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Name: Litewave Dave
Age: 40-something (barely)
Job Title: Owner/Designer
Designing: Composites for 35 years, kiteboards for 12 years
Product Name: Litewave Wing 2011
Product Category: Light Wind Twin Tip
Sizes Available: 146, 153, and 161cm (all are 44cm wide at the tips and 41cm wide at the hips)
Release Date: July 2010
You introduced the Wing in 2008 as your light wind board. Now in its third generation, what is the most significant change in the 2011 model?
The 2011 model has retained the original dog-bone outline, but about everything else is different. The bottom has a radical single concave that really smoothes out the ride and improves grip. The core is now vertically laminated Pawlonia wood which gives fantastic life and feel to the board.
The 2011 Wing is much thinner, lighter, and a little more flexy than last year’s model with just a tad of rocker to handle the chop. We incorporated torsion bars into the new 3D mold that provide side to side rigidity in the tips while letting them flex end to end. This keeps your fins performing well and not flexing off. The new spirograph graphics are amazing and offer lots of windows into the wood core.
What was your biggest challenge during the prototype phase?
We switched over from our USA factory to a well known factory in Thailand for this board, so tooling up, approving drawings, getting samples, and putting the final design into production took some time.
Does the Wing’s construction differ much from your Spirit line of boards?
Not very much. The construction is very similar. In the larger boards, we add a little more unidirectional cloth to compensate for flex incurred from length. This keeps all sizes riding similarly.
What are some of the other key product features and performance characteristics on the new board?
Last year’s Wing had a flat bottom. The 2011 single-concave bottom really makes it handle a lot better. It is noticeable for sure. Offset fins let you get more grip and ride easier when the wind is light and your board is flat. It can still be ridden toeside because the rail is so thin and grippy.
Do you recommend specific sizes of the Wing for riders of different weights?
I recommend the 161 for riders over 200 lbs. and the 153 for those weighing around 165-199 lbs. The 146 is for smaller riders. Of course, if you want to ride in the minimum wind you can go big!
What do you think riders often overlook or should consider when choosing light wind gear in general?
I think too many riders look to the kite as the light wind solution when it is really the board that makes a huge difference. Having the hourglass side cut shape is very important too. By having the extra flare on the ends, you are getting a lot more planing surface right where you need it – on the back corner of the board where your weight is. A regular shaped board tapers in the tips and you lose a lot of potential planing surface area. It is amazing how the shape of the Wing gets you going upwind in light wind. I weigh 220 lbs. and can go upwind on my 15m in 10-12mph with the 2011 161-Wing.
How do you think the Wing differs from other light wind twin tips on the market?
Compared to other boards, our outline shape, the concave bottom, and our rocker and flex are unique. The Wing lets you ride in light wind, but handles lively in chop, kite loops, raleys, and all your normal tricks. It is super fun to ride in anything 22 mph or less. Above that, I ride the Spirit 137.
What is your warranty policy on this product?
Six months against manufacturer defects.
TESTED: Rebecca Geffert/www.Boardsports.com
This board should not be called the Wing, it should be called Session Saver. It’s that good! Even when a directional board will barely keep you upwind, this thing rockets you there. It’s easy to go toeside, easy to jump, and easy to fall in love with. Just try it!