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Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-19-2014, 1:14 PM Reply   
As I said in my boat review thread, I was going to start a thread on my experience riding different boards. I will post them Chronologically with a post for each one so they are easy to find.
First off,

Hyperlite Broadcast 4'9

This is the first board I ever tried wakesurfing on. It is fairly light and easy to get up on. It isn't the best board for beginners as it can be a little squirrely. It is not a fast board by any means and it does tend to dunk the nose fairly easily as well. As I said, I learned on this board and have came back to it as I progressed, but I still don't particularly like it. Everyone I have seen ride this board doesn't really care for it either. There is nothing really wrong with it, but it just feels a little off somehow, as I like to say "It's not half bad, but it's not half good either."
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-19-2014, 1:20 PM Reply   
Liquid Force Fish 5'6"

This board is very stable and very big. It isn't that easy to maneuver, but it is very buoyant without being too floaty. It has edges that dig in the water and make carving possible without rolling the edge. It's swallow tail design helps keep the rear stable. It doesn't dunk the nose too easily, but if it starts to pearl, there is no saving it. When you pearl the nose, take a breath because you're going down with the ship. This is the first board I ever free rode. This is a good board for beginners who are bigger, or if you have a wake without a ton of push because of how buoyant it is. It just takes more effort to get up with it's size and it does take a lot of effort to move the board around. It is a cruiser that can carve if you put the effort into it.
Old    Charlie Zulu (Pad1Tai)      Join Date: Jan 2013       05-19-2014, 1:41 PM Reply   
How about posting a video of a surf sesh so we know if your capable of rating boards.. We want to see all your bag of tricks..
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-19-2014, 2:17 PM Reply   
Ok, that can be done. I can post some videos this evening.
I also don't have "tricks" as I don't do spins or airs as of yet, which wouldn't be in any of my reviews anyway. But I can definitely post up on how they handled, rode, and carved.
I know whenever I look up on reviews, I typically on see things along the lines of, "My kid could ride this board" or "it's fun and I got it for cheap." I was just hoping to add some first hand info that people can find and take into account when they are looking to buy a board. I definitely encourage anyone else to post in here as well with their reviews on boards so it can be kind of a one stop shop for a lot of wakesurf board reviews people can come to and see what might match their style. A lot of things look good on paper and can be said by the manufacturer on their site, but first hand account on how they ride tends to be more helpful.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-19-2014, 10:09 PM Reply   
Here's videos as requested. Different boats and boards each time.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-19-2014, 11:54 PM Reply   
Ronix Caption 4'8"

The Caption is a great board and very fun to ride. It is a light and fast board that has a swallow tail design making it stable in the wake. It also has a rounded nose that makes it resistant to pearling and easy to recover if you start to. It works good in smooth and rough water and even though I haven't done any spins on it, I have seen it done on this board. It has been my go to board last season and will remain so until I get my hands on something better. I am able to freeride this board easy even if the wake isn't that great. It has good buoyancy and maneuverability and is a blast to ride.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-20-2014, 12:00 AM Reply   
React 4'0"

I am unsure on the model of this board. It was made by a local maker that is no longer in business. It is a short surf style board with a large single thruster in the rear. It was the first non compression moulded board I have ridden. It has a ton of buoyancy being fiberglass and foam construction.
It is very stable, but being so small you have to find the sweet spot on the board, otherwise it can be a little tricky and you can sink the nose if you're not careful, especially if you aren't positioned right.
It grips the wave strongly and is great for carving and playing around. Because of the huge fin in the back, it is not well suited for spinning.
This is one of my favorite boards to ride, and I will jump at the chance to ride it. If the owner ever decides to sell it, I will buy it in a heartbeat since you can no longer find them.
Because of it's small size, it may not be suited for a smaller wake either. I have only got to ride it on very large wake of a Wakesetter VLX, which it does great on.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-20-2014, 12:12 AM Reply   
O'Brien Alias 5'0"

