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Scoring a glassy West Wittering Christmas foil session!

Ever since I started foiling I have been wanting to score a session here but its a funny spot and you need wind swell and tide to align perfectly to get a good one. I had my eye on the forecast all week and normally it would have been far less of a excitement, however now with a foil a 12s period and 0.3m swell on the south coast can get me fairly excited, so I rushed down to West Wittering with my latest prototype and jumped straight in. The spot only works for a short time and is very tide dependent but it had worked out and things were looking good. It’s a long paddle out but I was stoked already to be out on my own and turned for the first wave, it was vey different to the short steeper faces I have been foiling up until now and almost with no effort I was up and going.

The waves here break on sandbars formed in the mouth of Chichester harbour however the water depth varies a lot so soon after they break they tend to turn fat with long mellow open faces perfect for the foil! My first ride was easily 300m and over a minute long, I thought  I would not be able to beat it but time and time again they just kept rolling through. Where on a surf board even if you can get on to this size of wave with a huge board you tend not to be able to do a huge amount, on the foil you can zip around all over the place. Foils really do open up the door to surf breaks you would normally never be able to surf or when the waves are just too small to have fun on a normal board!

Check out the video, wishing everyone a merry Christmas from Grey Paddleboards.

 

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Do you want to get more control and performance from your hydrofoil?

Do you want to get more control quick and skimpily  from your hydrofoil?
Ever noticed that tiny wobble as you race down a wave or kick out when you think the foil has come loose?
With hydrofoils it is key to have all the componets as solid and flex free as posable to translate your control inputs all the way down the mast and to the foil as quick and as accurately as possible
Due to manufaturing tolarances with some foils you can find very small amounts of movent between your foil componets for eg were the mast goes into the mount socket or into the fusalarge. This small amount of movement at one end of the foil can lead to a lot larger amount of movent at the other.
To Solve this problem and to get more performance from you Hydrofoil we have introduced our Self adhesive Stainless steel shim tape in 3 sizes 0.03, 0.05 and 0.10mm
It is as simple as disassembling your foil and giving it a good clean to make sure all surfaces are dry and free from contaminates and then using the appropriate size shim and applying it to ether side of the part and rebuilding the foil. The tape be pulled off and replaced if needed or double layered to shim larger gaps or cut into shorter lengths with a old pair scissors for small gaps (Disclaimer: we do not take any sort of reasonability for you damaging your wife’s best dress making scissors!)
Its these attentions to detail that can really make a difference.
Any questions just drop us a message.
Happy Flying!
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Drawing foils and wings in Fusion 360

Over the last year I have put a huge amount of time in to learn Fusion 360 to help develop my own wings. I have spent literally hundreds of hours figuring out a simple way to do so. To aid all you guys out there that have messaged me on how to draw wings I have put a file together that is free to down load and should give you a good starting point to work from and see how I constructed it. There are many ways to do so but if you want something simple this is a good place to start.

 

The file is available to download here

 

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Fantasy For Flight

Flying has been in my blood since I was a child. My Granddad was probably the one to spark it off for me, having flown Liberators in WWII and then building model aircraft at home in his shed. Since I can remember I always had a keen interest in anything that flew. I remember the first pack of balsa wood and tool kit my dad gave me at the age of three or four, they used to cost £1 from the local toy store. My brother and I soon looked forward to getting another pack every Saturday with our pocket money. We sat at the kitchen table designing and building model aircraft, boats and just about anything else we could think of.

As I got older, along with me the models soon grew in size. I moved onto building radio controlled cars, boats and planes. This was the first time I learned about hydrofoils with my granddad, building a foiling model boat that he then gave me. With the South Downs being on our doorstep I got more and more into flying model gliders. I would hike up there on my own and spend hours soaring the ridge. Still the models continued to grow and grow in size.

When up on the Downs I would watch the full size gliders soaring overhead and always want to try it for myself, when I was eighteen I finally got that chance, and soon I was working towards my glider pilots’ qualification. My first solo flight in a glider was in just under twenty hours of training, which is about one third of the normal time it would take. The feeling of gliding has so many similarities to surfing. Being powered by nature and feeling that adrenaline rush when you hit a big thermal and start gaining height and speed, just like taking off on a big wave.

It was also around this time I had my first go on an Air Chair which was a hydrofoil designed to be towed behind a boat, I don’t remember much but I do remember taking plenty of crashes! Seeing pictures of Laird Hamilton and alike with their tow in foils and one or two others playing in the surf, I made several attempts to build a foil for my paddleboards but for various reasons they never made it to the water.

 

Over the last few years foiling on all sorts of watercraft has exploded bringing a new dimension to watersports. Seeing the evolving Americas Cup yachts really sparked my interest back up. Early in 2016 I started to build a new foil to attach to my SUP. Low and behold just as I was finishing it that first video of Kai Lenny appeared, showing that it was indeed possible and giving me a huge boost in drive to design and build my own foil. The flowing weekend we took the very crude foil I had built and fixed to a old windsurf board we tested it behind the cable ski and to my amazement it worked and my very first run saw me rise up and flying down the lake, I was now FULLY HOOKED!

                                                           

I then built a specific SUP board to take the foil and headed into the waves. At that point there was no real knowledge on what and what not to do so learning to SUP foil involved a lot of heavy, painful crashes but that hasn’t detered me. In the last year foiling has gained a lot of momentum in the surf industry and I for one have not stopped thinking about it day and night. I’ve been building and experimenting with all sorts of different designs with the aim to understand a lot more of just what makes a good and bad foil and how we can improve this very new and exciting area of our sport and were it will take us.

 

                                                  

 

 

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Our new web shop is up and running

Our new web shop is up and running. We’re excited to be able to offer a variety of custom build parts from great brands including FCS, Gore-Tex, Chinook & Hydro-Turf. We only stock the products we use on our own boards so we know they’re the best and can offer advice on the right choice and and install for your project.