Welcome back to another Appletree Surfboards Tech Talk video! The team are back in Cape Town, with Dylan Wichmann and they're here to talk about Big Wave Tow in foiling

Big wave tow in foil surfing vs normal tow in foil surfing

So, Dylan, you explained already how you actually got into normal foiling by tow foiling behind the boat. How different is that compared to the tow foiling you do now? Yeah, so I’ve done quite a lot of tow-in foil surfing. Unfortunately, I haven’t got quite yet to the size waves that I’ve wanted to get up to. That has not so much to do with the board, but more to do with the foils. Most foils are made for that two to three foot range waves.

Foils for big wave tow in foil surfing

To tow anything 10 to 15 foot plus, we need a completely different foil set up. First of all is the longer mast. When I do go in bigger surf, I’ll always be on a 950 mast so that I can keep the foil deeper in the water. So I don’t go flying when I hit one of the bumps. We are currently busy developing a lot more big wave foils. Hopefully I’ll be able to get out to Dungeons and Sunset and all the big waves around Cape town.

And how are they different? The foils? Well, it almost looks like the front wings are the same size as the tail wings you currently would be riding. So I think the range would be, say, 500 to 700 square centimeter. And sort of similar stabilizers just because a lot of the time that’s what we used to, so it’s pointless changing too much up. Otherwise, you need to do a whole bunch of testing just to dial in that one foil.

Small boards for big wave tow in foil surfing

We also move on to a lot smaller boards. One thing is that you will simply have less wind resistance, compared to riding on a bigger board. You’re moving 50 to 60 kilometers down the face of the wave, you’re going at incredible speeds. And the main thing that you actually do is just putting all your weight on your front foot. Just to keep the foil from from breaching.

Catch the full spiel over at


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