Howzit TD,

Can you offer more feedback on FCS F series?

Did the board turn easier?

Did it have more drag going straight?

In bigger surf, did you feel any loss of stability or control?

There’s a good reason I’m asking.

Lates, Dave


I thought a bit about your questions, trying to find an analogy to help convey my experiences. The best analogy I could come up with on the spur of the moment is this: think of knobby bike tires vs thin narrow ones. Which is faster in a straight line? The thin narrow ones (Tour de France). But which ones would you want to avoid turning hard with? The thin narrow ones. For me, give me knobby “tires” to grip, crank, bank, tork against and turn with. They give me more bite, speed and g-forces on the terrain (in a manner of speaking) of a good wave. I can go up, down, up, around, and under and through with more power and speed than if just going straight. I feel I can just hit the turns harder. Great for cranking under the pocket and off the bottom hard, over and over. But I’m leaning way over my rails. I don’t think riders more centered over their boards would feel the resulting grab and force to any advantage, and might even be slower. Do you cruise and trim, or do you generate speed by throwing your weight through your turns? How much area do you cover on a wave? What kind of waves do you ride?

Did the board turn easier? My favorite boards with flatter more powerful tail rockers seemed to “feel” the foil and pivoted better. But other boards with more tail rocker dragged noticeably and became total dogs, turning worse. Going back to a normal foil livened these boards up back to normal.

Did they have more drag going straight? Maybe a touch, especially the high tail rocker boards. But I rarely go straight. If I did, say at Maalaea, I might opt for a normal foil fin.

In bigger surf, did you feel any loss of stability or control?

No, actually I used the bigger FG-7 in bigger surf and they felt too big, I could hit turns ridiculously hard in the hook repeatedly, but they felt a bit slower rail-to-rail than need be.

I want to repeat that these are the FCS FG series, which gave me much better results than the Futures Vectors, which did nothing for me except hum. But I’m interested in hearing your thoughts…

Hey TD,

Thanks for your feedback, it’s very valuable.

Ok, here’s the deal.

First, Im glad you like the new fins it sounds like youre a real rippah!

I bought the FG7s but I have not ridden them in anything substantial…yet. I immediately visually compared the FG7s to my standard G5s and noticed that the FG7 is offset rearward relative to the tabs…I wondered why…when all of their other fins are not offset no matter what you buy.

The reason is that the FGs are more toed-in! I took my long straight edge and compared toe…the older fins pointed about 2 inches offset off the nose tip but the FGs toe actually point across the stringer! The increase in toe would increase turnability but decrease drive so they compensated by off-setting the fore-aft placement rearward. It all made sense now.

Unfortunately, because of the significant increase in toe, its not an apples-to-apples comparison and thus unfair to other fins compared. We simply cannot judge the fins on their foils differences alone. No biggie.

Im not sure if FCS is “tricking” the public or offering a better product. Optimistically, I’d like to think that one can build a board with mild toe-in, and simply swap fins (FGs and regulars) for the desired effect - this is exactly what I plan to do in the near future - variable toe from std FCS plugs using different fins. The FGs are keepers.

Thanks again, Dave.

PS - Back in the mid-1980s, most of my best high-school friends moved to Honolulu and about half are still there…I’ve been to your state about 6 times. Mostly surfed Kaisers, Tongs, West Side and Lanis. Great night life too!

“compared the FG7s to my standard G5s and noticed that the FG7 is offset rearward relative to the tabs” Dave- I looked at the fins and can’t see this rear offset. The FG-7 is a bigger fin template thatn the G5 and the base has been lengthened a smidge rearward, but the leading edge is placed the same. A fairer comparison to the G5 is the FG-5, and between these, mine appear visibly identical, with no difference in fore/aft offset. I wonder about the differences you have in your hands. QC or ? You are right about the toe-in/ change in effective AOA. I discussed this with Bert, and he gave good reasons about why this changed my higher rockered boards performance for the worse. Another reason this design, though sometimes great, may not work for everyone or in all boards.

Yeah got the FG7 and they do have a longer chord but still offset rearward when compared to the stock AMs. I actually like the fact that these are offset back cuz most of my setups are a little forwards.