If there's one perk in the surfboard industry that's second to none, it's research and development, or, as it's more formally known... building boards and "havin' a go."
3 years ago we took our most forgiving and playful performance designs and gave it a facelift from nose to tail, staying true to a classic shape, yet upgrading the engine and suspension. Thus, the Codfather was board! The first prototype has been stabled in every D33 members' quiver for months on end, gracing much of the California and Baja coastline.
Today, the Codfather gets a new engine. The contours and styling are unchanged... the shape having stood every test we threw at it. However, we pulled out the quad fin setup, much like a modern, v6, turbocharged engine, and swapped it for '67 Shelby Cobra Big Block.
The first thought, was that we'd lose our traction and hold at high speeds, giving up a vertical approach, for unparalleled 1/4 mile times and drifty tread through turns. BUT, with the modern shape of the Codfather, the adjustment was much more like the Shelby Cobra, a flyweight track hugger with a monster under the hood, AND WE'RE LOSING OUR MINDS about it.
Now that I've broken it down in wrench-turner metaphors, it's time we lay it out in surf science to better explain why we love the new Keel Fin Codfather variant so much.
Why do twin fins seem to surf faster than quads or thrusters?
It's all about drag, and where drag occurs. It's as simple as 1..2..3.. or in this case, 2..3..4.. Quad fins gives you HEEPS of surface area to push water, unobstructed, through the center of the board. Straight out of the gate they've got the best 0-60, but end up creating the most drag, reducing the top-out speed.
Thrusters have a little less drag, but with an obstruction in the center of the board, where water is trying to escape off the tail as quick as it can. That's great for control, not so much for glide. They top out at a slightly higher speed, but take a little more work to get up to speed.
Twin fins allow water to move freely down the center of the board, and have enough surface area to create an incredible amount of drive with very little drag. Where quads and thrusters create there own speed off the bottom turn, a twin fin asks the rider to let out the clutch a bit slower, taking a higher line, setting the inside edge, and starting the rail to rail "pump." Much like the Cobra, you don't floor the pedal until you're dropping into 4th gear. From there, the wheels chirp well into 6th.
"I hear twin fins aren't good for vertical surfing."
Nonsense. Look at Dave Rastavich or Mark Richards. The key is carrying that top-end speed with you through a longer turning radius. When more fins let you pounce straight from the bottom, a twin fin holds speed much further out in front of the wave where more fins would stall out. Start with a high line, give it two or three successively stronger pumps down the line, drop carefully down and away from the face, going a couple of feet further away than you'd set your bottom turn with a shortboard. Take a wider angled approach to the lip... Since you have more room, wrap the bottom turn with a touch less lean, staying square a hair longer. Over-commit through the lip and you'll throw more spray than Lionel Richie's Jerry Curl.
Should I go glass-on or removable?
This is where it gets really fun for you... and where we go bananas! Will this be your home break board? Or your travel/everywhere board?
Homebreak Cod: If you don't mind staying local with it, go with glass-ins. There's simply nothing that compares to a glassed in pair of keels on a modernized retro fish. Speaking of local, we connected with Marlin Bacon at 101 Fin Co. for a custom set of bamboo keels that we melted into this buttery yellow tinted, glossed and polished, top shelf fish we've dubbed "The KeelFather."
Everywhere Cod: If you don't want to be held back by the airlines goons, or stuck with one fin template, Try our Codfather with a Futures based keel fin! In our next blog, we'll go over the new keel templates and the what, when, where, why's of each template. While the eclectic taste of glass-on bamboo keels is unmatched in style, removable keel fins will expand the personality of your Codfather 2..3..4.. fold. We circulate a few different sets of keel fins amongst us D33 frothers.
OK so one more time, why try the Codfather with twin keel fins?
Smoother surfing: Twin fins require finesse. The more seamless your rail to rail transition is, the quicker you'll accelerate. More speed through turns means a longer arc. Less is more!
Higher top-end speed: Less drag than thrusters and quads. Carries more speed through turns, makes it through flats and around sections.
Keel Fins are dead sexy: For starters, twin fins are one of the few setups where hand-shaping is common practice. You rarely see that other than single fins. Marine ply, bamboo, pawlonia, fiberglass... you name it... hand shaped keel fins are here for the long haul, and nothing's prettier than a clean shiny wood grain on a gloss and polished race car!