10 golden slalom tuning tips

by Maarten on December 29, 2008

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It doesn’t matter if it’s wave, freestyle, race or slalom, when you go out windsurfing your sail trim is important. Especially when speed is a big factor, then it’s even more important. Point-7 published 10 golden slalom tuning tips to get your trim right.

Do you have great tuning tips to get your windsurfing sails ready? Share it with us in the comments!


Roo March 25, 2010 at 7:40 pm

Here's Roo's golden "Rooles" for setting your gear up to be balanced and go fast, they are the starting point to get everything in balance.

1. Measure 30 cm in from the tail and measure the width of the board at this point.

2. Pick a fin with same depth as the width you measured and fit to the board. (start with a normal upright fin not a weedie)

3. Make sure the rear foot strap is mounted with the rear screw in line with the leading edge of the fin.

4. Set up the front foot strap by laying your arm on the board with the elbow bone in the middle of the rear strap and measure to the tip of your middle finger.

5. This point will be the middle of the front strap, mount the strap as close as possible to this position.

Your board is now balanced to your body, the foot strap position will be different for each sailor.

Once you've balanced your board it's time to look at your rig. If you've set your sail up using the recommended mast and according to the measurements on the sail then it will be easy to balance it out.

1. Take your fin out of the board and connect your sail to the board with the mast foot in the center of the mast track.

2. Stand the rig up and with the board on a flat surface, i.e. grass or your board bag for protection, stand on the board with your feet either side of the mast foot.

3. Move the boom until its around shoulder to chin height.

4. Lay the rig down and measure from the front of the mast at the boom to the clew eyelet.

5. Divide this distance by three and measure from the front of the mast at the boom back this distance.

6. This is where the center of you harness lines should be. Grip the boom here with both hands thumb to thumb either side of your measurement point and place the harness lines either side of your hands.

7. To get the right harness line length grab the boom in the center of the lines and adjust the lines until they are just touching your elbow bone.

8. Most sails have their max draft around 33% so this is a good balance point for most sails.

9. With the board and rig still connected, lay the board on its side and the rig on the ground, tilt the rig towards the back of the board until the gap is even between the foot of the sail and the deck of the board.

10. Your mast foot is in the right position if you take a line perpendicular to the board, i.e. at a 90 degree angle, from a point midway between the front and rear foot straps and it lines up with the center of the harness lines. If the center of the harness is too far forward move the mast foot back, if its too far back move it forward.

11. Put your fin in the board and go sail to see how it feels.

Now you have a reference point you can set the board at each time you sail, it makes it a lot easier to fine tune your equipment for optimum performance for the conditions.

Remember if you're not fast…you're last!

jacob November 8, 2012 at 10:23 pm


ive been looking at sails to buy and some say they need a bigger mast, what is the correct way to measure your mast?

Maarten November 9, 2012 at 12:14 am

Hi Jacob,

Each sail brand prints the correct specifications on the mast sleeve and on the mast is usually a sticker with the length on it. You can also look it up on the website of the sail brand. For example:
RS Slalom specifactions

The luff (blue) is the length of the mast sleeve when the sail is rigged (with an mast extender) and the orange states which mast you should buy, recommended by the brand. And you will need a mast extender to bridge the gap between the luff and the mast recommended mast length.

So if you have a mast already, look for a sail that matches the mast. But if you don’t have a mast, buy the mast recommended by the sail brand because that generally produces the best performance.

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