Translator from GOOGLE

Fanatic Blast

Just when I was getting used to the idea of "free move" windsurf boards\sailboards ...
The following things happened ...

  1. The freemoves gained such popularity that ...
  2. The Gecko replaced the Fanatic Shark completely - NO MORE Sharks !!
  3. The Fanatic Hawk 135 disappeared
  4. The BLAST as a "free carve" showed up and then
  5. The Hawks disappeared completely - NO MORE Hawks !!
Somewhere I read the disappearing model(s) had been around for about ten(10) years ...
For me certain models like the Sharks and the Rockets feel like they are timeless ...
Excellent boards that are difficult to improve on  even more ...
The Tabou Rocket has managed to stay around - for now ....

Before we go too far, the Blast is apparently based on the Stubby concept and looks like this:


That image makes it look like a typical freeride and does NOT show how it has a parallel outline with the stubby nose .. Let's try again ...



Ah, much better. One can see the narrow diamond tail (like the AHDs) and the wide middle to front that is almost parallel plus the wide, short stubby nose ...

Personally I am NOT a big fan of the narrow tail nor the short boards. Thought this was due to my lack of windsurf skills, but was reassured when reading some comments from John Ingebritsen on the iwindsurf forums where he does NOT like the short boards nor narrow tails on wide boards and he IS a blaster !!

Here is an extract from the 2017 Fanatic brochure:

clique to enlarge
Local windsurfer, Force10 has had the Gecko 120 LTD and now a Blast 115 LTD.
Was surprised that he would change out so quickly ... and asked him about it ...


"The Gecko is a very easy board to sail, supremely polyvalent (multi-purpose), quite fast but it lacks 2 things:

Power in the tail for larger sails in lighter winds, so with my 8.3 it was only good with the 8.3 fully loaded" and "The board was getting pretty big and bouncy around the 6.4 mark"...

These comments don't surprise me due to the narrow tail of the Gecko, but I do NOT see how the Blast would be any better in that regard. However, sailor in question also has a Fanatic Falcon LightWind 152 which should be fine with an 8.x sail and the appropriate fin. Since I have a JP SLW92 which is similar to that Falcon, those boards are fine in 8.x weather if and when there is NOT much chop. With 90+ cm width they tend to slap the water if one is not skimming over it !!

The Gecko 120 is 76 cm wide and slated for sails 6.5-8.5. When I used an 80 cm freeride with a 7 meter sail in the appropriate conditions, it was rough and so, it is not surprising that the Gecko would have issues in 6.4 weather ...

So, how does the Blast 115 address these issues or concerns ?? I do NOT think the power in the tail will be improved... However, the board with 66 cm width should be ideal in 6.4 conditions. My personal concern, once again, is the board is only 232 cm long. 

Force10 does a good description  of the Blast 115 here and he does mention the Blast seems to be for more advanced sailors while the Gecko 120 is a little more forgiving and user friendly...
I will attempt to translate the key factors into English here ...
Actually, let's try google translate :

with some key points about the Blast 115...

"Fast as a slalom board, but "easy" as a Freeride. "

"If you compare with the Gecko 120, the Gecko has more stability, gybes more easily in moderate wind but for the rest, Blast is superior in planing and in high speed gybes."

Force10 mentions "nose dives" in his reviews as do even some reviews on  the shorter Free Moves.

What about the Hawk ??

"The Blast replaces the Hawk with a different approach; It's not the same feeling, it's more "connected", direct, significantly more aggressive in the gybes without asking for better technique, I feel more attack with the Blast. The Hawk cut the chop, whereas the Blast flies over it (absorbs it), you must be in the straps and not be afraid to press the gas ... 

the short nose sinks a little only if you are semi-planing (schlogging)..."

Not sure why, but when I read all this, I get a feeling that it sounds like the new Severne FOX.

When are we satisfied with the boards we have ? It feels like we are always looking for the board that planes earlier. Reminds me of the commercials\adverts back in the day when we watched TV\television. They were always advertising "cleaning even more than white" and the "closer shave". Read somewhere that we now have seven blade razors ??

In any case... it does sound like a FUN board that can kick ass ... If you want to go with bigger sails or are a little less "technical" than Force10 or heavier like me , I guess either a Gecko 120 , 133 or Blast 130 would be the ticket.

Cannot find many videos other than the marketing video @ this time ...

Fanatic Blast 2017 from Fanatic International on Vimeo.


Now get out there and ride !!! sorry - BLAST !!

Now some videos are starting to show up ...

fanatic blast 130 ltd from Rave Creative Ltd on Vimeo.

