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Thread: Traction Pad

  1. #11
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    TRACTION pad.... no more wax..... bump for more kick....

  2. #12
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    when i am wearing 7mm booties i cant feel my trac pad at all, with no booties on i think it makes a difference

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MDSurfer View Post
    but please tell me what the point behind "track pads" is? Is it to prevent heel dents in the deck, improve traction, add weight, give you more leverage for air, or just to sell you another piece of equipment?
    Well, all of those reasons, but also on really short boards 5'6''-5'10'', they keep my foot from slipping off the back of the board on steep drops... also, i just like being able to feel where my foot is on the back. It's sortof confidence inspiring for a turn when you can feel that your back foot is in just the right spot.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MDSurfer View Post
    but please tell me what the point behind "track pads" is? Is it to prevent heel dents in the deck, improve traction, add weight, give you more leverage for air, or just to sell you another piece of equipment?

    It is really only effective on certain boards. I have a fish hybrid that was shaped to turn likea shortboard, so I traction that too. But my mini guns, and LBs do not have them...

    all of the above that you said are why they are a great surfing tool. With 3 mil booties on, when its super hard to find your sweet spot with your back foot, it provides the perfect bump to line your foot up on. When I am barefoot, it is the exact spot that I slide my foot to everytime I stand, I slowly push back until I lock into the bump and get the exact pivot and pressure point that im looking for. Most importantly, it prevents you from keeping you feet too far forward. When barrel riding, its not needed, but 90% of the time, it provides a HUGE amount of added torque to your turns based on proper positioning. and the most important thing to me is that when you turn your tail backwards, or lead with your fins out of a turn, or when landing an air, it is literally the only way my feet dont slide right off the back. You have to use every bit of pressure to your advantage, so anything that will promote keeping any part of my foot on the top of the board, I will take it. Even if it only holds your toes on the boards, it catches something and allows u to continue weight transfer.

    Its not that any of these thing cannot be achieved without them, they certainly can, but why not use these little items to your advantage. The tail pad is on the progression level that the fins once were. Wax once was. The leash once was. And wetsuits once were. Its like, you COULD surf without all of the above, but why not combine every bit of technology that we have to increase your success rate on performance and completion of maneuvers?

    My question to you, is why not?

  5. #15
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    So, if they're so integral to the sport

    . . . why are not board manufacturers not making them standard equipment, or even building boards with some sort of raised kick pad? Would not SlipChek® work as well and be less bulky? And how can the shop salesperson know exactly where your "sweet spot" is if the board has never been in the water before you attach the trak pad? It would seem as if you're at the mercy of whoever happens to be attaching the pad because you dare not wax the board and then try to attach the pad.

    Certainly you can find cost effective pads from Whiskey M or some such, but it would seem that they are more a "coolness" factor than a real high tech necessity. Please sell me more so I too can become a believer. Anyone ever surf a short board without one?

    If we're looking for technological advances, how about Dentin like shark skin that reduces drag dramatically?
    http://www.sharkskincoating.com/newse.asp?newsid=239
    <<
    The streamlined shape of the scales decreases the friction of the water flowing along the shark's body by channeling it through grooves.The grooves are so closely spaced, they prevent eddies from coming into
    contact with the surface of the shark's moving body. This reduces the amount of "drag" as the
    shark swims, enabling the creature to glide farther on a given amount of energy.
    Scientists have found that the ridges created by shark scales can reduce drag in the water by
    as much as 8 percent. Golf balls and many military aircraft and vessels employ similar drag-reducing principles
    .>>

    They're already using this technology in "Speed Suits" for swimming, and I realize that such a coating would be counter productive to executing 360's and such, but for down-the-line speed and carving, it would be a real hoot. Just don't drag your hand across the bottom in a reverse direction.
    Last edited by MDSurfer; Feb 20, 2011 at 12:47 PM. Reason: Added Link

  6. #16
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    I'll admit, I was slow to catch on to the idea at first. I surfed for years without one, even though they were getting popular. People would even give me the, "You're not still using WAX are you?" speech. Then, as surfing started really progressing, and boards got chippy-er, and turns got tighter, and airs and tailslides started becoming "modern surfing," the advantage became clear. You needed something back there to push the tail around with and something to help you recover when you lost your back foot. Something with texture... with contour... that could give you more grip and more leverage. For me, unexpectedly, it also helped keep my back foot from getting blown off the board by the whitewater when cutting it close around a section.

    Bottom line is, if you don't surf like that, maybe you just don't need it. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.

    In terms of where they get put on a board, it all comes down to trial and error, and personal preference. I use the fins to determine where to put the pad. For me, I like the bump to be over the trailing fin, and the front edge of the pad to be lined up with the leading edge of the rail fins. Some guys like it further back than that, but that's where I like it.
    Last edited by LBCrew; Feb 20, 2011 at 01:27 PM.

  7. #17
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    [QUOTE=MDSurfer;89338 Anyone ever surf a short board without one?
    [/QUOTE]

    I don't use them on my shortboards. Well I have 1 used board that I bought and it has one...but as far as sweet spots go, its not in mine!! I think it is mostly psychological and all the pro's have them. Unless you are doing airs I don't see the point.

