Back in surfing I had gotten in the habit of doing this weird knocking or drumming type thing on the tip and tail of a new board to listen to how it sounded. Especially boards with stringers. A nice lively board had the right sound quality to the hit like a tuning fork or something.
Honestly I think I was just doing it because I had seen other more experienced surfer friends doing it and thought it would make me look like I knew what I was doing as part of sizing up a fresh board at the shaper.
When a board got older I’d use the same idea to see how much life the board still had in it.
Now in foiling I find myself in the habit of plucking or tapping gently on the tips of my front wing and also sometimes tail to hear the sound of the vibration through the whole rig. I feel like I’m happier on setups where the sound is a warm timbre vs dull. And if it doesn’t make a nice tight sound at all it’s usually a dud.
I’m wondering if this is a load of crap or if anyone else does this?
The rigs that end up sounding pretty always seem to ride way more fun for me. Especially Feedback and subtle inputs in turbulence seem heighten.
Single piece front wing / front fuse usually make nicer sounds (uni, lift, F1, cab… Etc.) The ones with connections from front wing to fuse usually have worse sounds.
Mike’s lab seems like the dream for connectivity but not sure I’d ever be able to wait for one, also tuning tails / fuse length is too much fun to mess around with.
Is the vibration/resonance quality and connectivity of a foil setup any different than overall stiffness?
I give the foil a whack with my hand to check if anything is loose and based on vibrate and lack of rattles I am satisfied… I also hold the board steady and seeing how the foil wobbles when given a whack. Modern carbon setups are definitely a bit more tightly wound I guess?
I’ve never seen anyone hit a stringer like that, maybe this is a location thing, but on the whole seems like a whacky idea
I assemble my kit, stand on the board, and wrench on the wingtip, Probably 30 lbs worth of force up and down, with the other hand grabbing the connection. If there’s any movement, even slight, you feel the parts moving against each other and can tighten, adjust accordingly.(depending on system).
If I’m approaching a new foil I’ll throw some torsion in the mast also and get a feel for the bend and twist to help confirm what I’m feeling when riding but I have very low tolerance for flex.
I use the whack and listen to check for loose board bolts when I’m in the water and I think something might be off. As sexy as it is to “listen to the energy return in the Carbon” I don’t think it’s a great test for a foil. I’m more interested in how it’s going to hold up to actual foiling forces which are immense. Turn your kit upside down and sit on the front wing. That’s a close approximation of just regular gliding. ++ for turns, jumps, partial tip breaches, etc.
Just remember when your on foil 100% of your weight is going through board, mast, fuse and front wing. More if your banking a hard turn. And a breach on one side is twisting it way more than you can do by hand. Grab it and really get a feel for it, even pushing hard your not coming close to those forces. You won’t hurt it I swear.
In the last few years I worked hard on these forums to shame the manufacturers into making stiffer masts. Better connections are next!