I *Heart* Fins

Your online source for the best in surfboard fins

Pura Vida

Tim Orr *hearts* fins. He sent in a shot of some of the ones he has in his collection. Pretty nuts!:

Tim shapes surfboards under his Pure Life Surfboards label in Hawaii. He’s a fan of the bonzer style fin configuration/bottom contour. Here’s a board he’s shaped that he calls the Kona Green Machine. It’s a looker!:

Pure Life - Kona Green Machine

Tim crafted the fins himself. A backlit shot that also shows off radical bonzer style concaves exiting the tail:

Kona Green Machine - Fin Cluster 

We’re not sure if Tim want’s his contact info blasted onto the internets for spam bots to harvest so you can drop us a line if you’d like to get in touch with him about custom shapes or fins. He also posts on Craig’s List Hawaii quite frequently so that’s another option for getting in touch.


Daniel Partch Quad Fins

Daniel Partch Frye TemplateSingle Foil Fins

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“Special Modifications”

Special Modifications
(Photo from the Warbles Blog)

RT, the great story teller behind the Warbles Blog, embarked on a neat project with Jeff Beck to make a custom 10″ narrow based flex fin. Get the full scoop here.

Also keep your eyes open on that page for a great post about a visit to Fibre Glass Fin Co.

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Daniel Partch: Craftsman

Daniel Partch At Work

Daniel Partch At Work 

Daniel Partch Dol-phin

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UDT > Underwater Demolition Team

UDT Fins - Reef and Sand 

The UDT fin is named for the Navy Underwater Demolition Teams. Historically, they and a number of military special operations units have used these fins to execute their waterborne/underwater missions.

These fins have an insane amount of power. Two major factors contribute to this. The first is simply the amount of surface area the blade of the fin has. The second consideration is the stiffness of the fin. To keep such a long blade relatively firm requires some serious structural support. Checkout the heavy duty siding the fin has:

UDT Fin - Side View

As far as wave riding is concerned, the power of the UDT fin is really important for getting into bigger, faster moving waves:
Taking off with UDTs

This power also helps you make sections:
Waveriding with UDTs

A good, powerful fin is helpful in other critical situations as well. Dive!:

The UDT fin is made out of Malaysian rubber, which is known as the best rubber in the world. The fins have a smokey smell to them which is a result of the wood fires used to remove any impurities from the material before it’s processed. This is a comforting surf equipment smell that fits into the same category as clean neoprene and freshly cured resin.

UDT Fins

The UDT fin runs just a tiny bit wide/large in its sizing. If you have any questions about sizing, don’t hesitate to drop us a line.


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Lokbox Demo Day

Sunday was Lokbox Demo Day in Oceanside CA.

The Lokbox-Mobile was on hand:
Lokbox Mobile 

August in So. Cal. and the heat was in full effect. The sun was piercing and the air was more humid than usual for this part of the world. Not looking too good surf-wise in the photo below but there were some fun waves to be had earlier in the day (you can see a couple rippers in action on the 70 Percent blog):

Shawd and his family own and operate Rainbow Fin Co. up in the Santa Barbara area. They run a tight ship and are very good to their customers (clean performance fish shape by Ian Zamora):
Shawd and his MR 80s

Shawd shows off the new MR 80 quad-fin design by Rainbow Fin Co. We’re seriously stoked on these vibes. The easiest way to describe it is as a cross between the more upright canard quad style fin and a fuller traditional quad set up like the LB4-LB1 combo. You can especially see this blend in the rear fin. Full but more upright:
MR 80 Quadset

We can set you up with the MR 80 quad-fins:



The Slantback

8″ x 5″ marine ply keel hand foiled by local fin builder Daniel Partch:
Daniel Partch Keel Fin

This “slantback” template is his favorite keel fin design and is inspired by something that his fin making colleague/mentor Larry Gephardt came up with. According to Daniel: “You don’t want too much base on your keel otherwise the board can be too rigid. If you want to surf with that *gestures in a large rising and falling swooping motion* then this is the best fin”.

We’ve compared this fin with some other keels we have on hand and we can see the slant keeps a similar amount of surface area for drivey-ness but with the looseness that comes with a shorter base. So drivey but loose, just like a good fish ought to do.

Wood fins are nice because they float:
Floating Daniel Partch Slantback Keel Fin

The layers of ply are like contours on a map. In this case they show off the lovely foiling that Daniel does:
Daniel Partch Keel

We currently have Daniel’s slantback fins available:


Really Big Fins…

Big Fins

I had a layover on some travels recently and was struck by how insane the finage on this 747 aircraft was. That tail fin is like 10 feet thick at the base! According to Wikipedia, the 747 cruises at Mach .85. That’s a lot of fin to push through the air at that speed. Of course at 30k+ feet in the air there’s not as much to hold you back. Still pretty crazy though. More info on the 747 here.

Bonus points for guessing which airport this is. There are a few pretty good clues in the background for those who know the area!

