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  • Vanguard vs V4 (and Unibrow)

    I am keen to learn the differences between the Vanguard and the V4 (other than the obvious appearance). In particular, what types of conditions and level/type of surfer each board would be best suited to. I have heard heaps about the Vanguard but not too many reports on the V4.

    Also, many in the Forum have talked about the Unibrow's small wave performance. When looking at one in the flesh, I was surprised by the extent of its rocker and wonder how this goes in the smaller stuff!

    Looking forward to reading some responses.


  • #2
    Can't say much for the difference between vanguard and v4, but I will say that I've never missed having an extended nose on my vanguard.

    The uni goes good from thigh high upwards, but I've found since getting the vanguard I'm trying to make it work in everything! If it's waist high or above and anything other than mush I'll take the vanguard over the uni every single time, just so much fun.


    • #3
      one of the team guys said he finds the v4 easier to get vertical when its well he pulls it out then.... i personally cant get off the vg.... (i just spent 5 days out of the water while drying a vg ding because i had no interest in going out on any "normal draggy board" )... i'm riding it in everything from knee high to very large... and its gets plenty vert..!! i need to dial in a non-swept fin for big days though... ea blakstix get a bit twitchy when laying rail in chop at high speed...


      • #4
        I reckon the V4 might be a more comfortable take off on hollower waves and also stronger offshore days. I have found the VG gets held up a bit in stiff offshores - that channel in the nose that drives air under the board to stop it nosediving I think works against you in the wind. I've also had a couple of instances where I've tried to put too much rail in the wave at take off on suckier waves and the corner has caught - only seems to happened on my forehand, backhand I probably tend to never angle it as much. It's only happened a couple of times but I never really quite knew what happened it just felt like the VG tripped over something, until a mate watching told me what happened. As he's an old shaper he then started to tell me the virtues of having that last bit of nose!

        Anyway, apparently the V4 is even faster and more precise (see the broken rapidfire thread). I love the ability to do really good roundhouse cutbacks on the VG. I've surfed mine in very small waves and it still flies so long as there is a wall. I've had mine out in nearly double overhead. I am finding the more I surf it the more I can make it go in all kinds of waves, at first it seemed to only like nice clean waves (still though the spitfire is probably better in slop). I think the UB might also be a better performer in mushier conditions given it's dominator heritage.

        I'm tossing up between a piledriver or a V4 (both 6') I think it has to be ....both!


        • #5
          Having ridden both my thoughts thus far. VG 6'2" 43.5 litres, V4 6'6" at 42.2 is a little bit harder and catching waves marginally harder probably due the slight volume diff and the litre or so of foam on the v4 that is out of the water on the nose rocker. VG nose is usually under the surface when paddled I find, getting full flotation on that volume. The moment I stood up the first time on the v4, I could feel the distinctive looseness of the vg relationship. Instant acceleration out of the bottom turn or onto the rail. Some have written that you should not fight the vg in what it wants to do and I found that at times it was true. Just enjoy the ride and in sizeable surf it was certainly a ride. Haven't had the v4 in decent size yet due to injury but so far, the v4 does exactly what it's told with a refined manner over the vg. It becomes part of your instinct and found you were able to place it exactly where you wanted it rather than close enough with the vg which can behave a bit skittish, not that that's a bad thing at times. V4 tolerates front foot weight a lot better. Rather than bogging down quickly, you can weight it to slow down with precision. I've had more barrels on the v4 in a month than I had in 6 months on the vg which tended to skip through if you didn't think about enough. But maybe the experience on the vg had helped with the transition but it does seem more refined on the v4 especially with the speed that is at least equal to the vg and perhaps a bit faster. The nose rocker also helps on vertical takeoffs and air drops. I found with the vg it had to be weighted just right. With the v4 there was no additional thought process, you just did it! Both sensational boards, love them both. If I had both to choose from it would be the v4 every time. If I had to take the vg . Would still be happy. Perhaps those who have tried the vg and found it wasn't for them would be more at home on the v4 but it still is very much a vg. Both ridden as a quad with stabilised 5th fin. Simon anderson in the vg, mayhem gmbs in the v4. I find them very similar. Hope that helps


          • #6
            I second Denchy's comments. I'm really loving my V4 (and the FCS II's).


            • #7
              I really appreciate the responses. Thanks Denchy for your detailed run down. It is really helpful for me to make the right decision. Is it fair to say that the V4 would suit an intermediate rider as an all rounder (say from 1ft - 6ft waves)? Also, I normally ride boards around 29-30 litres. I notice that the V4 only comes in a higher or lower volume option. I am thinking of going the 6'0 which would be a slighlty higher volume board than I would normally ride (which in turn I thought might make life a bit easier in terms of paddleability etc.) although I have heard that you should err on the side of lower volume with the Tomo boards? Any thoughts? Thanks again in advance.


              • walkingdisaster
                walkingdisaster commented
                Editing a comment
                Lower for sure mate. If you usually ride 29-30, pick up the 5'10 at 28.8. They are designed to be ridden with a lower volume than regular boards.

            • #8
              Yeah, intermediate And up. I'd say 1 ft is a bit lean. 2 ft would be a min but it has to be steep and running. It will be the step up board of my now 2 board quiver. As far as volume goes, I like foam. You need to paddle the thing before anything else happens. I'm 55 And it ain't getting any easier. I do cardio workouts 4 times a week apart from surfing to keep the groms at bay. I'll take that extra litre if you don't want it!!