Can you hear that? The ocean is calling you to surf and catch waves. Then, you thought of using another fin setup. Yes, you have tried the twin and the thruster fin setup. But admit it – you want to surf quicker this time. What surfboard setup are you going to use? The quad fin setup that allows you to surf with great speed and perform sharp turns.
But since it’s your first time riding a quad fin setup, do you think that it offers you the speed excitement you want? Yes, of course, and quad fins can offer surfers more that. Let’s go further by knowing what a quad fin setup can do.
Quad Fin Setup
You would observe that the quad fin setup has the qualities of the twin and thruster fins. If you plan to catch small waves, this setup is the right choice! The quad fins give you excellent speed allowing you to do fast and quick turns (similar the twin fin but you gain more control.)
Quads are excellent in small surf (particularly when the rear fins are further on the surfboard and close to the rails). Hence, the surfer gains more speeds in catching weak waves and enables you to perform fast turns. The extra control on the turns offers a fantastic surfing experience.
Take note: quad fins aren’t only best for small or weak waves. Surfers can also ride quad fins in catching hollow waves. When the back fins are on the surfboard’s back, surfers gain additional hold in facing steep waves.
Quad Fins for Pro Surfers
If you’re a beginner, who plans to ride a quad fin surfboard, make another choice. The quad fin setup isn’t ideal for novice surfers but perfect for advanced riders. Since quads don’t have a center fin, professional surfers experience less drag. Advanced surfers can expect great hold in high lines using quad fins. Thus, the quad fin setup is reliable in catching heavy, fast, and hollow waves.
Pro surfers would love the high speed and turning abilities that add to the quad’s advantage in conquering peaky and weak waves.
Remember: You should know where to place the quad fin plugs on your surfboard’s tail. The distance of the board’s fins and its closeness to the rail affect how the quads perform.
For example, when the fins are clustered together and further set on the surfboard, the fins would reflect a thruster. Fins that are farther apart from each other and have the distance to the rail allow the surfboard to gain speed. The surfboard becomes a tight turning arc once you ride it.
Riding Quad Fin Setup Surfboards
Surfers (advanced riders especially) who haven’t tried quad fins before would wonder how quad fins ride? Well, let’s answer that question by knowing how quad fin surfboards ride.
Quads on Large Surf
Most of the world’s pro surfers ride quad fins in facing powerful waves and breaks. Are they worried? Not really. You see, pro surfers have a superior hold of the big surf because of two fins close to the surfboard’s rail. Hence, you gain enough speed to catch waves at sea.
Fins offer drag when you’re surfing a straight line. But that’s not only the good thing they do- fins help in holding and changing the board’s direction. Shapers would shape a surfboard to channel water on the surfboard’s back.
When water hits a thruster fin, you will slow down. You wouldn’t experience that in a quad fin setup. Why? The water rushing on the quad fin surfboard’s tail gives you speed to face waves. Unlike a thruster fin setup, quads give you natural speed.
Reliable Response Time
Do you ever wonder what quad fins do to your board when you’re surfing? That’s easy. The quad fins under a surfer allow the rider to control the surfboard easily with less response time. When you’re facing steeper waves, the quad fin setup holds a high line. Also, you can experience more drive while performing turns.
Unlike thruster fins, the quad fins don’t have the back fin. Hence, the surfer feels the quad’s responsiveness. But sometimes, riders don’t feel complete control of the wave. Take note: surfers riding quad fin requires a different style than using a thruster fin setup. You have to adjust riding quads before you feel the fantastic speed, loose feel in catching waves.
But you would hear other surfers say that they slide down on the quad fin surfboard. (That’s natural if the surfers are first-time riders of quad fins.) Take note: more fun on the surfboard means that you get more hold and control. You can also efficient rail turns while you’re in the water.
Don’t forget to practice riding quad fins so that you achieve satisfaction anytime!
Now, here’s an important question you need to ask yourself:
Can I react quickly to the quad fin’s speed?
It depends. For example, surfers who are riding quad fins for the first-time might scream when they’re down the line of the board. Pro surfers who are careful and take things slow would have different stories.
Advanced surfers can carve a two-foot wave easily in riding quad fins. Experienced and skilled surfers could perform fast and successful turns with a quad fin. Yes, surfers would get different reactions, but the important thing is you enjoyed the experience.
(Who knows, you might even share the experience with other surfers and inspire riders to try the quad fin setup now!)
Why or When Surfers Should Consider Quad Fin Setup as a Great Option?
You experienced the drawbacks of the twin and thruster fin setups. Don’t worry because quad fins fill the void of other fin setups.
Surfers gain fast and loose feeling while taking control of the board. You can also conquer hollow, heavy, and even small waves with quad fins. (But take note that this depends on the cluster placement on the surfboard.)