The Alias is a fast board, but not the most stable and can be squirrely. It is a skim style board with more a larger surf style fin. I didn't particularly like riding this board as it felt too unstable for my liking. It is also the first skim style board I rode and felt completely different from the other boards I had ridden to date. I wouldn't recommend it for beginners, but more for an intermediate rider.
It is well suited for spinning, not by myself but by the board's owner who was more accustomed to it. He was able to pull off front side and backside 180s with relative ease.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-20-2014, 12:19 AM Reply   
Wavezone Boost 3'9"

This is the first board I actually bought. It is a fiberglass and foam skim style board from a smaller surf company in Florida. It has a single 8" long 1" tall fin in the rear and even though the weight limit says 160lbs, about 70lbs lighter than I am, I figured it wouldn't matter.
I was able to ride it and carve around, but because of the wave not having a ton of push and the small size of the board with my weight on it, that all added up to me not being able to freeride it.
Because of the smaller fin and the steeper wake we had, it didn't grip the wake well, except by the rails. If I tried to put more of my weight forward and slack the rope, the rear fin would come out of the water and it would tend to get squirrely on me. I mainly blame this on me being too big for the board.
I would recommend this board for small to medium sized riders, especially if you have a flatter skim style wave with decent push.

Side note: This board is up for sale in the classifieds if anyone wants to get it and take a crack at it first hand.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-20-2014, 12:29 AM Reply   
Ronix Koal Illuminati 5'0"

After not having the best of luck on my Wavezone, I tried out the Koal. I rode it in the three fin configuration. It is very stable and it is quick. It grips the wave well and is great for carving around. It rides similar to the caption, but is a little bigger and wider. It has the swallow tail which helps keep it stable in the rear. I was able to freeride this easily, even without having a ton of push. It is a very fun board to ride.
I plan on riding it more this season and trying it without the center fin to loosen it up more. I would definitely recommend this board for anyone to try, beginners and experienced riders alike.

On a side note, when this got taken to the Active Watersports demo days, it was the popular choice on every boat we rode, with at least someone else wanting to ride it. No one was disappointed.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 1:51 PM Reply   
Board:Byerly Buzz 4'8"
Boat:14' Moomba Mondo w/Flow

This board wasn't really given a fair trial since it was behind a lot less than desirable wake. It's supposed to be a fast board that is a hybrid between surf and skim style. It has different fin configurations that allow you to ride it as more of one or another.
I felt the board was extremely stable and carved pretty well, but it was behind a smaller mushy wake and I wasn't able to freeride it. It did seem quick, probably a little bit faster than the Ronix Koal. The feel of the board was nice, I wish I was able to try it out on a better wake as I'm sure it is a lot of fun. Both the other 2 riders who rode it when we were trying it out liked it a lot.
It maneuvered well without feeling sketchy and did seem like it had a lot of potential. Seems like a solid board.


I am writing this as a bigger guy (6'0 230lb ish). Also the main boat I ride behind is a direct drive Sunsport with a surf wake that is decent, but not incredible. If you are smaller, or have a bigger wake, some of these boards will work better for you than they did me.
From here on out, I will list the boats I have ridden the board on so you can compare the kind of wake, with my size to better figure out if a board would be right for you.

Here is a list of the previous boards

Broadcast-92 Sunsport
Fish-92 Sunsport
Caption-92 Sunsport, 97 Tige Pre2100, 12' Wakesetter VLX
React-12' Wakesetter VLX
Alias-12' Wakesetter VLX
Boost-92 Sunsport
Koal-92 Sunsport
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 2:27 PM Reply   
Board: Hyperlite Shim 5'4"
Boat: '14 Malibu Wakesetter VLX w/ Surfgate

