Board design by Ola H.

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Ola H.
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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Ola H. » Wed May 01, 2019 4:06 pm

Rasmus wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 10:26 pm
And after all i´m finding your approach on designing rather unsystematic, i would take a proven shape like freegal and analyse what i liked or did´nt , think for what conditions my next board should perform best and than make refinements. But everyone is different.
This is not really how it works, most of my shapes are developed over very long times. In fact, in my custom and proto program I have at least ten different lines of development going on all the time and I review and refine all those shapes. Even the original Fly shape that I developed 2011 and that was in production 2012 is still ”alive” and it was not long ago I made some new variants of that shape as a custom to someone. Once in a while I’ll develop something new from (more or less) scratch and if the shape works I’ll make variants and refinements of it later. Most boards that end up in the production program comes from such a line of development and often they were not developed to be production boards from the beginning but just ended up good candidates after enough people had liked them as customs or protos. In fact, I have noticed that my best boards are almost always developed for some particular rider rather than thought up as compromises designed to cater for a wide selection of riders.

As for the Freegal, that was a spinoff of the Frugal. The original Frugal was designed in 2012. The Frugal was thought up from scratch and it was my original short tailed board. Despite that this board being new in so many ways it only took two protos to get to the production shape and even the first one was very good. The rocker was completely new and worked right away. The first proto has a swallow and I later changed to a squash to make it a bit more attached to the water in turns. Then I slightly altered the outline curve between the feet, because on the original it was a bit hard to control the top turn between sliding and carving and a straighter outline section gives more stability, predictability and control. We had the Frugal in production 2013. The a friend wanted to work on a specific light wind wave board and after some thinking I came up with the Freegal which was a faster and easier version of the Frugal. The first version was a 100liter, but the guy loved it so we made protos at 80, 90, 100 and 110 liters and sailed them for some time and passed them around a bit. Since the Frugal was considered a bit too extreme, we decided to put the Freegal in production the next year and then we had it in production for several years. But I continued to work on the Frugal and actually made that rocker even more extreme, with even more curve in the center and a slightly flatter nose. I also refined the nose outline to be a bit sleeker. The resulting shape is still one of my favourite boards and a friend who is sailing it now thinks it is so good that it is almost cheating. But still.. a bit too much for the production market.

And in relation to this remark:
Rasmus wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 10:26 pm
What I´m now understanding is that stubby boards in your view should be more like an allroundboard (also waves that need more grip threw rail length), because you insist on using them also at higher speed, not just an onshore shape. For me a rather wide planshape should be used in small waves, small waves are always slow/slower making good rail control abilities unnescesary, i would specalise more. I own 4 boards in different shapes for specific conditions, but mostly onshore, that´s why i would go for a more refined shape depending on conditions.
When I design for myself I do specialize the boards a bit. After using the Frugal (almost exclusively) for two years except for some big Maui days, I wanted to adapt the concept for higher speed wave sailing and bigger waves
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So I designed the Hoogal with the same short tail, but a roundtail, a slightly extended nose and narrower width. This model was then systemtically developed through a few versions and the Limelight was in turn a spinoff from the Hoogal. So overall, to date there has been systematic development of this short tail-short nose concepts for över 7 years now

Here is a Frugal (v4) 75 and the Hoogal (v4) 75. The Hoogal is has a more drawn out nose and the widepoint 5cms back in relation to the Frugal. The Hoogal has a bit more outline curve in the back though. At 216, it is 6 cms longer than the Frugal (the tail is 2 cms longer and the nose 4cms longer).
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The Cortex comes from a completely different line of development and the _only_ overlap with the Frugal/Freegal/Hoogal is that I used to knowledge about the effects of short tails when deigning the Cortex. I’ll save the Cortex development story for later, but the reason we replaced the Freegal with the Cortex in the production program was simply because at one point we thought the Cortex would make a better production offering. This is not being unsystematic, it’s just keeping many developmental threads going as the same time.
Last edited by Ola H. on Wed May 15, 2019 11:45 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by BTB » Wed May 01, 2019 4:46 pm

Fascinating discussion - thanks for all the seasoned shapers for responding.

One thing i find fascinating is how development seems to keep coming back to some design features. Outlines and rockers have had some dramatic changes over the years but some of the shapes from the boards of the early 1990's look a lot like those of modern designs. Widths and volumes are similar for high wind shapes (light wind gear is much wider) but boards getting shorter is such a consistant trend that it make syou think why did this not happen sooner.

