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  1. #11
    What's the difference in performance between riding a swallow tail set up with quad fins as opposed to a squash?

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kahuna Kai View Post
    What's the difference in performance between riding a swallow tail set up with quad fins as opposed to a squash?
    To me, it's essentially the same difference as you'd feel if you were comparing a swallow and a squash with a thruster setup. All other things held constant, meaning... if you took a squash tail, and just notched out a swallow, you'd have less planing surface. This means the tail would more easily engage on a turn (people call it "more bite") and would add more control at speed.

    However... you have to be careful making that comparison, because all other factors and generally not held constant. Usually you see swallow tails on boards that have wider tails (measured a foot up) designed for smaller waves. These boards will have generally straighter outlines from the widepoint back for gutless surf, but if the tail's too wide behind the fins, you get what I call a "skipping stone" effect... you lose responsiveness, and it gets too hard to get on a rail when you get going fast. To compensate, you use some kind of relief feature... some kind of cutout tail shape, like a swallow, bat, crescent... to reduce planing surface.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Henny View Post
    good thread ,,,great info ... Fitz , I think Rider65 is referring to the foil (50/50) (80/20) of the fins not the front/rear size ratio...
    I really love the quads ,but it may take a little different approach and a more time to get things dialed in but it's worth it !

    The outline of the board, the fins,the composition ,the placement ,the foil, the rider, the surf all play a big part in the ride.... I am 6'1" 190 lbs. My boards: # 1 is a 5'10" HP shape I settled on PC-7 front GX rears ..that board is fast and easy to ride. # 2 is a 5'8" rusty dwart ,,,thicker ,wider.. I like the stretch quad set on that board ...the rears are set closer to the stringer,not out on the rail so you get a predictable hold and release. the narrow tail combined with the rear fin placement make vertical turns easy on that board. #3 Is a 5'6" fishcuit ...the fattest of the bunch and the hardest for me to ride.I use the stretch quad fronts and 375 pivots in the rear. It used to be difficult to turn on the backhand as you described , but LESS fin solved that for me as the tail is so wide it might be not as easy to turn. #4 Hanel Quad fish with the LOKBOX system ... this allows you to move the fins fore and aft to really fine tune the ride.

    Best of luck and let us know how it goes ~


    Absolutely right Henny..........MFitz73 we are talking about fin foil. Look at the center fin for a thruster and that is a 50/50 foil. 80/20 has IFT or inside foil technology where the flat side is actually scooped or has a small concave in it. And ofcoarse Flat is well..... flat. If you put 50/50 foil rears in your quad setup you will have more control and less squirt which is what your complaint was all about. The fins that came with your board to me are still kinda big except for on big days. If you have a fish I would reccomend the SF4 Quad set http://surffcs.com/us/products/fins/Quads/SF4Quad.aspx . Very stable yet very responsive and just a great fin for a fish design. For a shortboard I would go with the Q-5xc fins since they have the GX's in the rear with the 50/50 foil. If you are bent on keeping the M7's then just pick up a rear set of GX's with 50/50 foil. http://surffcs.com/us/products/fins/Quads/Q-5Xc.aspx .Hope this helps you out. Im also curious to just what exactly your board dimensions are also.
    Last edited by wave1rider65; Feb 3, 2012 at 04:54 PM.

  4. #14
    That's by far the best description of the difference between quads and thrusters I ever read.

    Kudos to you kind sir, you just won the internetz.

    Quote Originally Posted by LBCrew View Post
    "Killing it" on the bottom turn... hmm.

    Anyway... keep in mind that THE main difference between a quad and a thruster is speed through turns. The trailing fin on a thruster scrubs off speed. The rear fin on a quad adds leverage and drive. What you're used to is the tail sort of washing out on the turn... scrubbing speed and allowing you to crank into a tighter radius turn. A quad, on the other hand (with the proper fins and fin placement) will conserve speed through the entire turn, opening up the turning radius, but giving you that "squirt" of speed you're not used to.

    Make that extra drive and speed your friend... it adds heaps of knee buckling power to your surfing, especially if you're a bigger guy who can handle the Gs. Ironically, though, you'll throw less spray... if that's the kind of thing you're into. Big buckets of spray mean loss of speed. A quad is more efficient, so it's a lot smoother and faster through the turn.

    As for fins... mix it up. A lot. You'll never know what's right for you without trying a bunch of combinations. There are no rules. Do what feels right for you.

