FCS plug cracked

I’ve already searched for an answer and it doesn’t appear that anybody’s had this problem here so here it goes. I’ve been wanting to resurect my 7’0" now that I’ve got some experience surfing… but I broke a fin on it a long time ago. FCS center fin. Here’s the problem… I broke the fin off in the sand playing around in knee high surf in Surfside, TX one day. Pretty stupid of me… anyway, one of the plugs that the fin was mounted in cracked… not too bad, but it has a hairline crack down inside the hole of the plug and everything, exposing just a little bit of foam(?) above the plug. I was thinking suncure and a toothpick could solve my problems, but I’m not sure. Any advise on the repair besides using a different fin system? If I don’t do anything, I’m affraid the foam will take in water, delaminating the board. I’m so sick of FCS, never going to get them on another board again.

Drill out the old plug. install a new one, wham bam! and stay out of the sand. FSC are a good fin System. any other fin system would have been way worse to fix. I swithed to Futures on a couple of boards,didn’t like the way they caused a hump on the bottom conture. tried Red-X, sliced the side of my back foot open on the holes at the deck. nice fin system but dangerous on the feet and toes

They make rubber caps available that eliminate that problem.

Your better off getting the plug replaced or doing it yourself. If were able to patch it up with solar rez and a tooth pick you might be able to seal it up but you aren’t doing anything to fix the plug strength wise and it will probably crack again. If you don’t have an installation kit (you would need the hole saw bit and a fin jig) just take it somewhere and they can fix it for you. It is pretty easy. If you want to try it yourself, you need to get a hole saw bit the same diameter as used to bore the initial hole (just measure the diameter of the hole from the OUTER edges of the pigmented resin used to secure the plug). Take a strip of wood (I’ve used an old wood yard stick before) or something you feel comfortable drilling through and with your hole saw bit drill a hole through it. Take your drilled material and center it over the cracked plug and glue it down to the board (hot glue works good and comes right off the board). Take the drill bit out of the hole saw bit and using the bored wood as a guide drill down into the board (don’t go to far, I always determine my depth before hand and draw a series of horizontal pencil marks around the bit, you will be able to see the line when the bit is spinning). Then take a regular screw driver, place it in the slot of the plug and twist it. The plug should come right out. Pop off your wood guide, use a trailing fin for your fin jig (if you don’t have an official one). Use some rolled up masking tape, or something that you can circle your drilled hole with, so the resin doesn’t run everywhere & take your new fin plug, wipe with acetone, put it on the fin tab, tighten the screw just so it holds it in place and place the other tab in the plug that is not damaged and tighten that screw down so that it holds the fin in place. You might need to sand the top lip off the new plug so that it sits flush to your fin (if you don’t have a jig from fcs), just be careful when you fill up the hole with resin not to fill it too full. You don’t want the resin rising up onto the top of the plug. It sounds like a lot, but it’s not that bad. Much easier done, than described on a web board. Good luck.

Shipman, Aside from the deck pad covers we make for Red X, the installers are suppose to use a deburring tool to round the interior edge of the box after it’s been sanded down. Unfortunately, this step does get over looked or done insufficiently. I’ve ridden many boards without covers and never cut my feet on the deck holes.

I agree with Mikedwalus, (great description of the repair process). I have replaced a plug and it is quite easy if your comfortable with resins–or want to learn–and drills etc. I recommend mixing your standard sanding resin with a strengthening filler/addative when you are resetting the new plug. Or if you have cloth handy for repairs, cut a square of cloth and stuff the plug in the hole with the fiberglass cloth underneath and surrounding–anything to add strength. Also, it is no problem to leave up to a quarter inch of the plug above the flush line. Use an aggressive sanding pad with your drill to take down the plug and resin in seconds. I did this for the first time with no problems. Good luck and positive vibes. Jason

Tom, John, I had the rubber stick-on caps on but removed them to do a repair and polish. surfed it , cut the side of the back foot near the big toe then I sanded down the sharp edges but it still aggravated the cuts. no big deal . I healed fast and installed a traction pad. I like Red-X and just made another board using them. I wouldn’t count on the glasser/sander to sand the edges though.

Howzit Tom, Isn’t it amazing how forgetting a step in installation can make a person dislike a system even though it’s not the systems fault. No bad systems,only bad installations. Aloha, Kokua

Tindel, I am in League City and have the FCS installaton/repair kit. Send me an e-mail and maybe I can help you out. MLC

FCS has a new titanium plug that eliminates cracking and is lightweight. Very pricey and somewhat bulletproof. I know a supplier who has a barrel of these.

