Downwind specific foils

List of downwind specific foils, am I missing any? I guess the qualifications here are AR11-12+ and developed or used specifically for downwind. Optimising low end and glide over turn?

DW +12 AR

DW 9-10 AR



  • Eagle x
  • Unifoil

Afs pure ha 800 and 1100

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F one will be releasing the Eagle x this spring .

Aspect ratio 12

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Interesting take here.

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Cringing. Thank god for the guy asking the questions behind the computer.


This thing’s pretty ridiculous:

Haven’t heard much about it.

Very interesting, as someone who feels pretty dialed on their current dw gear (Axis 1201). Aced my last 12 mile run, I will have to take my Prog 200 out dw. I ride the 200 prone and wave sup tons but have been scared take it out dw because of its slower speed. A number of guys in the crew I was riding with this winter had some shockers on the 200 and 170 saying they struggled to keep up with groundswell on a run. These were runs I had no trouble with the 1201 pro. I have compared the 1201 and 200 back to back in the surf and on the wing and find the 1201 about 2-3 knots faster, and about noticeably more glidey but very stiff in turns, I am regularly saftey surfing it. However the 200 is very rip-able and but slower. Interested to hear what Patrick thinks about needing speed to keep up with swell. I agree that beginners may be racing to foils they aren’t ready for, if you aren’t on foil the run is wasted, go big!

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Cloud IX:

fs1780 for first paddle ups.
fs1350 for those with consistent paddle ups.
fs700 is being raced downwind.
fs900 just released.

There good points in the video, but it seems to depend on the conditions/board/level combination.
I own a 13 AR foil, and there is a place for it. In a day with open ocean big swell, I will select this foil no question; it is just a more enjoyable experience. (if you don’t have problems to pop up).

Is there a single generalization that can be stated about foiling? If there is it’s that the larger lower AR foil will be easier to paddle up and stay up, BUT… as is always the case, it’s impossible to compare given the infinite number of variables. Which tail, what fuse length, what did you have for breakfast?

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Yeah this seems to be a TLDR summary of the point the video is trying to make.

I guess Downwind Specific Foils as per the thread title, are high aspect foils that are generally not that good in other scenarios. The design parameters leading to higher aspect ratios optimised for higher average speeds mean they don’t turn as well.

I think the point that you “don’t need to buy a downwind foil to downwind” probably is valid, and in fact probably good advice, but I don’t really see that being an issue for people. Possibly a real issue is people thinking they NEED to start on an Axis 1300 as their first downwind foil. Don’t! Get something more modern that has maybe just as much low end but can still turn…? Those huge old Axis foils are terrible and only really necessary for big guys.

To talk about the foils in the video - I have runs where I would prefer the pp200 by far, as it is so fun, but others where I’d prefer 1201 or similar to reliably cover distance. High aspect = efficiency, no question on that.

What would fit into this category?

Lots of people seem to be learning on aspect ratios all the way down to 7.5 You tend to have decent turning on larger foils until you reach maybe 9ish. Once you are 9.5 and above you will not have much turning performance on the large intro to DW foils.

Anything larger than a 39" wing span feels gross to ride IMO. I prefer no larger than a 34" wingspan but my current foil is 30.5" and feels great.

So, match your aspect ratio and lift profile to the desired wingspan and you’ll have some answers.

Well to be clear, there isn’t anything with as much low end as the Axis 1150 or 1300 afaik, and you’ll need to match whatever it is to your weight and conditions.

I really liked the pp200 for the few sessions I had on it. Any of the biggest surf oriented foil you can find in the 7-8AR For some this may not be viable for flat water paddle ups without a lot of technique and strength improvement as you can’t beat the axis 1300 or 1150 for absolute low end stompability I don’t think, but I personally don’t enjoy them and find them limiting once conditions get at all beyond very basic bay runs, and equally flat water is good for technique but not indicative of what will work best in bumps.

Well, no the video states that there is no place for HA foils for average riders anyware. To what a disagree.
High aspect foils still turn ok at the right speed. I do not see this critical factor.
But I do agree that, for a wide range of conditions during the same run, you are better in a lower aspect.

But what is goal in all of this? To simply get from point A to point B as quickly as possible? Or to carve as many turns as possible over that same distance thereby maximizing the time spent on the water and minimizing car shuttling? There is beauty in both but foil selection will likely be different.

There was a great video posted last summer on the NW foil FB page of Heineken continuously hopping over the back of wave after wave at Rufus and more or less staying in one place for quite a long time.
Did anybody bookmark it?

Oh ok, tbh I didn’t watch beyond the first quarter. As we learned on the first round of HA foils, they don’t do well in messy conditions and are easily unsettled and even more so with this 13ar foils. The difference is that the newer ones are designed to be easier to ride

I guess maybe what is a useful point then is making the distinction between Race downwind foils and Freeride. Only the first category needs it’s own specific foil, because the second is just any surfy foil.

The hat he is wearing in the video makes me wonder what we have in store and what the positioning is going to be.

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Saw a video recently with some similar (but better) analysis…from I think James Casey talking about Code, and explaining the design philosophy of their foils and how there are just a lot of variables besides speed, including the value of good low end (even for pros racing), that makes for a great foil for downwinding…and (I think) saying there is a lot of crossover with what makes a good foil for other disciplines…can’t find it at the moment

I don’t think we can very very conclusive with this topic, other that not recommending 13 AR for beginners.
The rest, is related to the conditions, board, skill.
For me, the limiting factor is that I can pop up the 13 AR without problems, but then it needs to moved all the time; so for a long run can be a limiting factor (cardio).
Or if it’s very small.

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Congrats @KDW this is very exciting.

I guess this would classify as a “downwind foil” by the looks of it, and the context, video etc. Curious to know what the interface is.

Really love the ethos - give the customer a recipe that works.