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Archive for the ‘Watersports Towables’ Category

Wakeboard General Information and History

posted by The Captain @ 12:51 PM
Monday, June 11, 2012

The following info was borrowed from Wikipedia under the GNU Free Documentation License.

Wakeboarding is a surface water sport which involves riding a wakeboard over the surface of a body of water behind a boat or Cable System . It was developed through a combination of water skiing, snowboarding and surfing techniques.

The rider is towed behind xi boat or a cable park; typically at speeds of 18-24 miles per hour (29-38 km/h), depending on water conditions, rider’s weight, board size and most importantly, the rider’s personal preference. Wakeboarding can also be performed on a variety of media including closed-course cables, winches, PWCs and ATVs.

Riding

Using edging techniques, the rider can move outside of the wake or cut rapidly in toward the wake. Jumps are performed by hitting the wake and launching into the air. This can also be done by hitting a kicker (a jump). There is also the slider (a rail bar) in which a rider approaches and rides along keeping his balance. Once a rider improves in the sport, he or she can progress to tricks high in the air. As the rope tightens the rider gains speed toward the wake. When the rider goes airborne, the tightened rope launches him and while in the air, at which point the rider may attempt to do tricks.

Personalize

Different styles of wakeboards have various shapes and sizes. With this in mind, it’s important to keep personal preference and weight in mind. The larger the board (width and length), the better it floats and edges. Larger boards also make it more difficult to perform advanced tricks.

In addition, riding styles are determined by a boards camber. Manufacturers refer to this as the boards “rocker.” The two main rockers are known as the Continuous and the Three-Stage. A Continuous rocker, self-spoken, has a continuous curve throughout the top sheet. These allow for a smoother, faster ride without surface resistance. The Three-Stage rocker is made up of a flat center and abrupt changes to the tail and nose. This design was manufactured to provide more “pop” when launching off of the boats wake, allowing for more hang-time (time spent in the air).

Most wakeboards are designed and manufactured with fins. Some are molded into the board; others are detachable usually made out of aluminum, carbon fiber, or plastic. Each design determines how aggressive the board will track (“catch”) the water. Although designs cannot be altered, fins of different sizes are sold separately to better personalize the ride. Advanced riders are sometimes known to remove the fins while beginners will use them to provide better stability.
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Development of the sport

Wakeboarding arose in the late 1980s after the advent of Skiboarding.

Incorrectly thought to be originally created by a surfer named Tony Finn in the mid 1980′s ‘Ski-boarding’ or ‘Skurfing’ then wakeboarding, was actually created in New Zealand by surfboard shaper Allan Byrne and friends such as Kevin Jarrett. Allan Byrne lent a ‘Skurf board’ to Jeff Darby and friends in Queensland Australia who started to make their own and who later came in contact with Tony Finn who was to later produce their brand ‘Skurfer’ under royalty.

Recently in Wakeboard Magazine in June of 2008 a photo surfaced and was published from pre 1979 of Ron Seidenglanz and Robb Seidenglanz surfing a wake being towed behind a boston whaler in Corona Del Mar California. As an adult Ron Seidenglanz spent from age 24 on to now, over 16 years making wake board films and pushing the envelope of documentation while developing a family business as Sidwayz Films. Developing the sport with as many people as possible thou documentation and community organization and love of film making. You decide which way to look at the history of wake boarding.

Many years prior to Tony Finn and the ‘Skurfer’, Australian surfboard shaper and inventor Bruce McKee launched in Australia 1982, the world’s first mass-produced plastic, roto-moulded construction ski-board (Skurfboard) named the ‘Mcski’, later ‘SSS’ skiboard and later ‘Wake-snake’. The board had adjustable rubber foot-straps, concave tunnel bottom and a keel fin. Two smaller side fins were later added for greater hold and more manoeuverability.

Bruce McKee and associate Mitchell Ross negotiated with USA’s Medalist Waterskis and the first American production was launched. The launch of the product, American version being named the ‘Surf-Ski’ was in 1984 at Chicagos ‘IMTEC’show. At the show McKee also met Tony Finn who would be the proposed Californian representative. Tony Finn, went on to do his own negotiations with Darby and company from Australia and the result as mentioned above were the US boards later launched under the ‘Skurfer’ brand name.

The term “wakeboard” was coined by Porter Daughtry (Brooks, GA), as well as the concept and design, along with his brother Murray and a Pro snowboarder they sponsored. Paul approached Herb O’Brien with the idea and the introduction of the “hyperlite” wakeboard, named by Eric “The Flyin Hawaiian” Perez, laid the groundwork for evolution of the wakeboard throughout the 1990s. Liquid Force was started by Finn and Redmond.

The World Skiboard Association was founded in 1989 and the First World Skiboard Championships was held on the Island of Kauai, Hawaii, on the Wailua River. The next year Eric Perez defended his title against Darin Shapiro. This is when the Hyperlite wakeboard was introduced and blew everyone away. The first US Nationals were held later that same year in Colorado Springs, CO on Prospect lake, hosted by Tommy Phillips. Competitions began popping up and around the United States throughout the early 1990s. Wakeboarding was added as a competitive sport in the X Games II. The World Skiboard Association “changed its focus” and was re-named the World Wakeboard Association.

