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  • Mini Driver vs Hellfire

    Hi I am considering getting a 6'4 mini driver and was wondering how it compares with a 6'4 hellfire. I am interested to know if the Mini Driver has significantly more or less nose / entry rocker than the Hellfire. Will the MD be a much better paddler and catch waves easier than the hellfire? Also are the rails and tail of the MD thinner and more refined? I have the hellfire but don't have an opportunity to view the MD before ordering. Any advice would be appreciated especially if it is coming from someone who has ridden both of these models. Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Hi I have owned both. My first FW board was 510 Helfire I rode this board in the Maldives and at home in Thurso which is a way heavier wave. I sold it and bought a 510 md. The md has less vol but felt easer to paddle as the wide point is further forward. The tail is narrower and more refined. no stepped rail like the HF. I think the HF had a touch more entry rocker over the mini but I find the Md better in steeper takeoff s. I did however find the 510 a touch on the big side after riding my 508 subscorcher. I took the plunge a bought a 508 mini a drop of 3 ltrs over the sub. This is my new fav board. It rips. I am 5"7 and 150 lbs. I feel now that both the HF and 510 mini were oversized. SAYING that I still preferred the Md over the HF. The md is more like a Hpsb the HF as still a lot of hybrid in it if that makes sense. I would say look at the 602 Md against the 604 HF the md I'd wider up front a only 3 ltrs less I feel it will paddle better than the HF and been shorter much more rip-able with the narrower tail.

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    • #3
      My experience is similar to pmorgan's. I own a 6'2 HF and rode a 6'2 MD and yes the HF seems to have slightly more rocker and therefore is just a tad harder to paddle, but it is only slight. I ride my HF as a quad and it seems to work pretty good with that wide tail. I only had a test ride of the MD so I can't compare the both on real steep drops as I only surfed on a fun sized beach break at about chest height. Still I got enough of an idea about the MD that I knew the board was not what I was after - I ended up getting a 6'5 HZ for the more serious stuff (about the same volume as the 6'2 HF but feels a bit too big would like to try the 6'3).

      Anyway I like the hybrid family from the Spitfire through HF to HZ. So it really depends on what your preference is. I love the looseness and explosiveness of the hybrid (they release very quickly off the top) but it gets to be a hand full as the wave's increase in power and size. Though the HZ has enough HPSB design built into it that it goes well in the heavier stuff. Goanna whose MD I tested (while he tested my 6'2 JK) seems to like his but it took him some time to adjust to it. Anyway I found the MD seemed to be a lot like a normal rounded pin it appeared to turn OK and hang in just fine as you'd expect and it was easy enough to paddle into the waves that day, which were only waist to perhaps chest high on the sets. It definitely felt it needed more power to get it to light up...I think in spite of the HF being slightly harder to paddle it would actually have a broader range (lower at least) of waves.

      When I could take only 1 board away the HF was the one I'd take (now it is the HZ). The HF can handle double overhead but sometimes you'll be fighting it (probably should have changed to thruster, it gets too fast and skatey in lumpy/wobbly stuff) but I don't think you'll have that issue with the MD. The narrower tail on the HZ helps stop that high speed skate too that you get on the HF in lumpy stuff. I ride the HZ as a thruster, so that might add a touch more control too, but the more refined rails help a lot. The JK had refined rails and was very steady in large lumpy waves. So if you like the hybrid feel of the HF the HZ is like a continuation and a refinement of that line and it certainly handles a good fast steep drop and paddles better than both HF and MD, IMO.

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      • #4
        IMO there two very different boards, the Hellfire will basically go in almost any kind of waves up to double overhead or so, while the Mini driver i expect is more geared to a bit better waves, the new pile driver i would expect to be closer to the Hellfire in it being a bit more versatile than the mini in the kind of waves it will go in.

        That said i don't have both only have the Hellfire, but have eyed off the Mini driver in store and really like the look of them and will most likely be my next purchase as looks like a perfect Indo board for medium sized down the line barrel kind of waves.

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