In the comments section Clyde, who is a lightweight sailor, felt the Blast 115 did NOT meet up to his expectations. He feels it does NOT schlogg well and in terms of early planing has to send it downwind to get it going. Ironically when I posted these concerns on windsurf forums, people suggested freemoves and freewaves. No-one addressed it on the Blast other than one suggestion to move back in the mast track bit.

from iwindsurf forum:
http://www.iwindsurf.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=33325&sid=f74eaa80556719c2967519dfeae343bf

wazenski:
Bought a 115L Blast from Ocean Air this spring. Way fun. Glad I bought it. 

I own an aging 115L Fanatic Freewave. I consider this board the ultimate light wind wave board - fast , smooth, maneuverable. Compared to the Freewave, the Blast holds a bigger sail more comfortably (due to it's tail width), and edges out the Freewave in pure straight line speed. The Freewave with its narrower tail is more responsive in turns and performs better in waves by design, but the Blast turns with amazing confidence at high speed as it digs and holds its rail at full speed. 

alap:
so yesterday I sailed my brand new Blast 115, 2017, LTD 

I thing this is my first review, if I buy new thing I typically do it on closeout; so review is kinda obsolete. This is probably a really new thing that I bought (although it is 2017, and yes it was on sale) 

in my review I'll try to avoid the use of words good and bad. When we say good it actually means better, and bad means worse. All is based on prev experience and on relative comparison. 

So, first of all my level is intermediate, may be aspiring intermediate. I wndsrf for 35 years and I enjoy everything from 8.5 to 3.5, jybe being my weakest link. I complete almost all my jibes (well not on 4.0 and stronger) and this week I even started to exit planing (thanks to Peconic Puffin, Coach and Kevin K). 

The reason I bought this 115 is that I had 
Fanatic Ray 145 light edition, 82 cm wide, 2011 
Fanatic Ray 130 wood, 71 cm wide, 2011 
Exocet Carve 103 liters, 64 cm wide, I think about 15 years old 

Although 145 and 130 are identical shape, 145 is lighter than 130 and actually better. I first bought 130 for 8.5 primarily, but it is a bit small, works nice in the gust with 8.5 but in the lulls it is a bit too small. 145 on another hand is perfect with 8.5 and even with 7.0 it is better than 130 

So basically I had two boards for similar conditions, and when it was blowing strong 7.0 this Ray 130 with its width was too bouncy for the chop. 

So I wanted to move from 145...130...103 for sails 8.5... 7.0... 6.0 to 
145...115...103 

The width wise I had 82...73...64 

So the Blast 115 with width 66 seemed like a good choice. 

(Also notice my absence of experience with other modern brands and trends, like Magic Ride, Ray 145 from 2011 is definitely the latest and the best I have sailed) 

Straps are in outboard position, and I started with mast foot in the middle at 130. Later I moved it two cms forward, and this was much better. It was better in pumping on the plane and more stable and also first in the chop there was like a noise of blasting from my fin (no pun). I am guessing it set the board into more horizontal position. I'll move another cm forward next time just to find the optimum. 

Wind wise first two hours it was more like an overpowered sailing on 6.0. I was on stock 38 fin (i don't have smaller power box fin, but I'll buy it shortly), but not a single spin out. 

Then it died down, I rigged 7.0 and for 15 minutes I sailed it in the perfect 7.0 conditions, with very moderate chop. Then it hit really strong, I was really overpowered had couple spin outs and sailed another two hours on 6.0 again very well powered and sometimes overpowered. 

To me in those conditions it was absolutely better than my Ray 130, no comparison whatsoever. In fact I would be using my Ray with those 7.0 only for those 15 minutes. And coming back when it hit would be much more difficult than on this Blast. And using this Ray 130 with 6.0 - forget it! 

I am not sure with 6.0 what woulda be better, this Blast 115 or Exocet 103. Very very competitive, even with wrong fin. 

For my liking blasting on the reach I liked it very much. Very responsive when you want to "wave" sail the chop. Very stable straight on the reach, ignoring this chop. Very comfortable upwind and downwind. Shlogs upwind well as well. 

Uphauling on flat water in the wind shadow with occasional gusts - had no problem on both sails. 

Jybes - liked it. As I said, exited few jybes with speed (but also did so on Monday in stronger winds on 103 and 90 liters - so I can't contribute my success to the board exclusively). 

I think that the width 66 with parallel outlines serves two purposes. First when blasting the drag is created by the max width, so it is the same as the similar width of more classical shape (like compare to my Exocet 103 l at 64 cm width). On another hand the effective width is actually wider in lighter conditions (like pumping, or recovering from the jybe with no exit speed, or burring the rail when shloging upwind, or uphauling) 

I also like the weight, it is light, and this is great feature. The fact that 130 was heavier than 145 was an eyesore. 