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by MDSurfer View Post
    . . . why are not board manufacturers not making them standard equipment, or even building boards with some sort of raised kick pad? Would not SlipChek® work as well and be less bulky? And how can the shop salesperson know exactly where your "sweet spot" is if the board has never been in the water before you attach the trak pad? It would seem as if you're at the mercy of whoever happens to be attaching the pad because you dare not wax the board and then try to attach the pad.
    I would never trust the shop to stick the pad wherever they wanted. I always put it on myself... when i started using them 10 years ago, i would actually test the board out for a little while without the pad to figure out its sweet spot and then put a pad on after a few surfs. Now i have it pretty dialed to where i can just stick one where i like it.

    Like someone else said above, there are alot of boards where i find them completely useless.. Probably about 1/2 my boards have them.

    As for standard equipment, there are so many different kinds of pads... i use the same exact one on all my boards, and would be pretty mad if i was stuck with one choice from the factory.

    It is also just one more thing to market to us... but that being said, almost every board i've ever bought at my local shop had a track pad thrown into the deal.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by MDSurfer View Post
    .

    Certainly you can find cost effective pads from Whiskey M or some such, but it would seem that they are more a "coolness" factor than a real high tech necessity. Please sell me more so I too can become a believer. Anyone ever surf a short board without one?


    I have surfed without one. Not in about 10 years though...

    But they are certainly (to me) not a "cool factor". I used to HATE putting them on boards. I think even shortboards look beautiful without them. I dont think that trac pads really look cool, or Aesthetically pleaseing at all.... I seriously only use them for function. Plain and simple...

    And as far as who puts the pad on, I have only put them on myself. I bought a few used boards back when, and they were already on the boards, positioned perfectly..

    As far as the sweet spot on a potato chip shortboard, the backfoot sweet spot is always the same... Directly over the three fins boxes, centered... So I really dont think a sweet spot varies from shortboard to shortboard at all... There ARE sweet spots for your front foot that very based on rocker and size, but we are not talking about front foot tract pads... Those were pointless, cause your front foot needs to be positioned a little differently on every turn... Forwards in the barrel, back on hard bottom turn etc... You must move you front foot to be a progressive shortboarder.... The back foot is not the case. It locks in, centered above the fins on every turn. Every tail move. Everything except for a barrel ride requires the same back foot placement... for me anyway....

    And one added reasone why I used the Trac Pad... Especially with FCS fin boxes... It Protects your boards.... 7-8 years ago, when I was basically attempting airs on every wave or section I could find, because I was just obsessed with it, I had trac pads on my shortbaords..... And the boards that I rode, that had the FCS fin boxes exposed (meaning they are not positioned directly under the edges of the pad)... I would stomp through the fin boxes on all my landing. The amount of body weight tranfsered through my back foot on an air of big turn, just put so much pressure on the "sweet spot" that the top of the board just cracks right around your fin boxes... The also happens with Red X boxes, as well as Future boxes...

    But that is anoth HUGE point for me to use them... I make sure that why I put the pad on, that I seperate the peices a little bit, so at least 50%+ of each fin box is covered with the pad.... It has added tons of life to all my boards... Cause anyone who has problems stomping through fin boxes like me knows that once you crack that FCS box, your board is toast. You can repair that all you want, but the pressure will jsut shake it loose again...

    I mean, I could go on all day about why trac pads are awesome... I dont think they are "cool" at all though. I never really looked at it like that....

    For beginners, longboards, single fin guys or retro board riders, there is no point to having one, because the style and technique of those boards does not require such radical weight shifts and body transfer that modern shortboards require...

    So, if you are a modern shortboard, and you can do more than surf straight and pump down the line, a traction pad an absolute help to pretty much every turn you do one way or the other...

    That my opinion anyway... I love plain, crispy boards with nothing on them, but the trac pad is just too damn functional....

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by dudeman View Post
    I don't use them on my shortboards. Well I have 1 used board that I bought and it has one...but as far as sweet spots go, its not in mine!! I think it is mostly psychological and all the pro's have them. Unless you are doing airs I don't see the point.
    Refer to my other post about the sweet spot. Every shortboard has the same backfoot sweet spot. Its the same on every high performance potato chip i have ever owned. Its the central point in the middle of all three of your fins... Its the same on every board. Regardless of shaper, material, anything....

    And to your other point... I would say: People don't use traction pads because the Pros do....

    But, if Every Single pro on tour uses one, dont you think that is a sign????? If they didnt work, they wouldnt use them. I mean, you can't even tell what company makes pros tail pads. YOu can never see the brand name in any photo or video. So, traction pads are not used like sponsor stickers....

    People always say: Pros could rip on a Quad fin on WCT events.... My answer: Well, then why does every pro, at every event at any wave all use high performance thurster setups?

    The answer is: Thursters perform better obviously....

    Every pro has a traction pad: Thats because its helps catch their feet during body rotations! If they had no use, they would not use them... They all use them, so I think that says it all.....