how to choose the best surf fin
UNDERSTANDING FIN DESIGN - How to choose the best fin for your board
All surf fins are not created equal! We take advantage of a vast amount of fin manufacturing experience to create fins that work in many different applications. Designs are executed using the required materials and foils to create the highest performance surf fins available today.
Flex is a very important element in our designs. Many of our surfboard fins come with a tuned flex. A fin that has flex can be very different than a fin without flex. The flex concept brings to life an otherwise average ride. Cutbacks have more power and bottom turns have more projection.
True Ames Surf Fins incorporate a constant foil which means you will not find any flat spots on our fins that may cause water disturbance which will ultimately cause poor performance. Our bigger solid color fins are foiled from 7/16” solid 6oz. glass sheet stock. Smaller fins do not need to be so thick to have the proper foil.
The depth of your fin is measured from base to tip vertically. Adjusting your fin size will affect the performance of your board. Larger fins provide more stability and control, so a larger board will need bigger fins. For example a 9’6” single fin surfboard needs at least a 9.5” fin and if nose riding is most important to you then you will find bigger fins give more forward control.
The outline of a fin is what determines the area and the look. The way the area is distributed on the fin is what makes fins individual and work in so many different ways. A wide base fin with a wide tip is the most stable but not forgiving. A narrow base fin with a narrow tip will be very loose and fast but unstable at slow speeds. The fin’s sweep (or rake angle) affects the board’s ability to carve turns. A more vertical fin will make tight turns and fast directional changes while a more raked fin will carve wider arcs and handle more power through turns. Tail width is also a factor in fin choice. Narrow tail boards do not require deep fins because there is less distance from the fin to the rail. A wide board requires a deeper fin than a narrower board. For example an 8’ egg style board that is on the wide side should use about an 8.5” to 9.0” fin. A narrow tail single fin board that is 7’6” can use a fin in the 7” to 8” range.
Trying New Fins: Mix it up
You might have your board and fin setup exactly how you like it. That’s great, but, you might be surprised to see how much different your board will ride by adjusting up your fin setup. Waves are always changing shape and size, condition-wise, you might find that trying a few different setups can give your board a new feeling, maybe even better than before. Whether you are going with a 2+1 setup or just sticking to the basic single fin, there are lots of ways to improve your board’s ride. Don’t hesitate to try new boards and fins. It keeps your surfing fresh and allows you to keep progressing. We offer a bunch of templates and size ranges for a multitude of variables in your fin experimentation.
true ames. surf fins guide