favorite longboard fins?!

wanted to thank everyone that contributed to the recent thread on wooden fins…you all rock! it gave me some really good ideas for patters to glue up…and now i’m onto the next stage…FIN DESIGN! i’ve put together a pretty hefty catalog of fins for singlefin longboards, but i thought i’d ask everyone on here if there were any fins they’ve had over the years that performed really well (especially on singlefin logs). and if anyone can offer dimensions and a description of the foil, that’d be awesome. keep it groovy…

some of my favorites…

True Ames: Yater Spoon (9.75), Velzy Noserider (10.0)

Rainbow Fin Co: Wingnut Anchor (10.75), El Gato (9.5)

Island Fin Design: IFN (11.0), Sunset (???)

Fins Unlimited: malibu (9.5)

and i really dig this thing…

…however, i’d like to get more detailed specifications for some of these fins, and for any other fins that you all might dig, so that i can try and lay up some of my own…both wood and fiberglass (would it also be possible to do a super-flexy fin by just pouring, cutting, and foiling straight epoxy??). any info you all could offer would be awesome. thanks.

I just bought this one the other day. I just fell in love with the shape of it. Unfortunately, I can’t tell how it works since I didn’t try it yet. But a friend who I made a 8’00" minimal for had a great session with it. It’s a bit early to decide whether it was the fin or the board or both… Any of you ever buy fins just because it’s such a nice shape you’re sure it will work?

I like the Harbour fin… I have the 9in on a 9’2" as a single fin and it noserides great. You’ve probably seen them… really raked back with a wide base and fat tip… but thinned out in the middle.

My two favorites are:

George Greenough Series 4c 10"

and:

Josh Farberow FLex fin 9.5"


i liked the harbour fin as well. i had it on a 9’2" single also and loved the snap it gave off the bottom turn. it held great when up on the nasal area of the board too.

nice lookin’ fin balsa. i’ve found that fins that i think look nice and am attracted to seem to work for me. perhaps a blind test would be better.

i got to try out my fcs g-crv sides with a 6" center for the first time yday. it was small and weak conditions but the fins added some spark to junky waves. i initially thought it was too much fin but they didn’t track or feel stiff. it felt like there was alot of control and maneuverability. hard to explain - seemed like a different kind of glide, perhaps it was more of the lift that i was experiencing. definitely need more time on them as well as different conditions but they are worth a try imho.

That Farberow is indeed a great fin as a 9" single on 10’ boards with medium tails and some rocker.

I also like the 9.5" Rainbow pivot on square or squash tailed low-rocker noseriders:

I used a glass-on version of the Rainbow pivot and reground the base to give it a little more tilt back for a round pin (drew a new line from 0 at the front to 1/4" at the back ) and that worked dynamite.

The Velzy Noserider is good on round pins too - a little less surface area than most other pivots:

The Yater Classic in 7" is perfect for center in a 2+1 (with futures longboard sidebites):

The Heritage (BIG 10.5") is too much on almost everything…BUT it calms down Surftechs very nicely - to the point where noseriding & cross stepping for heavier guys is not like walking on ice in dress shoes. I use one on a 10’ Softtop and the weight of the PVA skin and the size of the fin conspire to make that board more user-friendly than any other pop-out noserider I’ve ever tried…

I’ve always wanted to try a Fins Unlimited Miss Lucy, but haven’t yet:

And I just picked up the Yater Spoon fin - 9.75". 2 sessions on it so far on a balsa sandy. So far, so good, but the waves haven’t walled up yet…we’ll see how it goes in ‘real’ noseriding conditions soon enough…

I have not enjoyed using anything designed to let water slip by. Neither small cutaways like the 8" Takayama as a 2+1 center, nor large ones like the Wingnut alone. Enter a bottom turn and lose drive halfway through - come out going slower rather than faster like I should. This goes for the G6 paddle fin too, although that drives along better in a straight line. That one in 7 or 8 inch might be fun with sidebites, but the 9" single isn’t all that for me.

I also do not enjoy the ride in anything over flexible or with small tip area. The G4A, the L-flex, the Velzy Classic, the Harbour HP1…all are intended to load up into a turn and then flex back & propel you out of the turn…all they do for me is load up and then flex some more and let water go by, losing propulsion. Most guys over 200 lb that I’ve talked to about this feel similarly.

I agree with most everything Benny says about wide fins but still keep a few of the thin tip flex fins and small (4 3/4") trailer fins for my 2+1 set ups.

On a Yater Surftech I had, the change in trailer size to the

4 3/4" with the base cut away so the fin hung over the back of the box was a real eye opener for me. It changed the board from a fin pivoting dog to a ripper in smaller waves.

The Liddle/Frye (nearly identical) flex fins really loosen up a longboard in smaller waves but I can see Benny’s point about a big guy being able to over power the fin. I find I can do cutbacks and off the tops much easier with a smaller tipped fin. It is at the expense of less drive and stability though.

I’ve been playing with some old school windsurf fins on single fin longboards and they seem to add a lot of drive and stability on walled up bigger waves. They have a wider base, slight cutaway and thicker foil than conventional longboard fins.

I’ve also been messing with some of the old slot fins from the windsurfing world. Not sure what to think about those… haven’t really had a good chance to try them out yet.

Sorry - no pics yet.

One other thing that needs to be said is about the waves…

I use those big fins because I usually surf waves lacking in power or steepness. Even when they get big, they’re inside a big reef, slowed by wrap, and not very walled-up. Think San O or Waikiki.

If I go to someplace that produces more power on it’s own, I need less drive from my fin. So for Pleasure Point, that Velzy Noserider becomes the first choice on most boards, rather than the 3rd or 4th, because it still has the upright shape that I like to turn, but has less surface area. For quick beaches like OB, or for going to Hawaii, I put in that Farberow and its even better.

So I could assume that John gets to surf quicker waves than I do most of the time :slight_smile:

I might also guess that for summertime Florida & east coast low-power-over-sandy-bottom…the big, wide, upright pivots might help for adding drive & stability.

try the RFC El Gato…its a classic looking fin (cause it is…think el gato - da cat).

it rides really nice, very oldschool…ive got it on my 9’8" noserider (pintail).

this picture makes it look hideous, so just look at the shape of it!

I surfed a 9" Miss Lucy on my 9-9 Infinity Classic Noserider, then switched to a 9.5" Josh Farberow and never went back. The JF noserides as well or better than the ML due to more rake, but it’s also more lively in turns due to its flex. I love how the fin loads up on the drop and then releases with a spurt as you pass the apex of your bottom turn. Really fun on left-go-right take-offs where you can maximize the load. The ML is more predicitable but the JF is more exciting.

I like these on my logs

or sometimes the Nuuhiwa

-chris



type something please , Greg …

I seem to not be able to get photos of my fins posted ,i want to talk about, maybe i could e-mail you.

For single fin boards, I like the 10" Squirrel Fin from Longboard House and the 9 or 10" Cobbo Fin. For 2+1 set ups, I like the 7-8.5" cut away from Island Fin Design.

D



Ah yes… Fins! I’ve come to the conclusion that for my style of surfing, weight, preference etc, etc, etc… The Cutaway center fin with side bites makes me a happy surfer if I’m on a longboard. I went thru soooo many fin combo’s over the last year from singles to twins to this and that…Next thing ya know its back to the Cutaway even on the rare occasions that I ride a board as a single… Why? Feels good for my stiff, petroglyph style…Hehe!

I went thru these and a lot more in all kinds of various combinations…

The only thing that changes these days is side bite types/sizes and Cutaway size/center placement. I can’t get enough of the great drive and holding power… A lot of people I surf with hate my fin set ups. I’m not a very loose kinda surfer. Maybe that has something to do with it? I prefer a solid feeling board off the bottom… My off the tops suffer because of it but then again, its hard turning huge boards tight off the top! For me it is anyway… Nose riding is a very part time thing for me. Turning off the tail is my preference… I do run to the tip on occasion though…

A rarity for me…I’m not a good nose rider so I couldn’t say if this fin set up is good for it or not… I always feel like I’m barely pulling it off up there…

This is where the Cutaway with sides works really fun…Turning…

I like seeing what fins work for others too. I see others just tearing it up and think no ways I could do it with their fin set ups. That’s really a neat thing that different styles and fins can push boards into places that I’ll never get to with my set up and ability…

Fluid Foils Fatboy

I love this fin in my 9’1" heavy longboard. It holds in perfect and sercure throughout any turn or position on the board yet gives me alot of drive comming into powerful turns and big cutbacks.

I am a major fan of fibreglass fins.

The fin is made of fibreglass and layed up in a panel. it’s 10" deep and mine has a floral inlay.

The waves i surf everyday are quality and powerfull beach break that wall up down the line style.

Straight epoxy wouldnt work as a fin due to the cracking of the resin, you need glass in there.

I LOVE longboards!

hi Brandon !

just a quick question …

what are the dimensions of the board you will be using it on ?

cheers,

ben

Quote:

hi Brandon !

just a quick question …

what are the dimensions of the board you will be using it on ?

cheers,

ben

where to begin… i like to try lots of different fins in lots of different boards.

square tails: 9’0" all-around board (usually ridden as a single, option for sidebites), 9’6" cruiser (wide, flat, parallel, kick in the tail cuz life’s more fun on the nose), 9’6" stepdeck (like the Harbour Cheater), 10’0" noserider

rounded pins: 9’2" (for a steeper wave…heavy nose rocker, flatter out the tail), 9’0" EPS (not yet shaped, but SOON!..will be 2+1…already got a fin setup for this one!!!)