A Bic Alto from circa 1990=
Volume: 85 litres
Length: 255 cm
Width: 57 cm.

The profile not far off some modern shapes it just has a drawn out nose and pintail. Why did no one try chopping 30cm of these boards?

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Sunset slalom 1992 (look how fat the tail is)
Volume: 100 litres
Length: 270 cm
Width: 60 cm.

Image
Last edited by BTB on Wed May 01, 2019 4:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Ola H. » Wed May 01, 2019 4:49 pm

But the Alto is a whopping 35cm longer than a typicla bord of today and look at the strap and mast box placement. Rocker is very different too. I think it would be pretty hard to make the Alto work to modern standards by just chopping pieces off.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by BTB » Wed May 01, 2019 4:58 pm

Not saying an Alto can be changed but in 30 years the profile is not much changed.

Boards have got more compact whilst retaining the volume and width and I wonder why it took 30 years to go from these shapes to modern ones if those factors stayed the same. Sorting out placement of tracks / fins and straps seems to have taken a long time to develop to where we are now where they are almost consistant across most short board models.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Bouke/Witchcraft » Wed May 01, 2019 7:01 pm

BTB wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 4:46 pm

The profile not far off some modern shapes it just has a drawn out nose and pintail. Why did no one try chopping 30cm of these boards?

Image

Like this? From 2003:

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Last edited by Bouke/Witchcraft on Thu May 02, 2019 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Rasmus » Wed May 01, 2019 10:07 pm

Hello Ola,

i´m a little bit amused about the Hoogal, it looks a lot like a 2005 Angulo Amigu 7´4´´.

I recently bought me one and i will convert it to a trifin setup. To me that makes sense because the Amigu is somehow a look into the future.

It has a straighter midpoint outline,but widepoint back as mastbase and footstraps, a hip between feet but closer to backfoot, a wide thumb tail, litle tailrocker. But is has a long, somehow pointy nose, with a steep flip at nosetip. Just as i like it, will see how it works, will be using it for onshore conditions with 5,7 and 5,2 sail and ofcourse small waves because of windswell.

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To me such an conversion makes sense, because the railfins will give it more grip and hold, allowing for more agressive turns compared to single fin.

Conversions of boards like BIC Alto are just to goof around, in the end they won´t work, because the backstrap ist just to far away from the rail, means the board is to wide there to hold it on rail, board will lose grip and slide.

That ´s the same with wide tailed boards, if your a not far enough back with your backfoot, you will not have enough leverage to keep the rail in water and the board slides, i often see that even when victor fernandez ist riding his Stubbie, even tough he stands back, but he can´t hold the rail an slides out.
This is when i say the tail is to wide, when loosing rail happens to often. This slide style is ugly and in real surfing is attripputed to a surfer with weak legs, the opposite of powersurfing, were you only slide after you have commited a full rail powerturn. In windsurfing it is somehow accepted, i don´t know why.

Thank you Ola, for showing the boardgraphics, now i know where to but the sideboxes, just little in front of a frugal.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Ola H. » Thu May 02, 2019 5:37 am

Rasmus wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 10:07 pm
Hello Ola,

i´m a little bit amused about the Hoogal, it looks a lot like a 2005 Angulo Amigu 7´4´´.

I recently bought me one and i will convert it to a trifin setup. To me that makes sense because the Amigu is somehow a look into the future.

It has a straighter midpoint outline,but widepoint back as mastbase and footstraps, a hip between feet but closer to backfoot, a wide thumb tail, litle tailrocker. But is has a long, somehow pointy nose, with a steep flip at nosetip. Just as i like it, will see how it works, will be using it for onshore conditions with 5,7 and 5,2 sail and ofcourse small waves because of windswell.


Thank you Ola, for showing the boardgraphics, now i know where to but the sideboxes, just little in front of a frugal.
Indeed! I sailed the Amigu a bit back in the day and it was indeed a futuristic shape. SUPER flat rocker in rear part but compensated for with a lot of outline curve. I wave a very fin board and I think it can work quite well as a tri fin. Let me know if you want more exact indications of where to put the front fins. The most "safe" position will depend a bit on what types of front fins you intend to use. But with this flat rocker, I'd say putting the center fo the box 1-2cm in front of the front screw of the back strap is the way to go. Then I tend to place the box (center of rear end) 30mm from the rail (the actual rail, not the tucked under). I then mostly use 1.8 degree of toe in (but with asym fins I increase this but I solve this by moulding the fin twisted in the fin base).

