Skaters--have you ever seen a surfboard with a kicktail?

I drew one up and I don’t know why I didn’t do it before–I know most surfboard shapers would balk, but I think it would be a good thing. The things I was thinking about were flex–which I didn’t end up thinking would be an issue, and the hydro effect of the deck kick slowing the tail from getting to the surface, which I was thinking I could take care of by foiling. I made the bump in the outline at 17" the kinda fulcrum

Anyway, here’s what it looks like. Took some playing with it to get it integrated

EDIT: Sorry if they’re out there and I just never saw one I could make out a kicktail on… if they are and I’m posting this, I’m going to feel pretty stupdi


In 1971 Hobie made a kick tail on a twin fin. It was just a slight hump at the tail. If memory serves me correctly the idea was to have some place to hold your rear foot while carving. The boards were real short, I think mine was 5"-2", I liked the way it rode.

oh yeah, that reminds me of “the SHoe”–well there ya go

Thanks surfifty

Have seen a couple McTavish noseriders (Surftec or tufflite don’t remember which) w/ tail like that. Long board, flatter rocker in nose. Owners claimed they rode great but have not seen one in the water.

Janklow what you have done is basically just make a nearly parallel profile in the tail area. . . which is what i have done on every board I have ever built. . . I have to say that I like it. . . it is nice to have the deck swooping slightly up behind your foot, parallel with the bottom , giving a nice secure riding position… . . it’s not new though !


Oops, my bad. You meant the kick on the deck and were NOT referring to “flip” tail rocker. The “flip” is what is in the McTavish’s

Yeah–that’s weird that vert surfers don’t have kicktails. Another weird thing for surfing to not have. I’m doin’ it. If it doesn’t work out, I’m gonna find some kind of adhesive wedge pad to put under a trac pad.


Janklow what you have done is basically just make a nearly parallel profile in the tail area. . . which is what i have done on every board I have ever built. . . I have to say that I like it. . . it is nice to have the deck swooping slightly up behind your foot, parallel with the bottom , giving a nice secure riding position… . . it’s not new though !


I don’t know how it works for vert surfing, will be interesting to see how you like it, not sure what you mean about the extra deck volume stopping the tail from getting to the surface though, are you thinking that extra thickness will mean extra rail volume and that this is a diadvantage? If so I don’t think it’s a problem because extra volume helps keep the tail on the surface, and a softer high volume rail will provide less resistance to the rail coming up if it has been sunk. Anyway as you say you can foil the tail rail how you like even if the tail is thick. Cheynes lazor zaps had thick tails also a lot of those traditional fish seem to.

By the way I don’t see any bump at 17 inches is it in invisible ink ?

keep us posted (please)


I did a couple of variations a few years back, one was a kick in the deck and the other had a center

arch bar glassed into the board. I don’t have pics of them, they worked well, but took a bit of time

to build. They are kinda constructed like the “Tumor” board on my website (see Special Projects) but

in reverse where the bump is in the tail.

The kicked tail felt good, your foot locked right in and it felt stable- worth investigating IMO…

If this design is to aid in planting the foot, it seems all you would need is a stomp pad with a steep step thing. It’s light and would form to your foot. But if you are talking about actually having the tail flip up on the bottom as well, then that is a whole different story i guess, not sure if that would add or take away from getting vert.

You can kind of get an idea about a kicktail in this Bing Silverspoon picture:

Roy, I meant that the tail’s angle upward might hydrodynamically interfere with the tail’s upward progress when I’m coming up to plane.

The bump is slight, and it looks like it’s at about 15-17". When I say bump, I mean the milder curve of the midboard rail planshape pulls in and morphs into a more straightened line to the tail corners at approximately the 15-17" from tail position, ala that of many well-liked shortboards by big names. Maybe you knew what I meant, but there ya go. I re-drew it again last night, and straightened out the nose and tail tips for cutting a rocker temp.

The kick could only help mechanically, or else I have zero idea how it could possibly hinder if the bottom is the same–I think there’s a clear translation from skateboards on that one–but I guess I should qualify that somehow–maybe in flex or too much leverage. May be that the wedge pad under the trac pad is a good way to go, but I won’t know until I try it.

Well, Is this what you were thinking of Janklow? I have to “post and run” but I’ll talk more in the A.M. if there is any interest, I have worked on this idea for a while. -Carl


You are a crazy man. I like that. The PDF I attached a couple posts above, check it. Roughly parallel to the bottom tail rocker. I was looking at some Merrick rocker shots a minute ago, and there is some slight parallelism to the tails in some instances–a notable one is the “five,” a new-ish vertical board used by Tim Curran, which is interesting…some other vert boards there seem to have some kick to the deck tail too.

(BTW, Slater’s “K-Board” “Shaping Bay Video” is pretty amazing, if you like that sort of thing…!!)


So’s this though


if you like the Neil Young sort of thing


Not surprised at this most-recent development at all…

Innovation is like lightning: hardly ever strikes in the same place twice; but lightning rods bring it down again & again.

Sorry, couldn’t post yesterday- too busy. Anyway, that board is a hacked down thruster of mine- the idea was to place the kick tail so that it was closer to the fin cluster. If you notice, it is set up as a twin, with two large fins about 2-3 inches forward of the tail. I wanted the board to be close to the way a kicktail on a skateboard is, pretty close to the rear trucks. Note the hard edge, I did that so that the flip from the kicktail wouldn’t cause drag when the board was planing. A couple notes about riding it- You could stand on the tail and pivot, just like a skate- it really worked! The twin fin slid around alot- even though I was riding big fins. If you look close at the side profile, you can see that I was grinding at the board- I was pulling the tail in, and was planning on making it into a thruster. Originally the board was just a normal template that had about 6" cut off the tail. So it was pretty wide and straight back there- I really felt like the board needed to be narrower, and more curve was needed in the outline. Alot of people thought (including myself) that the tail would add alot of drag to the board- especially when paddling. Not true. When you paddle, the only thing you really noticed was the lack of length, and that your knees where sitting in a sort of scooped out area. Catching waves didn’t seem to be a problem, although you had to be mindful of the tail when you were popping up. The biggest problem with the board? Ah… the stance. See, when you ride a skateboard, you have a pretty narrow stance, compared to the way you ride a surfboard (well, at least on a shortboard) so when you were standing on the kicked part of the tail- you felt like you were on a really long skateboard- sorta the way one of those long sector 9’s with the kicktail feel… long and ackward (compared to a normal deck) …I played around with it for awhile, but the real next step was to build a new board, one that was probably around 5’3" or so and thick and boxy all around. I actually built the board, but never put the tail on it. My good friend Tanner liked the board so much, he ran off with it and I’ve never seen it again, so maybe when he comes around I’ll make him put the kick tail on it. I’ve got so much crap going on… maybe on of you guys can take care of it. :slight_smile: -Carl