Power Kite Forum

MHL Lift or Carafino?

grigorib - 3-10-2015 at 10:59 PM

Speaking of hydrofoils what have you heard or would prefer - MHL Lift or Carafino?
Pros or cons?

PHREERIDER - 3-11-2015 at 05:29 AM

they are pricey, 2500+ . i have considerable info on my home computer. dimension, width,ride height etc... i will most likely make my own . i like Horue just off the top of my head.

the old "air chair" stuff is what i am after, beginner stable , available .

Do not start with the narrow version those are race, the more shovel-like the better, so yes there are progressions in shape from beginner to race .

my friend is getting one, don't think he has yet but i got his race board so things are moving along. like the race board kinda have to start in a bit heavier air than your ideal target breeze to work control out. with light air having its own tedious nature this seemingly may take a year or 2 to really be practiced at it to give any usable advice for application. in the next 6 months i will have much more experience and can convey more.

so brand recommendations ? don't know . i 'll post some stuff i have that helped me in starting to get into it. i do know strapless surf is a progressive skill builder for it.

grigorib - 3-11-2015 at 10:51 AM

Strapless surfboard is very easy. You just stand on it. Worked for me first time first. Transitions is something to work on. :)

PHREERIDER - 3-11-2015 at 11:01 AM

well yeah the ride is easy, but tack roll trans. hi speed jibes stuff like that require some practice but more so the for and aft speed control stuff and lighter kite touch in light air riding in general.

PHREERIDER - 3-11-2015 at 03:27 PM

heres a money shot for speed setup heinekien rides for them . seem to be THE race folks


and i have comb this pretty good and its good basic info and knowledge to get u going to find a set up that work for you.

if i bought one it would be a race series , but build freeride set up to learn on or trip to learn somewhere with rental stuff

grigorib - 3-13-2015 at 09:06 AM

Alright boys and girls. I listened to Chicago crew on their experience with Carafino lasting backorder in 2014 so I've chosen and went for MHL Lift. I'm sure both of brands make great gear.

Carbon is beautiful on mine :)

Time to learn and deny/confirm/substantiate what I've understood about hydrofoiling so far:

- "flying carpet" feeling
- "if your kite flies, you ride", which for me is 3.5-4 knots
- quiet ride, no noise from your own wake. Because no wake
- unbelievable upwind
- all the chop goes under the board, not hitting you

- don't go shallow places
- helmet is a must, protection is a must
- re-learning riding technique (front foot pressure, not leaning but sliding turning)

Demoknight - 3-13-2015 at 10:42 AM

Yeah, one of the local shop owners here in Chicago mentioned ordering some foil boards, but they took months to show up here.

PHREERIDER - 3-13-2015 at 01:16 PM

the no noise thing is gonna be freaky,

speed over the chop... that would be some serious magic there.

this is a repost but helpful


grigorib - 11-2-2015 at 06:53 PM

It's been a while but I only got out three times with the foil so even though I feel that I owe an update there's much more to achieve yet.

- up and foiling on third session. Out of three 2.5 were attempts to just ride without foiling. The learning curve is not as bad as "relearning kiting again" but suddenly boardstarts are a challenge
- kite takes more attention again since you fly kite trimmed in and depowered on the edge between pull and falling out of the sky. At least in the beginning but overall it takes so little power to go
- once you can ride board on water there comes "dolphin effect" and yet more wipeouts
- the moment foil gets on the surface or into the chop you hear "the hiss" and have split of a second to recover or loose all the lift and wipe out
- when you fall off the board you better fall far from it, ahead of it and upwind of it
- board by itself turns directly downwind and gains quite a speed pushed by waves
- can't control speed by edging. There's no edging, only depower
- you go upwind without any effort, all the time, regardless all the wipeouts, any tack takes you upwind
- "magic carpet" feeling is unreal. Hoverboard-like
- quiet, silent ride! You hear lines whistle and chop break

Overall, well worth it!

Kamikuza - 11-2-2015 at 07:33 PM

Used, I assume? cos carafino is a king scammer.

I got up foiling on my first session on the SS Alien Air and Lift foil... so it's gotta be beginner friendly.

grigorib - 11-2-2015 at 08:15 PM

MHL Lift. I think have I had the straps more forward it'd be easier to start.

Kamikuza - 11-3-2015 at 03:24 AM

My goal for that day was to ride the board and get a feel for how it runs with the drag from the foil... as per SS's suggestion in a video. Then let the speed drive the foil and resist it coming up with front foot pressure, rather than try to pop it up asap.

Good advice, I got 2 good runs on the foil at close of my session... OMG OMG OMG hey this is cool imma gunna buy one SPLASH

PHREERIDER - 11-3-2015 at 06:45 AM

cool stuff, can't wait to get going, my buddy rides his all the time, i am considering building my own with a short mast and then add taller as i wire things up. looking to get it together hopefully by winter /spring. land board sessions keep stealing me away!

grigorib - 11-3-2015 at 09:10 AM

Quote: Originally posted by PHREERIDER  
...i am considering building my own with a short mast and then add taller as i wire things up...