The shim is an awesome board. It is made for carving and it does that very well. It is very buoyant and has an edge that cuts into the face of the wake very well. It is extremely stable even on deep bottom turns. The nose doesn't pearl very easily, and if it does, it can be recovered with relative ease. On the wake of the VLX it was very quick and responsive. This is a great surf style board that is fast and will work well for big guys and for a smaller wake.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 2:43 PM Reply   
Board: Ronix The Duke 5'5"
Boat: 2014 Nautique G25 w/ NSS

I asked the Ronix rep to get me something that would work for a big guy like me with a smaller wake after telling him I normally ride a Caption and he hands me this.
This board is a boat. It is extremely big, thick and floaty. It has big rounded edges and floats on top of the water. It is very, very, very buoyant and is made for big guys and small wakes. It almost feels like you could use this board as a SUP it's so big.
This board is a little more difficult to get up on because of it's size, but if you are even looking at this board, you can mange it.
It has a single thruster fin in the rear to keep it tracking straight. You can carve around a little bit to some extent of it, but because of it sitting so high in the water and the edges being round it likes to roll over very easily instead of cutting into the wake to carve it up.

I would only recommend this board if you just wanted to cruise and not play around. It is designed for big guys on small wakes.
I felt it was too floaty and too easy to roll. It didn't fit my riding style. I like to carve it up and be aggressive, but I know there are some people out there who want to just hang out behind the boat, rock the tunes, and have someone toss them a beer while surfing.
If you want to ride without much effort, are really big, or have a boat with almost no wake, this board is for you.
Old    Trayson Harmon (trayson)      Join Date: May 2013       05-22-2014, 2:43 PM Reply   
Sounds like you're in this thread talking to yourself...
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 3:45 PM Reply   
Well there's about 400 views right now and obviously you read it

But that brings a good point, feel free to discuss, comment, ask questions, post your own reviews on boards, etc.

Board: Byerly Hazard 5'4"
Boat: 2014 Nautique G25 w/ NSS

So far this is my favorite board I have ridden so far. It is fast, it is responsive, it is buoyant, but sits low in the wake. It grips the wake where and when you want it to. It isn't as stable or forgiving as the Hyperlite Shim, but it is looser and a lot more fun to ride. It grips the wave well for carving, but will break free if you want it to. Both this and the Shim rode fairly similar to each other and felt about the same as in speed, but the Hazard has more maneuverability than the Shim does.
This one comes in two sizes, I rode the larger one and had a blast, but the smaller one got ridden by another rider that day who was able to do some 180s and 360s on it.
With how fast this board is, it should work well for a smaller wake and bigger guys, but be fun for just about everyone.

BTW: When I refer to a board as fast, I refer to how it tracks on the wave, like how much drag it has and how well it utilizes the push from the wave, not how quickly it moves when you maneuver it.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 3:58 PM Reply   
Board: Ronix Parks Carbon Thruster 5'1"
Boat: 2014 Nautique G25 w/ NSS

This board isn't made for a beginner rider. It is fast, but doesn't feel as fast as the Hazard or Shim. It I rode it with the fins moved up a bit, this made it a little squirrely, but it is well suited for spins in this configuration. You are able to adjust the fins in to different configurations to make it ride more like a surf or a skim style. How it was setup, was more of a skim style.
It is very responsive and the carbon being stiff makes it not flex as much and respond much faster and harder than a traditional board. It is also supposed to allow you to transfer more energy to the board without it being lost for throwing airs.
It has hard edges and tracks very well, as I said it is extremely responsive, maybe even too responsive as a small mistake could make you bite it, this could be helped by moving the fins back to more of a surf configuration. It can also be made looser by removing some fins and riding it as a strict skim style board.
It is fun and has a ton of potential for an intermediate to advanced rider to grow their skill.
Old    Charlie Zulu (Pad1Tai)      Join Date: Jan 2013       05-22-2014, 4:20 PM Reply   
Hey Trayson..... I think everyone's waiting for ALL the reviews before the comments start blasting
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-22-2014, 4:30 PM Reply   
Well that is all I have up until current if that was the case...