Rasmus wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 10:07 pm
Conversions of boards like BIC Alto are just to goof around, in the end they won´t work, because the backstrap ist just to far away from the rail, means the board is to wide there to hold it on rail, board will lose grip and slide.

That ´s the same with wide tailed boards, if your a not far enough back with your backfoot, you will not have enough leverage to keep the rail in water and the board slides, i often see that even when victor fernandez ist riding his Stubbie, even tough he stands back, but he can´t hold the rail an slides out.
This is when i say the tail is to wide, when loosing rail happens to often. This slide style is ugly and in real surfing is attripputed to a surfer with weak legs, the opposite of powersurfing, were you only slide after you have commited a full rail powerturn. In windsurfing it is somehow accepted, i don´t know why.
I agree this is ugly and all too common and I have when that happens unintentionally and I have gone through a lot of fine tuning of my shapes to keep it from happening. This was indeed a tendency with the first Frugal proto, but I solved it by adjusting the outline between the straps to a straighter on. With a wider tail and flatter rocker like on the Cortex, a bit more care has to be taken in the top turn setup, but even the Cortex can be driven through a big power top turn. The way I design my wingers is also somethign I developed to minimize this tencendy.

Here is good top turn carve on the Freegal 80. Powered up 4.0, but it is in fact easier to setup and and carry out such a turn when you have a relatively steep section to work with.
Image

Here on the other hand, it is also very windy so it is high speed riding. Then a shallow wave and a shallow top turn entry which is kind of worst case for setting up a power carve since it is very easy to slide out. This is the Frugal 66 in quad mode. I have worked a lot to set up my shapes to stick to the carve in this sort of turn.

Image
Last edited by Ola H. on Wed May 15, 2019 11:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by BTB » Sat May 04, 2019 3:23 pm

Bouke/Witchcraft wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 7:01 pm
BTB wrote:
Wed May 01, 2019 4:46 pm

The profile not far off some modern shapes it just has a drawn out nose and pintail. Why did no one try chopping 30cm of these boards?

Image

Like this? From 2003:


DSCF0002.JPGDSCF0004.JPGDSC_0235.JPG
Love this Bouke. When did you create this master piece? And how does it sail, looks pretty good in the pics?

I'm guessing, based on the pics you re-configured the fin box and straps around the original mast track - bringing both forward to reduce the distance to the tail to what is now very sorted/standardised configuration. And that and reducing the lenth by butchering the nose and tail makes it much better than the original, althouth you cant do much to the critical rocker section in the back 1/3 which must be pretty flat (and the fat rails that all bics had). Still, even this cobbled together mix of old and new, i bet sails better than most production boards or similar volume sold up until 10 maybe 15 years after the first Astro Rocks were sold.

Bic's had a formula based on the fact the construction was basic and heavy. They new they appealed to budget sailors so not the top end who would buy Mistrals, F2 or Fanatic's of the era. To compensate the weight they would build the boards thicker and understate some of the stats (they were often wider and had more volume than they stated). That made the boards when compared to high end models of similar length, as all boards were categorised on the length, plane early and sail easily. What no one appreciated at the time is they were close to the design concepts that would improve boards over the next 20/30 years (build more width and volume in to boards with a shorter length).

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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Bouke/Witchcraft » Sun May 05, 2019 2:08 pm

That was in 2003. The guy who worked for me at the time had found this old Astro Rock to teach his girlfriend to windsurf on but it did not fit in his van so we cut it off at both ends and indeed the fin box and straps had to be moved forward. When it was done, we thought to give it a go in waves just for fun but it was far too flat and wide in the tail to get any decent turn on it. Only Will Ward managed to make it look like something.
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Re: Board design by Ola H.

Post by Ola H. » Mon May 06, 2019 7:22 am

On the issue of top turns, I also like this one. Both the sequence as such but also in the sense that I really, really like this sort of turn, which is very smooth and tight and perhaps surprisingly does not involve a lot of power at all, despite throwing some spray. I think that my liking of this sort of turn explains some of my liking for compact boards because it is paramount that the both can come around very fast and also fit in tight places. It was noted before in the thread that shorter noses can pearl because you can not fit enough scoop. But in fact, in this type of situation, less nose is much easier and very often you do put the whole nose under water but that does not matter because you power through it anyway. The whole turn relies on having quite a bit of curve (both outline and rocker) in the center part of the board, and the turn is not really driven by the back foot but by the front foot and by mast fot pressure.

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This is the evolved version of the Frugal I discussed earlier. A 75 liter version with a tough sleeker nose and more rocker curve in the center.

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