I am about 5ft 10 inches tall & weigh about 80kgs plus/minus 3kgs.
I have been using my 2014 Wood JP Widebody 8'2" SUP for about 6 months since coming from my first learner SUP an Atlantis Vex Profusion bamboo model at 9'6" which was in my opinion a great strong board that served me well & at its heavy weight was surprisingly easy to turn. Thanks to the Surfboard Warehouse. Oh, & a good low price too!
My first jump onto the JP felt no different. Stable as!! The JP being 32" wide at 124 litres. The Vex at 30" wide at about 148 litres.
In the surf & most times it is not glassy & can have some chop & side waves from a breakwall & a steep shoreline causing back swell , I found the front/nose rocker to be low entry. Too low for my liking but mainly on take off. Why?!!
Because it nosed dived quite easily at the top of the wave which would then cause me to lean backwards to get the nose back up, then I would have to lean forward again to avoid slipping backwards! Then I would have to get to my surfing side stance which would waste my valuable focus time on what lay or broke ahead, Lol!!!
But once going this board was absolutely great fun & surprisingly fast enough & easy to turn once I got my back foot near the back pad. Although it did help even more to move my back foot to the right rail for a sharper right turn, then to the left rail for the left turn because of the wider tail, but! wasn't always necessary with the back foot far enough back.
One more negative because of the wider nose & flat entry rocker I found at times when riding a wave face, I would for no apparent reason, flip the board sideways. I believe this was caused by the front down side rail digging in.
My surfing rectifications for this board:-
Get into surfing side stance & have a few strokes of the paddle before the wave gets to you. My habit is to have the face forward stance, but the balance sweet spot keeps the nose down.
Move the back foot to right rail for right turn, left rail for left turn.
Get my stance to the rear of the board to get the most of its ultimate performance! Which isn't hard for this short SUP.
My opinion of this board:-
Love it! It's a fun board. Gets out easy enough through the wash. Easy to manouver in windy conditions. Longer boards seem to have their noses blown around. It's still light for a wood board & easy to transport & carry a good walking distance. Nice colours too. But the finish is below par. Some of the surface paintwork/sticker can peel. Mine is very, very minor on the underneath at this stage where the surface clear gloss has peeled in a section under the side rail but only about a 3 millimetre square bit. Nothing to worry about. Some pits on the deck paintwork on manufacture too which may be not apparent on other boards, So inspect before purchase! Seems to be tough/strong enough.
The performance of this board is still great & turns very easy, It paddles well enough to get some speed up on flat water as well as catching waves. Will never bog down when standing weight forward over fat or flat sections of waves & will maintain its speed.
Happy for the purchase. But would be happier on a better finish.
I have the 8 8 which suits my weight bang on....fun boards, good shape and two thumbs up from me too.
"Get into surfing side stance & have a few strokes of the paddle before the wave gets to you"
This is valid for all boards shorter than 8'5"
Try a 7'2" or 6'8" then you will be paddling always in surf stance.
I would advise more a "staggered stance". True surfing stance allow for less power and control of the paddle in the takeoff phase.
See my photo in the thread: www.seabreeze.com.au/forums/Stand-Up-Paddle/SUP/a-bit-of-advice-short-boards/
Ive had the 8'2 wide body for around 10 months and can relate to board tracking issues when paddling early on, im fine now though as i have sorted out my paddling stroke. I find a J shaped stroke is the way to go, i rarely change sides now maybe every 8-10 strokes...i love the board btw
PS:I rekon Colas is spot on too with that paddling in technique, my paddle is head high and i find my self crouching too when i put the power on, helps with balance too...
Sounds great! A new paddle style that will probably do the trick. I never new of that. Thanks Colas & Loz79