How wide is too wide for Fish Nose?

I’ve been playing around with this Shape3D software as well as comparing pictures in the resource pages and with these I’ve come up with a fish shape that I can almost feel how much fun it would be to ride. The numbers, however, do not speak so gracefully to me as compared with other numbers I’ve heard. The max wide point is 8" up from center on a board that’s 5’10" x 17.3"N x 20.6" x 14.4"T x 2.5". My biggest concern is the 3" nose to tail difference. My surfing experience dates ALL the way back to summer 2003 and I’ve only ridden about 10 or so boards so I am very aware of my limited knowledge. With this in mind, I wanted to run these numbers by all of you to hopefully get some feedback that could save me $$ and frustration… and how those two can be tied together. This will be the third board I will have made, first with epoxy.

Rider Info: 175lbs, 6’0". I’m an okay, but very determinded surfer and a solid paddler.

I attached a copy of the plans for a better feel for what I’m looking at. Although not shown as one, it will be a swallow tail.

Thank you anyone for your help!


This may not be of much help, but I would recommend you go with your gut feeling. While the dimensions you’ve posted differ a little bit from a lot of fish dimensions out there, who knows how the board will work? It may turn out to be the best board you’ve ever ridden. In response to your question…the wide point 8" forward of center seems a bit to to far up for my liking (I usually place my wide points about 2" forward of center). You might want to widen the tail to somewhere around 15 1/2" maybe (seems like most fishes have tails 16 + inches). Like I mentioned earlier, go with what feels comfortable for YOU…the dimensions I’ve posted are just numbers from someone elses perspective.

not answering your question [sorry mate] …but,

I like the look of it as a square tailed stubbie , actually ! Why would it "have " to be a fish , I wonder ?

well, that’s just my .02aus , anyway, for what it’s worth …



I’m not and expert. I’ve made 13 or 14 fishes. I put the wide points 3-4 inches in front of center. Nose width is good. I’d widen the tail an inch or more. Mike

For background info read this link.

Well, this one is all wrong… I suspect somebody’s mother was frightened by a coelecanth or possibly a stub-tailed beaver…

‘The universe is not only stranger than we imagine, it’s stranger than we can imagine’ - J.B.S. Haldane

Now, Ryan, have you tried any fish similar to what you’re sketching out? I might give one a try and proceed from there, which would give you more of a feel for what you want to change or modify.

hope that’s of use


I have only had 3 Fish board made from 5 10 down to 5 5 but I think that widepoint should be centre for the longer fish to 4" forward for the shorter. I also prefer a really wide tail on a wide short fish and a pulled in tail for the longer ones.I would recommend using the APS3000 program to import some pictures of fish boards that you like the look of and use it to take measurements of width and centre nose tail etc.This would give a starting place for your own design if like me you aren’t able to pick up and view these types of boards first hand. There are some beautiful boards out there.I could measure my boards and tell you along with what I would change to make them better but I think there are much more knowlegable people who will chime in.

Anybody ever experimented with really wide fish? Maybe something with dimensions like 5’8"x24"? Conventional shape, just 1-2" wider than normal.

My 5 5 is 22" about the widest I can carry under my arm.It paddles really slow but catches waves easily.

Wider than say…23 has it’s problems with top speed paddling, hard to sink and bury the rail at speed, maybe needing the center trailer.

Of course, a 7’ tall 350 lbs surfer might change the equation.

Did you see TomBloke’s 7’ er he posts? Widepoint waaaay forwards, wide nose, teardrop pin tail. I works.

Personally, I hate wide nose and much narrower tails, as then I"m surfing a longrailed, slow responding and slow to catch waves type of board.

And do you surf in offshore winds at all?

Wide forward teardrop shapes make the surfer stand forwards, so turns are long and drawn…but you’re catching waves LATE!

Long and drawn, TO ME, should be reserved for long boards with great paddle and glide.

Hi there RyGuy,

I think that 5’10" x 17.3"N x 20.6" x 14.4"T x 2.5" is OK for the dimensions of a fish… there is a bit more to a shape than just these 5 figures, but the figures will work.

The fish in the attached picture is 6’3" x 17" x 21" x 14" x 2 3/4" (sorry I like round numbers :slight_smile: and the intention of having a tail that is 3" narrower than the nose is to give it more manouverability… this was acheived by having 2 flyers in the tail to bring the width in and also a Vee starting before the flyers, hence there is more to the shape than just the 5 numbers.

