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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Long Branch
    Posts
    366
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    3

    Retro Fish Boards

    So... I've been strictly Shoartboarding since I started surfing 6 years ago and recently tried a longboard and realized what I was missing. Yes, I went with a Canyon and have no regrets!

    Clearly you need different types of boards if you plan to surf often on the east coast.

    So I got rid of my small wave shortboard in effort to diversify my quiver.

    Now I have a 9'0 small wave longboard and a medium to big wave shortboard (6'4 merrick A6). I'm thinking about going for a Retro fish mostly for one reason. Its different.

    What are these boards good for?

    I hear they're great for small to medium size mushy waves which seems to be the gap in my quiver.

    Considering going for an SUP since that seems thats the most Diverse option. I'm kind of all over the place so any suggestions would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rhody
    Posts
    159
    Just bought a retro fish (quad) for the same reason. Wanted some variety in my surfing in weak east coast waves. Love the longboards I have (9'4" HPLB and 9' ripplerider) which are rock steady, but I'm no Wingnut and don't get a lot of great turns in. In fact, I'm lucky if there's more than a bottom turn! Just started the fish last week and it will take getting used to for me -- but with shortboard experience it may go lots faster for you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    bethany & wrightsville
    Posts
    440
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    32
    Ive been really wanting to try/possibly buy the CI sperm whale. I love round nose boards and I feel like that board would be one I could rip on. Sadly, im lacking funds and I already have a 7S superfish I bought for next to nothing brand new and I loooooove that so oh well, maybe next year. Ive never surfed a retro fish but I think it would be a great board for EC waves. They are good for small waves and are really skatey from what Ive seen/heard. Go for it I think its a good idea.

  4. #4
    I'd try to discourage you from going with a retro fish. Assuming you're talking about the classic Steve Lis design, they aren't great boards for average small beach break surf. They would be best suited for a very capable surfer in fast, down-the-line point waves. Around here you want a board for small mushy surf or heaving beach break barrels.
    If you're looking for a new experience that may improve your surfing, I say try an egg. I have one and it works beautifully in many conditions.
    And be sure to talk to a local shaper!
    Best of luck!

  5. #5
    I'd try to discourage you from going with a retro fish. Assuming you're talking about the classic Steve Lis design, they aren't great boards for average small beach break surf. They would be best suited for a very capable surfer in fast, down-the-line point waves. Around here you want a board for small mushy surf or heaving beach break barrels.
    If you're looking for a new experience that may improve your surfing, I say try an egg. I have one and it works beautifully in many conditions.
    And be sure to talk to a local shaper!
    Best of luck!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by weathermaang View Post
    I'd try to discourage you from going with a retro fish. Assuming you're talking about the classic Steve Lis design, they aren't great boards for average small beach break surf. They would be best suited for a very capable surfer in fast, down-the-line point waves. Around here you want a board for small mushy surf or heaving beach break barrels.
    If you're looking for a new experience that may improve your surfing, I say try an egg. I have one and it works beautifully in many conditions.
    And be sure to talk to a local shaper!
    Best of luck!
    Exactly what this guy said. Lis style keel fish were designed for California style reef/point waves. Completely different from Long Branch beach break. You can certainly make it work. I've had fun on them in certain conditions. I've seen local surfers surf them well. But in my opinion it's not the right tool for job. Most generally struggle on these boards in our waves. The same outline with modern rails and quad fins is a step in the right direction. Pull the tail and you're getting closer. Or blow the tail out into something like a mini simmons and you going to have some serious fun in small waves.

  7. #7
    I agree, for the most part, with those guys...talk to a local shaper and eggs are really fun. That being said, I've mostly shortboarded for the last 11 years and I picked up a 5'10" Hynson Twinzer about 5 years ago. I absolutely love this board! It's decievingly fast, easy to paddle in, and very loose. It takes some getting use to but I've taken it from the Gulf to NorCal to East FL now to New England and it will catch anything from 2ft mushy waves to head high tubes. It's a board that I plan on trying to keep for a little while longer. But I got to ride a friends quad egg shape in some 3-4ft semi-clean stuff and I want to get one of those badly...it's more shortboard style, effortless paddling, and can be used in tons of conditions. Just my 2 cents....find what works for you and what you enjoy.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Monmouth Beach, NJ
    Posts
    2,412
    To get back to the original question... what are these boards good for? Well... they're good for a change! And that sounds like what you're looking for... I understand. IMO, I think everyone should have a fish in their quiver!

    Although the original design was, as others have said, for fast, down the line point surf, the design concept is still valid, and I would argue... started the whole "shorter, flatter, wider, thicker" craze that's become the standard "alternative" board today, except possibly for the Simmons, which wasn't the short, sub-6 foot bullet-shaped modernization it is today when it was first designed. I think even THAT was borrowed from the fish!

    So yea, the original Lis design won't work well in our local beachbreaks. But with a few modern design tweaks, it can work exceptionally well in waves you describe... thigh to shoulder high waves that' aren't breaking top to bottom down the line. Slopey, sectiony, bowly waves are perfect. Think about a few popular breaks south of you, or area beaches at higher tides. They catch just about anything, go really fast down the line even in mush, are loose enough to throw turns in waves where your shortboard will bog and catch rail, and even tuberide well if you don't go too long. And that's where most people go wrong... they ride the things too dam long! My advice is always go shorter than you are tall. I'm 6'1, 185lbs, 48 years old, and I ride a 6'0 retro fish with glassed on wooden twin keels. To look at it, you'd say, that's a classic retro fish. But it has a few subtle design features that open up the performance window considerably.
    Last edited by LBCrew; Aug 31, 2012 at 01:25 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Long Branch
    Posts
    366
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    3
    Thanks guys, some great info here. Special shout out to LBCrew who really knows his sh**

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    bethany beach
    Posts
    183
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    7
    If you are looking for a retro fish, (Canyon) consider the one I have for sale w/fins. $225. I'm in Newark all week til next weekend I'll probably be down Thursday night to bethany. Also have my perfection fish for sale.
    I like the shape of the board for around here, especially the days I go to the beach with the family, and need a long board, but don't want to lug a LB around.

    http://www.swellinfo.com/forum/showt...ale&highlight=