School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

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School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby wjp1 » Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:57 am

Hi All,

I'm a beginner/intermediate riding a 6.6 JS revolution - pretty much good to go in anything up to head height. Now I've always had the basic plastic fins (whether FCS or Future) that come with the board.
Now I'm wondering if at my level getting some "proper" fins is actually going to make any difference in terms of my ability or easy of use.

Any thoughts on this subject?
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby flacky » Tue Nov 27, 2012 4:43 pm

You'll get everything from people who don't know better saying yes, to people who know more than enough saying no, and everything in-between. My 2p is fin choice is more noticable on a single fin. And I'm a bit of a fin slut tbh. I am fascinated with board design, fins etc. But I'd be tempted to say no. But you know what, sometimes your board looks the business, and that feeling of pride is enough to lift your game. Right or wrong, meh! Liken it to your lucky satdee night shirt that you were guaranteed to pull whilst wearing.
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Poo Stance » Tue Nov 27, 2012 7:21 pm

My 2p is that they do make a difference. They form an integral part of your connection to the wave. And logic would dictate that altering the physical characteristics of your fins will alter your experience of that connection.

I play with my fins a fair bit. I sometimes ride my minimal as a twin or a single. When I ride my singlefin I knock it back or forward in it's fin box depending on how fast the wave is. With the fin all the way back I dont slide out on take offs (as much). Recently put small sidebites in my piranha. It doesn't get hung up on 'top turns' any more. But I have noticed I can't generate speed as easily.

For me I think I'm following the general rule of bigger waves = more finnage and vice versa. When your going slow on a wave you really notice one or two less fins.

The problem with understanding fin design Inc placement is that is has as many features available for change as a surfboard. Rake, surface area of base/tip, base/fin thickness, foil... and many more I don't even know the terms for. You could have the perfect fin and on the wrong board in the wrong place and its all out the window.

Buy cheap sets. Borrow of mates. Play around, try using different fins on the same board on the same day. Understand what the experts say re design and try and relate that to your experience. Then hopefully you can choose the best fins for the conditions and how you want to surf.

However. As said. Someone will soon come along and say just funkin surf, have fun and forget all that jazz. And they'de be right. :D
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Poo Stance » Tue Nov 27, 2012 7:25 pm

Oh yeah. And the piranha loves the FCS GR fins so much better than G5s. Got a mate who also rides GR fins and he says they work for him.

Maybe peeps could post up what fins they use and what they thunks about them?
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Leven » Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:40 pm

To give my 2p worth......I'm somewhere in the middle!


Fins do make a big difference, but you need to understand what that difference is. For instance, if you surf a thicker than normal board for a change, you might want to put some slightly bigger fins in it, as the board will have more float/be more out of the water.


I find primarily the difference to be in speed and drive, especially in hollow waves.
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby flacky » Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:55 pm

My point is that at this level, changing generic plastic fins for glass ones won't be noticeable. Obviously changing the shape will be more so.
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Black » Wed Nov 28, 2012 8:07 pm

There's no pro surfer who's complained about having the wrong fins as far as I know - say no more!
I would though.............
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby swiggy » Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:58 pm

flacky wrote:My point is that at this level, changing generic plastic fins for glass ones won't be noticeable. Obviously changing the shape will be more so.


+1. I have heard so many people say "I need bigger fins" or something like that while wobbling along when they probably wouldn't notice if they had a fin missing :lol: You have to be pretty good/experienced to notice subtle differences in fin material. Significant size differences are definitely noticeable, but only once you have surfed for a while..
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby wjp1 » Thu Nov 29, 2012 5:07 am

thanks guys. As fate would have it I lost a fin 2 days ago (got knocked out by a newbie). So I ended up stumping up for a set of FCS UL-5.

Its been flat since so I haven't tried them. I'll see!
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Cuttlefish » Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:41 pm

Don't you hate it when the learners tell you to "get out of the water" and then come and punch one of your fins out?
:shock:
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby defever » Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:26 pm

Did you spend $130.00+ AUD (£75.00!!) on UL-5?! How did you manage to choose that out of million kinds of FCS fins??

I hope no one goes anywhere near your brand new fins...
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby gavtheoldskater » Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:38 pm

always a good one this...

surfing seems so far behind in fins, yet fins are everything for drive, lift and manaoevrability. in windsurfing you would'nt dream of using something plastic.

however, i always quote this story; many years ago now a certain french pro racer, who will remain nameless, may even have been course racing world champ once, went into a collaboration with a french aerospace company to make the ultimate racing fin. in materials alone it was something like 1k, and thats not counting all the computer design and modelling time.

when the day came to test, he put it on the board, sailed out, sailed in.. took the fin out. it did'nt work.
a world of waves and a world of ways to ride them!
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby dermo909 » Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:42 pm

I changed the black plastic fins on my minimal for fcs-m5's and I definitely noticed the difference straight away. Immediately the board felt tighter on the back end and was generating more speed.
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby zboy » Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:28 pm

simple answer from me is it worth the cost no.av price of 70/80 pounds.does say a tech fex future fin perform different from f4 composite yes it is noticeable,espescialy on the bottom turn in the drive to your release off your top turns, and even pumping down the line for your cut back i notice the difference, i recently changed fins to fiberglass future thruster fins for winter juice more control, stiffer , precise fin there twiggy gun template :-)
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Archy_is_God » Mon Dec 10, 2012 1:39 pm

I've been meaning to try those Twiggy Futures - keep us posted on how they go over the winter.

It's definitely a good thing, tweaking fins, but steer clear of changing them every session - like surfboards, sometimes it can take a few sessions to really suss out what's going on and how to make the most of it.

If you are lucky enough to surf most days, then you can form a picture of what works well in which condition/size. If you surf less frequently, then there is some merit in leaving it all alone for extended periods and learning to surf what's under your feet.

The reasons pros don't moan about fin choices is predominantly because they take the time to really suss out what works well with each board (with the benefit of the person who shaped that board chipping in with their thoughts as well) then they stick with it, gently tweaking the formula here and there on their 'main' boards.

Far too many options these days... sometimes it's good, but other times I see people who are still learning who have full-on quivers (as that's what they feel is going to help them progress) and their enjoyment is often hampered by being hung-up on equipment choices :(

But yeah, as a rule-of-thumb, the same fin template in a better material isn't going to be too detrimental to your surfing.
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby dixie » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:04 pm

fins are way too expensive when im buyin em....
n worth 10 times as much when im sellin em :-D :-D :-D

sorry , drinking my flu away
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby surfrat » Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:13 am

i use reasonably large occy fcs fins for bigger surf or more powerful surf then if it's small and weak stick some m3's in and the board has a little less drag due to smaller template to quicker, and turns tighter and tail slides thru a turn more with less push and less speed so i can fall off trying tail slides in crap surf more often...

recently tried loxbox fins and they felt so stiff compared to my more flexy FCS....toook some getting used to. decide they're good for big surf but didn't like em in the small stuff
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Re: School me in Fins! Worth the cost?

Postby Jamez » Mon Feb 04, 2013 8:20 pm

try changing the black plastic ones to stiff carbon ones and you will feel a hell of a difference what ever level your at.

i wouldnt touch the black plastic fins with a barge pole - they r the shi test thing ever invented.

i also dont like the performance glass ones which are stiff heavy an unresponsive

my fav are the old ultra light epoxy Fg5 and Fg7...however most hexcell core fins will perform admirally

there are too many variables to get a sense of opinion especially with the posters on here, just go out and invest in a reasonable set of hexcell core epoxy fcs fins and answer the question yourself :?: :?: :?: :?: :?: :?: :?:
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