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Addvance - El Fuego - Differences/Choices

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  • Addvance - El Fuego - Differences/Choices

    I'm looking for a new board and have some questions.

    I'm a 43 yrs; 6'3 225 lbs and fit, but with a large frame. I've been surfing 30 years and am on the top end of Intermediate. I surf 1 to 3 times per week, like any working stiff and try to swim a couple of other days to stay in paddling shape. I'm surfing a lot of punchy beach breaks and the reefs in South Orange County CA and North County SD.

    I'm currently riding a 6'1'' x 21 1/4 x 2 7/8 epoxy hybrid shortboard. It goes great, but sometimes I feel like I need to get into waves sooner and paddle faster.

    I've been intrigued by the Firewires and have been looking at them. For my size, the volume calc shows: 47-58

    The volume equates to the 6'6'' ADDvance or the 6'5'' El Fuego. (The 6'6'' Spitfire and Dom are in there too). I really do not want to go bigger than 6'6''.

    The boards are basically the same length, width and very close on the thickness. The difference that I see is that the ADDvance goes wider in the nose and narrower in the tail, while the EF is the opposite.

    After looking, I have not been able to find these boards in shops to compare in person.

    I'm curious to know how the differences between the boards affect the ride. I'm looking to get in early, go fast and connect some good turns...having some fun. (If I'm missing an anlysis of another model, let me know!)



  • #2
    Hi DMac,

    I would have said the Addvance and the ELF are both wide in the nose and narrow in the tail as opposed to the Spit & Dom which are not. Maybe that is what you meant.

    If your surfing punchy beach breaks you also need to consider rocker profile. The Elf is a very flat board and while it wil probably get you in early I don't think was intended for punchy beachie takeoffs.

    I have an Addvance and surf puchy beachies all the time and it has never let me down on a take off up to about head high. I have noticed on several occasions the flip in the nose save me and I think the bevelled rails help as well and it is ridiculously easy to catch waves with. Yesterday I tried paddling into some 1 1/2 head high breaking quickly across a bank and I felt the Addvance (or maybe the rider) was past its capability. I could get in, but couldnt seem to get it wound up along the face and would get nailed. I noticed the younger fitter and lighter guys on traditional short boards were making it much more often than I could. You sound like you have a bit more ability and weight than me so maybe have a higher range on an Addvance, particularly a smaller one.

    I'll let other who surf these conditions more capably recommend you a board.



    • #3
      I think the biggest issue with the Elf in the steep punchy stuff is all in the takeoff. Like STC67 said, it has a really flat rocker. This lends itself to sketchier takeoffs when things get steep. However, once you are in the board will go like mad and get you through sections that might otherwise look like nothing but closeout. Since you describe yourself as on the upper end of intermediate, you might find the El Fuego to be a great choice. It will certainly allow you to get in early, which might get around the steepness issue. I also find it to be really responsive once you get your feet placed right.

      In general, I tend to see the El Fuego as offering a bit more performance than the Addvance, although both will do well.


      • #4
        yeah great advice everyone. The two boards really represent 2 genres of surfboards. The Addvance is a mid length, high volume board primarily meant to make catching waves easier while making paddling also a breeze. Per formance has been intertwined into this DNA but above all, its a high volume board.

        The El Fuego is a more of a shortboard hybrid, that has far less volume and will be ridden shorter. It has a different set of performance characteristics but above all, is a shortboard ridden with FAR less volume.

        I think deciding between the two is all about figuring out what your needs and preferences are.

        Hope this helps!