Freeride User ReviewsSee what other riders think about their CA Boards
Being from Taranaki and with 15+ years of windsurfing experience I know far less about windsurfing board construction and picking the right gear than I’d like to admit. What I do know is that the Freeride board that the guys from Carbon Art recommended and made for me is a joy for blasting around on. It is easy to control, it gets onto the plane quickly, it cuts upwind effortlessly, it is forgiving of my “intermediate” technique, and it is a beautiful work of art!
>When I’m ready for a dedicated wave board I’ll be straight back to Carbon Art because I know that I’ll get the right advice from a great team.
The following is a short review of my experience with a Customised FRX 59 which is an FRX with a slalom rocker and softer rails than full on slalom. Board has been sailed over 10 days with a Sailworks 5.6 Hucker and 32 Vector Volt fin. Sail is a 6.0 performance wise. Winds have been 18 to 24mph with most days averaging about 20. The standard construction is relatively light and the board planes up quickly. Top end approaches a slalom board and the board is easy to sail fast and very forgiving. Jibes are predictable with nice glide leading to planing exits. Float is perfect for my 77kg. The board is a joy to sail even in heavy Gorge chop.
I have been meaning to send you a note before now. I did manage to get several days on the board before leaving South Padre Island.
I sailed the board over powered on 4.8 to 6.0 and found the board outstanding overall. If I was forced to live with one board – this could be the one! The board is very quick to plane and fast. It handles chop very well and I am looking forward to sailing it in the Gorge this summer!
Let me set the scene,
I am 85 kgs intermediate hack sailor that has little time in his life to go windsurfing but generally finds a couple of days a month to head down to the flat waters of Inverloch, Vic. Australia for a blast. I am getting to the age were a comfortable ride is just as important as going fast.
I am an old fella that came to this windsurfing game late in life. In my younger years I used to sail catamarans. My intuitive wife recognised I needed an activity outside my business and running a small horse property and probably more to the point to get me out of her hair. So I ventured into this addictive world of windsurfing and completely got hooked to the point that I foolishly suggested to a few windsurfing mates that we set up a Club to help beginners (like me) and Inverloch Windsurfing Club was born.
I progressed from an old Tiga Swift to a 144 ltr board, and then I felt all grown up and experienced when I sold that and purchased a 120 ltr board. Ahh the joy of going fast at 25kts 2 second peak – lol. That board was great but I soon found its limitations in only once getting to 30 kts and seeing all my friends posting 30kts plus I decided that it was time to upgrade to something a little quicker.
I started looking at 100 ltr boards by the big brands however a few of my mates were running Carbon Arts and I thought it was worth checking them out as well. I had purchased a second hand 100 ltr slalom board and found that it was a difficult beast to master. I was quite tentative about this move and trialling any board beforehand was important for me.
After trialling the four boards including a Carbon Art Freeride and Slalom the big thing I noticed was that I could just jump on the Carbon Arts and ride off into the sunset with ease whereas the big brands required a little more finesse to get the most out of them. This point has been proved time again after friends have purchased Carbon Art Boards and made similar comments.
The Carbon Art CA 63 Freeride was a little more expensive than the other boards but what Carbon Art offers made up for that price difference in leaps and bounds. The ability to custom design your paint job and also to speak with James and describe the Inverloch conditions and have him tweak the design slightly to give me more top end speed. I can hear you asking what my top end speed is these days – 35 kts and still going.
All windsurfers are different and have different demands on the boards that they use. I recommend that anyone considering buying a board trials different brands beforehand to ensure that the board meets their own personal requirements. For me the stand out with Carbon Art was the ease of use, the overall board strength designed and built by a master craftsman, the comfortable ride and individuality in design.
My Carbon Art Freeride CA63 is my go to board these days for wind conditions of 12 kts to 25 kts and I run 5.8 – 7.5mtr cammed sails on it with fins ranging from 32 – 38cm. The board seems to have a sweet spot around 15 – 18 kts of breeze with a 6.6 mtr sail and 36cm fin. Funny though – every time I take it out with a different sail/fin set up I think that is the new sweet spot!
May the breeze be at your back and always get you home.