Source: The Kiteboarder Magazine
Sizes Available: 2.4, 2.8, 3.5, 4.2, 5, 5.5m
Sizes Tested: 4.2m
Offering pure enjoyment is at the heart of this new Swing V2’s design. It is not a matter of pure performances nor the jumps’ height. It has been designed to offer the lightest feeling possible and generating efficient power to allow foiling in all conditions with maximum stability and ease of use.
The power’s distribution has been improved and is perfectly balanced in order to save arms fatigue. The instant power generated by the wing as well as its neutral balance makes it a fantastic wing for all riders no matter their level and ways to practice. It has been designed to offer a flex which greatly improves the comfort. The Swing V2 is a fantastic light wind wave riding wing.
We have made the choice not to add unnecessary accessories to keep the weight as low as possible. Its remarkable low weight will make you forget about it when in free-fly mode and when riding the swell. The Swing V2 has improved all of its original features: simplicity, comfort and stability. Riding in the low end will have never been so enjoyable and is exceptionally intuitive.
Visit for more info: www.f-one.world/product/swing-v-2/
Shortly after the release of the Strike, F-One introduced a new version of the Swing and this is probably a big head-scratcher for some as the Strike is such a general improvement on the Swing. So what can a refined Swing V2 bring to the market? The answer is lightness and while for most, that may not seem that important, but to us it muddies the water and makes the choice between the Strike and the Swing V2 much more difficult.
Type of inflation: Push Button inflation / boom dump valve
Number of boom handles: 2 center handles
Y handles: None
Wrist leash style: Closed loop cinch
First off, the Swing gets all the same control improvements that are baked into the Strike. The three small handles are replaced by two larger handles, the boom has its own unique bend (different from the Strike) and the airframe gets upgraded rigidity, perhaps not quite as rigid as the Strike, but a significant improvement over the Swing V1. Much like the Strike, the Swing V2 boom bends away from the rider for a more comfortable riding position, but also reconnects with the canopy for a stiffer more controlled trailing edge. Noticeably different, the Swing’s boom has a much narrower tip compared to the Strike, reducing Dacron and bladder and perhaps a bit of stiffness. The other significant difference is that the Swing V2 comes in one size smaller (2.4m) than the Strike.
The new handles are a big change but a welcomed mod to the previous three-handle layout. With the Swing V1, the middle handle was only helpful on your first week of wingsurfing, but after that, you almost never used it unless you were confused. With only two handles on the Strike, our hands always landed in the right place and without thinking. Since the handles have a wider stance, you can move your hand forward or back to fine-tune your balance point on the wing and it seemed like our technical handwork was far easier as we attempted new transitions—our hands could find a handle much faster and we had fewer misses. The handles use the same EVA-infused webbing as the Swing V1, which is great because that was one of our favorite designs on the market.
The Swing V2 also gets the introduction of a release valve on the boom for much quicker deflation. Inflation still occurs on the leading edge through the high-flow push-button valve (just remember to close the valve on the boom first or you will be pumping forever), but now the boom deflates much faster than the Swing V1. The wrist leash is new this year; it uses the same cinch system that F-One pioneered on the V1, but gives it more padding and makes it a bit smaller.
Since we tend to be biased towards the surfing side of wingfoiling, when we were told that the Swing V2 would be designed as a beginner/progression wing it just didn’t seem to add up. Foilsurfing with wings is all about lightness. Sure there are handling characteristics that come to play, but the lighter you make the wing, you get more float and freedom to ride waves without interference. Ok, so we’ve disclosed our agenda, but when you test the Swing V2 back to back against the Strike we found that the Swing V2 has two arguably crucial qualities that give it a slight edge for downwinding and riding waves. The first is that the Swing V2 is just a hair bit lighter and seems to float a bit more positively when you’re in onshore conditions. It’s slightly easier to flick around and if wave riding was all that we were doing, that advantage would be a decisive factor. Secondly, the Swing V2 has a much broader power band that is less sensitive to how you sheet the wing. The Swing V2 generates power immediately, no matter where it is in its angle of attack. If you could imagine a low-aspect kite that has that sheet-n-go feel, this is the equivalent. We prefer this slight difference in power delivery for wave riding because oftentimes in wave riding you need power instantaneously. It can be the difference between kicking out of a wave or waterstarting and getting to the channel before the next set rips you into pieces. Compared to the Strike, the Swing doesn’t have as much range in over-powered conditions and you might feel a bit more arm pump on long upwind tacks. As for upwind ability, the Swing V2 feels more efficient than the V1, but it doesn’t reach the same high angle of attack that you get with the Strike. When it comes to steering the Swing V2 through the wind window, the Swing feels a little less active than the Strike, which means it feels a little more steady.
Maybe we’re splitting hairs, mostly because the Strike works great for chasing swells and riding waves, but we believe the Swing V2 is a foilsurfing wing at heart and those qualities that make it great for waves also make it great for beginners and progression. Super stable with easy access to power without much technique is a winning equation for those just getting into the sport. If you’re doing a lot of upwind riding (ie to get to your secret spot) or freeride/freestyle winging, then the Strike might feel like the better option. If you’re a surfing purist, then perhaps you should give the Swing V2 a chance before you commit to the Strike.