With summer on its way, dock starting and pump foiling are back on the cards. This is one of those disciplines that involves spending a lot of time in the water, so not really that fun over winter. Dock starting is probably the most social discipline as there is generally better weather, and you are hanging out with a bunch of friends. It is easy to chat and share tips. A great way to spend a sunny afternoon and improve your foil skills at the same time.
In terms of the board, you are looking for a small stiff board. Our suggestions would be something like the Appletree Mini Foil, or the AXIS Tray. The smaller the board, the less the swing weight and the lighter they are to pull out of the water every 2 seconds while you're learning.
The main thing you are looking for is something light and sturdy. The Tray is bombproof, but the mini foil is lighter. The smaller models AXIS Pump would also be a great option as a crossover prone and dockstart board.
Foil Set Up
We are really looking at the AXIS Pump n Glide range here. It is what is was designed for. The PNG 1150 has gained a reputation world wide over the last couple of years as the ultimate pump foil front wing (as well as light wind winging). For big guys learning, as well as more experienced pump foilers wanting even more glide, the PNG 1310 is also an option. More average weight beginners will be better off on the 1150.
The recommended rear wing would be the Pump 460. This wing has a wide span which gives plenty of lift to aid with pitch control, but is also fast, to reduce and drag. This makes the most of any glide.
The larger progressive rear wings would also work great as a crossover with a wing setup where the 460 can start to feel a bit loose, with it being flatter.
In terms of a fuselage either a normal geometry or advance red fuselage will work. The advance options opening up more manoeuvrability to more experienced riders, and in both options the smaller the fuselage the more pitch sensitive the foil setup becomes. The ultra short options are generally the most popular currently.
For the rest of the set up the 19mm Aluminium is the most affordable way to go - however if you're a bigger rider and looking towards the 1310 for dockstarting, the High Modulus masts are going to be more beneficial. The AXIS Aluminium masts are one of the strongest on the market, but by the time you're getting to the largest span wings even those will feel the effects of leverage forces on the mast. In terms of mast size, 75cm seems most suited. Generally larger sizes become harder to jump up onto, even from a raised dock and shorter sizes become slightly more awkward to pump.
Get out there and enjoy this discipline - its well worth it and will improve your pump game for each and every other discipline you enjoy!