Smaller Gutless Days
You can have the rear fins close to its rail and further up slightly. Then, you would see the board loosens up. Surfers are satisfied doing smooth maneuvers a they face the waves. Surfers can slide the surfboard’s tail easily.
Don’t forget that a rider gains speed in catching waves because the surfer wouldn’t experience the resistance of a center fin.
Bigger Hollow Days
You can place the quads a little at the board’s back and near the rail. Then, you would experience additional speed in each you’re at the beach catching waves. The waves allow you to have an extra hold that enables you to conquer higher lines on steep waves. Since there’s no center fin, expect the surfboard to speed up.
The quad fins come in handy when you’re facing barreling waves that don’t give you space to turn. With quad fin setup, you don’t need to pump then drive the surfboard. Why? The quad fins give you awesome speed once you take off and surf. Hence, you would feel the speed that you aim to experience.
How to Choose the Right Quad Fin Set?
Surfboards have different shapes and sizes. Surfers don’t have the same skill levels when it comes to riding a quad fin surfboard.
So, you need to choose the right quad fins that fit you and your board. But we’re not only talking about fins here – customizing your fin setup is essential too! Surfers add quad rear fins to the thruster side fins of their surfboards to customize their fin setup.
You can do that by determining the quad fins or rear fin set that works for you and your surfboard. Here are the following steps you can follow in choosing the right quad fins.
1st Step: Check the quad fin or rear fin position. Here, surfers have four choices:
- Close to the stringer
- Close to the rail
- Set forward
- Set back
Remember that your choice should be applicable to you. Also, consider that the fins position affects the performance of the surfboard. (We talked about this above.)
2nd Step: Choose the rear fin size. When it comes to the sizes, surfers have different sizes options such as the following:
- Small rear fins
- Medium rear fins
- Large rear fins
These three rear fin sizes have a big influence on the hold and pivot characteristics of the surfboard. So, make sure that the fin size depends on your weight, the waves you would catch, etc. Settle with a fin size that comfortable for you and would give fast and smooth turns.
3rd Step: Choose the fin foils. Before selecting the rear fin foil, make sure that the foil supports the rear fin position of the board. You also need to think about the desired performance you want to achieve.
Here are three foil options for surfers:
Flat Foil – With this rear foil, you have the idea of a side fin. Flat foil offers quick transitions between turns, fast releasee, and extra hold on the rail. The flat foils are suitable for surfboards having wider tails, shortboards, and surfboards having rear fins near the rail.
70/30 or 8/20 Foil – If you want to experience maximum speed, this is the fin foil to choose from. The 8/20 foils offer high speed, easy rail to rail transition and consistency in different conditions. You can use the foil in any surfboard type that you’re using. 8/20 foils are also excellent for rear fin placements.
50/50 Foil – For surfers who aim to achieve control and stability, the 50/50 foil is a good choice. The 50/50 mimics a regular center fin performance. Hence, you gain full surfing satisfaction. The foil suits all surfboard types and for fins closer or near the stringer.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Quad Fin Setup
For surfers who aren’t familiar with the quad fin setup, here are a few benefits of riding quads and of course, it’s drawbacks.
- Great for small surf
- Offers excellent speed
- Helps surfers do fast turns
- Suitable for any conditions
- Feels a little loose
- Not suitable for beginners
You might think that the quad fin setup isn’t right for you. But with quads advantages, you can experience a high level of surfing experience. Surfers can execute smooth and fast turns successfully with a quad fin setup.
You can catch small waves and become confident in controlling your surfboard. But you’ll be facing little downsides – one of these is the quad setup feels a little loose. (Most surfers experience this, so I guess it’s natural if it’s your first time to rid quad fins.) Another sad part is that quad fins aren’t ideal for beginners. Don’t worry! If you’re a newbie right now, practice a lot more, and you can ride quad fins in the future.
Which Quad Fin Should You Try?
Yes, some surfers experience confusion in choosing the best quad fin setup for them. Many quad fin surfboards are available in the market. You can see famous brands on the market and so the choices are overwhelming.
But what quad fin is right for you? Well, it depends on your choice or preference. Consider the quad fin board that you’re confident and comfortable using. Take note why and when are you using the quad fin board.
Here’s an example: quads are ideal for small days because the fins allow surfers to:
- Make excellent flat sections
- Acquire enough speed to ride a wave
Advanced surfers would feel joy and excitement in riding quad fins because of these reasons. With great speed, wave catching would be successful.
That’s not all.
Quad fins are also perfect for hollow days because of the following:
- These are faster than the thruster fin setup
- Surfers can execute sharp take off riding quads
- Perfect for barreling conditions where there isn’t space for turns
Quad fin setup offers great possibilities to pro surfers. From the speed to the smooth turns, you’re sure that surfing is enjoyable.
You would love how quad fin boards level up your surfing experience. Don’t wait further because the fun and excitement begin today! Listen to the call of the waves!