I used to windsurf a lot in my younger days but have been out of it for a good 7/8 years now. Need some advise on what are the best production boards/rigs out there at the moment.
Some specs to work with: I need a slalom board around 9ft (I sail mainly inland; have no wave sailing experience), semi-sinker. I weigh around 175 lb. I typically can handle winds up to 20-25 knots. Quite competent with harness, gybing, but struggle with water starts.
I would suggest a board about 115 to 140 Liters. The lower fiqure if you want to sail in stronger winds 20 to 25 mph, the higher figure if you want to sail in lighter winds 15 to 20mph.
The new sails have a tremendous wind range. You could probably start out with 2 sails. I would recommend a 6.5 to 7 meter sail for your big one and a 5.0 to 5.5 for your small one according to the size of board I recommended above.
Starboards have been getting a lot of good reviews lately as well as F2 and Mistral. The later 2 are probably more durable.But the Starboard is probably a better all around type board and faster..
Remember when waterstarting, board position is most important. Get the board parallel to the wind or aimed slightly downwind. Drag the boom over the back of the board to release the sail from the water. Then try to lift the sail to get it flying in the wind. Move the whole rig forward and over your head and lift it as high as you can. Don't pull down on the rig until you feel it pulling you. Keep reaching and pushing the sail as high as you can and keep it pushed forward. If you tilt the sail towaard the back of the board it will immediatly move upwind and you will not waterstart. Try not to put too much of your weight on the boom. Put your front foot on the board about a foot behind the mast and wait until the sail pulls you hard before really trying to step up on the board.Once the sail has enough power to pull you up keep your weight just behind the mast and remember to keep the sail from tilting toward the back of the board so you won't go upwind.
I hope this helps a little.