POINT-7 AC-F 6.4M 2019 TEST REVIEW
The AC-F is described by Point-7 as their “classic freeride” option, cleanly distinguished from the high-end AC-X tested last month, with a focus on “light wind qualities over high wind performance.” Nevertheless, the brand is quick to point out that the AC-F is not built as a beginner freeride option either, classing it instead as a quality built tutor for those with “aspirations for a blasting style without forging down a dedicated path too soon.” Rigged here on a 80% SDM, it has the largest dimensions in the test, and simply looks big for its quoted area, with plenty of cloth in the clew and head. Downhauling until the looseness in the clew reaches the “best setting” mark in the upper panel, the leech falls away progressively whilst the bottom two battens keep some connection with the mast. With three tubed battens incorporated, x-ply in the alternating batten pockets to mitigate stretch, and no fewer finishing details than you see on any other Point-7 sail, the AC-F is a well considered sail, with plenty of durability built in to withstand the inevitable abuse and wipeouts an intermediate experiences whilst progressing.
“For everyone who wants to have fun! Fun, Freedom, Friendliness. There are many freeride sails on the market but Point-7 has one pure freeride sail, and its duty is simply to let its riders have FUN.”
Using the AC-F for the first time, it is clear that the large dimensions make it feel big and capable in the hands from the off. There is next to no movement or breathability in the luff sleeve, relying on the long boom and rearward centre of effort placement instead to provide the leverage and obvious feedback through the back hand. You could try to pump the AC-F to maximise its light wind potential, but equally just hold it upright to expose it to the wind and wait for the pressure to build! Add to this the fact that the sail’s single clew eyelet is placed higher than on many here and the geometry of the AC-F gives it a very unique character compared to others in the test class. As the gust hits the power is bold and positive, providing the rider with something to use and channel into the board. The pull is focussed around the rider, the orientation of the boom encouraging the rider to pull back against the sail and experience real acceleration and the buzz of blasting. And this is where the AC-F is really at home. Whilst its large area somewhat disguises its high skin tension and provides the feedback for use in marginal winds, the sail only really comes to life when used in powered to overpowered conditions. Ensure the outhaul is pulled on, but otherwise leave the downhaul set on the mark, before simply locking in to enjoy some impressive blasting potential. Producing fast sails simply seems to be in Point-7’s DNA! In transition the size of the AC-F is once again apparent compared to others, yet the shallow draft at neutral helps the sail to depower and rotate smoothly, before powering and accelerating once again on the new tack. If you’d like a well built sail for use in a variety of conditions and roles, and have a penchant for stealthily blasting past your peers, the AC-F will undoubtedly hold the element of surprise.
Bold obvious power delivery, with plenty of natural range, the AC-F possesses Point-7s insatiable urge for speed and blasting without it being an overbearing attribute.
Other sails in this test: