Front wing parts

Showing all 15 results

The specs of the front wings in our range

Understanding the specs of a front wing

  1. 1. Outline: 

The principle of the outline of a front wing shares many of the characteristics of a surfboard shape. The notions of width (chord), length (span) and curve… also have a direct impact on the program and the behavior of the foil.

We have 2 large outline families:

  • Ovalized” outlines designed for ease (Rise, X-Over) and/or maneuverability (Curve, Fluid). Overall, a rounded outline offers more progressiveness in changes of direction. The curves are less technical because you benefit from a more fluid and continuous grip.

  • The “stretched out” outlines for performance with glide and speed ) (Veloce, Ypra, Sirus and the H versions for high aspect ratio). The performance gain comes at the expense of the forgiveness of a more ovalized outline. A type of outline that is aimed at more experienced foilers who will quickly learn to extract the full potential in curves, often exceeding what they were able to achieve on foils with a rounder outline.

It should be noted that the distribution of the profile will strongly influence the behavior of the wing. For example:

  • a very round leading edge will facilitate the entry into curves.
  • moving the tips back from the center of the wing will self stabilize the foil.
  • centering the surface will improve rail to rail.
  • more surface at the tips will stabilize the foil and limit its maneuverability.
  • scalloping the trailing edge will reduce the chord and boost glide.

Obviously these elements are to be associated with all the other parameters because we can choose elements that contradict each other to create a balance or, conversely, combine complementary elements to give a clear meaning. The design of the outline is crucial.

2. Wingspan:

The wingspan is the total distance from tip to tip of the wing. It has an important role in roll stability and handling.
With a small wingspan, the foil enters curves more easily and needs less pressure to engage in a turn (for instance the Fluid S is cut for great handling). On the contrary, a wing with more wingspan will have a larger curve radius.
All things being equal, more wingspan means more glide and less maneuverability, but also more forgiveness in high range, and less in low range.

3. Corde:

The chord of a front wing represents the maximum central width which goes from the leading edge to the trailing edge. It conditions its lift and accessibility. A large chord will create lift at low speed and forgiveness but will limit glide by creating more drag. An initiation type wing like the X-Over has a larger chord. It makes take-off easier and maintains flight even at low speed.

Conversely, low chord wings like the Veloce H and Ypra develop limited power at low speed making the take off more technical. But they allow much higher speeds while remaining very comfortable (limited pressure under the front foot). We have more glide in flight, which allows us to maintain flight with less energy. Overall, low chords are very technical.

4 – Aspect Ratio:

The aspect ratio could be summed up as the ratio between the wingspan and the chord of your wings. It is calculated by measuring the wingspan in centimeters and then dividing the square of that measurement by the area of the wing in square centimeters. This is how you define the aspect ratio of the wing.

Visually, recognizing a high or low aspect ratio wing is simple. Low aspect ratios are compact and have a collected shape while a high aspect ratio will be very slender.

To sum up, a front wing with a low aspect ratio is easy to start with and will be more reactive for surfing. Its advantage is low-end power with excellent lift and responsiveness. These are wings that allow you to have fun and progress easily!

The high aspect ratio wings are made to optimize glide. The take-off will be more technical and the need for speed to hold on to the flight will be greater. You might need aggressive pumping at some points. On the other hand, they bring a huge gain in glide and speed with an unparalleled planing ability. Sailing upwind is crazy in kite or wing foiling with such a front wing. You can go for angles amazingly close to the wind!

5 – Thickness:

When we talk about thickness, we refer to the maximum thickness of the profile. The thicker this profile, the more powerful it will be. On the contrary, a thin profile will be more progressive and allow better glide without saturating at high speed. Please note, we are talking about raw thickness, but also thickness of the chord to compare wings.

From one front wing size to the other within the same range, this thickness changes but remains proportional to the chord. A small size, intended for a small build or for strong wind / powerful waves, will be thinner than the large sizes intended for strong builds or small conditions.

For an identical chord:

  • The thick profiles facilitate take-off and low speed flights. On the other hand, this thickness creates more resistance (drag) in the water, which results in a slower top speed. But it will help you gain confidence and experience in flying. In strong winds or on powerful waves, these are wings that will become more physical with an ON/OFF behavior. We mainly find this type of profile on beginner / intermediate type foils, but also on reduced speed wings such as dock start / pumping wings or pure surf foiling wings which will evolve 5 to 10 knots slower than kite or wing foiling ones.
  • Thin profiles will certainly need more speed to take off but, once in the air, their thinness gives them a better glide. They fly with more speed and much less drag. This gain allows you to plane further without slowing down. These are wings made primarily for going fast. At low speed, they will tend to lose stability and stall abruptly.

As you will have understood, the dosage of thickness will be essential to stick to a program and a specific level of foiler. Our job is to find the perfect balance in each range.

6 – Profil:

The profile is very important both in terms of glide and lift. The thickness, seen previously, will play an important role here depending on where this maximum thickness will be present.

For example, a front wing like the X-Over has this maximum thickness on the first front third for maximum lift at low speed.

The further back this thickness is, even centered, as on the Ypra, the less raw lift you’ll have. What’s in it for you? A very clean glide without risk of overpowering at high speed.

Another important element, the curve of the intrado (underside of the front wing)! A profile with a very flat intrado will have lower lift but better top speed because it will limit drag. On the contrary, a profile with more hollow in this place will give more lift and stability at low speeds. And a very convex intrado will surely help the glide if it is well thought out.

A supercritical profile is a profile which on its trailing part tends to put the flows back in the axis of displacement. To do this, the rear third/quarter of the extrado and/or intrado profiles are slightly hollowed out so that, at the profile’s exit, the intra and extra flows come together with the least possible disturbance. So we recalibrate their speed at this stage while at the start of the profile we create a speed differential to generate lift.

7 – Camber:

The camber is the shape of your wing seen from the front or back. This parameter influences the stability and glide of your foil. In our range you will find different models: from curved front wings to practically flat front wings, and even front wings with an inverted camber.

The impact of the type of camber, all other data being equal, could be summed up as the influence of the hulls under the tail of a surfboard:

  • Flat: neutral shape with a lot of glide but also lateral drift if you don’t hold it back.
  • Negative camber (downward tips): uncommon shape in aviation because the tips would easily touch the ground, which is not so much an issue in the water. The effect is comparable to that of a concave under a board: we are locked on the water, great control, but limited rail to rail.
  • Positive camber (upward tips): shape that looks like a V on a hull, so with a nice and smooth rail to rail, but less stability and control.
  • In dihedral: like a double concave, we will have a balance of the mix of a negative camber and a positive double camber in the center. So V in the middle and tips (would be rails in surfing) that offer grip.

Thus a pronounced negative camber like on a X-OVER gives you excellent grip and limits the yaw effect (stability of the foil in a straight line).

When the camber is moderate like on a Veloce, it keeps a minimum of stability while limiting drag for better glide and better top speed.

The omega camber of the Ypra has shape changes in its curve. It has practically flat sections (in the center and at the tips) for maximum glide and thus limit the risk of ventilation (loss of lift) when the tips approach the surface of the water. The rest, more curved, is used to lock the foil as much as possible at high speed.

Flat front wings or with a camber close to 0° have maximum glide and speed. Another big advantage is that those front wings have very little risk of touching bottom when surfing in shallow water. Moreover, when very close to the surface, they can breach the tips without risk of ventilation. Above all, they are very versatile front wings.

An important point to note is that a wing with a negative camber (Curve) will dive into the water laterally when ventilating a tip, while a positive camber (Fluid H) will pull the wing out of the water. So a Curve will return to its element to perfectly function while a Fluid H will escape from the water to drift, send airs etc… Which radically changes the behavior and therefore the target audience.

8 – Surface area:

Although this spec cannot be relied upon alone to choose one model over another, the surface area of wings is the most frequently indicated comparative measurement on the market. It represents the projected surface area of your wing in cm². In our descriptions, we prefer to indicate this surface in three different forms for better understanding:

  •  Projected: As shown above, this represents the surface of your front wing when viewed from above or “flat”. Pretty much its shadow.
  • Extrado: This is the surface that includes the camber of your wing, i.e. the actual surface in full development.
  • Feeling: It includes the notion of the type of profile in addition to only the surface area for a more realistic sizing. This measurement facilitates comparison with the various models on the market.

9 – Volume:

Talking about volume for foils may seem surprising. We are used to relying on this spec to choose our boards, but what is the real interest of this info in the choice of a front wing or a stab?

The volume is very important to have a total understanding of the size of your foil. Indeed, the volume of water moved will largely define the lift of a wing while the way it is moved will define its behavior.

We have seen previously that a profile thickness radically changes the lift of a front wing, regardless of its surface. For example, a wing with a surface area of 1500 cm² will have a totally different power and feeling if its profile is 12 mm or 15 mm thick! They are two radically different wings, even though they share the same outline.

We have the perfect example between the Rise and the X-Over which are very close in outline but totally different in thickness. Their projected surfaces are almost identical (+/- 1850 cm² in XL) but with a radically different volume of almost 1L!

The result will be very different (as we indicate in our “feel surface”) with a feeling of 1900cm² for the X-Over, which is thinner, and 2100cm2 for the Rise, which is thicker.

10 – Wheelbase:

The wheelbase is the distance between the front wing and the stab. This spacing affects the overall comfort and stability of your foil.

  • long wheelbase will provide greater stability and lift. The foil feels more locked and less reactive to small parasitic movements. The longer wheelbase also increases stability, avoiding pitching, which allows for a smoother takeoff. This type of foil is great for facilitating learning (as with the X-Over) and for freerace / slalom navigation (thanks to the extensions) to keep the foil locked at full speed.
  • On the other hand, with a reduced wheelbase, the reactivity of the foil is greater. You have a very low inertia during maneuvers, which gives maximum nervousness in curves. With this type of foil, you have a more playful flight, even downright aggressive with reduced curve radii. Be careful not to lose too much lift, which the designers compensate with more angle in the stab or profiles with more lift.

Our foils have a span from leading edge of front wing to trailing edge of the stab calculated according to their program. The difference will be made with the length of the sockets at the stabs. The X-Over and Sirus having the longest span and the Freestyle the shortest.

Then, depending on the practice and the feeling sought, you can vary the span, the center of thrust and the stability with an adapter or with the different extensions offered in our catalog.

Find all the details here:


11 – How sizes are scaled at GONG:

Rappel des tailles par Patrice dit L’Ours, boss & shaper GONG:

Sizes explained by Patrice aka L’Ours, boss & shaper GONG:

“I designed our foil wings naming them S, M, L, XL, etc … so that everyone can easily find their way around.

You have to see it as follows : after progressing on a Curve L, you might want to evolve on a Fluid for example. Well, the size you need for the Fluid would be L again.
Indeed, it’s the change of program that is to be considered: you go from a versatile and easy surfer front wing, to a faster and very maneuverable front wing. But your weight remains the same, so does your spot, and the wind range in which you use it too.
The right size for you in one model is therefore the size that is right for you in all GONG models.

That being said, you probably also want a light wind or a strong wind front wing. The variation in available power will require you to adjust the size of the wing of your foil. (It is not an absolute requirement by the way.) In this case, you want another size, M or XL for example.

But remember that I have scaled all the wings on a single equivalence grid. An L is an L.
You will tell me yes but the Fluid L is much smaller than the X-Over L !!! It’s true and that’s precisely my job: to estimate exactly your progress when you decide to switch from one to the other and to calibrate the sizes so that you feel like in slippers with your new wing in a new program. You go from an athletic beginner to a radical carver, it is logical that the necessary surface for your performances will drop considerably. And I am the one doing the math to adjust the ranges.” L’Ours.

Buying Guide:

For information, at the bottom of each product page, you have a “Buying Guide” section where everything is explained: For whom? For what ? What size ? etc You will also find the video of L’Ours presenting the range in detail.

In case of doubt, you can contact us on the online chat, make a telephone appointment via the chat or our contact form in the section “GONG”.

Your evolution:

It is essential to choose your front wing according to your level without skipping steps. When in doubt, favor accessibility over radicality, simply because the most radical actions are carried out on equipment over which you have perfect control. The diagram below gives you an idea of the accessibility of each wing in the range.

Which cover?

Don’t forget to protect your foil, we have developed a cover that allows you to protect the front wing. You don’t risk damaging your foil by storing it in your garage or loading it in the car.

For carbon masts, you can also protect it with our mast covers. This way your foil is fully protected.

Never forget your spare parts

There is nothing more annoying than arriving at the spot, seeing perfect conditions, and then realising that you are missing one or more screws, or that by being in too much of a hurry, you have just screwed up a screw head. Consider that screws are consumables and that they should be changed regularly, and ideally, you should have some in advance.

We also advise you to protect your aluminium foil from galvanic corrosion by using Tikal Tef-Gel. This prevents blisters from forming on the surface of the metal and reliably protects it from corrosion by galvanic currents between different types of metal. You will also avoid jamming your screws, and you will have a much better tightening torque.