Know your setup

One of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to wave boards is which combination to use; twin, thruster or quad. 

Here is a mini guide by Severne rider Dieter Van der Eyken on the experience you can expect with the various fin setups, as well as, the conditions he would use them in. 

Twin 

What experience would it deliver? 

In general, sailing a board with a twin setup makes it extremely fast and more “skaty” on the wave.

What kind of conditions suit best for this setup?

More onshore conditions with small waves up to chest high to really allow the board to turn very short & get fast speed for jumping. When the waves are soft this can also be a good option as it will help you to keep speed better.

Philip Köster is well known for his use of twin fin setup. He often uses twin fins in his Pyro wave boards.

Thruster

What experience would it deliver? 

I think Thruster setups are great for bigger turn’s in side-on conditions, as well as, bigger jumps. In general, you can feel you have more grip under your back foot when taking off on a ramp when jumping while at the same time in wave riding it will allow the board to go better rail to rail when going for bigger bottom turns. This really depends on the board though and the wave conditions you have. 

Using a thruster can also assist with general sailing ability in lighter conditions or when there is a lot of current. It can help you get on the plane earlier and up wind a little easier.

With the Nano, for example, it improves the jumping ability (not the stability in the straight line) but does make it hard to make tight turns in side-onshore conditions which the board is really made for. For those tight turns, you need to use a quad setup. 

With the Mako, a thruster setup allows for better jumping and also loosens up the board a bit in the top turn to make blowing out the tail easier. I will for example mainly use this in side-onshore conditions. In side to side-off conditions I will go for a quad setup.

For the Pyro, the main difference is that it will allow you to go better rail to rail in slower waves or when you need to make tighter turns in for example side-onshore conditions. For jumping, it does very little influence since the Pyro is already extremely fast but so far I have personally enjoyed that setup the most for side to side onshore.

What kind of conditions suit best for this setup?

Side on to side shore with bigger waves from shoulder to logo or even mast high.

Dieter riding the Mako, Nano and Pyro using quad fin configuration.

Quad

What experience would it deliver? 

A lot of times a quad setup makes the board more stable, both in a straight line as in the turns. Having 4 fins means you will always have a bit more drag than thruster or twin so in general, this will be the “slower” setup. 

However, this can compensate for its performance and is also very depending on the shape of the board.

With the Nano for example it’s my go-to setup, it really allows the board to turn really tight in the pocket, keeps great grip in the top turn and overall makes the board really stable in a straight line which is great when lining up for a ramp. Because of this I also use quad in small waves on the Nano and actually will only move the back fins more back when waves get bigger.

With the Pyro and Mako, it’s different because it mainly adds grip to your setup. This means it will get more secure in riding and this means it’s mainly the setup I will use in bigger or more choppy waves.

What kind of conditions suit best for this setup?

Quad is mainly better for bigger or more hollow waves on the Pyro and Mako. Starting from head high with the exception of the Nano. For that, I would start using it straight away from smaller waves till as big as the board will hold.

Find your own style. Ultimately this is a guide but it also comes down to your own individual preference and what feels best for you.

Dieter on the Pyro using quad fin configuration.

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