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WindTech 287 (9'4") Prototype

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Created by CrimsonFlash > 9 months ago, 12 Nov 2019
CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
12 Nov 2019 6:15PM
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I've got to say upfront that I (and some other local Perth windsurfers) were a bit skeptical when we'd heard Neil Scheltema was thinking about making a 287 (9'4") long board. Most of the boards I've been using in recent years have been around 245 to 250cm max so I wasn't quite sure what to expect with something that was another 35+ cm longer than what I was used to. Let's just say that I was very pleasantly surprised when I took the proto 287 for a spin. Here's my take on it...

Dimensions: 287 x 61.5cm, Volume 130L

I'm a ~92kg sailor and the setup used was a 7.8 Loft Racing Blade and 34cm WindTech slalom fin. Had a couple of drag races across the channel near Pelican Point (Swan River, Perth) with some other sailors on current model Starboard iSonic and Carbon Art slalom boards and I was effortlessly keeping up on the 287. I found the board deceptively fast and with the long nose out front, it was eating the chop like it wasn't there. I felt like I was in cruise mode while the guys on the iSonic and Carbon Art boards were working hard to deal with the choppy river state (there were quite a few big sailboats around at the time that were kicking up some nasty chop out in the boat channel).

The volume distribution seems to work really well and the board has a really nice feel when out of back straps and going upwind. Plenty of meat in the rails allowed me to push really hard when heading up-wind and even with the small 34cm fin and a loaded 7.8 race sail it didn't feel like it was about to let go. Absolutely rockets upwind and like the Silver Bullets, I could achieve very deep angles off the wind and with total confidence and control. Anyone who has ridden one of the Silver Bullets will know what I mean about the levels of control and safeness that these boards offer.

I asked Neil why this board doesn't have the ATT fitted like the Silver Bullets and he said "Because of the narrower pintail and the boards forward footstrap and mast track positions including the lower rocker, it rides more on the hull/rail rather than off the tail like the Silverbullets. The ATT wouldn't be as effective and this isn't what this board is about anyway. Another factor is cost and we want to keep the price competitive on this model. The ATT is very expensive to put on the boards".

Gybing was best drawing longer curves rather than trying to snap it round like the shorter/wider boards. Also found the 287 easy to bear away on the swells - heaps of fun! Another cool feature is the recessed storage area just forward of the mast track. This will be good for storing flares, safety gear etc. when going offshore or during events.

In summary, the 287 proto was a pleasure to ride and ignores chop in all sailing angles where other modern wider boards would simply bounce out. Look forward to trying it in some nice ocean swells off Leighton beach or Cottesloe. Hopefully I won't have to wait too long for the production models to arrive! A big thumbs up from me and nice work Neil for yet another great design. I'm pretty sure the 287 is going to appeal to many old school sailors who remember the days of long boards and how much fun they were.

A couple of other local sailors had a bit of time on the 287 proto before it was finished off ready for production so guys if you're reading this thread, feel free to add your thoughts/feedback.

Cheers

azymuth
WA, 1334 posts
12 Nov 2019 8:12PM
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Select to expand quote
CrimsonFlash said..
A couple of other local sailors had a bit of time on the 287 proto before it was finished off ready for production so guys if you're reading this thread, feel free to add your thoughts/feedback.






Ok, I'll add mine.

Simple - the board rocks, it's insane fun

I hadn't been on a regular board for more than a year and it was just so easy to get the board to fly, I felt super relaxed in the first 10 secs.

I didn't ride longer boards back in the day but I totally get it - all that nose upfront is so confidence-inspiring, point downwind and fly over the biggest chop wishing for more wind.

It was a pretty gusty day when I had a go and that's where the board really shines, gliding through the lulls noticeably easier than shorter boards.
Cranks big carving gybes and looks awesome too - the proportions are spot-on.

I reckon Neil knows a thing or two about board design

RichardG
WA, 3408 posts
12 Nov 2019 10:07PM
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I have a Strapper 9'4" Tom Luedecke World Cup Slalom model by Michael De Sciascio which is at my brothers house in Sydney. I am going to get it to Perth. Similar length but I am sure Neil's model will be better with the Tuttle Box and modern advancements in design. That said the longer boards get up to speed travel, glide and fly over the ocean and chop.

LeeD
2672 posts
13 Nov 2019 5:53AM
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Yup, length is not bad.
Even in higher wind applications.
My old Naish 255's and JP 255's work as well but easier than my 227- 238 85 liter FSW's.

CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
13 Nov 2019 5:47PM
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Another pic of the 287 at Melville WA after doing some comparison testing against the Silver Bullet 64 & 72. Couldn't stop grinning!!
This was with 34cm Windtech fin and 7.8 Loft Racing Blade. Nice combo and worked a treat.



Imax1
QLD, 3324 posts
13 Nov 2019 8:06PM
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Is there any tuck on the rails or is it square most of the way ?
What is the profile on the bottom , concaves ?

olskool
QLD, 2116 posts
13 Nov 2019 8:21PM
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I heard rumours of this beastie a few months back. Lets see it on the water. Any video footage of it in action?

CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
14 Nov 2019 6:26AM
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Select to expand quote
Imax1 said..
Is there any tuck on the rails or is it square most of the way ?
What is the profile on the bottom , concaves ?


Plenty of tuck on the rails and makes for a very dry ride. No concaves!

CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
14 Nov 2019 6:30AM
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Select to expand quote
olskool said..
I heard rumours of this beastie a few months back. Lets see it on the water. Any video footage of it in action?


