection which used to be a carbon fibre piece. I've seen a few snapping last year so I was pretty please to see the alloy insert this year.
The locking of the wing is done through a rod that you insert from the middle front of your wing and screw into the fuselage. Nice and easy fit, quicker than the traditional 3 or 4 screws.
On this entry level foil, the front wing and the stabiliser are made of injected carbon which at first glance looks like plastic. The front wing seems solid while the stab feels a bit flimsy with a fair amount of flex around the winglets. I checked online and a replacement cost only $49. Not that I think it will break but if it does, it is so cheap I wouldn't bother trying to fix it....
Time to take it on the water, I bolt it on my strapless and off I go .I get up on the first stroke and start riding away. I feels incredibly stable, a bit like the foil is on autopilot. It doesn't want to breach, it just cruises (at about 15-20 kn). I am heading for my first tack, I get into the turn, the foil carves nice and wide and I get out of my turn without touching down on my first attempt. Heading for a 360, same thing, nice and steady and exiting easily with a loop. Now going into the gybe, this is something I like to do sharp and at speed. It went halfway through the turn nice steady and wide when I got thrown off the board by the pull of my kite. The design of this foil just didn't let me go sharp as I usually do on my other foil.
I try again with less input on my kite and get out the gybe very easily. Heading into a toe side 360, and exiting very easily without touching down.
Now to try the rodeo (sitting on the board on the fly), again super easy... The foil feels like it is on a rail.
I had good fun trying this foil and was amazed by how easy it is to ride it. I wish I had access to this foil when I was learning a few years ago. Now that I have moved onto wave riding, I prefer a more reactive foil.
I feel on my current foil that I have instant direct control on Pitch, Yaw and Roll which I couldn't get on the IC6.
If I was a beginner or if I wanted to just cruise and nail all the cool turns, it will be definitely my foil of choice.