Board Review: SIC Bayonnet 2018

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 SIC Bayonet 2018

Our Man in The PNW – Joel Yang – loves to geek out on boards and gear as much as we do.  The Stoke on the Water Gorge Guide put this review of the new SIC Bayonet together for us, after a winter of extensive downwinding.

Reviewer: Joel Yang, 200lbs, 5’10

SIC created a platform with their Bullet collection that has become an industry standard on how a downwind board should feel. I have spent many miles on both Bullet V1 & V2’s and the Bullets are still my Go-to DW boards today. The Bayonet is the perfect upgrade for anyone that has spent many downwind miles on an SIC Bullet V1 or V2 and looking for “what’s next?”

First Impressions:

The Bayonet does not look like an immediate sibling to the Bullets – and it is not supposed to look like one either. There is intention behind this design so at first glance – everything from the outline, to graphics, to volume, and features are tellies that this board will ride very different compared to the others in the SIC family.

 SIC Bayonet 2018

How it rides:

When you step on this board – you will notice right out of the gates that this is no Bullet. The feel is very different initially and it has to do with the volume distribution. While the Bullets taper into the volume and stay consistent throughout, the Bayonet goes right into the volume up in the hood.

Stability: The Bayonet is 26” wide and should never be compared to the width of flatwater boards. There is a reason that the flagship Bullet 14 is locked in at a width of 27.25” wide and much of it has to do with finding the best width to accommodate paddlers to be able to combat all of the mutant forces from wind to water turbulence when you’re out downwinding. We can ride the Bullets everywhere in the Gorge without even letting the conditions concern us whatsoever and never once have we ever felt like we were “scrubbing speed” due to the width of the board. The Bullet has been the foundation of why I have the downwinding skills I have today and I am very thankful for that particular design. Even though 1.25” does not seem like that big of a difference in waist width – when you factor in everything else about the design of the Bayonet – it adds up to make quite a significant difference in feel.

*Just because you see pics of perfectly lined up downwind swell does not mean that the conditions are always like that when you’re out catching bumps. More often than not – you have to deal with lots of side winds, cross current, and reverb or what we call “wall bump” that can send you vaulting off your board – so at the end of the day – if you’re catching bumps and linking rides – it’s a win.

The Bullet has a very distinct feel when you step aboard. It provides a feeling of reassurance and is the perfect tool to help you build your confidence in downwinding due to its predictability in stability and glide.

 SIC Bayonet 2018

If you were to compare the Bullet to the Bayonet to skateboards. The Bullet would be the ultimate drop down cruiser longboard, and the Bayonet would be the park slayer.

Maneuverability & Readiness to Play – what does this mean?

The Bayonet has a very loose feel and wants to play on all conditions Mother Nature throws at you.

I was very impressed how well it handled mushy indecisive conditions, really tight fetch, and also begs to play in really wide long powerful troughs. It has the ability to crawl up and over bumps that you think you’re about to miss, as well as scout bumps from way far out and catch them from a distance it almost feels like cheating.  The double concave on the hull will give a very familiar feel to those that have spent time on a V1 as it tracks really well and allows you to go where you want to go without feeling “overly locked in”

The square block tail will encourage you step back and feel really stable while dropping into steep troughs and the tail kick (rocker) will have you pulling manuals for days while grinning like a fool.

Conclusion:

Keep in mind that this board would not be appropriate for beginner downwinders or a first DW board purchase. It is intended to be the perfect second or “next” DW board, after you have spent the time crushing it on your V1 or V2.

It is the perfect board for those that are looking to advance their skills and start playing more while downwinding. It made the river feel like I was riding a huge skatepark.

Pros:

  • Loose / Surfy
  • An advanced level board that will push you to keep unlocking your skills
  • Awesome rocker line to handle multitudes of conditions
  • Awesome price and quality

Cons:

  • 1 board size and volume only
  • Not for beginners

Who is this for:

  • This is perfect board for the advanced downwinder looking to progress their skills further without having to put in an order for a custom ride.

 SIC Bayonet 2018

Lisa
Lisa is managing editor of PaddleMonster.com and is an avid paddler of all the things - including sup, SurfSki, outrigger canoe and prone, though she especially enjoys paddle surfing and downwinding. She is a former journalist with more than 30 years experience in print and broadcast journalism and in government communications. She is a six-time Chattajack finisher, racing both sup and OC2. When not paddling, she is an outdoor instructor.

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