Translator from GOOGLE

Fanatic Ultra Cat

Je vais essayer de faire cette entrée en francais pour mes amis de La Plaine/St-Lin :)

This post will be attempted in French for my new friends - try the Google translate - put in French and then English :)
When it goes OFF the main page i will put an English version too ...started - interspersed with French BELOW

Merci beaucoup pour avoir me donner la chance d'essayer la fameuse planche Fanatic Ultra Cat !!! La planche n'est pas juste connu pour les vents legères MAIS aussi pour sa vitesse !!! Ca date des années début 1990 et il y a du monde qui l'utilise encore !! C'est environ la même longeur que mon BIC Dufour MAIS beaucoup moins lourde, plus épais et moins large en arrière. C'est connu d'être capable de "planer" et roule casement avec les mêmes vitesses que les "shortboards". 

Je l'ai nettoyé et ca fait une belle planche n'est-ce pas !!

Thank you SO much to my new friends for having given me the chance to test the infamous board Fanatic Ultra Cat!!! This board is NOT just known for light winds BUTT also for its speed!!! It dates back to the earlys 90's and there are still plenty of people who use such a board !!The board is approximately the same length as my BIC Dufour BUT is much lighter , less thick and less wide at the back. It is known to be capable of planing and going with same speeds as shortboards. 

I cleaned it and it is a beautiful board,  is it not ??

Qu'est-ce que ca prendre pour être une "longboard" du type course ? Comme déjà discuté, il faut que la planche "plane" rapidment ie ne prend pas trop de temps, evidement la planche est legère, le "mast track" peuvent être ajouster pendant le "voyage", le derive est fait en carbone, l'aileron est fait en carbone et c'est assez controllable evec vitesse et quand on change direction. Aussi le dérive peut être enlever de l'eau completement. Cela n'est pas possible avec le BIC Dufour. J'ai pensé que ca prendrait une aileron plus large par exemple ...

What does it take to be a " longboard" of type race ? As already discussed, it is necessary that the board plane up early, obviously the board must be light, the mast track can be adjusted while planing , the "keel" or centreboard is made out of carbon, the fin is made out of carbon and the board is rather controllable when direction is changed or under speed. One needs to be able to remove the "keel" from the water completely. That was not possible with the BIC Dufour. I would have thought this would have required a larger fin - to run with no centreboard.

Some say this board can be gybed like a shortboard !!

Pour sortir de l'eau completement, le dérive depasse la planche en haut. Il y a une couverte qui protège les pieds et donne la possibilité de facilement re-descendre le dérive.

For the centreboard to be taken out of the water completely , the keel sticks out of the board on top. There is a cover which protects the feet and allows one to push the keel/centreboard back down - with one's feet.

Le pied de mât est different et le "socket" aussi.

et l'autre coté plus haut ??

Il y a une genre de "pedale" pour être capable de changer la position du mât pendant qu'on "roule". MAIS c'est quoi la cord en dessus - qu'est-ce que ca fait dans la vie ?? Ca l'aire que c'est une genre de cord de sécurité.

There is some kind of pedal to allow one to change the position of the mast while moving, planing hopefully. BUTT what purpose does that cord serve ?? Apparently it is a safety cord that is NOT really required on this version of the CAT.

Le lendmain je suis allé sur l'eau avec ma voile MS-2 8.0 dans les vents très legères à Baie d'Urfé. La planche flotte mieux que mon BIC mais je trouve qu'elle flotte casement trop. Elle me fait penser à des BICs que j'ai essayé. Les nouveaux BICs flotte comme une bobin de pêche. C'est dur avec les vagues de face et de coté $%^& J'ai mis l'aileron dans le milieu et le "mast track" en arrière. Mais j'ai oublié de barré le mast track $%^&*($%^&*( Casement aller dans l'eau %^&*( Pas utilsé l'harnais aves ces vents faibles. Mais eu du fun pareil.

