GUNSAILS SEAL 5.0 2023 TEST REVIEW
Gunsails have kept the prices of their sails extremely affordable, despite this they have not comprised on the construction of the sails. The Seal is smooth, comfortable and accessible whilst maintaining its durability.
On test here we have the Gunsails Seal 5.0, the brand’s core wave sail, the lightest of all their wave sails, focused on speed, agility and manoeuvrability. Gunsails are confident that the 4-batten formula displayed on the Seal is the key to radical wave manoeuvres and strong wind conditions. It is clear to see the level of detail that has gone into this sail’s design, as several different materials are used for different sections of the sail.
The luff features an extended Dacron panel, suggesting the sail has a lot of breathing potential that will insert shape into the sail once powered. The Seal is built with square ply, a material that offers higher thread density allowing Gunsails to reduce the thickness of the included monofilm to reduce weight whilst maintaining durability. In addition, multidirectional x-ply is used in high-stress areas of the sail, a design that ensures the Seal can take more force and tension in the critical areas. Finally, Gunsails use a tension frame at the clew, distributing the tension across the sail whilst enabling a consistent profile, even as the sail ages.
The Seal’s most notable metric is its price. Gunsails has produced a durable, high-quality sail that performs well; the brand is undoubtedly industry-leading in price. The 5.0 comes in at an incredible 579 euros, an absolute testament to the brand’s focus on sharing the passion for “the most beautiful sport in the world”. The brand is also producing the Seal in a recycled version, which is made from recycled plastic bottles. This is an accolade that should be celebrated as we look to enjoy the sport in a more sustainable way.
“To describe the Seal in three words: it is fast, agile and manoeuvrable. In 2022, the 4-batten Core Wave Sail remains the ideal choice for radical wave manoeuvres and strong wind conditions.”
With plenty of luff curve in the sail, the leech profile displays a gradual release, with plenty of looseness in the upper panels. At rest, the sail sets relatively flat and neutral; however, once on the water and powered, the Dacron section of the Seal gets straight to work, injecting some depth into the sail. This breathable nature also helps the rider adopt a smooth and natural pumping style, assisting the kit onto the plane. This smooth nature continues as the Seal picks up speed, making it one of the most comfortable sails on test, allowing the rider to extend sessions with minimal fatigue. The Seal’s low-positioned power helps pin the board to the water, particularly in choppy seas, making it accessible to novice and pro riders alike, as it mitigates any board control issues.
Whilst the Seal is certainly not aggressive on the wave, its smooth and flowing feel allows the rider to settle into a more laid-back and stylish form of wave riding. This is particularly noticeable through the midpoint of the turns, where the rig feels wonderfully light and neutral, enabling strong positioning of the rig as the rider turns towards the wave.
Luff: 411 cm
Boom: 170 cm
Ideal Mast: 400 RDM Cross/Expert/Select
Available Sizes: 3.2, 3.5, 3.7, 4.0, 4.2, 4.5, 4.7, 5.0, 5.3, 5.7.