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Think Inside The Box

Inside the Box
(photo from the Fish Brotherhood Blog)
The Fish Brotherhood have a great interview with JJR, the man behind Lokbox, up on their Blog. The Brotherhood (Nuno and Alexandro) clearly put some time into designing their questions because there’s some awesome insight to be gained on the fin system as well as just surfing/life in general. Nice one! Check the interview out here.

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TKO- Taylor Knox Tri-Fin

Taylor Knox Tri Fin

The Taylor Knox tri-fin set from Lokbox/Rainbow Fin Co. comes in both a 4.4″ and a 4.6″ fin (all three fins in a set are the same height). We haven’t actually tried these out yet but the name alone conjures up images of powerful, raw-some cutbacks!:

Fin Size & Construction

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Ted aka “Clayfin” has been baking up some lovely pieces of earthenware fin art. Take a look at his blog to see more about what he’s up to: Clayfin Blog

Clayfin “5? Fin
JB’s Clayfin

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There’s a great post on the Surfy Surfy Blog that gives some details on all these different bonzer center fin flavors. Rad!:

Center Bonzer Fins
(photo from the Surfy Surfy Blog)

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Frye Flex

Frye Flex Fin

San Diego Classic.

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PT Quad

PT Quad

The Lokbox based PT Quad is a fin design by Santa Cruz shaper Pat Taylor. It’s much like the Canard Quad design that has been doing the rounds in many Speed Dialer and Speed Dialer-esque shapes these last few years but with a fuller template. As with these Canard Quad templates, you can see how the two fins together have a profile similar to a traditional keel fin. Use this fin set up if you feel underpowered with your current quad set.


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Portugese Slide

Vasco’s Liddle Flex Fins
(photo from the Nereuskinesis Blog)

Check out the Nereuskinesis Blog for some insight on how these Liddle Flex Fins worked for Portugese shaper Vasco. Be sure to check out the rest of his blog and soak up some of the good life vibes while you’re over there.

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Happy New Year!

Have a great year in ’08!

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Flying Tiger: Greenough 4A

Greenough 4A

Greenough 4A


The P-40 Flying Tiger silhouete on the Greenough 4A is *the* distinctive fin graphic in our book. We couldn’t pass up on the oportunity to shoot this fine foil on top of this vintage poster.

In a nutshell, the story of COL Chenault and the Flying Tigers is that he turned a marginal WWII fighter in to the dominant force in the skies over China by developing tactics that played to the strengths of the aircraft (diving speed) and his unit (team work).

Although this fin performs better amongst fins than the P-40 Warhawk did amongst WWII aircraft, the story of the success of the Flying Tigers is a good metaphore to remember. You can defeat performance equipment by taking advantage of what your gear excells at.

Much like the Warhawk, the 4A excells at diving… wait, that would be “driving”… down the line. Unlike the P-40 however, the 4A also provides some zip out of turns with that narrow, flexible fin tip.

Use shorter versions of the 4A in your 2+1 set up board or alone in a short singlefin shape. Use the longer versions of the 4A in disc shapes of all sizes and singlefin longboards.


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RS1-RS2 Lokbox Quadfin Combo

The RS1-RS2 Combo
Like the R5-R8 quad combo, the RS1-RS2 is another of the more recent quadfin offerings from Rainbow Fin Co. for the Lokbox fin system.

The RS1 has a full bodied 4.5″ leading fin much like the LB4 (so fuller than the R5) but has a trailing fin that is smaller than either the LB1 or the R8. The RS2 is only 3.75″ high, a whole .5″ shorter than either of those.

RS1-RS2 Quadfin Combo
These are just a few situations where these fins would work well:
-On boards that have their fin boxes further back.
-On shapes with more pulled in tails.
-For riders that want to loosen up a board that use a fin set with a larger rear fin like the LB4-LB1 or the R5-R8.

Below you can compare the size and rake of the RS1 and RS2 (RS2 on top of RS1):

RS1 vs. RS2 comparison

We currently have the RS1-RS2 Quadfin set available in the following…


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Side Bites

RSB- Rainbow Side Bites
3.5″ Sidebites for Lokbox. Use in your 2+1 set up or loosen up a quadfin by swaping the rear fins for these.


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R5-R8 Quad Setup

R5 R8 Quadfin
Above is a nice shot of the Lokbox R5-R8 Quadfin combination perched on a local reef. The R5-R8 is a set up that’s been made available more recently by Rainbow Fin Co. for the Lokbox fin system. Although the fin heights are the same as the LB4-LB1 combo, these templates are not as full in profile taking less power to turn with them. This means the LB4-LB1 may be the choice for a larger surfer (or someone with a real power oriented surfing style) while the R5-R8 may be good for someone of more average size. Of course fin box placement and board template should be considered in this equation as well.

The following image contrasts the templates of the two fins with the 4.25″ R8 resting on top of the 4.5″ R5 (stay tuned for some R5-R8 vs. LB4-LB1 contrast shots):
R5 vs. R8 comparisson

The R5-R8 is available:


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