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evo | Wake

Water Sled Safety Tips

posted by The Captain @ 11:59 AM
Monday, June 11, 2012

It might be the first season when you are taking your kids for some water sled fun, or it might be your family tradition from many years- safety is the most important thing when it comes to water sports.

Here are some tips that will make water sledding safer and more fun:

  • When you are on a water sled, make sure that you are accompanied by a designated spotter. Also, you must be able to communicate with the spotter at all times using hand signals.
  • Don’t go water sledding too early or too late. Wait for one hour after sunrise to begin sledding, and finish sledding one hour before sunset.
  • It’s not safe for the boat to run parallel to the shore. This is because shores have shallow water, which is dangerous for sledding. Besides, the rider might sway into the shore.
  • The boat should never get too close to swimmers or other personal property of people.
  • Make sure you wear a life jacket, because if you crash against a strong wave of water, you might bounce off the water sled. If a child is sledding on water, the jacket must be properly fitted according to their size. Any floatation device that is just ‘close to the right size’ shouldn’t be used.
  • Ensure that the driver has the right boaters’ license.

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6 Tips for Water Tube Safety

posted by The Captain @ 11:48 AM
Monday, June 11, 2012

If you are planning to go water tubing with your family, there are some water tube safety guidelines that you must keep in mind to have the safest and most enjoyable experience.

1. Use a PFD

Wearing a personal floatation device (PFD) is always a good idea. During rough water tubing moments, there are chances that you might fall off the tube, so you should be careful.

2. Know the equipment

You should know the capabilities of the water tube you are using. Read the manufacturer’s guidelines for tubing capacity by weight, size, maximum towing speed, number of riders, and age limits.

3. Use a spotter

Designate a person as spotter who will lookout for tubing accidents because it will be helpful for the driver to focus on oncoming obstacles.

4. Water regulations

You should be familiar with regulations that govern the water body on which you are planning to go tubing. One factor to consider is the towing speed.

5. Driver

Make sure your driver is sober, alert, and responsible. He should keep a safe distance from other boats in the area and watch out for water hazards like buoys, docks, and rocks.

6. Secure tow line

The tow line must be tied securely before you take off. You should also check out for any signs of wear and tear. If you find that the line is worn out, it must be replaced immediately. Don’t use a common rope – use only the rope that is meant for water towing.

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Must-Follow Towing Safety Guidelines

posted by The Captain @ 11:29 AM
Monday, June 11, 2012

For many people, staying on the boat (or rather behind the boat) is the best way to spend their weekend. Skimming on water can be done using tubes, kneeboards, sleds, or skis. But before you set out for an adventure, here are some important safety tips to be followed:

Inspect the equipment

Check the equipment to see if there are any cuts, nicks, or frays on any part, including the towline.

Check the handle as well. Then continue to test the wakeboard, tube, or skis to see if there are any signs of wear and tear.

Secure the towline

Rope should be secured firmly to the stern (at the back) or at the central position of the boat. Don’t attach the ski rope to railing.

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Beware of propeller

Once you have secured the towline, take care that your tow board or tube is not near propeller of the boat in the beginning. Once it is clear, move the boat away from the skier so that the line is tight.

Point ahead

When you go water skiing, before you get underway, you must ensure that the steering wheel and the ski towline are pointed straight ahead. In case they’re not, the skier will not find it easy to stand up. If the boat is pointing ahead, then the skier can get up easily with a little acceleration.

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evo | Wake

Wakeboarding Tips for Sure Success

posted by The Captain @ 11:09 AM
Monday, June 11, 2012

Wakeboarding is a fun sport. If you like snowboarding, surfing, swimming, or skiing, you’ll simply love wakeboarding. If it’s wakeboarding for you this summer, we have some cool tips for beginners.

Long rope

Get a long rope. The longer the rope, the calmer water you’ll have to face. This is why longer ropes are suggested for beginners.

Weight balance

You need to understand how to balance your weight to change speed. With more control on speed, you can easily speed up and slow down according to water conditions. To slow down, lean your body weight on your back foot, and to speed up, place your body weight on the front foot. With weight balancing, not only can you manage speed, but you can also stay safe.

 

Determination

Many beginners fail at the first attempt and say goodbye to wakeboarding.In order to master this sport, you need to be persistent and keep practicing. . Determination will make you as good as a professional.

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Speedometer

Don’t rely on a speedometer while wakeboarding. Though the boat’s speedometer will show a number, but these devices easily malfunction and don’t generally give an accurate reading. If you want to get the right reading, you need to rely on yourself and decide if you should speed up or slow down. If you increase the speed keeping just the speedometer reading in mind, you might end up being injured.

 

The right foot

To be a master of wakeboarding, you need to know which foot is the lead foot. This will be the front foot and it will manage all your weight. One way to find this is to notice yourself wearing pants and see which foot you put in first.

 

For wakeboarding accessories, click here.

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evo | Wake

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