shape matters

Brian Camet talks about his new kite foil board…

camet foil board 5Foil boarding has been around for quite a few years but recently foil board racing has taken off. The advancements in foil technology and the America’s Cup have created foil fever and has quickly started taking over as more and more riders are ditching their course boards and jumping on foils. Speed, fun, and the feeling of flying are addicting!

Rewind to 6 months ago. I was sitting with a friend of mine that has a foil board and we were having a conversation about his gear. He turned to me and said “This is a piece of crap. It hits the water, stops, and I have no control over where it goes”. I answered back “Of course it does. It’s shaped like a barge!”

So began the journey of creating a new board focusing on achieving better hydrodynamic and aerodynamic efficiency. After looking around I saw that everyone had pretty much the same flat bottom and angled rails. We looked at what the problems were. One issue was that it takes a long time to learn to foil tack and jibe. So time is spent off the foil and surfing on the board when doing maneuvers. The issue arises when the board comes off its foils and hits the water at a high rate of speed. Friction from the flat bottom hitting the water act like a brake sending the rider flying forward over the front of the board. Secondly, the board is flat and it has no directional stability. It hits, skips, and goes in any direction except where you want it to go. The third issue is maneuverability. Most boards have chine-like rails which serve no purpose at all. They are not sharp enough to dig into the water to help the board carve into a turn.

The result of our research was to design a board that reduces drag when coming off the foils and re-entering the water. This was achieved by incorporating a double concave bottom to the board. We are not talking about a small dip in the board, we are talking a major concave bottom. This allows the board to slice into the water redirecting the water flow up the concave, back down, and out the sides of the board eliminating the board from hitting the water and stopping. The board is able to maintain speed and generate stability and lift. The rails are hard from the front to the back allowing the rider to carve the board like a surfboard into a jibe. The boards have wider backs to help the board plane faster giving the rider an advantage by allowing the board to foil earlier then others. This also adds volume to the board making it easier for novice riders to learn. The boards are constructed of light weight EPS foam core with high density foam skin and a fully vacuum bagged carbon fiber deck and bottom built in San Diego, California.

The results? A stronger and lighter board that flies through the air!  Check it.