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Board weight vs performance

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Created by benjl 2 months ago, 27 Dec 2018
benjl
203 posts
27 Dec 2018 7:13AM
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Hey guys

I'm intrigued.. how much board performance is gained once you're under that 8kg mark? Ie is a 7kg board really noticeable on the wave vs an 8kg board? Or at that kind of weight, is the biggest performance gains from shape, rails etc? Can you really feel that difference in weight on the wave?

i had never previously ridden a board lighter than about 8.5kg until my new sunova flash 8'0 at about 7.9kg. It's a lot lower in volume, length and width, so, many factors here but the performance difference is insane.

Kind of curious after chatting to a dude at the beach the other day who's carbon board made my flash feel heavy and my normal board like a lead balloon.

Eski
WA, 42 posts
27 Dec 2018 12:42PM
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G'Day Benjl
Good question and i don't have the experience or answer. However, I was faced with that dilemma yesterday full carbon or carbon rail/wood. I picked up both boards and there wasn't a heap in it, so i kept the almost $400 difference.
Given that there is often chop / wind down my way a little extra weight isn't a terrible obstacle from my experience.

I would imagine if you get ideal conditions regularly it may be worth the extra coin...

Love the one your with

Cheers
Eski

hilly
WA, 4510 posts
27 Dec 2018 2:32PM
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For clean good shape waves, up to head and a half, weight makes a huge difference. I have a super light 8 5 (sub 7kg) that is brilliant in those conditions. Big waves and windy conditions light weight can be a hindrance. So living in WA the 8 5 does not come out much

colas
3011 posts
27 Dec 2018 4:17PM
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A light board is very important for taking off in small weak waves with a good technique (i.e not paddling with parallel feet), and to whip the board around fast, and performing aerials.

But it will also amplify any mistake, and need to be more steadily driven in turns by your legs, otherwise they will stop mid-turn (and on chop) if you do not actively pilot them.

This means that... 99% of SUP riders do not actually need a light board. Most people will benefit from a lighter front section to help in turns but the overall board weight will only be important for very good riders. Technique is much more important, as the "response" of the board. For instance boards with the weight more in the skin than in the core will feel more responsive for normal riders, such as full PVC sandwich boards, even if they are a bit heavier than thin skin boards. In your example, going from 8.5kg to 7.9kg should not give you a lot of benefits, the difference in performance is in the shape.

This said, a light board is so pleasant to handle and carry that it will have a placebo effect and you will imagine that it performs better on the water, and this can boost your confidence and makes you SUP better. Plus as your "dude at the beach" you can brag about how your board is lighter :-)

micksmith
VIC, 1275 posts
27 Dec 2018 9:33PM
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Give me lighter boards anytime for a multitude of reasons

moogengronko
34 posts
27 Dec 2018 7:15PM
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I have a 400m walk to the beach. Any day give me a heavy-as submarine board
and a **** handle
Or no handle even better
So that I can carry it with my lower lip as I sneer

Seriously
I think that I disagree with above comments: a heavy board 'plows' through chop way better provided a little momentum is underway-either due to paddling or surfing
light boards are fantastic when it's clean and smooth and not strong offshore

moogengronko
34 posts
27 Dec 2018 7:27PM
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Or perhaps I have misread above comments because it's holiday time andI've had three hours plus out there for each of the last three days
In boardies and rashy and hat

STC (legend) should come over here this time of year

Slab
898 posts
28 Dec 2018 12:55AM
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Light boards in good conditions...heavier board better for choppy windy days imho...my heavy board has superb momentum and feels very smooth.

Once you've used a heavy board for a few months non stop and get on a lighter one you do get a big smile.

Lighter board soooooo much nicer to carry.


supthecreek
1682 posts
28 Dec 2018 4:33AM
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Select to expand quote
moogengronko said..

STC (legend) should come over here this time of year


ha ha... thanks mgk, I'd love to come hang with all you Breezoids for sure!

However, on New Years Eve, I fly to Portugal for the winter.
Lots of surf and not too crowded this time of year.

I know light boards are easier to carry through airports

Kami
1314 posts
28 Dec 2018 5:13AM
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Select to expand quote
micksmith said..
Give me lighter boards anytime for a multitude of reasons


Love that kind of short explanation.

micksmith
VIC, 1275 posts
28 Dec 2018 8:49AM
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Select to expand quote
Kami said..

micksmith said..
Give me lighter boards anytime for a multitude of reasons



Love that kind of short explanation.


Haha, if I gave all the reasons I'd take up the whole page and besides I hate typing lol

cbigsup
313 posts
28 Dec 2018 10:32AM
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I firmly believe lighter is better.

But, I had an interesting experience a few years back with Angulo Surfa 8'8" boards.
Bought the carbon, rode it in some DOH hurricane swells, and in hard offshores didn't get to the bottom of the wave.

Had a problem with it, Josh A. had no more carbons and I snagged an AST and some cash. AST was much heavier, but much to my surprise and amazement, in similar waves with howling offshores, had no issues not making the drop.

I am a lightweight at 65 kegs, and not the strongest paddler in the world, but did have this real world experience which changed my thoughts somewhat.

Bighugg
NT, 157 posts
28 Dec 2018 10:42PM
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cbigsup , had a similar experience with a pair of 9'5 Starby WP, my old epoxy and a mate on his latest carbon. Similar weights, he's bit shorter. Big southern storm swell. The heavy board would make the drops n run like the clappers. The carbon was getting blown back off or on the few runs we did get it was scary skittish for both of us. Heavy custom to order ??
Do love lighter boards for small stuff n the Mrs has come on leaps and bounds on her new XXX Sunova.

benjl
203 posts
29 Dec 2018 11:57AM
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Interesting, I find it insane that a kg here or there in board can make all the difference in strong off shores when a riders weight is substantially more and can fluctuate several kegs in a day? Haha. Or is there some kind of exponential formular like board weight = X equivalent of body weight

colas
3011 posts
29 Dec 2018 3:17PM
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Select to expand quote
benjl said..
Interesting, I find it insane that a kg here or there in board can make all the difference in strong off shores when a riders weight is substantially more and can fluctuate several kegs in a day? Haha.


It depends on your technique. A very, very good rider will keep always his weight pushing on / driving the board, so he wont get the drawback of a light board. Normal riders will sometime have the board get a tad loose from them, and a light board will suddenly be toyed by the chop & wind instead of having the inertia to smooth its trajectory.

micksmith
VIC, 1275 posts
29 Dec 2018 7:45PM
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Select to expand quote
benjl said..
Interesting, I find it insane that a kg here or there in board can make all the difference in strong off shores when a riders weight is substantially more and can fluctuate several kegs in a day? Haha. Or is there some kind of exponential formular like board weight = X equivalent of body weight


By George I think you've got it, weight of the board may only be relevant if proportionately larger in all aspects. Weight, width, length, volume to the rider. I've done a quick calculation and come up with x= < 7kg board @<90kg rider weight, in other words lighter works best for me

hilly
WA, 4510 posts
29 Dec 2018 5:41PM
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Tow in boards have lead weights added to them so they stay in the water on big waves at high speed.



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"Board weight vs performance" started by benjl