Welcome to behind the design with Fanatic’s foil designer Jerome Bonieux and product manager Max Pajank. They’ll talk us through the new mast and fuselages in the Fanatic foil range as well as discuss the Aluminum 3.0, the Carbon range and the new Fanatic/Duotone COLLAB mast.
Max if you could tell us, how was the feedback from the previous range and what were the design goals for these models?
The feedback on the previous Aluminium range was that it was quite heavy, we had good stability and higher bending stiffness and torsional stiffness. Our goal was to reduce the weight while maintaining stiffness and performance.
Which came first in the development, did you first design the Aluminum one and then design the Carbon from there?
No, the first point we were focused on was the profile of the mast, once we had the profile we evaluated points such as drag, performance, stiffness, bending stiffness and torsional stiffness. After this, we modified the 3d files to create the Aluminium and Carbon moulds for the foil masts.
What kind of numbers are we looking at in terms of improvements and performance when compared with the previous Aluminum 2.0 version?
We have been able to reduce the drag by 14% for the new profile with both the Aluminium and Carbon mast when compared with the Aluminium 2.0 series. We have also been able to reduce the weight of the Aluminium series by 20% and when comparing the Carbon mast with the Aluminum 2.0 we have been able to achieve a reduction of weight by 40%.
That’s some significant weight savings! Jerome, talk us through the shapes, how have you been able to achieve those numbers with your side of the design and development?
It wasn’t just me, it was the design company we have been working with Ixent. They were the ones running all the calculations for us, more than 20 different profiles on a big spreadsheet. Each of the designs had areas in which they excelled and areas of compromise. It was up to us to find the combination we wanted, where we had the strength in torsion, in bending and we had the weight we were looking for. I think it’s important to pass on the message that it’s not just a profile we picked up, we had a lot of prototypes where we were comparing wings and going over the advantages and disadvantages of each of them against each other, then testing it in real life to make sure it was performing as we wanted it to. I’m super stoked the wing system is working very well and I believe we have the stiffest masts out there. The team riders have been loving it, jumping on it all day long and it’s proven to be bombproof. We are super happy.
That seems to be a key issue, there are many products out there that almost have limitations with that kind of usability, how much work did It take to get this product to be as durable as you wanted?
I’m not going to lie – it actually has taken us almost 2 years. Our dealers know this as they have been waiting a while for this new equipment, but the reality is it’s not so easy to make something that is light, stiff, but able to cope with the very heavy landings we are seeing today with the freestyle moves. We know from seeing broken Carbon parts on the beach from reputable brands that this is a common problem in the industry, so we wanted to make sure that our first Carbon range would not have these issues. We did have issues during the development and we took the time to modify these, changing materials lay-up techniques and even new moulds until we finally got something where all of our team riders could ride and come back to us to say that they haven’t been able to break it. We feel very confident releasing the new range to market. You’ll find we are not the lightest available, you can compare this to our sister company Duotone also making carbon foils. It’s the same team developing the Duotone and Fanatic range, you’ll find that the Duotone range is lighter, but definitely not as strong as the Fanatic. In our opinion, the Fanatic is the best compromise for someone winging who wants to be able to jump, land hard and have full trust in his equipment.
So moving on to the development of the new fuselage, this is also compatible with the Duotone system. Can you tell us a little more about this Max?
We have the same fuselage to mast connection on Duotone and Fanatic Carbon foils. A customer can use a Duotone Carbon mast and mount a Fanatic Carbon fuselage to use the Fanatic front and back wings, which are a bit more dedicated to wing foiling more so than the Duotone. We have chosen the same connection to have the interchangeability between the brands and give the customer a wider spectrum of availability of setups for whatever they want to ride.
The fuselage is available in different sizes can you talk us through these and explain which sizes are best suited to which users and riding styles?
We have three fuselages for the Aluminum and Carbon range. The 68cm is the shortest in the range and is mainly targeted for experienced riders who are looking to perform tighter and more carvy turns, it is the most playful fuselage in the range. We have a 78 fuselage, which is more intermediate, for someone looking for a relaxed session on the foil, we also have the chance to adjust the position of your back wing to change up the straight-line ability on the 78 fuselages. For windsurfers, we have the 90cm fuselage in both Carbon and Aluminium and the longer length is better suited for windsurfing.