The only unusual thing is the wide boxy nose that I see all the time when on the reach, but it doesn't affect the performance in any way. It is just there, a bit an unusual view, but I was already accustomed to it by the end of the day. Also speaking about the nose, NSI pad was applied and the one that fits is the widest possible square pad 

To sum things up, I am very happy with my upgrade, and at the moment I can't complain about the single thing.

I had my second session yesterday and want elaborate a bit. 
The forecast and my local knowledge was calling for 7.0 conditions, but when I arrived it was 6.0 

I took my Blast anyways instead of 103 and had a fantastic time for probably 1.5 hours. Then it died and I was shlogging doing light air pivots and light air upwind and then even straight downwind for last 100 meters 

Then I took Ray 145 thinking if may be I should rig 7.0 as well. But it came back so I went again for a very good hour on the Blast 115 with the same 6.0 

Then it died again and I switched boards. First 45 minutes it was very nice light air shlogging, turns, upwind... and then one gust, another, increasing and increasing. Certainly the water was very calm in the beginning and no chop and it required quite a bit of pumping to get going. First time actually sailing 6.0 on 82 cm board, but it was fantastic. In jybes it was a bit more drag that needed, but the extra stability for not falling. Then the wind was even stronger with a chop back, so I quit. 

I must say it was extremely nice combination of one sail 6.0 and 145 and 115 complementing each other. 

I have no drawbacks to report on this 115. Easy to pump on, easy upwind when powered and even easier when shlogging, very predictable in the jibe, no spin outs even with stock 38 fin. A very good sensation of speed and very nimble under the feet, and very controllable if you want to ride it in S line, chase some bumps, or turn downwind a bit to sail from the "wave" 

Also I recently bumped in the specifications of 2011 Ray. The 115 LTD version has the same weight as this Blast and practically same dimensions, although of course it is not a stubby. I certainly suspect that it woulda be very similar in terms of performance. But there is no way to find out Smile And no reason. Regardless, I have now very nice quiver of two LTD Fanatics, bigger Ray 145 2011 and 2017 Blast 115, that work very good together.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g44K9iJc0u4&feature=youtu.be

21 comments :

  1. I hope I like the Blast 115 as much as my 2003 Exocet Speed Slider 67 118 - I just bought one!

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    Replies
    1. Hope so too !!
      Let us know how it works out for you !!

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    2. On Blue Marsh Lake in Reading PA it was a disappointing day. The Blast does not schlog well. I was missing my Bic Techno 283 that I had sold years ago - one of the best boards ever made in my opinion (but it needs a more standard fin box)
      At Dewey Beach, DE on the first day on the Blast I got hammered trying to uphaul a 7.5 Koncept. Next days were better on a 6.0 and more downhauled 7.5 however my concern as a 130 lb. 5'3" 163 year old is that I would like something more traditional yet lightweight and efficient. Yes, it seemed fast yet controllable on a plane occasionally getting some quick air on the chop, but to get it planning as in many recent shapes you have to shove it downwind and then head up. I'm wondering if I'd like the Gecko better or a Rocket 125. Again, I don't get to the shore very often so I need a board that schlogs comfortably and is able to use my most used sails here in PA 7.5 and 8.5 and the 6.0 when the wind picks up.

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    3. hmmm @ 66 cm width, it is NOT a wide board and so, it is not the width that is an issue in the schlogging department. In terms planing without pumping or heading downwind ... width and longer fins are our friends. Before changing the board, I would try different fins. A longer fin helps in early planing and may even help in schlogging, unless it is the volume that is the issue in the slower mode - at your weight, it should not be the issue ...
      don't give up yet ....

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    4. when I posted your concerns , Clyde, one suggestion was to move the mast track back a bit for planing. Others felt that with your weight and those sails you should be "blasting" - pardon the pun :-)

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    5. I had an Exocet speedslider also, such an amazing board

      I just bought a Mistral Equipe II top condition for the light wind and as a windsurfer (started in the 80 s) i dont like the design of the new boards...raceboards look like floating doors.etc) so i decided that in wont buy anymore boards from factories, i am going back to buy custom made boards, shapers are back and we have more choice than 10 years ago...so ....

