It's about life - not "lifestyle"
" 12 Sep 2002
I took the Hydro Paipo II out this morning for its initial test run. Going out through the waves I was really fired up as it appeared to want to raise above the water. I was having a hard time keeping the top deck in the water. Awesome I said to myself, it is going to work as planned.

I waited a few swells out just trying to get used to being in the water with the board and wing underneath.

A set came through (not big but just about right), I picked the perfect wave of the set, turned Hydro Paipo II around for its maiden voyage. I took a few kicks to get it going, felt the wave pick us up, everything was right with the world, as we glided down the face of the perfect wave. We were picking up momentum, the speed was just about there to free the deck of the wave face, it was starting to happen, slowly, slowly, but you could feel it starting to pull up. Just then a crack, snap, uh oh, sound from underneath, the board was still going forward but lost its desire to raise out of the water. The wave passed us by.

I was hoping beyond all hope that it was just the board, epoxy, fiberglass just making a little settling in noise. Getting used to one another working together. I felt one side of the hydro fin, it felt OK. I felt the other side, it was not where it should have been. Maybe it was just the angle (hope, and more hope). Nope, no such luck. The one side was flopping in the water, part of it was detached from the fin, and found it to be pretty well messed up. It had parted company with the keel/fin and was dangling in the water.

Bummed NO, I was absolutely stoked. It floats, two of the three parts of the hydro are still together and held up well, the Paipo seems to want to ride out of the water with ease, and it was comfortable to ride even though the ride was short. I got pretty close with my first try,

I'm heading to the limber yard to pick up a new piece of marine plywood. On the drive home from the beach I already had the new wing design in mind. This time a little less volume, and maybe a smoother design. I should be able to cut out the new piece and get it attached and sealed by tomorrow. I will be out in the water again soon with Hydro Paipo II for Test Ride 2.

This is all part of making and riding your own wave riders. It is not failure when something does not work the first time, just part of the learning curve. You redesign, recut, reattach, and off you go again. Hopefully with something that will work a little better next time. Remember, all your boards are always a work in progress."

Roger Wayland
Roger Wayland Gallery
Copyright (C) 2002. All rights reserved.

Text and photo copyright Roger Wayland.