The best thing would be to make the template for your shape and then eye-ball it to see if you think it will work… If you don’t think it will work when you look at the template, you havn’t wasted too much time.


PS: Before you ask about the spray job, it was done by Speedneedle! :slight_smile:

I am no expert as I have only ridden my fish, and only a couple times all in the wrong conditions, but for a traditional fish (which is what I think of when people say fish) I’d say your tail is pulled way in. I think of fish as early wave entry short boards and wide tail is good for that.

Mine is 6’2”x18.5”(n)x23.5(wp, c+6”)x23”©x18”(t)x14.5”(pins)x7”(crack)x3”. It is a big fish. As wide as the blank would support. I do have a longboard with a wider nose, 19”, but even my longboards I shape with a narrower nose usually.

It seems to work but then I have no reference to compare it to.

Thank you all for your input. Definately want to make sure everything looks as good as possible in the planning stages to make sure my college student dollars go as far as they can when it’s all put together. I feel a lot better about that now.

I took the information you guys provided and widened the tail and pulled the max wide point back a few inches while still maintaining a shape that appeals to me.

Great link MarkSpindler, thanks for posting that. I will definately have to read that a few more times to fully understand everything that is mentioned.

I’ve attached Plans v2.0 for any further critiques–very appreciated.

Thanks Again Everyone,



traditional fish have little curve to the tail rail area, but your template looks to be a good fun shape.

I’ve seen this fish on the Resource page. I’m sure this is old information to you, but she is freaking gorgous!

Your comment certainly makes me second guess my revisions and consider heading a little further back in the direction of a narrower tail. The mobility aspect that you brought up is really what catches my attention. That is what I imagine when looking at Fish v1.0. My concern now is what will have to suffer for the added mobility. Speed is my first guess (that seems to be the usual inverse relationship). Like most, I want my cake and get to eat it too. A second cake would also be nice.

Could you go a little further into the there being a “bit more to [the] shape than just these 5 figures”? I agree with you, God forbid that should be the only characteristics of a board worth mentioning, but I wanted to get your view of what else you see as major contributing factors and their pros and cons specifically for a fish.

Again, gorgous board. How does she ride?



You should check out Lost Round nose fish and Greg Webbers “Spoon” for fish with wider nose than tail. I think?

But they might be different design than what You’re after, I think they are both trifin fish.



The board goes great! It handles conditions anywhere from about 1’ (probably less but I can’t be bothered) to 6’ really well. And don’t worry about the speed… there are no problems with that :slight_smile: It certainly isn’t a traditional fish but the people that have ridden this board prefer it to the traditional fish shapes they have ridden. I guess for you, you need to decide if you want a traditional fish or something with a few modern tweaks thrown in. If you want to shape 2 boards then by all means, you can have both pieces of cake… if you can’t then you’ll need to decide on traditional vs. modern variations.

In terms of my comment on more to a board than 5 numbers, I was meaning that there are a number of other aspects to the board that make it good / bad. Things like flyers / hips / wings, Concaves, Vees, channels etc. and Fin choices to name a few. If it is your first shape I wouldn’t go too wild with these, but the reason I meantioned it was that for the dimensions that I mentioned for my fish, the reason why 3" narrower in the tail works is due to the double flyers. Without the flyers, I think me shape would be a bit of a pig dog :slight_smile:

To see other types of variations, I’d recommend having a look at some of the other fish shapers boards as well. Mandala’s ( and Rich Pavel’s (can someone help with the link for this, I know there is one somewhere) are both good examples of different variations of flyers / hips and fin setups.

Hope this helps… but remember, it’s your shape so whatever you feel will work just back yourself and go with it :slight_smile:


The nose on my fish Is about 16" and my tail is 17" my question for you is why are you makeing your tail a lot narrower? and I am not persuading you to change your outline also how wide are you going to make your tail tips and the length of the buttcrack

It seems that you may be able to do fairly well snaps of that board because you have the speed of the fish but a narrower tail to turn harder

Hi RyGuy,

I guess what it boils down to is what YOU want, the type of surf you will be riding with it, your ability, and many other variables. When someone says they want a fish, I think of a short, wide, flat, thing with big old keel fins on it. thefishexp’s board is beautiful, but I call that a swallow tail, not a fish. I like your second template much better. Distance between the tips a minimum of ten inches. The butt crack half that distance. Be glad to send you fin templates. Mike

Ive been thinking all day,

And I think 28’’

is too wide,unless the board is

maybe 32 ‘’ wide.

this was a hard question.


how’d I do?