Surfer: Darshan Gooch
Height/weight: 6’4″ 185lbs.
Board model: 2win single wing swallow tail
Dimensions: 5’11” x 19.75″ x 2.375″ vol. 32L
Construction type: Varial foam core (no deck channels) + CFT std glassing + carbon tail strips
Fins used: futures Akila Aipa fiberglass 5.4″
What comes to mind when checking out this design?
Considering this is Stretch’s version of a modern twin-fin, it stands alone. Channel Islands has an updated version of the Merrick Twin but i don’t feel that these boards are comparable.
Where do you think this board will shine?
I imagine this board to be very adaptable in an assortment of different waves, mostly waves I wouldn’t consider riding a standard or contemporary shortboard. Most ideally this would be for waves in the thigh to head high range that would be lacking in quality or substantial curve throughout the wave face.
Sub average to decently good waves and everything in between: beachbreaks, mushy to decent point waves, wedgey and fairly hollow reefs. This board can be a real “go-getter”!
Originally I had ordered this board amidst our 2016 summer season in hopes of finding a fun and user-friendly board that would get me excited to surf an assortment of sub-average summer-type waves.
The “2WIN” immediately turned me into a 14 year old frothing grom again! Like experiencing the excitement of a fish for the first time, there was an immediate spark and sensibility of speed and freedom as soon as you hit your feet. One of my favorite things about the 2WIN is riding that line between casual flow and radicalness. Naturally this board goes fast without the struggle of having to create your speed. It’s up to you where and how you want to use or bleed all that forward trajectory. For me the art of twin-fin surfing is learning how to use and engage the rails more actively, while exploring those boundaries of speed and control.
I found it very suiting for the types of waves I surf regularly around Santa Cruz. With uncanny accessibility to an abundance of speed and a natural sense of user friendliness, the 2WIN proved to be very adaptable. What i had initially ordered for so-so summer days, turned into a board I felt confident bringing into larger overhead barreling waves. This is now a board I am having a hard time putting down.
Eventually when I pushed this board into waves that became too steep or square (far outside of it’s intended capabilities) the tail could begin to drift or slide. Sometimes if I mis-stepped behind the fins the board became a bit too squirrely and directionally challenged.
At times I found it challenging to project vertically in tight places, and sporadic situations. I don’t think this board is vertically challenged as much as it needs the appropriate time and space to find it’s optimum line.
Strengths = natural speed and user-friendly characteristics.
Weaknesses = Not a “do-it-all” design for me. Need to pay attention to what that back foot is doing.
“If I could choose between this and one other model, I would get the …..
In a perfect world I would choose a 2WIN 2.0 version geared for the winter season and better waves in mind. And have the current 2WIN for a variety of average, to sub average conditions.
“Twin it “2-WIN” it!” This board is sure to put a smile on your face especially if you are feeling tired of your conventional shortboards and stuck in the rigidity of habits and routines.
How did the difference in foam core affect performance?
The “2WIN” is the second Varial Foam blank I have tested. Initially Stretch made me two THING’s, a version with a 2.1pcf Marko foam EPS blank with 1/8″ bamboo stringer, and a duplicate THING using Varial Foam, both in CFT construction glassing.
During the sessions where I compared both THING’s, I first noticed a subtle damping effect when surfing the Varial board in semi-chattery conditions. In cleaner conditions there were times when I could feel the board loading up in turns and almost having some subtle springiness qualities as you are unloading pressure. Almost like a rubber band on a very small scale.
My feeling is that Varial could have a lively, more natural – multi dimensional flex pattern as it interacts with the wave and different weight distribution. The subtleties of Varial had proven very hard for me to pick up on immediately, so I was interested in trying it in a summer type surfboard such as the “2WIN”.
Both these boards built with Varial cores were and still are durable. Outside of foot dents, I am amazed that neither boards have had any legitimate dings on them.
Compared to my CFT constructed boards with EPS/EPOXY, both of these Varial foam versions were not “lighter”. The THING built with the Varial foam actually weighed 6oz. more than the Marko foam and bamboo stringer version. There are a lot of variables in surfboard construction of course. Personally I’m not a “team light” kind of person and I don’t mind a little weight and these boards seemed appropriate to me. Not heavy in the slightest degree.
Honestly, I think a custom built surfboard with a longer lifespan is a step in the right direction. Some may find it a challenge to notice the performance differences but maybe that’s where the fun is at, learning and experimentation. Enjoy!