So, a few years back when firewire boards started being mass produced, I took out a buddy of mine's. It was a 6'1x18.75 with a little swallow tail on it. The board was pretty fun. Easy to paddle etc... But I didn't like the way the thing turned. It was lighter, so I felt like when I would do sharp bottom turns in the flat, I would look speed, or the board would kind of skid around if you apply too much pressure. Not to mention that I felt like I lost some speed. I tried a few aerials thinking that the light board would make it easier, but it really did the opposite. I felt like my heavier, traditional foam/glass shortboard get more momentum going and launches me higher...
So anyway, after that My shaper made me a couple of EPS epoxy boards, that acted pretty similar to my other shorties, but I still didn't quite like it. It took me a couple of weeks to really dial in the new materials. Once I got it down, it got really fun. Quick, little airs all the time, and you can really whip them around, but again, I would take the board out on a meaty day on the reefs of sunset cliffs, and when you get a nice overhead face, you drive into a turn, dig your trailing hand in, and the board would just crap out....
So again, my second epoxy experience was not perfect either...
But, here is my issue. IF I BREAK ONE MORE FU**ING BOARD THAT IS DAMN NEAR BRAND NEW, IM GONNA SNAP!!!!!
I pulled into a barely head high barrel yesterday, got closed out on, the board end up cracked on the rail. I feel like whenever it's really good out, I go to do an air, and I stomp through the glass on my stringer. Or if I pull into a closeout barrel and the lip hits it, game over.... I mean, some days, I will have a session where there are no closeout barrels, nothing at all, yet Im loading my board up and there are dings all over it...
I used to get a few free boards here and there from some of the shops here. Im 29 now and the free boarsd stopped coming =(
So, now that I am buying $500 boards like they are going out of style... Whats the deal with the firewires????
I read an interview with Taj Burrow and he swears that they have figured out all the initiall issues that they had and he actually rides them on tour sometimes.... I always look at it like, if the guys on the tour don't use the technology, its no good then...
So whats everyone's opinion? Do we just continue to go through boards like toilet paper, or is there a more viable high performance option?
I know that to the average surfer, they probably won notice too many differences in the materials, but for those of us who can feel the subtle differences in fins, tails and every aspect of the boards we ride, what is the answer?
man i cant speak on the fire wires but i just bought a rusty tuflite from a guy on this site it was my first epoxy and i love epoxy boards they float a hundred times better so so light and skateboard feeling , the only complaint i have is that it floats to well sometimes when your trying to cut back or lay-back you cant dig the rail in the face of the wave like you can on a traditional board so it slides out and , that could just be me and not getting my weight over the board but i plan on sticking with epoxy's for a while
i love epoxy boards they float a hundred times better so so light and skateboard feeling , the only complaint i have is that it floats to well sometimes when your trying to cut back or lay-back you cant dig the rail in the face of the wave like you can on a traditional board so it slides out
That, in a nutshell, is exactly the affect I am speaking of. You can't throw your trailing arm in the face and just burry the rails. They pop out. Thats what happens when I ride them in larger point break surf. You get tons of speed, then you go into a roundhouse and sort of putter out as you swing around.... Dissapointing. Like I said, on a 3 foot day at my local beach break, the epoxies were cool. Fun airs, super light, durable... But when the surf gets good and performance comes into play... Epoxy has let me down =(
i think it has a lot to do with the glassjob, ive had a lot of the same problems as you with boards, and once i started getting custom boards with really good glass they hold up wayyy better. i dislike most of the suftech/tuflite "epoxy" boards
I got a firewire in febuary and I loved it. It was about my 8th or so board that year, and I still habent has to get another one. I ride the 6'0 futura in day that are ankle high contest slop, to days that are over head and pitching. I feel like when I do a turn its just like twisting my ankles and the board whips around. That board is the fastest board I have ever ridden. (Besides my alaia) I dont agree how they make the boards in china,but they are definatley one of the best boards on the market right now. I really want to give one of there rapidfire (bamboo deck) a try. But none of my friends have them. Ill answer your questoins if you have any.... But go with the firewire
Taj rides them pretty much all the time on tour. He must of figured something out about how to ride them.
It maybe that you need to alter how you ride somewhat...so, it may take awhile to get adjusted to how you need to ride them. Which might be why more pros don't use other materials. They don't want to spend the time or don't have the time to test them fully.
What about altering the dims slightly from your standard PU boards to compensate for the extra float of the firewire/epoxy boards?
I don't know what kind of boards you are purchasing but the fiberglass ones glassed overseas generally have terrible glass jobs, much more fragile.
Well, the foam quality is not the issue. The guys at plus one shape all my boards custom for me. They actually had a stock pile of clark foam that lasted them the past couple of years. I just broke my last clark foam board 4 days ago. Thats the board I was speaking of. So, as far as the "glass job" they are considered world class. They glass boards for pretty much every pro surfer in socal south of trestles. All my boards are hand shaped in San Diego, so Im not using chinese materials or anything. So, its not an issue with materials at this point. I believe that I am riding the top of the line foam/glass... So, since I have used a large array of boards from Sharp Eye to Al Merrick and finally plus one. I know that plus one does not have the best glass in the world, but their foam is sick. Their glass jobs do tend to be light though. I guess to accomodate all the progressive grommets that ride for them, but if you get a heavy lip from blacks coming down on your deck, its game over.
I agree - Foam quality or even foam type (eps vs. poly) doesn't have much to do with how easily a board will snap. Zach - if you want to keep riding light, flexible, custom shaped poly or eps foam boards like most of us want to, i really dont thing there is much you can do to make them resist snapping, that wont sacrifice performance.
glassing schedule mostly and things like stringer material, and rail shape relate more to a boards flexural strength (snapping resistance). heavier glass or boxier rails will def make the board more resistant to snapping but you wint like the feel.
There are supposedly types of 4 oz. glass (warp bias) that will not increase the overal weight of a board, but will make it harder to break because it contains more fibers running lengthwise. Heres how onw manufacturer explains it:
"Warp Bias Fiberglass - contains more yarn in the warp (length) direction for the purpose of added stiffness and buckling resistance"