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Drops Naked 112 (2008)

15:43 29th April 2010 by Ed Davis
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Nice to see this Italian brand back on the scene with a new and enthusiastic UK importer. They are made in the same factory in Tunisia as the AHD boards and have a similar look with similar strap and pad fittings. The Drops 112 quotes a width of 66cm which was the minimum for entry into this test. Unfortunately it turned out to be a little narrower than quoted, so it ended up being the smallest board on test.

Type: Fast and fun all-rounder for mid-intermediate to advanced sailors.

On the water:

Despite the smaller size it still proved to be a very potent early planer with its relatively wide tail and long planing flat and didn’t suffer at all by comparison with the other boards on test with sails up to 7.5m. It powers up and accelerates very quickly, flattening out early and gripping well for easy passive planing and reaching a very decent turn of speed. It is easy and fun to blast around on taking chop in its stride, is very comfortable in the swell and handles well when overpowered. Yet it still feels small and throwabout and gybes particularly well.

Fittings:

The strap positions are sensibly semi outboard, but with no option to put them further in for early intermediates or further out for blasting on the rail. One or two people commented that the front foot was also a little too flat and not as comfy as it could be on the pad, which prevented them getting maximum drive. The fin seemed fine and in conjunction with the deep tail vee you could probably get away with even smaller than the 36cm fin provided. This is of particular relevance because the board is sold with two fins of your choice and it might be prudent to get one of around 32 / 34cm and the other around 38 / 40 to give maximum coverage for all conditions.

Overall:

It proved a very popular board with just about everybody. Being that bit smaller certainly helped, but it proved very capable of taking a 7.5m sail and could push up to 8.0m while at the other end it would be OK down to about 5.5m. We could happily recommend it to anyone wanting a nice easy blasting, easy manoeuvring freeride for either inland or coastal use with 6.0-7.5m sails and our heavyweight sailor (100kg) found it very appealing as a versatile freemove. Sold complete with two fins and a boardbag it is amongst the better value boards on test.

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