Unfortunately my gopro was out of action so haven't got any footage for you. Will have to wait until the production models come in. Sorry

LeeD
2672 posts
14 Nov 2019 7:14AM
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Lots of great 9'4" boards thru the years.
Seatrend 9'4"
Seatrend 9'5"..hit 44 mph at Ponds Speed Trials.
AHD 9'4"
Sputnik 285.
Mistral Energizer.
F2 Thommen 290.

choco
SA, 3638 posts
14 Nov 2019 10:30AM
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Slowboat has always been an advocate for longer boards

RichardG
WA, 3408 posts
14 Nov 2019 2:46PM
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Bombora Astrotoy is 285 cm
Bombora Xit is 282 cm
F2 Sputnik 285 (cm)
Bic Presto 280cm

All great boards in my collection. Then there was also the Bombora Astro Epoxy which was 295 cm.

Length is glide and keeps you tracking. Neil and Windtech understand board design and what most sailors really need everyday.

John340
QLD, 2263 posts
14 Nov 2019 5:33PM
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choco said..
Slowboat has always been an advocate for longer boards


His slalom boards are 249cm or 8'3" in the old money

Rob11
237 posts
14 Nov 2019 4:12PM
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Select to expand quote
CrimsonFlash said..
a 287 (9'4") long board
Dimensions: 287 x 61.5cm, Volume 130L


No matter how good, too long for transport, storage etc...
Also 5 footstrap positions, is this standard? Some brand only offer 2 even some just one.

Pacey
WA, 417 posts
14 Nov 2019 11:24PM
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Rob11 said..
No matter how good, too long for transport, storage etc...


Only if your board choices are determined by what fits in the back of a short wheel-base van.

LeeD
2672 posts
15 Nov 2019 3:03AM
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Seems a lot of foilers choose foiling based on the short length of the newer boards.
They chose not to remember the Berky Spoons or Naish Slaloms which were around 217cm lengths.
As we all surely know, it's most important to fit all our gear inside a sub compact mini car.

choco
SA, 3638 posts
17 Nov 2019 8:39AM
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Select to expand quote
John340 said..

choco said..
Slowboat has always been an advocate for longer boards



His slalom boards are 249cm or 8'3" in the old money


True but longer than the standard 228cm from the OEMs

Ian K
WA, 3676 posts
17 Nov 2019 1:02PM
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Select to expand quote
LeeD said..
Lots of great 9'4" boards thru the years.
Seatrend 9'4"
Seatrend 9'5"..hit 44 mph at Ponds Speed Trials.
AHD 9'4"
Sputnik 285.
Mistral Energizer.
F2 Thommen 290.


Bic techno 283

www.seabreeze.com.au/forums/Windsurfing/General/Bic-techno-283-love-help-me-understand-Go151?page=0

The beginning of the end was boom clamps. Windsurfers forgot how to tie knots. Maybe get a supper to show you how useful roof racks can be.

CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
10 Sep 2020 7:03PM
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Update on the 9'4" Cruise Missile from WindTech. Full carbon production models will be arriving end of September. Wahoo!

Al1
32 posts
12 Sep 2020 6:50AM
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My most used board the last 10 years is not my 94L JP freestyle wave, not my 87L Quatro Pyramid (I wish !), it is my Exocet Kona 9'5 (near 300cm long X 59cm wide, 120L) , long and narrow, with a freestyle-wave/Onshore-wave rocker, and the Exocet/Kona signature duck tail. Love it so much that I own several as spares (Exocet don't make them anymore).
It is fast, confortable like a Cadillac, it tracks, it glides , it has insane amounts of drive , it turns ( ! ), there is just no better wave board between 8 to 15 knots in soft waves up to shoulder high. I did buy the Starboard Blackbox who is its direct opposite shape wise, but has the same program. Sure it had the potential for waaaay more radical turns, but I sold it after 6 months, it was a dog in planning conditions and so vastly inferior for shlogging in sub planning wavesailing condition. The secret of my 9'5 is that all that floatation and length doesn't hinder performance, and it boost confidence in difficult condition for crossing the breaking walls in the inside where the wind is too light to plane. It takes away the stress factor, you don't get exhausted in the lulls waiting for waves, and I found after all these years it is crucial to have fun and make the best of your light wind wave sailing day. Did I mention that it was also plenty fast and confortable fully powered , like a good freeride board ?
Longboards rocks.

I think the main drawback of longboards is radical jumping, they are not made for that.

CrimsonFlash
WA, 67 posts
13 Sep 2020 1:26PM
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Hey AI1, Great summary of your experience on longer style boards. I think a lot of sailors that got into windsurfing during the short board "revolution" don't have appreciation for the longer style boards and what they have to offer. Some of your comments "It is fast, comfortable like a Cadillac, it tracks, it glides , it has insane amounts of drive , it turns" is very relatable to the the new 9'4" Windtech board, however not built for the waves like your Exocet Kona. Good to see there are still some long board enthusiasts around! Will post a few pics of the 9'4" cruise missile when I get my hands on one.

sboardcrazy
NSW, 7275 posts
15 Sep 2020 8:36AM
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I'm sailing the smaller WT64 which for my size is a big board..
I love the extra length. Compared to my 112ltre shorter slalom board it slogs comfortably without you having to worry about the nose submarining or going into the back of the next chop. You don't have to spend all your time watching the nose and can just relax and enjoy the ride.
More stable to uphaul.
I hadn't sailed my slalom board for a while and was surprised at how quickly it came off the plane in the lulls. I'd got used to the WT gliding through.



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"WindTech 287 (9'4") Prototype" started by CrimsonFlash