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    6. By the way i live in Montreal now but i spent a part of my life ripping the sea on the west coast of France (Brittany)

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    7. Hey FlyingFish: Where do you sail ? I was @ OKA Sunday the 6th @ La CrĂȘte, OKA Parc with my Mistral Equipe 2 XR and my HotSailsMaui SpeedFreak 8.5 :-)

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  2. hey Joe.....i was at the Baie D Urfé, the yacht club, i also saw a Kona and another board
    i order a new gasket (the brown one under the board for the daggerboard,) my equipe II is very clean unless the old gasket...i just got the board, with a 6.5 m noth sails, i have to buy a way bigger one .. i used to be very good in the rough sea,used to live in the seaside for decades, and it s the first time ever that i bought such a huge board lol,,,, on facebook i put the pictures of my ex boards and they were way smaller.... anyway, i will keep the mistral for the lightwind and i will buy a custom made board for the medium,,,,,i dont know how to ad pics here :)

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    Replies
    1. the Kona is my buddy Yan aka Sailboarder. Next time you see him say hello from Joe Windsurfer :-)

      Delete
  3. my Equipe II is a 1994 model CHS Carbon Hybrid Sandwich....and my daggeboard is in carbon fiber , so ultra light, i could not believe it ..

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  4. cool, i sent an e mail with the pix of the boards :)
    i speak french very well. english not bad and my german is so rusty lol

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  5. At lakes bay on the Blast on my first ride out I got catapulted when I hit chop on a gybe. I hit the water so hard that my neck got twisted. I am 63 yrs. old and wondering if there would be a safer board. I actually bought a used Techno 148 (Core model) for light winds here in central PA and am thinking about replacing my Blast with a 2015 Exocet RS4 111 slalom board. Any thoughts about this?

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    Replies
    1. i am NOT the right person to answer such a question..
      will assume you mean a BLAST 115 since you ask about RS4 111 - both are so similar in width - 66 vs 69 cm and length 232 vs 235. the BLAST is freemove and RS4 is slalom. which one gybes better in chop ?? or is it a matter of skills ...

      Delete
    2. the Exocet RS is a slalom board, it forgives less than a blast. it s rigid. insanely fast when you have the skills, because it requires lot of skills to push this machine ,and good legs to push on the fin.... gybes are more technical, rails are more aggressive, do not forget, the RS series by Exocet are for the race full pin, those boards runs properly while overpowered and flying on their tails at lightspeed..... there are ON and OFF boards..... I had Exocets in the past, they are amazing boards

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  6. I haven't catapulted in about a decade and I'm wondering if it could be the board. Maybe I'll try moving the mast track back. One really nice thing about the blast is that there is a sweet spot when powered up and really pushing on the fin. With your hips slightly forward in a locked in position this board is extremely fast.

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  7. I was planning on buying a Blast 115 until I read your comments. Where you able to tune it to enjoy it? Do you need to be an expert to use it?

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    Replies
    1. have suggested clyde answer your question
      sounds like he dialed it in
      Force10 loves it and is sticking with it
      for me as a heavyweight that is small - 115 liters and 232x66
      for sure 6.x sails will fly on it
      also, for tacks 232 is short
      you could also ask on the the Fanatic forum !!

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    2. all reviews of the BLAST are good
      they DO suggest you have some underlying skills
      like foot straps, jibes, etc
      this review translated thorough
      https://www.telstarsurf.nl/tests/84/test-fanatic-blast-2017/

      Delete
  8. hi there
    i m an old windsurfer, (52) and i REALLY don t like the boards now, they have square noses square tails, they are ultra short, very wide, they more and more look like the course racing boards (look like doors), i know it glides sooner, faster (lightwind) easier to ride BUT, I truly miss the pointy noses, the pintails or swallow tails with wingers of the boards of the 80 s 90 s and up,,,,we were riding sinkers not doors. and we had so much blast with these small boards
    Pascal Maka keeps saying he doesn t want to ride a board wider than 63 or 65 centimeters,,,,I agree with with him....
    I will not buy a brand new board now from a factory, I am turning back to the shapers and will get the boards I want, i know, it s more difficult to ride but the rewards are amazing because don t get me wrong, despite what the magazines, the tests and so ever keep saying, the boards now are not any faster than many good boards we had in the past....just easier ( I compare with the GOOD boards we had, not the firsts gens of Tiga in polyethylene, or hifly, alpha etc, I compare to F2 sunset bullit, then thommen etc, AHD, Ace ,,,,)
    sorry if it looks nostalgic or biaised but for the same amount of money, and most of the time now a better quality you can design the board of your dreams and ride like a devil :) ..........
    FYI i had Spoon, Tiga, Bic, Mistral, F2, AHD, ACE, EXOCET, Customs made, few boards of each brands cited, and some I forget I guess,.

    the main improvement for me is the rigs, sails are amazing now, masts and wishbones lighter and more resistant and also fins incredibly efficient,

    hope to see you on the water ...and never forget, windsurfing is the best sport of the world, you cruise, trash waves or go bonkers at lightspeed

    Fabrice

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