Pick 5 Challenge | Mr. Jeff's Wing Foiling Gear List

Pick 5 Challenge | Mr. Jeff's Wing Foiling Gear List

Today Mr. Jeff is in the "Pick 5" hotseat with Tucker. Jeff is constantly on the water with a wing and a foil, and his Subaru is a virtual demo room with about 30 pieces of gear to choose from, so it's going to be interesting to see how he whittles his choices down to just 5.

Jeff: Before I choose my 5, I want to set the tone for this. There are people from all over in different riding locations and different conditions. My 5 are for the Great Lakes based on our wind and the water conditions to get me on the water from 12 knots up to the upper 20s.

Tucker: So you're forsaking everything under 12 because you can only pick 5?

Jeff: I am. I'm a little older and I don't want to work so hard to get up on foil. I can ride in under 12 knots, but it's a lot of pumping and a lot of patience. I weigh 175 pounds, give or take.

1. Duotone Unit 5.5m Wing

Jeff: My number one piece would be a Duotone Unit 5.5m, hands down. It's got a lot of lift to get you up and riding because we get a lot of that marginal wind in the 13 to 18 range. I find that 5.5m to be the right size for me for getting powered up and getting on foil. If you have the skill set, that 5.5m can get you up in light winds.

Tucker: It's got versatile performance, too. It works great in the waves, great freestyle, powered up, fast, you name it.

2. F-One Strike 4m Wing

Jeff: My second item would be the F-One Strike 4m. I believe the 5.5 and the 4 are a good spread for me based on our conditions between that 13-14 knots up to the upper 20s and maybe even into the 30s. I think the new V3 Strike sacrificed a little bit on the low end, but I wouldn't need that because I'd take the 5.5m as far as I could, and then our wind usually jumps to 20 and then into the upper 20s pretty quickly. In my experience on the 4m Strike V3, it can handle a lot of wind, and it's a great surf wing. When we get a lot of wind here, we get a lot of waves.

Tucker: Yeah, you were riding that 4m Strike this morning with 6-8 foot waves in 25 knots.

Jeff: Yes, it was a bit crazy out there, but it was good. In the high end I can hold it down into the 30s and even a little bit more.

3. F-One Rocket Wing S Foilboard

Jeff: The board was the tough one, but my new favorite is the F-One Rocket Wing S. I've been predominantly riding a 75 L for my go-to board, and I've also had a downwind board, but the new F-One has a little more length at 5'2" and it's a 70 L. With that length and a little bit narrower board construction, I found it's more versatile, meaning that I can cheat the lower end with it a little more, and the touchdowns are a little more forgiving. With the extra length, it gives a bit more pitch stability when I'm on it.

For me, the 70 L is a semi-sinker, so on big wave days it'll sink a little bit below the water's surface turbulence. So if I had to pick one board and not have my downwind board, which I do love, that would be the 5'2" Rocket Wing S.

Tucker: You're getting to the point where you'll be starting to do some jumps. Then you'd need a little bit more volume to land on so you can ride off.

Jeff: We'll see about that and how the joints and the hips will handle all that!

4. F-One Seven Seas 1200 Foil

Jeff: That's three, so that leaves two more. My last two would be my foil choices. The Seven Seas 1200 is one for sure. I really enjoy it because it's very versatile. It's got pretty good glide and speed, but it's surfy enough that it can take a lot of different waves. We get these ankle-biter to knee or mid-thigh waves that are slow-rolling in Lake Michigan, and that 1200 Seven Seas will stay in the pocket.

Tucker: Yeah, it's good even on a chest-high day if you're doing a downwinder or you're riding offshore or sideshore waves where they're not really breaking are bigger and rolling slow. I agree; I think the 1200 is fantastic. It's great for wake foiling or surf foiling too, so it'll work for whatever you want to do when the wind isn't great for winging.

5. F-One Eagle 890 Foil

Jeff: My final choice would be the Eagle 890 for obvious reasons: the speed, the glide. That thing just charges. For its size, I feel it has decent lift, and it's great for riding a swell or even down the line on a peeling wave. I like a little more front foot pressure when I'm riding so I can feel that feedback and lean into it. So that would be the last of my 5 that I'd pick


Pick 5 for High Wind?

Tucker: Now I'm going to mix things up a bit. We're doing this from our perspective here in the Great Lakes in Lake Michigan, and I do think this is representative of the average conditions out there for a lot of people, but if you were in a high wind locale like San Francisco or Hood River where you're getting some swell but it's not Maui with 12 foot offshore, how would that change what you've picked?

Jeff: That's a good question. Believe it or not, I would probably go to one foil. I would ditch the 1200 Seven Seas, though I'm not sure I'd stick with the 890 either. I might pick something right around 1000 in mid to high aspect. That would be my first major change.

Then I would probably drop to a 5m for my largest wing. I'd also get a 3.5m and a 2.5m wing. In those areas, when it blows, it really blows, so I'm probably going to be on the 3.5m or the 2.5m most of the time.

I'd keep my board, believe it or not. That 5'2" 70L is a good choice. I think it'd be good in the river swell and I think it could be good out in the Bay Area. I haven't ridden there, but I've watched a lot of videos and have seen what's going on there. I know they have a lot of currents. So that would be the change-up: go to one foil and add another wing.

I have guys call into the shop and want to know if there is one foil that they can use to ride most of the time. Depending on the foil you're using, you can always size up on the wing a little bit, especially if you've got a decent board like a 70 liter. Or if I'm going to have two foils, then I don't need as many wings.

Tucker: Thanks again, Jeff.
If you have any questions or comments, we'd love to hear from you!

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Mr. Jeff
15th Sep 2023 Jeff Hamilton & Tucker Vantol

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