Fanatic will abandon the freeride Shark board in 2015 !!!
The Gecko has replaced the long-standing Shark and there is NO board in the 2015 Fanatic freeride category on their webpage!! And that after just two(2) years !!! This speaks highly of the success factor of this class of board !!
In 2010 Starboard had the Atom, which it abandoned and then came back with the AtomIQ, which i presume is supposed to be pronounced Atomic ? Yet people still claim the RRD Fire Move was the original freemove and still the benchmark board.
Here Tiesda You of Starboard discusses the AtomIQ and the thinking behind it. One reason this model is fast - rocker is based on the iSonic 110 !!
Others? There is the JP MagicRide and the Simmer FreeMove. I have had a Simmer WCR/World Cup Race sail, but have never seen nor heard of their boards ...
Back in about 2008 it seems there were some "freestyle" board that some called "freemove". Mistral Syncro, Fanatic FreeWave, Naish All-Terrain, Tabou 3S and RRD FreeStyleWave. These boards were NOT like the freemove boards of today in 2014.
Why called free-move? Move for maneuverability ?
These boards are supposed to be
1) FAST - AtomIQ fastest and Fanatic Gecko slower than defunct Shark
2) LIGHT - especially LTD
3) THIN - SB boasts 9.9 mm
4) SHORT - will be more difficult to tack
5) MANEUVERABLE - jibe/gybe well
6) SAIL like 10-15 liters less
7) PLANE like 10-15 liters more
8) FAT WIDE & THIN NARROW TAIL
Fanatic Gecko - 98, 105, 112, 120 and 135 liter versions
JP MagicRide - 104, 118 and 132
RRD FireMove - 102, 112, 122, 130 and 140
Simmer FreeMove - 100, 110, 120
SB AtomIQ - 100, 110 and 120
RRD 140 is 90 cm wide !! This is practically a FreeFormula !!
Even the Gecko 135 is 83 cm wide.
The Shark 165 was this wide - so, a heavyweight newbie should start with a Gecko 135 ??
Find this difficult to believe!!
Both of the above referenced freemove boards are supposed to be able to handle a 10-oh sail. I have tried my TR-4 10-oh on my AHD FastForward 160 and prefer the sail on my BIC Techno Formula which is wider at 94 cm and can handle 58 to 66 cm fins.
These dudes were lucky enough to test JP, Fanatic and RRD on the same day
They say (in Swedish) All are fantastic boards, but in different ways. Suitable for different people depending on sailing style.
Did a quick tour of the local shops to see how free these boards really are ?? Forget the Simmer - I have NO idea where they are sold in North America. The Starboard also seemed hard to find --> isthmussailboards.com seemed to be one of the few !! As usual anything that even sounds like kevlar or LTD is around $2000. The good news is the Gecko HRS is around $1400.
As I was considering a Shark 135 to replace my AHD FF 160, what would I now choose in the Gecko model ? The 135 Gecko is about the same length, but as wide as the Shark 165 was !! And so, I would go to a 120 liter version ? Is this uphaulable for a 220-230 pound/ 100- 105 kilo heavyweight like myself ?
My hope is this will put more freeride boards like the Shark on the used market :-)
Feels like it already started ..
Met a local who now has a Gecko 120 LTD and is selling his Shark 150 LTD...
And , do the freemoves do what is promised ? This fellow says he is on a Gecko 120 with a North Natural 7.3 and flying in 11 to 13 knots. He must be a lightweight cuz there is NO way i would fly like that in 12 knots. Perhaps there is more wind than suggested ?? People definitely say they plane early, jibe well and are FUN. Just need to choose a board with less volume than usual ...
On the other hand.. people think a FreeMove can be a "one board quiver". The ONLY one board quiver I know about is the longboard !! Here a fellow tried a 5.5 in chop on a RRD FireMove 122/120 only to realize a 79-80 cm board is NOT made for that !!!
This clip "feels more real" and has interesting view from the back:
Post References: obviously the company websites, youtube, local shop photo,