The next day I was on the water doing a test run using my MS-2 8.0 cambered sail in the very light winds at Baie d' Urfé. The board floats better than my BIC but I find it almost floats too much i.e. too floaty. It makes me think of other BICs that I have tested/tried. The new BICs float like a fishing bobber. It was difficult with small waves straight on and from the side $%^& I had put the fin in the midlle and the " mast track" at the back. But I forgot to lock the mast track $%^& * ($%^& * ( Almost flew into the water %^& * ( Did not use the harness in these weak winds.               However, definitely had fun.

La prochaine fois ca va être avec des vents plus forts !!!
Next time I will go in "bigger" winds !!!

Les caractéristiques du planche ??

Longeur : 380 cm
Largeur:     67 cm
Volume:   250 litres
Poids:     13.5 kilos
Dérive:      70  cm

actuellement j'ai découvert que les mesures sont moins que indiqué ici. J'ai un chat/"cat" qui est plus avant le "mega cat" avec "juste" 210 litres and largeur de 66 cm. Le longeur est 374 cm et le derive est mesuré à 63 cm. Je ne suis pas sure du poid !!

Board characteristics??
Length:  374 cm
Width:     66 cm
Volume: 210 litres
Weight:  between 13.2 and 16.6 kilos
"Keel":     63 cm measured
Fin:          12 inches/ 30 cm
Box:         A-box

The board goes VERY well upwind (like most longboards) and planes in lighter winds than I thought. It seems I have the earlier, smaller version and the later, larger version was more race oriented .. and approached the specifications of the infamous MegaCAT.

La planche va bien "upwind" et va "planer" dans les vents plus legères que j'ai pensé !!!

Voilà qu'est-e que j'ai écrit dans ma journal...hier le 30 septembre 2011

By the time I got back and was ready to go , the wind had dropped and everyone was getting off the water. Including the kite surfers. So, I went out on the water ALONE and PLANED with my MS-2 8-oh !!!  Some people commented on the Fanatic Ultra before i started:) They said they just donut make them like that any more. Even Helmut is talking about getting a longboard now !!

The above in italics is from my journal entry of 30SEPT2011.  The only issues I have now with the board now are - need to change footstraps and the deck is slippery - needs reDek !!!

I have now made a video to describe the board - forgot to mention that reDek has been applied:



The youth fleet´s top 3 board and sail setup was,
# 1 ESP 1, Fanatic Mega Cat, Neil Pryde RS:X 8.5 m2 and Loft sails 8.5
# 2 FIN 5,  SB Phantom Race 380, Neil Pryde RS:X 8.5 and Severne Raceboard 8.5
# 3 FRA 259, Fanatic Mega Cat, Neil Pryde RS:X 8.5 and Bic OD 8.5  

The ultimate raceboards were and are now all 380s like the Mega CAT, Phantom, Exocet, F2 Race 
NEXT STEP - gotta get me ona those  380's !!! 

During my first experiences with the Ultra-CAT, which i will call U-CAT from now on,  i felt that the board did not turn as tight as i would have liked. This was with tacks since gybes/jibes were NOT attempted. At first I thought a longer or bigger fin might help. However, some readings showed that fin placement played an important role in this... The further up the fin, the more "turny" it would become and "less control". The further back and it is to be somewhat more traction and perhaps even faster, butt less "turny". I had put the fin in the middle. Before I purchase a new fin that will cost as much as the board, i will do some experiments with moving the fin forward some ...
One place that does carry US box fins up to 40 + cm is gsport. Have written them to see availability and shipping !! 

On the longboard forum they are calling the Mega Cat fins trim box - thought the Ultra Cat was US box !!
Some US box seem to have an additional "fin" at the bottom/top. What's that all about ?? Will have to check the fin box on the U-CAT now $%^&*( 
Here's that Mega Cat fin discussion -

 In May of 2012 I changed the base of the CAT. I wanted to be able to remove sails from one board and put them on another ie swap boards instead of sails. This is NOT possible with the OLD boards cuz they all have proprietary mast bases. So, I took Yvan of AuVentFou's suggestion and CUT the old mast base. Then I purchased some washers and an 8 mm nut. This went on the standard Chinook US mast base. In order to put it on I need to loosen it about 4 turns, but then it tightens on fine.

