Futures instal.....level the jig plate....WHY??

Just printed off some futures instal instructions.

They mention using a small level to ‘level’ the jig plate once placed onto the bottom of the board. Im wondering why this would be done?

My thoughts are that if the jig plate is ‘level’ across the board (rail to rail) it will have no bearing / relationship with the bottom of the board.

I thought it was more important to be using the Timmy tool , to ensure this 8mm clearance between the board and the jig, this will give the same depth cut all the way around the jig, therefore the box will sit evenly into the blank, i.e not high one side and low the other.

the instructions say use both a level and a timmy tool to set jig height…

any suggestions…do people use the level or the timmy tool or both? Doesnt using one cancel out using the other, as the they will both give a different jig height relative to the blank



hey what’s up Saltbush. I use both, but some routes on concaves you just throw that timmy tool across the room and run a shallow cut, evaluate, and continue. Same w/those leveling pads. My older Cordell has Futures and the glasser botched the install on one of these fins, the box was set slightly down too far in the rear, maybe he didn’t use the leveling pads, eh?. I go slow w/Futures, I’m still learning how to gauge a route on contoured bottoms. I think the leveling pads help near rails where you’d clearly have some gap on your jig in one corner and the plate resting firmly to the foam on another. for center fins, it’s pretty much setting the timmy and then restting your depth on the router in reference the bottom contour on the blank.

 I blaze w/Fusion. Love Fusion. I love Futures too, but mainly because of the Alana Blanchard advertisements. haha

on a side note: I’m not so sure my Timmy tool is accurate for Futures ILT

Hey Saltbush,

If you want a truly professional installation then you should use both. Timmy for depth, level for uh, well…leveling. Your router should never have to be adjusted because your router bit should be set at the proper depth so when you use the “donut” your flange and center cut will cut perfectly everytime you bottom out the router. When doing your center cut then instal the “X box” shim in the “donut” and then your center cut will go from 3/4" to 1/2" when you bottom out the router. Pretty easy and super strong when it’s done right. 

Hey fibreglass hawaii!

Happy to use both, have gone and got a little level to suit.

just unsure as to why to use both?

if i level the jig on the blank first, it means there may not be exactly 8mm clearance all the way around the jig.

so then i use the timmy tool to make sure the jig is at the correct height, but this might ‘unlevel’ the jig?

My router is set at depth so i dont need to chage anything there, i also used the timmy tool to set my router bit depth.

Thoughts? How do you or how can you use both the level and the timmy tool without them cancelling out each other?


My thoughts…

It depends on the concaves your running.


basically, the angle your jig plate sits on sets the cant of your fins.

So on a flat bottom board, the jig plate will sit level/perpendicular with the stringer and you can use the tommy to to adjust your height, so when routered your box will sit flush in your board.


It gets a little trickier when you start adding deeper concaves/bottom shapes

Your fin box may need to sit a little deeper on one side (or proud on the other) to achieve the desired cant. 

I guess you shouldn’t change the cant of the boxes too much as, with futures that changes with each fin you use.


Remember you  can always sand your boxes to fit into your concave better


Im no expert, thats just what I worked out after having the same questions as you, especially because my first board had pretty deep double through the fins! 

P.s, Alana’s ass alone surely sells more product than what a Kelly or Dane Reynolds could ever dream of?


true that. the world we live in. But, Machado’s bamboo neckbeard fin looks cool as well. I’d buy a set if I have cash to torch.

I’d also say that–for me–issues with getting a nice flush Futures box has to do with shaping that bottom accordingly. Problems with routing boxes extenuate from my shaping skills. How I plan to resolve this: be a better shaper.

Agreed, it is a fantastic ad they have there…no airbrushing im sure!

still cant get my head around using the level, versus the timmy tool.

using the timmy tool:

gives the correct depth cut into the foam, so the box sits flush ( or fractionally below) the surface of the blank.

using the level:

surely this is going to leave one side of the box ( most often the side closest to the stringer) too high, as the jig sits level, but the foam drops away from the rail due to the concave ( i know there are all sorts of variations in concave, im talking the common single, or single to double scenario). Having a level jig means the depth of routing will vary based on the angles/variations in the bottom contour of the board, whereas with the Timmy Tool, the depth of cut will be same all the way around the box.


if you set the jig router hole (rail side) with the timmy tool at 8mm above the blank, and then set the jig to level, the stringer side of the jig router hole will be more than 8mm above the blank due to the concave(s). 

Havent watched the instal video on futures wesbite for awhile…did they use the level method in the video? Cant remember?





they show a small bit in the vid where Timothy McRouter is sliding the foam spacers under the jig. I notice that if I shim on one rail, do the same–mirrored setup–on the other rail, no-brainer.

I personally hate the timmy tool; I have a couple scores in the plastic several millimeters off their factory mark. (Maybe I have timmy-dissfunction) hahaha

I test a couple routes on scrap, that seems to be working. I do the center fin first and then on to the rails. But right now, my router is set for fusion, and that depth on the router is so dialed, I just want to burn through all my FCS plugs before re-tooling for Alana Shenanigans.

Would like to do fusions as well.

i do like the look of them, problem with fcs is for a small time guy like myself, i have to make an account and they have minimum quantities to purchase, doesnt really suit the quantity of boards I do.

i prefer the single box set ups as opposed to ‘2 plugs’, i like the rigidity it gives, some prefer the flex tha two plugs apparently allows? Although, i have never understood how this flex apparently exists, given you have a fin in both plugs creating a bridge that resists any flex??



Not sure if I can tell the difference between Futures and FCS being a guy who surfs leftovers and inside A-frames w/the groms. I know I prefer FCS for compatability. I’m running Proteks in homage to a friend-of-a-friend who had part of his lower leg severed from his fin during a wipeout in Hawaii.

I did order a set of Futures “YU” red honeycomb…for solid conditions, and improved surf skills on my part.


EDIT: Woah, Proteck’s running on Futures, man I need to open my eyes: http://www.surfcohawaii.com/product-p/pt-car.htm