For 2009, RRD offer three seperate lines of wave board. They have their awesome Twin Fin range (tested a few weeks ago) accompanied by two single fin ranges. The Wave Cult range, aimed mostly at onshore conditions, includes 90, 85, 80 and 75 litre models, whilst the Wave Cult Hardcore range consists of 75, 70 and 65 litre models and is targeted at more radical conditions.
RRD chose to send us their 75 Wave Cult HCW for test, which is offered in just one construction level (X-Tech).
"A reference wave board line for the days when conditions are going off. A secure, radical, well tested scooprocker line that will give you control and power in any situation. The boards to prove your skills and push your limits" – RRD Website
achieved a GOLD Quality rating with the following scores:
We like the way that RRD equip their boards with components from independent brands like MFC and DaKine.
The board comes standard with a high quality 21cm G10 MFC Fins. The footstraps are made by DaKine and were amongst the comfiest in the test, providing plenty of padding but also being forgiving enough to flex with your foot when necessary.
The RRD has the narrowest overall width of all the boards in the group (54.5cm). It also has the second narrowest tail width (measured 30cm from tail) to the Quatro and is a staggering 5cm narrower than the Exocet (the widest tail in test). The narrower width combined with being one of the longest boards in the group give the RRD a sleek and gunny looking profile.
The RRD is the heaviest board of the group weighing 6.53kg (but also the cheapest).
With its narrow profile and extra weight, we weren’t expecting the RRD to shine too brightly in this category. But actually it's not bad. On the negative side, the board feels small (by far the smallest in test), so heavier sailors will struggle a bit, but once planing it is an extremely rapid board that accelerates well and gives a very secure directional feel in a straight line.
The RRD and Fanatic both stand jointly at the top of the group for jumping. In fact, the RRD is an exceptional board for boosting massive airs on. Once going, it reaches a respectable top speed, feels nice and directional (to help with lining up your jump), but most of all seems to generate a huge amount of lift in the air. Like the Fanatic, the extra length of the board contributes to this.
The smaller size of the RRD means that in cross-on conditions, you need more power and speed to keep it going.
When carrying good speed, the RRD has a really grippy, reliable bottom turn, but does feel slightly stiffer off the top than some of the more compact boards in the group.
Advanced/lighter weight sailors who are good at keeping speed through turns will like the grip and gunny feel of the board, less experienced/ heavier riders may find the board a bit small and hard to keep speed through the turns and would be better considering RRD’s Wave Cult 75 or one of the other higher ranked boards in this group.
In a similar manner to cross-on riding, the smaller size of the RRD becomes a factor. Lighter/more experienced riders will love the aggressive style that RRD allows but heavier/less experienced riders will probably prefer something a bit bigger and more forgiving.
It feels like a fast gunny board down the line, has a really nice grippy bottom turn and is great for snapping hard carving top turns on. It’s not quite as flowing and ‘surf’ like as some of the other boards, but does allow a more aggressive style of riding.
The Hardcore wave is best targeted towards more advanced riders. For the less experienced, there is nothing about the nature of the Hard Core that is particularly difficult to sail, but it is small and won't flatter flawed technique in the same way that a wider board would. Less experienced riders would probably be best considering the Wave Cult range instead.
Foot comfort is excellent on the RRD. The pads are very good and the straps are excellent.
The first impression you get when you step on the RRD is that it is fast, blasty and gunny. It feels quite small and narow and a little heavier/ less lively than some of the other boards in the group, but in high winds, the board offers great control - the best in the group.
The 21cm MFC fin supplied with the board is smallest of the group but actually suits the board well. Anything much bigger will overpower the narrower tail width. The fin track is quite long on the RRD, but we found somewhere just forward of middle to suit the board well for most conditions.
The mast track worked best in the middle and slightly further forward (about 1cm) with bigger sails and bigger waves.
The RRD felt more comfortable towards the smaller end of our 4.0m-5.0m test sail range. A sailor of 75 kg or more could easily have this as their smallest high wind board and it would cope no problem with 3.7m sails. Our 80kg Clones could wobble out in cross-off conditions with a 5.0m on it (just), but wouldn’t like to have gone to 5.3m on it.
The RRD Harcore is best suited as an all-round high wind board for more advanced sailors. It has fantastic jumping performance and also offers really aggressive turning potential in cross-off conditions.