Tech talk: Foil box and insert position


Hello everyone. Welcome back to another Appletree Surfboards tech talk video. In today’s video we are going to talk about foil box and insert position, mainly in wing and surf foil boards, and what foil to use best. We hope you will learn something so let’s go!

Which foil brand works best for an Appletree board?

At Appletree Surfboards we love all foil brands. We don’t have a particular favorite. We have all our own foils that we ride, but we try to produce boards that work well with any foil brand on the market. This gives us a bit of a problem. Because every foil is designed differently and they are also designed to sit in the board in a different location.

This has to do with the way the foil is designed and where the mast sits on the fuselage. If you put your mast further forward on your fuselage as a foil designer, that means that you actually place the foil backwards and you’ll have to put it more forward in the foil box. Of course the foil box is not super long, so we try to aim for that sweet spot where you want to have your foil in the middle at most times. But there’s so much difference between all the foil brands that this is sometimes a hard thing.

A couple of tips and tricks on how to set up the foil

What we always advise people to do when they get a new board, is to start the foil in a neutral position. In the middle of the box and use the board without straps. If you also put on straps, you’re fixing your position and you can’t shift your feet anymore. So if you can ride without straps, always try first without straps. Then while riding, have a look down and see where your feet are relative to the insert holes in the board. See if you could place straps in the position that you are. If not, go back and move your foil slowly in the direction that you want your feet to move.

If your feet are too far behind the inserts, move your foil slowly forward. Of course the position of the foil really changes the way the board rides, but you want to always start in a neutral position were you are neutrally comfortable to ride. From there slowly start experimenting.


Foiling with straps

If you find your position that you like on your board, then you can add straps if you even want to use straps. If you are still not super confident, maybe start with just the front strap and leave the back one off. The back foot is so directly in link with a foil mast that it’s more important to move that in the right position. So start with the front one only and then only if you feel that you are super comfortable in your riding, only then you put your back strap on.

How do you find out which settings work best for you?

Another very important thing that we always advise people to do is if you are experimenting with foiling, do one thing at a time. You’ve already got a new board. You might also have a new foil, a new tail wing, a new front wing, a new foot reposition, a new mast position. There is so many variables, so try to go slow. Don’t change too much at one go, one thing at a time, feel how it is, if it changes your riding and then go back to the beach and move things a little bit. But one thing at a time and don’t change like seven things and then feel like it’s completely terrible. That’s a very important one.

Foil box and insert position

The best position for your straps

In our boards, we provide insert holes for almost every foot position that you want to have. As you can see, we can have the strap as a single front step or the other way around for when you are goofy foot. And then you can also place it off center and almost straight. This will give you a little bit more control because only your toes are under the strap, but your foot is nicely in the middle. And then you can also go for a Y setup with two straps in either a small Y or a wide Y. Those are more used for people who do racing and they really want to pull the board to one side.

How does the position of your straps effect your riding style

Always think that if you put your strap to one side, you are also moving your body weight to the side. So you’re not in the middle of the board and not in the middle of the foil anymore. This means the board will naturally lean towards your heel side, which is good for when you are racing or when you are riding full power with a kiteboard for instance. For winging, it does work, but if you then want to turn around and go toe side to get a wave, it usually doesn’t work anymore, because you’re way too far off to the side.

Therefor it’s much nicer to have the single strap in the middle. For me, I always ride single strap like this when I’m doing freestyle or wave riding. When you’re free riding at flat water you can go for the Y setup. In the back we have just got the single strap. You can also get an off centered one, but usually the single is good enough. If you want to have more weight over the middle of the board, just have the strap super loose like this one. So you still have room to move within the strap.

Can you customize the position of the foil box?

I know there are some foil brands out there that really require a special setup. For instance, the foil really far forward on the Armstrong foils. It does work in our boards. We have tested with it, but it does mean that your foil is usually quite far in the front that you don’t have that flexibility anymore. Because we make every board ourselves in our own production facility, we can make you a customized board with the foil boxes moved slightly forward.

If you are interested in such a thing, please give us a call, an email, or go to your local dealer. They will be able to help you out, choosing a custom and customizing it for you. But make sure that you know what you want to have because we have put a lot of care in designing these boards and making the balance the right way. So as soon as we change something, it will always have a different effect.

So that’s about everything we have to say about foot positions and strap inserts. I hope this video was informative. We are going to do a lot more videos this year, so please subscribe to our channel. Give us a like, and I’ll hope to see you next time in the next video.

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