SURF MAGAZIN 1-2 2019 / SEAL 4.2 2019
Amazement at the first check on land: A seal with a flat profile and almost straight standing battens? With the first pump it is clear: By no means! Behind the GUNSAILS hides the most powerful engine of the test group! The wide Dacron luff panel gives the sail damping, over the mast pocket draws a deep profile in the sail, which brings the award for the "Planing Machine of the Year" to Saarbrücken. The Seal always gives enough absorption to cushion gusts and chops but acts never spongy in the hands of heavy surfers. The control is at the top level - just trim until the Loose Leech reaches the FRED mark and then pull at the boom with only moderate pull. Rerigging is omitted almost complete thanks to the good wind range in one trim, the Gun is convincing here too. With its powerful characteristic, it is understandable, that one has to make a cut when it comes to its neutrality in the turn and in maneuvers, here the Seals seems to be a bit bulky and not very agile in the direct comparison.
SURF CONCLUSION: Early planing, controllable, stable and with a great trim range - the Seal delights everyone who wants an uncomplicated power sail for strong winds in shallow water, in bump & jump conditions or for small Baltic waves. As a neutral off-sail for waves or to practice ambitious freestyle maneuvers, the sail lacks a bit lightness - a feeling less related to the weight on the scale than to the location of the pressure point and profile allocation.
+ control, wind range, price
WINDSURFING JAHRBUCH 2019 / SEAL 5.0 2019
ON THE BEACH: The Seal is the compact handling sail from GUNSAILS. The dimensions remained unchanged compared to the previous year, as well as the exemplary equipment. There is plenty of X-Ply used. In the sail window it is quite coarse meshed to allow an almost unobstructed view of the lip. In the sail top there is still a narrow woven laminate. The wide open leech above the second batten is also conspicuous here. The battens are hardly pre-profiled. However, the Dacron luff panel allows the sail to develop a moderate profile under wind pressure. In addition, two clew eyelets are available for individual tuning. On the 2018 model we had criticized the twist behaviour of the sail. So we are very pleased that our criticism has been accepted and that the seam guidance in the sail top has changed significantly. Three (l) new seams, which stretch from the lower leech to the mast top, promise an improved twist behaviour.
ON THE WATER: From the first second on, the Seal stands out from its new stable brother Horizon and shows itself improved in several details for 2019. What remains with the Seal is the pleasantly good handling, it is agile and seems small. The power transmission is somewhat dampened, due to the soft luff panel and the generally rather soft profile. Although the Seal is not the fastest to planing, especially in direct comparison with the Horizon, with some powerful pulls on the back hand, even heavier riders can start planing quickly. The Seal does not do much by itself, but the pressure point further back has real advantages. It works like an accelerator pedal that can be controlled very effectively. If you pull the back hand, it accelerates directly. If you let go, the Seal brakes super-effectively. Nevertheless, with this direct control in its acceleration it does not come close to the peak values of the four-batten sails. Last year we especially noticed the unstable twist behaviour when there was more wind and jumping, this is now a bit better and looks more harmonious. However the Seal is not a real high speed sail for jumping in a lot of wind. But it is powerful on the wave, if necessary completely neutral and yet with sufficient power reserves on the back hand for turns in floppy waves.
CONCLUSION: The Seal goes slightly improved into the year 2019 and has rightly already been able to drive itself into many hearts last year, because on the wave it has no weaknesses. However, the Seal is still rather comfortable on the way, conditions with borderline wind are less well tolerated.
PLANCHEMAG 11-12 2018 / SEAL 4.7 2019
The Seal is one of the most compact 4-batten sails and has a deep profile in the front area with pleasant elasticity as well as a new distribution of X-Ply materials, namely a lighter square-ply in the sail top. Like the Horizon you have the choice between 2 clew eyelets. It is recommended for RDM masts, but is also compatible for SDM.
ON THE WATER: The Seal is one of the most powerful 4-batten wave sails on the market, with a well distributed tension between the hands. It is relatively light (it is equipped with one of the lightest masts on the market) and pulls strongly forward, but keeps the board quite deep on the water and always has some damping to catch choppy water. It's not the most efficient of the group in tense conditions like Bump&Jump, but this super compact sail stands out with always enough pull in the wave to maintain speed when the wind is dropping, when restarting or when wave power is dropping. In handling it is quite well behaved, which benefits the rider and it also has a good trim range through the two clew eyelets: it breathes well in the wind. In the wave it pulls effectively forward in the buttom, when pushing the front edge of the board it accelerates nicely, which makes the handling easier, the sail lies balanced in both hands and then releases the pressure on top of the wave when you open it. It's not the sail that's easiest to neutralize, but all with a certain smoothness and a good balance between handling and stability. The sail gains strength and pull on the rear hand by using the upper eyelet, good to go upwind and in lighter winds.
CONCLUSION: Very well positioned in price, the Seal is one of the strongest 4-batten sails in light and medium winds, offering an excellent ratio of stability and maneuverability with ubiquitous and uniform pull in the hands to surf effectively in waves with a wide range of use.