Looks a little funny cuz it is NOT going snug to the board = NO matter, Will see how the feet like or dislike it !! 

Here is a photo :-) Also asked Yvan if I can return the aluminum extension I just purchased :-)

Found an interesting article taken from a 1991 magazine and on this site:

Finally found a video with a board like mine - he calls it a race board and puts some special music with it ...

HD Windsurfing Scottish Borders from Chris McColgan on Vimeo.

I had made adjustments so that the mast base is now a standard mast base with full pulley support - in order to be able to take race sails downhauled properly. This created other issues - the nut came off once in the middle of the local river and someone called the fire department and three(3) times the pin came out. And so, I needed to find a solution ...
First i thought this clamp might work ...

However, on the base a piece of plastic is in the way ..

However, since the base was off, could make nut tight ...

And added a rope to keep clip on ...

And now just need to test this setup !!
Update: have to remove the "rope" as it wrapped and pulled on the clip.

Here is a video that shows one can have a good time in light winds:

i like the sounds, the colours, under water stuff and sailing in light winds
NO harness and NO footstraps required
One day will post one with planing and some editing :-)

I cannot believe that I am still piddling around with the mast base %^&*() I worry about losing the clip and the round piece inside. These two(2) pieces are custom for this board and not used elsewhere. I may have found a similar mast base for sale and would go back to that if i could. At least have the choice. My next attempt was jamming a wooden dowel under the clip to ensure it does NOT come out. After that i need to ensure the nut does NOT come loose and perhaps raise it a bit - bolt is scratching the track.

The very next day in May ... 2013, i continued my "experiments" with this base... I added another washer so that the bolt would NO longer scratch along the middle of the mast track. I know there are ways to stop nuts from loosening, but there is not a lot of room on the bolt to try things... And so I added bolts - one on each side so that that portion of the mast base could only twist and NOT turn. It is starting to look like something from a science fiction movie or from a knee joint operation, butt if it does the job - that is all that matters ...

This board is after all the board i have used the most so far in 2013. Tried sailing with the 160/79 once and with the Formula 94 cm board once also. Those boards need specific wind conditions and are not as forgiving. More and more i am looking at getting a real longboard - something like a StarBoard Phantom 320 or even the freaky AHD Tactik, which is not really a longboard and may even be considered a hybrid...

For now - let the tests continue .... :-)

The first test run was a COMPLETE success !!!

Note: On the next run I DID have to re-tighten the mast base and as such made another minor adjustment...

Just the other day I came to the realization that Fanatic Ultra CAT makes for an interesting acronym. This longboard has just become my FUC board :-)

And yet another adjustment to the FUC mast base - i added a tie wrap.
This one may be the clincher ...

I still look for what could/would replace this board - should the need arise. So far it is still between Kona ONE and SB Phantom 320...with a lean towards the StarBoard...

In 2014 I busted the nose when i hit a sandbak and somewhere prior busted the clip. The mast base is proprietary and as such was crazy glued - seemed to hold, but is always a weak point with NO alternative. With the clip and the nose repair, this board stays at the chalet. I still enjoy it very much on the little lake and have replaced it at home on the St Lawrence River with the Mistral Equipe I LCS-XR which is VERY similiar in terms of specifications. On that mast track I have put a metal plate under the track and attached a standard US base. MUCH better,,,

I used to wonder how people managed to punch a hole in the nose of their boards. Well, I wonder NO MORE. My buddy Ed helped me fix this board to show it is invincible.  Here is the video when it made its return to the water :-) {still need to make a planing video with this board}

In 2016 I am trying to sell it as I now have way too many boards. Now it looks more like this:


It is a FANTASTIC board and the ONLY reason I am selling it is, I just have too many boards now. Currently have eight(8) boards !! For $150 , it is a steal for a GREAT board !!

SOLD in less than 10 days ... with mast foot, fin, carbon centreboard, some footstraps , etc

I did not make many good videos of this board - sadly ... found this ok one...

FFF vs BFF and "is windsurfing losing popularity"

Recently on iwindsurf i posted the question whether it was okay to ride with just the front foot in the straps. I have a phobia of getting stuck in the straps. The answer was clear - DONUT do this %^&*( However, this generated a HUGE discussion {AGAIN} on front foot first/ FFF versus back foot first BFF.

For me it was clear quickly that the ideal STARTING point was -- get up to speed {not too much}, get in front strap, hook in and then get in back strap. Today they are up to page 9 - read for yourselves:

Just when i thought windsurfers were arguing only on this point just for arguments sake, i discovered another long winded discussion on the auzzie forum about whether windsurf popularity was declining.Well, they are up to page 16 %^&*(

It feels like kitesurfers log here just to give it to the windsurfers ...

Some photos posted in the discussion are as follows:

obviously making fun of the polka dots and the "bra"
and this one ??

Dani posted some comments and my intention is NOT to re-hash the lengthy "discussion" from down under. What is sad is: equipment is definitely going up in $$$ now. Air Canada was threatening to no longer allow windsurf equipment for travellers - what, not heavy enuff 4 the size ? And the usual issues of storage, transport to the beach, expensive repairs, etc.

What i try to advocate locally is: perhaps it is time to go back to the longboards ? I hear KONAs are the rage in the US of A and i am SURE it is just a matter of time that we see them everywhere here. I brought my BIC Dufour down from the in-law's chalet and i use it more than 50 % of my outings. No longboard and i would be down to less than twenty (20) outings per summer season - just like all my local windsurf buddies %^&*(

In other words, lack of steady , "good" winds means NOT many outings. It is VERY difficult to be a weekend windsurf warrior locally %^&*()

Lost my weed fin #$%^&*()

Was perhaps too anxious to go out on the water %^&* Definitely remember hand tightening the powerboxed weed fin. Definitely remember tightening the vent plug and THINK i tightened the fin with the screw driver. I often have premonitions and somehow was feeling attached to the fin that day - like it was an old friend AND had thoughts of checking the fin each time i grazed a rock %^&*( Did i listen to my inklings - obviously NOT. When i hit a rock more solidly, i tried to go and learned what spin out is - the board just went sideways. Have i lost my fin ? YUP %^&*()

Thought perhaps it floated away and looked downstream - nothing. Swam in to shore and checked with another fin - yup, they sink %^&*() Tried to go back and find it - yeah right ... This is in the mucky local river where i swore i would NEVER go with my shortboard again. Again, yeah right %^&*()

Checked the web and people say things like - i have sailed 25 years and never lost a powerbox fin. Just want those people to know that that makes me feel a whole lot better and i hope you manage to lose a fin in your next session ... just kidding :)

I thought i had the pattern down and screwed up again %^&*() I have to learn to slow down and double check stuff. Especially vent plug and fin.

New rule - NO hand tightening the fin from now on %^&*()

just hope this has NEVER happened to you either and may it NEVER happen to you ...

the good news - i will purchase a Makani weed fin that covers 7.0 to 8.0 :)

thanx for the comments Dani - will hafta check you guys out in Cape Cod !!! :)
added the blog to my faves liste :)
AND NO more hand tightening does NOT imply power tools :)
ok ok - nor glue either - man oh man, one has to be careful what one "says" here :)
on one forum i wrote that i fell after hitting some rocks, butt was okay
someone responded - glad to know your butt was ok :)

BEES bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Last weekend in late summer 2011 we went to the apiary/bee place called Intermiel in Mirabel: The "animateur" , as he is called in French, is an entomologist and was VERY enthusiastic about the subject(s). He took us around the plant - starting with a small DVD on the history of the place, discussed some bee products, let himself get stung, showed some hives and then ended it with some lovely samples of hydromel, which is water with fermented honey - up to 14 % alcohol. Unfortunately I do not drink and could only smell the wonderful samples. They also now have apple cider and some ice wine.