From what I know a short mast is needed in shallow places like OBX and SPI to not hit the bottom all the time. From learning curve perspective the long mast is good and quick enough right away. The downside of a short mast is foil getting out of water (riding tall or getting into chop) when cavitation kicks in (you can hear that hissing sound) resulting in complete loss of the lift and falling over.

Also used foils get really affordable, might save a lot of efforts and time

PHREERIDER - 11-3-2015 at 02:52 PM

I tried to buy a few used ones but they sell so fast, LF Aluminum set up by far cheapest . i know i can build one lighter and faster than LF set up , actually having the LF to learn on and if i'm really digging it, eventually build a faster one...kinda how i do things.

my buddy has MHL and a trial run is ready to go when i'm ready so... if i find a great deal, and i'm always looking , i wouldn't build one, but i need projects like that sometimes. it keeps the pace of "just buying more stuff" at bay and allows acquisition AND use to be very deliberate ...i can barely decide to use TT or ATB in one session, completely ignoring my surfboard so this will only confound my dilemma.

the build would be fun , the ride i know is gonna get me! i'm still stoked on riding my strapless! one will find me, i have confidence.

ssayre - 11-4-2015 at 07:40 AM

" i'm still stoked on riding my strapless! one will find me, i have confidence."

i'm sure one will find it's your way sooner or later. It is nice to have a couple disciplines. I'm stoked on strapless as well, jut not water :) next i need strapless snow skate

PHREERIDER - 11-4-2015 at 08:06 AM

i'm stoked on the build as well! the build has already got me!

grigorib - 3-29-2016 at 09:41 AM

4'th foiling session update:

- moved straps forward to reduce the "dolphin effect" and it helped a lot. I can apply more pressure to the rear foot now and not have to push like crazy on the from one
- can start without wiping out, consistently
- can foil for extended distance
- I love foiling

PHREERIDER - 3-29-2016 at 11:01 AM

nice, and thats what its all about!

windward tack is just around the corner!

rtz - 3-29-2016 at 11:10 AM

grigorib - 3-29-2016 at 01:59 PM

I'm riding 2013 MHL Lift. It's beautiful carbon setup, the mast/fuselage/wings set weigh 7.2 lbs. The board is carbon wrapped as well and is pretty light too compared to compression Fish boards.
What I specifically admire about it is the fuselage doesn't have the "spear tips" on the front and tail of it - the hydrofoil is dangerous enough to add more sharp edges.

FlyGuyFrank - 3-29-2016 at 03:20 PM

Wow...pricey stuff! You guys seem to have endless $$$$ to spend on toys! :o I bought a brand-new Core 95 land board and got it for half-off delivered free for a total of $230 and thought THAT was extravagant!


PHREERIDER - 3-30-2016 at 05:05 AM

MHL is deluxe, i like alex aguera stuff ...but currently phreedom custom ! will be the magic

the wing set from LF will work on my custom so it may give some variety.

cool on the progression man.

grigorib - 5-22-2016 at 06:07 AM

Trip to OBX doubled foiling sessions I've had in a past year. I used to ride the foil "flat vertical" and now I can "edge" (actually lean back) and push. Upwind is mindblowing. The board no longer feels bulky and I tighten the straps for more control (instead of going strapless on rear foot:)

Thinking of getting a Slingshot set with 24" mast as I'm getting ready to go back to OBX. Hitting bottom is no fun.

PHREERIDER - 5-22-2016 at 06:49 AM

Great man, TT is stealing my sessions! But adding distance every outing, yesterday I was TT'ing and my buddy was foiling jibes effortlessly, he got about a year on it and is form is a solid and a great model to watch. Comfortable conditions helps for sure

grigorib - 5-27-2016 at 10:33 AM

One more lesson learned - for a given kite size if wind is sufficient to ride a regular twintip, it's too big of a kite for a hydrofoil.

grigorib - 7-23-2016 at 06:11 AM

Last few sessions I decided to put my back foot in front of the strap, almost above the mast. Resulted in even more stable and faster rides and back foot is strapless now. Felt quite easy.

grigorib - 7-25-2016 at 08:43 PM

I've had a challenging session past Sunday:
- light and unstable wind so kite would fall from zenith, had to loop it to keep line in tension and kite flying. You know, one of those awkward lightwind sessions when you have to trim in so kite flies at all.
- bunch of motorboats and jet skis cruising around (it's Sunday) and to top it off a sailing race going on. Too much traffic while having to pilot the kite excessively.
- I took the back strap off which made it look cooler however with that I lost my point of reference. Keeping my back foot in front of the strap I was also pushing on it a bit. I'm missing a little "kicker" for my back foot now.
- replaced front strap with NSI Kling On hook. That funny happy feeling riding "technically strapless". Had couple of tacks and promised myself to enjoy it a bit later, too many changes at once are not good. Strapless is definitely harder, certainly less board control on pitch and yaw but foiling strapless looks so tempting. Apparently not as hard to boardstart as I thought it would be.

And to make it worse I pumped my new 12m kite which I got couple of weeks ago to find out that central strut valve is leaking. Came home, inflated the kite to find that all three struts are leaking...bummer. Valve donut time I guess