"Looking at your vinyl shield, it occurred to me that it will have some problems trying to be a diving plane at some point. I think its a good prototype. "
I tried it with 2 smaller shields and had a problem with the leeward side one digging in. I plowed through a lot of heavy stuff with the one piece and didn't notice it digging in if anything it seemed to lift and prevent the nose from submerging.
I didn't plow through the base of any huge waves so I can't say for sure what will happen but I plan to do a lot of sailing at the Ocean Front when I get a chance because sail-surfing is a real blast.
I think a fine mesh tramp material would work but it might fill the air with a mist that you would then sail into. There is a steady rush of water hitting the bottom when really booking and I like watching all the water thats not hitting me.
I am considering a way to batten the leading edges so they will not flap so much but fear the diving plane effect might kick in, its a work in progress but I felt it far enough along to share with those in warmer waters. Our season here is probably about done for.
Hobiekayaker, I was only going about 8 to 10 mph tops in the video because I was sailing one handed closehauled within a 1/2 mile of the windward shore. Out in the Bay it was really kicking and I was plowing through 3' waves without any problems or noticable slow downs, but it requires both hands to sail.
If the temps aren't too cold over the Holidays I would be up for some sailing and let you give it a try. I would like to get some gps readings but it is the sail- surfing speeds I am most interested in. Conditions were really only right during a howling nor-easter for it so I haven't done as much as I would have liked to. When you catch it just right it feels as though a giant has grabed your little yak and given it a good push.
I used to windsurf and the feeling is very similar except sitting down at water level. While sail-surfing is the only time the Island felt like it was ready to go airborne which probably wouldn't be good but oh what a feeling.