Xylem Malama Kai paipo

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Ted
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Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Ted » Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:37 pm

I've got one of Josh's Paulownia boards on the way. 47" by 20" by 1.25" with rolled bottom and knife edges. It should be almost as buoyant as my 50" Austin.
http://www.xylemsurfboards.com/-The--Ma ... aipo-.html

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by PhillyViking » Tue Sep 18, 2012 3:52 pm

whats your report on the Xylem .. I have an Austin so am particularly interested in the comparison.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Thu Sep 20, 2012 9:33 pm

I had Josh make me a 50" x 20" x 1.25" board and have been surfing it a lot the last nine months. First, to compare it to the same board out of 3/8" marine plywood that is dead flat with squared rails. The Xylem has way more float - it is not neutrally buoyant. I put a leash plug on it because if you let go on a wipeout, the board is going to get taken by the whitewater. The rolled bottom handles choppiness much better than the dead flat plywood version. I give up a tiny bit of speed, but that is not an issue as the board is extremely fast. The turning on the Xylem is also much better. The knife rails are truly amazing as I have had barrels that I am expecting to be pitched over the falls on and somehow I hold in a very nice high line and come out of.

I have an Austin that has the twin fin set up on it. The Xylem is not as buoyant as the Austin but you will still have to duck dive it. The turning of both are similar to me, but I have not tried the Austin as a thruster. My Xylem has better hold than the Austin in the barrel.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Ted » Sun Sep 23, 2012 5:33 pm

I just got back from a test surf on the Xylem. At 47 x 19.5 x 1.25, the Xylem has near perfect buoyancy: easy takeoffs, easy duckdiving, and enough float to sit on. The rearward buoyancy makes it easy to paddle with surf style or bodyboard style without sinking.

I tried several styles of takeoff paddling including surf-style arm paddle, forward trim no-paddle free fall, bodyboard-style one arm plus two leg kicking, HPD hand on board sidestroke, two hands on board kickboard style (Ron's favored method), and sit on board rock-forward no-paddle. All methods worked well except sit on rock-forward. My preferred takeoff style for the Austin is mid trim one arm plus two legs or forward trim no paddle - both worked fine on the Xylem.

Easing into a high line or check-turning into a high line was very natural; the board really likes running down the line fast. Mellow bottom turns into the pocket were secure with good projection down the line. I didn't try any super deep bottom turns since the board was leashless and the rocks were hungry. As Ron noted, the board is buoyant enough to get grabbed by whitewater.

It is substantially easier to duck dive the Xylem 47" than than it is the Austin 50". While 20 foot HPD underwater cruising is not possible, deep duck dives with no speed are easily achieved. The board does have a buoyant tail, so some knee pressure followed by deliberate rocking helps.

I think this board will be a great stealth contest board: it looks like a traditional plywood board, but it paddles and takes off like a bodyboard.

Video and photos to follow.

Ted

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:27 pm

Glad to hear that your maiden voyage was a success! Since our session swapping boards, I have been riding my Xylem, HPD, and a new plypo I made that is a modified bodyboard template that my son uses. The design works well in plywood, but with Josh's rolled bottom ( that is his boards :oops: ), and knife rails, it would be insane. Paulownia wood is great, but definitely has more float than I prefer; that said I have no problem with the lack of it in the HPD.

A bit off topic but worth a note of experimentation I think is pairing swim fins with paipo. I have been using UDT's for a long time. I picked up a pair of Toobs blunt cuts. Swapping the fins with the boards has led me to match the floating fins with neutrally buoyant boards; and the heavier sinking fins with a board that has a lot of float.

Let's see the pics and vid!

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by bgreen » Mon Sep 24, 2012 5:46 am

Classic experimentation - Ted on the takeoff's and Spudnet with the fin/floation combo,

Now I wasn't too sure on the rock forward/no paddle method. Presumably the wave needs a bit of power/lip propulasion for this to work.

Bob

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Mon Sep 24, 2012 10:33 am

bgreen wrote:Classic experimentation - Ted on the takeoff's and Spudnet with the fin/floation combo,

Now I wasn't too sure on the rock forward/no paddle method. Presumably the wave needs a bit of power/lip propulasion for this to work.

Bob
Be positioned, sink the tail and rock forward on the take off. Maybe a slight hand/arm assist for direction or adjusting where the lip is folding over.

Ted, now you should try a 47" x 19.5" x 2" Austin S&S Checkered RPM!!!
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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Ted » Tue Sep 25, 2012 3:48 pm

I was thinking a 47" x 19.5" x 1.5" Austin would fit in my bag.

Perhaps a 50" x 19.5" by 1.5" Austin with the front 3" chopped off flat would work. My 50" is beat up enough that I might hack off the nose!

The 44" Austin and 47" Xylem have perfect buoyancy for me, though the Xylem is faster down the line. Both allow me to sit in the lineup with water hitting right at the armpit with arms at sides (wearing usual LS springsuit and other gear). The Austin 50" floats me about 3-4" higher, like a 41" bodyboard board.

