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Expanding from 508 Spitfire to 501or3 Baked Potato and 508or10 Hellfire

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  • Expanding from 508 Spitfire to 501or3 Baked Potato and 508or10 Hellfire

    Hello everyone,

    Got a lot of useful info on the forum a while ago looking at firewire boards and ended up buying a 2nd hand 508 spitfire which i LOVE. It grovels great and still turns well etc and goes good on bigger waves... My current issue is that its a bit of a jack of all trades king of none (well thats a lie it excels in the mid range). So i was going to expand and after my experience with this board i think its got to be more firewires...

    I surf southern queensland and northern new south wales, mostly on the goldy. I think this is another factor after a few big swells recently the 508 spit felt a bit too buoyant and chunky in the hollow GC surf... Scary duckdives, sketchy drop ins and more than one occasion of going well and truly over the falls!

    I am 24, around 70kgs maybe a little less, 5'7 (fairly stocky) strong and fit. Id say im a beginner/intermediate, i am happy to go out in anythign that i can get out in and give it a crack, get into waves pretty good, paddle fairly strong and get lots of turns in with the occasional cutback on a good day...

    So i was thinking 501 or 503 Baked Potato and a 508 or 510 hellfire...

    If anyone could give any advice on sizing and if they think that these would be good board choices (id sell the spitfire) that would be awesome! I suppose the plan would be to eventually get something really refined and high performance as a final addition... In the mean time i hope a hellfire would be happy on the overhead days and hopefully help me get inside a few dredging barrels...



    ps i have posted with in both baked potato and hellfire forums hope thats ok

  • #2
    Hi Nelson

    Your story sounds similar to mine, keep in mind that I am 5kg heavier and a couple of years older. I surf the Sunshine Coast, so no heavy wetties like some of the other guy's here : ) I'm also only a two board man.

    I went with a 5'8" Spitfire first and found it was a 'jack of all trades king of none' as you say for my size, way too corky. So I sold it for a 5'6" Spitfire, which was a much better volume but still felt it lacked something. More my fault as I was trying to ride it in solid beachies, going over the falls and my cutbacks were skipping out when I had too much speed (lack of rail length or fin selection I suspect). Really I should have been on something more like a HellFire tackling solid beachies and that's what I went next, a 5'8" HellFire.

    Extremely happy now surfing beachies, enough rocker for the late drops and turns beautifully, duck dives well too. I reckon 5'8" would be ideal for your size although 5'10" would be ok if you are beginner/intermediate. The 5'8" does feel a bit sketchy when I get tired and lazy during a big surf (paddling suffers too) because I think I'm pushing the volume for my weight, maybe a 5'10 would have been better.

    The HellFire would be perfect for the Spit and DBah or when the points get some size.

    I'm also on a 5'3" Baked Potato to grovel, which is awesome! I had a 5'2" Sweet Potato but the Baked Potato works much better, especially if you want to throw it around and get it into bigger surf (there is a limit though). I would have loved to try a 5'1" for more performance but it defeats the purpose for having a grovel board I suppose. In saying that I think you could get away with a 5'1", especially at your age, weight and height.

    Hope that helps, give me a yell if you have any questions.


    • #3
      Hi Nelson

      I would go the 508 Helfire. I am the same height and weight as you and I had a 510. It was a touch on the big side even in a 5mm wettie. I am a fair bit older and have a doggy shoulder but can still paddle my 508 subscorcher for hours on end. The sub is another nice board worth a look.


      • #4
        Thanks guys, really appreciate the feedback!

        Just about everyone is suggesting go 508 on the hellfire which the more i think about it seems the right choice. Really useful to here your similar story and surfing the beachies (broadbeach is my closest) when they get sucky is classic territory where i start tihnking about changing up from the 508 spitfire.

        just about everyone seems to froth over their hellfires! i suppose for now i could keep the 508 spit for grovelling and get a hellfire then get a BP or SP a little later altho it might be nice for the winter...

        i suppose i really ought to board test some different sizes and models out of currumbin! my concern is under shooting on volume but i think thats the thing really the 508 spit feels corky and i would want the BP for grovelling and the hellfire for punchier stuff so at the right volume they should be great for their range and probably overlap eachother a little...

        now im starting to question mainy sweet or baked potato and to go slightly more volume for uber grovelling or less for perfomance....


        • #5
          Baked all the way, I've had both but where the Baked excels over the Sweet is the ability to push the limits of wave size, it has a bit more hold and if you pop in a little knub fin it's much harder to lose the tail like you normally would pushing the Sweet to the limits.


          • #6
            Potato family boards = fun I don't think I'd ever be without one of them

            I'd say get the hf in a 5'8 when you get used to that volume in a couple weeks or so get the 5'1 BP. At that point the 29.3 ltrs of vol is gonna feel really floaty. The 5'3 might feel like too much after using the hf I woulda thought


            • #7
              Matt_s is on the money, my biggest problem is transitioning from my 5'3" BP and 5'8" when the surf goes up and down. Hoping to fix this problem soon. 5'1" BP would be the go.


              • #8
                Awesome info again guys, i was thinking i would go the hellfire first and get a BP once iv sold the spitfire which goes pretty good as a groveller since its like 30L or something!


                • #9
                  Yeh I have a 5'6 Dom and I find that grovels well it will Defintely do till you sell it and get your hands on that BP !