Hey crew! I finally got my hands on a set of the Futures Fins Gerry Lopez SUP thruster fins for stand up paddle boards. Although I just took them out one time, I wanted to share my initial impressions with all our readers. Ever since the fins were first announced, I've been on the hunt for a pair of these. The other day at a local surf shop, I found a pair of blue ones in the back of the Futures rack. . . Score!
The package comes with 3 fins, 2 sides and a center for a traditional longboard/sup box. I was stoked on this. Prior to the release of these fins, for a thruster, you had to find a center fin that matched up with your choice of side fins. Then, you'd have a spare center fin that you had no use for. Well, now, if you've got Futures boxes, you have a solution. Now how does it ride?
It was interesting taking them out in the water. While I was talking fins with the guys at the shop, one guy looked at the fins and said, "that design (referring to the point under the tip of the fin) gives more release," and the other guys says, "that fin will give you more drive". Well, after the smoke cleared from that debate, which included pulling out the Futures book and everything, it was still a toss up, so I got a set.
I put them on a hand-glassed PSH 9'4" which is a predecessor to the current 9'3" Ripper model. The rails are harder, it's a little less buoyant, and slightly heavier than the production model but surfs somewhat similar. I always run a thruster set up on the board. The conditions today on the North Shore of Oahu at the local break where I went out was 2x-3x overhead with light winds and slightly bumpy conditions. I hit the water at first light so I was able to get some set waves before the crowd came out.
Well, how did they ride. So far the word I can assign to the fins is FAST. I was able to do some cutbacks on the inside section, but the wave was sort of a cat and mouse wave today. I can say that the cat never got the mouse and I never ran out of speed. The have excellent hold in the steep sections and were predictable in steep takeoffs and heading down the racetrack toward the channel full speed.
I look forward to playing with the fins more in a variety of conditions. So far I'm impressed and will be leaving them on my board. If you have a set, post a comment and let share your thoughts with the rest of the community. Peace.