BEHIND THE BRAND: Aero Glide
WITH JEROME BONIEUX
We have just launched the brand-new Aero Glide foil range, so our Foil Designer Jerome Bonieux gave us a little insight why he designed it and what´s so special about it!
Jerome, what is the new Aero Glide for?
If you are looking for more efficiency in your ride, longer pumps, connecting more waves and improving your light wing riding, then the new Aero Glide is what you need! They work amazingly well and have a huge range of use. Even freestyling on them works really well, as they have an explosive pop!
What exactly is new compared to the other Fanatic foils in the range?
Our new Aero Glide front wings are much higher aspect ratio than anything we have done so far in our range. We are talking about an aspect ratio of 9.5 for the complete range, which gives you way more glide compared to our other wings.
As the name suggests - our Aero Glide is made to glide for long distances effortlessly without much input needed once you're up in flight mode. Coming in four sizes from the fast and agile 725 to the endless glide of the 1305.
Comparing it to other wings - what´s the advantage?
It´s all about efficiency! With the new Aero Glide you are getting a lot of glide but very little drag, which means you can connect bumps much easier, fly on much smaller waves and glide much longer and easier through your tacks and turns.
Normally the potential negatives that you will be getting with such wide spans is that the wing would be very hard to roll from side to side, making it stiff in the turns. That was something we were very focussed on – we really wanted to make sure that these wings still kept a lot of fluidity in the turns, so we worked a lot on the profiles, especially in the area towards the tips. We have given it quite a bit of twist towards the tips and reduced the camber. Most of the lift is generated in the center of the wing, as you can see from the outline itself, that´s where most of the surface area is located. As we move over to the tips the wing gets thinner and thinner and less lift is coming from the tip. That´s allowing it to fly run smoothly while keeping a very fun and intuitive feel.
You also introduced new back wings as a perfect combo?
Yes, we have introduced the new GL back wings to go with the new Aero Glide front wings. Those are also higher aspect than before but the main difference is also that for a given surface area front wing, we are now pairing it with a lot smaller back wing. Compared to our previous ones they are pretty much flat over the whole surface. We also got rid of the little winglet we had, which means it loosens your foil through the turns and the foil feels way more lively, whilst still maintaining full control at high speed.
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%.
How do the different wings pair with the different stabilizers and what/ are they for?
The 725 Front Wing goes with the 165 GL Stabilizer and is fast and agile for all lighter riders and advanced foilers up to about 85kg – it loves to go fast!
The 905 Front Wing goes with the 180 GL Stabilizer which offers a great combination of speed, manoeuvrability, glide and pump covering riders between 50 - 95kg.
The 1085 Front Wing goes with the 200 GL Stabilizer for a great pump and glide – it´s also a good choice in smaller surf. Mid-sized to heavier riders from intermediate to advanced level will love the efficiency of this combo.
The 1305 Front Wing plus the 200 GL Stabilizer glides without much input and is easy to keep up for heavier riders with intermediate to advanced level.
How important is it to combine the Aero Glide with our Carbon mast & fuselage for the ultimate performance?
When you go for High Aspect front wings it´s very important to keep rigidity in the entire System. Our Aero Glide wings itself are designed to be very stiff which gives them a direct response. But in order to translate this into your ride, it is important to have a rigid mast and also mast to fuselage connection that is very stiff, because these bigger spans put a lot more stress on the whole system. Our Fanatic system is perfect here as it is rock solid and you can really extract all these higher aspect ratio front wings have to offer.
How large of an effect does torsional stiffness in the mast have on the ride feeling?
We have always been fans of very stiff masts. We try a lot of our competitors products and often have issues with some of their masts feeling too soft and wobbly, especially when paired to higher aspect wings.
Bending and Torsional stiffness are definitely a very high priority on our design brief. We feel that a rigid mast gives a lot of control at high speed and makes the foil much more user-friendly. As far as we know, our masts rank amongst the stiffest on the market and we are proud of that!
The new Aero Glide is not only designed for Wing Foiling right? Which other disciplines does it crossover into?
These wings also work really well for Prone and Downwind Foiling and even Windsurf Foiling. So overall, I would say the new range is extremely versatile and easy to use.
What do you expect to be your biggest seller/most popular combo from the new line up?
I guess the larger combos of 1085 and 1305 will be the best sellers, cause let’s be honest, most of the riders out there are still a bit hesitant to go under the 1000 cm2 size because of their level. The more advanced riders on the other hand will be looking at the 905 and the 725 as a way to push their riding to the next level. I do want to stress that all four of the sizes are still extremely easy to use and should not regarded as wings for the elite only.
Anyone that already knows how to foil will have fun of those new Glide wings!
Pics: Toby Bromwich, Klaas Voget, Maxwell Gifted