I do want to see if anyone has any input on a IS Tako. I've been looking at that board lately and want some info on it. Anyone?
Old     (whiteflashwatersports1)      Join Date: Dec 2012       05-23-2014, 11:23 AM Reply   
We have the IS Tako and love it. Very good board for newbs and advanced riders big and small. My buddy is 6'7" 290 and he can ride it. My daughter and her friends are 14 year old florida girls that are tiny and they love it. Fast down the line - way faster than the broadcast, does not pearl like the broadcast. Advance riders in my crew are able to throw airs, 360's etc. My daughter brought a friend with her this past saturday that had never been on a boat before and she was free riding on her third try. Great board especially for the price.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-23-2014, 12:47 PM Reply   
That's some good info. I see you're running a newer Tige. Do you think this board would work well in a smaller direct drive wake? I know that those Tiges are supposed to have a pretty awesome wake. It is encouraging that a guy who has half a foot and 50+ pounds on me is able to ride it.
Have any pics of the wake you're running for comparison purposes?
BTW, it was your post in the other thread that made me start looking into a Tako.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       06-07-2014, 10:28 PM Reply   
Update on Wavezone Boost:

I decided to give this board another chance now that we have the wave dialed in a lot better than we did when I first tested it.
Our wave now has a lot more push and I wasn't having to put as much forward weight on it. I was able to free ride it with some effort, but still freeride it nonetheless. I also was able to do my first spin ever on it, a front side 360. I really like the feel of a skim style board now and how it is able to spin easily. I will probably still be looking for a bigger board that is easier for me to free ride, but I like riding a skimboard a lot now.
We also tried switching out the 1" x 8" fin for a 1.7" x 4" fin from the Ronix Caption. It was more stable, but the larger fin caught the wake too much and it wasn't able to spin easily.
Also, Trayson rode it in both configurations and was able to freeride it easily, althought he is within the weight limit of the board at 165lbs. Definitely a fun board if you have the wake for it or aren't as big as I am.
Old    Jake (jdhart73)      Join Date: Mar 2010       06-08-2014, 6:43 PM Reply   
You should demo some boards from some of the pure wake surf shapers. Inland, Soulcraft, Choas, Walker….

Good work though, tons of info.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       06-08-2014, 9:39 PM Reply   
Thanks. That was my goal, getting as much info out on as many boards as I can ride. I want to ride some pure wakesurf boards. I don't know of any shops around here that have a demo program that carries those kinds of boards. I was able to demo a lot at the demo days event, but they only carry major wake brands and is only once a year.
I hear great things about Doomswell, Day 1 Wake, Inland Surfer, and Victoria.
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       07-03-2014, 11:13 AM Reply   
Board: Liquid Force Custom Quad 4'8"
Boat: 1992 Supra Sunsport with custom (NSS style) surf system

This board tracked very fast down the line and was pretty buoyant. I rode it with two fins in the front fin boxes, none in the rear, this made it very responsive when carving it up. This board seemed like it had a personality like it wanted to be ridden hard. While carving it up, it handled great, it recovered easily if you started to fall back and you were able to save yourself if you put the nose down too much and started to pearl or took a turn too deep into the flats. If you tried to just ride it and cruise for a bit, that's when it got squirrely and started to handle like a drunk pig. It almost seemed like the board was telling you to ride me hard or get off.
This was a very fun board, very fast, and very responsive. Definitely a good board for an intermediate to advanced rider, especially if you are the bigger side because it is a very fast board.
Old    Russ Constable (Midnightv10)      Join Date: Feb 2012       07-08-2014, 10:34 AM Reply   
Great write up on the LF Desi..
Should be getting my new Soulcraft any day now.. next time we go out you can demo that
Old    Surf Addict (Desi) (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       07-08-2014, 11:02 AM Reply   
I can't wait. I really want to ride some bigger skimboards that I can freeride and spin on. As you saw and experienced, my tiny skim is fun to ride on but is very small so you can't freeride it easy unless you're on the lighter side.


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