Do foil parts wear out?

I’m thinking masts, wings ect. Not the connections, the carbon itself. Do wings lose rigidity in the span from being stressed in turns and bounced off sandbars? Does a mast lose stiffness over time from the repeated stress and flexing?

Does gear having a ton of ride time matter?

Everyone wants to use 1 universal mast for 5 years straight. So we shall quickly find out :slight_smile:

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I would assume yes? That’s why foils break from jumping. I assume that it’s not the first jump, but it’s jump #1000 that snaps them. So from an EXTREMELY rough theoretical standpoint, yes, the flexing is causing fatigue.

More relevant might be: Isn’t a 5 year old foil out of date? Tech is changing so fast that I have a hard time imagining staying on the same kit for 5 full years. Foiling is still so young that new does, typically, mean better right now.

This assumption is somewhat accurate with respect to the mount end, but not the length of the mast. When under tension/compression cyclic loading, carbon fiber has an extremely long fatigue life/strength. This is why the 787 Dreamliner can operate at higher cabin pressures and has a longer service life. The majority of the length of carbon masts will stay as stiff as new throughout it’s life. However the mount is subject to a type of stress called interlaminar tension, which stresses the epoxy/resin, which has a low fatigue life/strength. This is why carbon masts break at the mount, and why Project Cedrus (and now NL, SAB) uses an aluminum mount.

There are many people still riding 5 year old Cedrus masts. They may be considered “slow” by some standards, or prone to ventilation depending on style, but they’re just as stiff as they were new, and not out of date thanks to the use of adapters.

I would say most foil gear will wear out due to abuse loads (bottom strikes, failed landings, etc), corrosion, or wear and tear at the tapered interface. But if it’s not abused, rinsed often, and well cared for, it should last a really long time. That’s what we strive for.

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I’ve been intrigued by the universal mast for a long time but always steered clear because of the aluminum. Is it hard to give it a thorough rinse after time in saltwater? Most of my sessions are freshwater but I baby my gear after ocean days.

My original Cedrus is 6 years old now. Granted I don’t foil as much anymore, but I do take it with me on sailing trips during which it rarely gets rinsed. I only foil saltwater. I am not the poster child for care. The most important thing is to not leave an aluminum adapter connected to a carbon fuse. The second most important thing is to remove mounts/adapters during extended periods of non-use (months+). As long as you follow those guidelines, corrosion is not an issue. And even if you don’t, the corrosion occurs to the adapter, which is the cheapest part. The aluminum in the mast undergoes multiple anodizing and corrosion inhibiting priming operations (at least Cedrus does, can’t say the same about others), and corrosion to the mast is rare. Evolution will be even better, as there is no exposed aluminum (it’s all over-molded) so no sand or damage due to abrasion in the bed a truck for example. We are also transitioning to custom Grade 5 Ti hardware which will be less likely to corrode with aluminum than stainless. My point is if you take care of your Cedrus, it should last you a lifetime. If you don’t, it should still last a long time, and worst case your bolts seize and we repair the mast for $100.

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Carbon composite do not exhibit fatigue from repeat stress like metal . And the epoxy that hold them togetter has relatively long life before it breakdown chemically.

Yes they do break apart sometimes with excessive stress or from the impact. But they will not degrade from aging.

Corrossion in matal part is another thing but can be manage.

I don’t think very many people keep foil wings long enough to find out. For 6 years now, I’ve upgraded the foil quiver 7 times and sold the old stuff.