At A Glance
Airush have a comprehensive foil line up that has been on the market for a little while now. Combining carbon composite wings with aluminium masts and fuselages the range offers excellent value for anyone looking to get into foiling. Utilising the standard twin track mast mount set up means there are a wealth of board choices out there to go with your new wing.
The Core Freeride Foil has an intermediate aspect ratio with an 825cm2 front wing. The front wing has quite a deep profile and the delta shape bolts beautifully to the fuselage with minimal gaps or joins. The new rear wing is slightly smaller than before and features the same X wing design; it can be mounted tips up or down and also moved fore and aft to trim the lift.
A three-bolt mounting system marries the mast to the mast plate and also the fuselage, and it’s a male-female affair with the mast slipping into the fuselage and mast plate. Airush ship the set up in a fantastic package with a padded bag and 80cm mast as standard but there are other mast options available as an extra; you can choose from 95cm, 60cm and 45cm to complement your set up.
The whole affair is modular and can be used with all their wings in addition to fitting with the new surf range from AK, the sister company to Airush. This gives you the option you to get a surf wing to stick on the front and a 60cm mast, and you are good to go without having to change the rear wing or the fuselage.
On The Water
With so many trim options, it’s always going to be difficult to find the right set up. We spent a lot of time tinkering, and short of some sanding to the mast (to quell some of the noise) it was a process that some riders might find a little too much. The initial outing we lacked lift and really struggled to make it work. Further efforts ensued, and on the recommendation of Mike the UK distributor, we took a Torx driver on the water with us. This meant we could quickly change things on the beach, or even in the water in an effort to get the most out of it.
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In the end, we found the X wing worked best tips down, tuned to offer more lift produced the best results. Foils are finicky things, and even the density of the water or the difference of salt and fresh can make huge variations. On the one hand, it’s nice to have these tuning options; on the other, it can certainly be off-putting for the novice.
Once we found the sweet spot with the Core Freeride Foil; however, we got to enjoy the benefits of this great wing. At low speeds, it offers plenty of lift, which is great for beginners and riders getting to grips with their turns. The stall point is also very low, with the wing still flying at really reduced speeds. This characteristic inspires confidence and allows you to learn to gybe and tack without having to be riding at scary speeds.
As you put some power through the wing, the speed increases, and there is a good top end here; we were cruising comfortably at 18mph and upwards and the wing felt stable and comfortable. It’s a great wing for carving, and it is easy to tuck into some small waves and get a feel for doing some turns. It leans on the more playful side of freeride that is for sure.
At low speeds, we found the mast we were testing a little noisy, yet once we were moving forwards at speed, we found the noise settled. (Some tuning to the mast with a light grade wet and dry should fix this.) Once up above ten knots and faster, the noise disappeared. It’s worth noting that most aluminium foils we tested had some noise at low speeds, some had it at high speeds. The tolerances here are so small it’s almost impossible to produce a consistently quiet mast across a large number in production.
Reducing the noise is a simple case of light sanding of the trailing edge of the mast at an angle of about 30 degrees. It’s a straightforward fix; some people enjoy the noise, some don’t… You can run some fine grade paper up and down the trailing edge running it from top to bottom to reduce the noise.
Once you get the set up right, there is a lot of potential to be unlocked here - be sure to put the time in early on to get the most out of the Core Freeride Foil. It’s a well put together package and getting the bag included is a bonus. The modular nature and the AK surf wings make it a sound choice for a rider keen to get into surf foiling too.
With lots of lift at low speed it is very forgiving, but with a good turn of pace as well. You’ll enjoy carving it too, and those first wave rides will entice you in…
This review was in Issue 76 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Airush
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By Rou ChaterRou has been kiting since the sports inception and has been working as an editor and tester for magazines since 2004. He started IKSURFMAG with his brother in 2006 and has tested hundreds of different kites and travelled all over the world to kitesurf. He's a walking encyclopedia of all things kite and is just as passionate about the sport today as he was when he first started!