For me the most interesting part was the bee by-products:

1) bee pollen: this is taken from the bees as they enter the hive. Obviously not all since the hive needs it as food. The collected pollen is cleaned and kept dry. It contains all the nutrients and minerals for bees AND humans. I purchased a small container and take about one teaspoon per day. It has helped my thinking, digestion and energy levels. Some people have side affects and I have had some muscle cramps. Apparently this has been around for centuries - is it a well kept secret ?

2) propolis: is a substance bees use to keep intruders out of the hive and when they do intrude, they kill them and cover them in this substance. Apparently it acts as a disinfectant and mummifying agent. When I cut myself windsurfing , the only treatments i used were water from the dirty river and some propolis ointment. I can tell you it did feel like it healed quickly with NO pain or infection. The cut was through the skin and healed to the point of being back on the water and windsurfing in less than one week. My wife purchased some propolis from Walmart, which comes from France and is taken internally.

There is also "raw propolis" that one chews. I have tried it twice. I chew it until I cannot chew it anymore and spit it out once and swallowed the 2nd time. Not sure the swallowing caused diarrhea or not, but will check back later on that one ... WELL, as far as I am concerned, it is true, swallowing this type of propolis will cause diarrhea - for me in any case. And as the Fench say,"Jamais deux sans trois !!"

Have also purchased propolis ointment now. This was what i tried when i cut my hand windsurfing. I felt it helped my hand cure quickly with NO infection. The cut went to the meat. Here is a pic of the ointment - my hand injury is posted in the new journal entry section :-) hand injury foto

3) royal jelly: is secreted from the glands of young bees for a certain amount of time ONLY and fed to the "babies"/pupa. This allows them to increase in growth exponentially. If more than usual is given, the individual bee becomes a queen !!! In other words, it is some kind of super booster. People take it for clarity of thinking and energy boosting as well. I have NOT tried this YET. {will post better pic when i get some :) } So, here is a pic that I took -- instructions say one to three teaspoons per day - check the size of the "tea spoon" :-)

The reason I write about these things here is: these are natural products that can be used by windsurfers - or anyone for that matter for the purposes described above.

Note: all these products do seem expensive !!
btw the chocolate and honey mixes are delicious AND sinful !!

I do NOT drink any alcohol of any kind. However, i do find it extremely interesting that mead is made from bee by-products - as is hydro-mel. These honey wines have 10 to 15 % alcohol and are very aromatic. The two(2) pictured here have won awards !! As a non-drinker and parent, i do not advocate use of wine. However, i do know many people are wine lovers and fanatics. I merely wish to suggest to those of you who do enjoy a glass of wine to try these... So far, I have heard nothing but good things about them ...And i do enjoy their bouquet :-)

As you may have noticed, I did not depict honey here and I will, but what I found of interest in 2016 is this Manuka honey that comes from New Zealand. Apparently the combination of the manuka bush with the honey has even more healing powers. NOT all Manuka honey is greated equal and they actually rate on some UMF factor ... Will find a decent pic of this one as well ...

And of course I forgot the hand balm. It may work better for cracked skin or eczema than the propolis skin cream - depending on the person. I use propolis exclusively and my wife uses the balm. Each to their own and I stand behind both products - excellent reviews from all who have tried either ...

Patrick Bergeron is coming to Montreal

The local windsurf club in Montreal is called APVM - l'Association de Planche à Voile à Montréal = The Windsurf Association of Montreal and have a website

The reason I give an extended url is the reason for this post. There is an event called Advanced Clinique. This is to be given by the infamous Patrick Bergeron for a limited number of people. Some training indoors and some on the water = weather permitting.

I have never personally met Pat, but we have chatted via e-mail and a buddy of mine was lucky enuff to get a good deal on one of his SW Retro sails - still in the bag !! ie NOT used.

So, if you are interested you better RUSH off and sign up !!!