Wednesday 1 September 2010

Kit Reviews

Hot Sails Maui are my new sponsors for sails. Over time there will be comprehensive reviews of their range, starting with the GPS -Grand Prix Slalom. This is my weapon of choice for the BSA Slalom 2012, to be paired with Exocet RS Slalom and SL Sport boards and Black Project fins (in my opinion THE only fins to use now).

click the headings for the full reviews

Exocet RS4, First impressions
Following the reviews below I was over the moon to accept sponsorship from Exocet, and now ride for the UK Team 'Exo Warriors' under the management and guidance of the UK Exocet agent Ian Kraft. Over time I will do a series of reviews on the RS series, I currently now own the RS4(69cm), long with the SL Sport 78 (see reviews below). In the long term I will also get the RS2 and RS1 (59cm, 54cm)
This section is where the real reviews are, using  a team of sailors of varying abilities over a period of time to give full feedback on the kit. This is a different type of review, pitting the abilities, weights and styles of sailor against one  board range rather than brand against brand. It is going to be a series of reviews.
This first introduction to the kit looks at some of the extra features  and the standard parts such as footstraps and the extras on the sail. The sail is rigged a few times to see how easy it is with it being a cammed sail with thin luff tube.
Here I talk about a very light wind session with use of both boards, the 7.8 silver sail and a couple of Black Project fins. The outcome was good despite marginal dropping winds.

Getting to know the Exocet 66 SL Sport, Silverline 7.8m sail
 and Black Project Typr R 37.5cm fin
Here the kit is tested in force 4, gusting to 5.
I rarely top 30knots in these conditions with a 7.8m sail but manage it with this kit.
The Black Project fin does a fantastic job.

The sails and boards are discussed in detail.
Positive and negative thoughts are highlighted.
Overall opinion and would I buy one?

All the reviews below this point were part of my learning process while I completed the 1000nmi challenge, and no where near as rigorous as the 'true' reviews above. They will give you an idea of some kit that I could not find anything for on the internet review wise.

The Mistral Slalom 'Red-Dot' is a full carbon construction, feather light speed demon, read the review here. It took me a while to tame the board.

Starboard Kode 112l (2009)
For a long time this was my favourite board. It is such an easy board to sail that it almost makes me look like I know what I am doing. It is still my weapon of choice in the winter when I do not want to get wet.

This was my first speed sail and started me on this quest. I guess if I had not bought this then this whole website may not exist. For the time it lasted it was a great platform to learn on due to being light yet powerful.

This is my lightwind sail, and will be for some considerable  time. It gets going very quickly considering the 4 cams and deep profile. First impressions are here.

My first 'true' fin purchase that did not come from the bargain box. It was worth it.

My Personal Kit List.

Here I have a list of my kit, more to keep a track of it myself than anything else. I have also included links to my preferred shops as they are always a pleasure to deal with.

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