Hey Mungkeys, Can you give me the details of the supplier. i would like to get some of these. Thanks in advance

All, I can relate to ripping out fins. It must be where I surf and the shallow rocks etc. I have been able to avoid many a potential fin rip out disaster, simply because I have stayed with FCS. Most of the time the fin snaps off at the lugs, but every now and then I need to make a slight repair. I know which I would rather : a simple FCS plug reinstal versus the old days of glassing the fin back on or worse still loosing the rail because I used a fin system that wasnt simple and designed to cope with hitting something. After trying RED-X and Futures in goodfaith, I was really disappointed when I accidentally hit something. The damage to these boards were irrepairable. Lost the rail in one case and cause a massive delam in the other. The simple things are the best.

I’ve had so many problems in the past with FCS systems. Didn’t matter who shaped the boards, all of them had been installed correctly. Switched over to Futures and have no problems whatso ever. I was reluctant to switch due to having a small investment in fin selection, but now I wish I would have switced sooner!

Like mikedwalrus and Jason said- also, try a little masking tape around your hole saw ( 1" or 1 1/8" diameter works for me) for depth marking, as some hole saws can be a little tough to see pencil marks on. I have used broken fin tabs with a small pilot hole in 'em ( smaller than the pilot drill in the hole saw, that is) to guide the hole saw: the hole saw pilot drill will naturally want to follow the predrilled smaller hole. Stop a little before you get to the mark and try to remove the plug- you may have measured wrong. Better to have to drill a little more than to drill too far. Guess how I found that out… You may want to tape down the small square of glass cloth and cut an X in it ( sharp blade knife) over the hole to prevent it bunching and jamming when you stuff the new plug in. I prefer to wet out the cloth and dump a little resin in the hole before sticking the plug in - excess resin will ooze out around the plug. Deal with the excess with a chip brush or squeegee it off and you’ll be fine. Wax the screw so it won’t bind in the threaded hole over time and use a fine file or coping saw to cut a shallow slot where the fin tab meets the body of the fin so that the next time you hit something the fin will break off before busting out a plug. You lose only a few minutes water time replacing a fin, you now know how much time you lose replacing a plug. hope that’s of use doc…

Well, it looks like you guys might be looking for something that was designed to combat some of the most common problems faced with fin systems today. Just for the record: Lokbox does not effect the deck side of the board. Is the only fin system that offers “ejectable fins” upon forward impacts via the patented “finlok” or bendable metal plate. This only occurs on solid impacts such as reef or other surfboards etc…,allowing the fins to eject, in many cases sparing damage to the box. Box installs with a tight rout and minimal resin(this is a good thing). Can be made lightweight by using one layer of 4oz glass over the box, or more durable by adding multiple 4oz or 6oz patches, for bigger waves/boards. Designed to handle the stress of ANY type of fin, whether it’s G-10,vector type foils, regular fiberglass, or carbon composite plastic. Can be installed on the foam blank,after lamination on bottom, or after hotcoat. Fins are adjustable forward and back 1/2 inch. Custom templates available. Only system offering an FCS adapter. Installation Jig also has set-up for longboard center boxes. All products are made in the USA, and are available through rainbow fin company at 831-728-2998 and can be shipped anywhere. visit www.rainbowfins.com (go to online store, then shopping to see fins) East coasters can visit rdistributing.com or contact rainbow distributing at 321-777-5936 Japan contact Makoto at Peurto Rico contact Carlos Cabrero at Tres Palmas surshop hawaii/europe/brazil distributors coming in 2004 Technical questions can be forwarded to or you can call 760-757-3147 Thanks for your interest!

Well, I sure did get a lot of good answers and sparked a conversation too. Thanks for all the tips… this is a really cool bboard! I think I’ll try to contact Krokus and see if he’d give me a hand. Upon further inspection this evening, the plug had gone into the board on one side, thus the crack in the plug.

Drill out the old , sink a new one . use the fin to line up fin posission! Have a great surf! www.edgefins.kauaistyle.com

It seems that most of you guys prefer FCS to any other system. Certainly, the install is simple and the fin selection is terrific. But the system is not perfect for everyone. I have a few gripes that would make the system more desirable for someone like me: First, put the front tab at the extreme FRONT of the standard size fins to keep kelp and weed out (like the grom fins). Second, offer white plugs instead of just black which looks goofy on a clear board. Third, mould a stress relief into the fin tabs at the factory so it doesn’t need to be done in the field with a hacksaw. Fourth, engineer the tabs to break off in a frontal impact (so the plugs don’t blow out or crack out). Fifth, offer unshaped plastic dummy fins with tabs so that custom one-off fins can be shaped for those of us who want to experiment with unusual fin configs/designs. Sure, we can shape fiberglass fins and cut tabs in them, but they don’t break off like the plastic fins. Sixth, do something about the stock hex key - I have never had problems with them but apparently a lot of people have.