  5. #15
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    I had the same problem with quads and would slide out quite a bit especially on a hard bottom turn when it was bigger. no joke, i got one of those knubsters and it has made all the difference in the world. this past weekend i was out on a board thats really meant to be ridden in waist up to about head high. well it was a lot bigger than head high and i threw in that knubster and it was a gem. been doing this for about 6 months and it works like a charm. ill usually throw that in when it gets above chest high and its breaking kinda hard.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LBCrew View Post
    "Killing it" on the bottom turn... hmm.

    Anyway... keep in mind that THE main difference between a quad and a thruster is speed through turns. The trailing fin on a thruster scrubs off speed. The rear fin on a quad adds leverage and drive. What you're used to is the tail sort of washing out on the turn... scrubbing speed and allowing you to crank into a tighter radius turn. A quad, on the other hand (with the proper fins and fin placement) will conserve speed through the entire turn, opening up the turning radius, but giving you that "squirt" of speed you're not used to.

    Make that extra drive and speed your friend... it adds heaps of knee buckling power to your surfing, especially if you're a bigger guy who can handle the Gs. Ironically, though, you'll throw less spray... if that's the kind of thing you're into. Big buckets of spray mean loss of speed. A quad is more efficient, so it's a lot smoother and faster through the turn.

    As for fins... mix it up. A lot. You'll never know what's right for you without trying a bunch of combinations. There are no rules. Do what feels right for you.

    "Killing it" on the bottom turn... hmm. I believe it's a technical term.


    This forum got me riding quads, before that it was all thrusters or single fins and my boards were all still stuck in the 90's. I get back on a thruster these days and it just feels so sluggish and unresponsive. Fitz ditch the plastic fins mans, I swear you'll thank me. I was up in your neighborhood right after the holidays; but I'm running about 12-15lbs lighter these days and I still fall into the "Big Guy" end of the bell curve. What LB is refering to here is the whole reason I love quads "A quad, on the other hand (with the proper fins and fin placement) will conserve speed through the entire turn, opening up the turning radius, but giving you that "squirt" of speed you're not used to."
    What can I say, I love to go fast. I find that glass flex fins spill a lot of that speed when coming out of the apex of a turn or with a quick direction changes. A more solid fin in PC or wood or fiberglass or I guess if you're Roy, Titanium doesn't seem to lose that speed as much. That sudden loss of speed also seems to translate into a loss of control for me. Also, you might want to think about buying a good used set of matched quad fins; that way you'll have a baseline as to what a proper quad set should feel like. You'll get a proper set of rear fins, which you can then mix match with all of your regular side fins. You've been using fins meant to be front sides as trailers. A good set of rear fins are worth it and make so much difference. The erbb classifieds is a great place to find used fins, most of the guys on there will ship, or craigslist or hit up njsurfer42, he always has good deals. "Do what feels right for you."

    http://forum.surfermag.com/forum/ubb...Board=5&page=1

  7. #17
    Back in October I purchased a quad fish/shortboard hybrid with a rounded pin tail. I am using a set of FCS PC-7 fiberglass honeycomb fins up front with G-XQ trailers. That combo has a ton of speed and drive but maintains control when going fast in better surf. It does struggle a bit in the small stuff however. The rounded pin has more "bite" on bottom turns, especially when I'm killing it, and doesn't spin out. I feel like this set up, at least in good surf give me the best of both worlds. The speed and response of a quad without the instability on turns.

  8. #18
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    Im glad this thread came up. Im having a board built and im considering a 5 fin set up. The question is I already have a set of Fcs M-5's, which is a medium fin, would it be wise to get a large set of fins say like a Fsc M-7's or any large size for that matter, and run the 7's up front and the 5's in the rear, or spend the extra money and get a 5 fin set, Im 6'-0' and go 220 lbs.

  9. #19
    I'm 240lbs and really like the PC7's in front with the GXQ trailers. I was riding a PC5's with GXQ trailers which were good, but noticed a real difference in hold, climb, and response (feel free to dog me for not sprechenzie dee lingetee) in the larger fins. Maybe I'm imagining things but I really do feel a difference with the larger stiffer fins. If you put 7's in the front and 5's trailing, it might make the board a little stiff. But, like NJSurfer says, do what feels good.

    That said, every time I spend the money on good equipment, I'm almost always satisfied and glad I did. When I try to save a few bucks and be cheap, I usually regret it. So my opinion is to go ahead and buy the nice 5 fin set. You're buying a new custom board after all.

  10. #20
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    Might as well go all the way, you talked me into it Kahuna it doesn't make sense not to, really its only about 40 clams more, and its the right thing, what the hell.