I did lose (and retrieve) the Xylem onto the rocks at Lighthouse. With my poor eyesight, it was hard to spot among the driftwood. That puppy is dry-docked until a leash is fitted.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by rodndtube » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:47 pm

Hey Ted,
Where were you surfing? Back in Hawaii for the Winter season? Lighthouse... on the Big Island or Oahu?

You might be able to go with a 19.5 Austin which would be too narrow for me but my frame is wider and heavier. You should be able to approach your dimensions you mention up above. My newest S&S has more thinned out profile in the tail and nose and even throughout the body with a more domed deck.
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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by PhillyViking » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:06 pm

I appreciate all the comments. I have been on the verge of getting a Xylem board for over a year .. its time to try it for my self.

I mostly ride E-coast but get to take some trips. I have an Austin 52" and ride 4GF surf mats. To my own surprise (big guy, small mat, mostly small waves) I mostly rode my 4GF mini rather than my longer and wider Vespa or bigger Austin this summer (Assategue Island. Buxton NC, NJ). 2 years ago I thought i needed big and buoyant .. now that seems to get in the way. I like the idea of trying something closer to buoyancy neutral. Likewise, I like the shape shifting feel of mats so I am attracted to wood with flex. I mostly take off with legs only using my Force Fin Pros selected for optimal comfort. While I improved my mat duck diving technique, that is still the downside of mats for me.

So the question is how small can I go on a Xylem before I lose the performance attributes given my profile?

Also, has anyone ridden Wegener's (or equivalent) as well as Josh's wood Paipo. Wegener promotes concave and Josh convex. Based on my reading .. both are fast (and stick to steep sections and turn) so maybe the two approaches both work for different reasons. Josh addresses this on his web site.. In addition to reporting his own trials he makes the argument that the ancients who had a lot of time to work this out went convex. How about flex? Coming from mats, flex makes sense to me. Seems everything else being equal that convex would have more flex. Wish I had budget and time to try everything! I love theory but there is nothing like riding.

David

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Uncle Grumpy » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:44 pm

I'm 6'2" and am currently down to 185 lbs. For myself, the longer more slender alaia styles are the way to go in smaller, less juicy waves.
They really do allow you to get the most out of small waves.
The ones I've made have significant flex which I feel contributes greatly to their effectiveness.
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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Wed Sep 26, 2012 6:59 pm

David,

I, just like you, made the switch from riding mats. Paipos definitely feel different. I have never ridden a Wegener, but I have ridden another brand that uses con caves on the bottom. It was way slower than my flat bottom plypos. When it comes to a wood board, I have not ridden anything better than my Xylem. Please note that it is not flexible like a thin alaia. Flex in a paipo and shape shifting in a mat are two very different things.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by GeoffreyLevens » Fri Sep 28, 2012 9:32 am

Is the bottom on the Xylem board a smooth curve all the way across or does it have flat (or flatter) area down the middle?

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:04 am

The board definitely has flatness in the middle. Later today I will see if my son can take pics and post it in here.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:24 pm


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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by GeoffreyLevens » Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:28 pm

Thanks Spudy, great slide show! Bottom sort of reminds me of Tony Staples or Rick Hamon "egg" from the 70's San Diego beaches. Makes me drool a bit.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Uncle Grumpy » Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:58 pm

REAL Charcoal, a Primo Kamado and a Paulownia Paipo?! That could be my back yard!
Coincidence? Great Minds thinking alike? Paipo Conspiracy? :mrgreen:
IMG_2789_zpsf5bd5076[2].jpg
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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Ted » Fri Sep 28, 2012 4:41 pm

Here is video of yesterday's go out in small surf with the Xylem and the Austin. (I start on the Xylem, swap to Austin mid way, swap back at the end.)
The video session ran an hour without a set wave. Next time we are going to jump in earlier.

Swapping boards in the water yesterday in small surf made similarities and and differences clear.

The Austin feels very modern, buoyant, precise and powerful. For me, the 50" Austin is close to a perfect paipo board (might be perfect at 1.125" thick).

The Xylem feels like a hybrid of contemporary function and traditional feel; the Xylem invites HPD "one with the wave" style riding, but adds the efficiency of easy paddling, flexible takeoffs, tail pivot turning, and bottom turn projection.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAoa8rnW ... xZHGmrgEOQ
Last edited by Ted on Fri Sep 28, 2012 6:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by spudnut » Fri Sep 28, 2012 6:37 pm

Uncle Grumpy,

Do you really have a Primo & Kamado too? Once you go ceramic, there is no turning back. Next we have to create a ceramic paipo :lol:. Too much buoyancy won't be a problem here.

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Re: Xylem Malama Kai paipo

Unread post by Ted » Fri Sep 28, 2012 6:52 pm

Here are photos of the Xylem showing rocker and comparing plan shape to Austin.
https://plus.google.com/photos/11507993 ... Mba4uSpnQE

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