Kiteboarding Fins Frequently Asked Questions:

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Starting the sport without any knowledge? 

Powerkiteshop’s trained staff who all fly kites are always keen to help you, but first, check out our most commonly asked questions to get you started.

If you have a question that hasn't been answered here - you can simply call us on +44 (0) 121 544 9514 and we will be pleased to hear your query!


Kiteboarding / Kitesurfing Quick Links:

What are kiteboarding fins ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Kiteboarding fins are positioned towards the ends of twin-tip kiteboards or at the tail of surf-style kiteboards. The initial use of the fin allows you to edge against the pull of the kite giving you the option to change your board speed as well as an easier change of direction.

Although not essential on twin-tip kiteboards, almost all production boards come with fin inserts as standard.

Fins on a twintip board normally range between 3.0-6.0cm and can give more or less grip as you turn in the water.

As a general rule, smaller fins will allow you to turn the board quicker into the direction you want to go, whereas larger fins will give you more grip and pressure against the water allowing you to hold more power when needed.

There could be anywhere between one and five fins on a wave board and a multitude of configurations.

For advice on selection call Telephone + 44 (0) 0121 544 9514

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What will I get from a Single Fin Configuration ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Based on the idea of the sailboat keel.

Single fins have added stabilization and control on powerful, larger waves, although can lack the manoeuverability of other fin setups.

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What will I get from a Twin Fin Setup ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Twin fin setups are great for small waves, being fast and manoeuverable, but when put into tight spots on larger waves, they can become harder to control.

This type of configuration is often popular with Fish surfboards.

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What will I get from a Thruster Fin Setup ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Thruster / Tri-Fin setups are widely recognized as the standard fin configuration for the majority of kite surfboards.

The thruster answers the shortcomings of the single fin and the twin fins configurations and gives you stabilization, control and manoeuverability in all types of surfing conditions.

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What will I get from a Quad-Fin Setup ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Quad fin setups boast an extraordinary amount of holding power in larger surf.

You may think that having four fins would sacrifice speed by creating more drag, but this is not the case.

The both sets of fins are working together on the rail. Makers believe they create less drag than a board with a centre fin.

The manoeuverability isn't sacrificed either, with fins directly under your back foot, the quads are very responsive.

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What will I get from a 5-Fin Setup? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A Bonzer / C5 5-fin configuration normally has the addition of a centre trailing fin in the back.

The two front fins are typically small and oval shaped and designed to direct the water through the larger side fins allowing for more drive and grip from your board.

This type of setup is often used for kiteboard racing.

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What type of fin systems are available ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A Fin System is the name given to describe how a fin is attached to the base of a directional Surf Board. Below are some examples:

FCS (Fin Control System):
The F.C.S (Fin Control System) is a fairly new system, designed in 1995 by Australian Brian A Whitty, which allows for a wider choice of Fins to be fitted to a Directional Board.

A conventional Fin would be glassed-in to the board permanently, whereas an F.C.S System has a slotted box with an Allen Key fitting.

The Fin is secured in place using this method and is easily removed should a fin change be necessary.

Tuttle Fin:
The Tuttle fin box has straight sides and the root is a uniform 1.60 cm (.625″) and the “fit” is supposed to be quite tight on the sides. The depth is set by the angles on the front and rear of the fin root.

The tuttle fin gets most of it’s support from the close fit between the sides of the fin root and the sides of the fin cavity in the board.

Deep Tuttle:
The “Deep Tuttle” configuration is the same width on the sides, but the fin root is much taller (deeper), measuring 7 cm (approx. 2 3/4″) at the same point on the root.

Power Box:
The Powerbox is a fin system using a root with both tapered sides and tapered front and back.

Primarily used in Kiteboard Racing.

Truss Base:
When the tang (or base of fin) is clamped in the box with the set screw the tang is compressed horizontally.

This compressive force is dissipated by the trusses into the solid base of the fin.

The trusses act as I–Beams with their long axis running the width of the tang.

The long axis of the truss resists lateral loading on the fin during surfing keeping the base extremely stiff.

The use of Truss and I-beam technology gives the base of the fin a maximum stiffness to weight ratio.

This enables Futures to have 60% more base than plug systems while still remaining extremely light and stiff.

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What aspects can affect a fins performance ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

The maximum height of a fin is measured from the bottom surface of your board.

The hold of your surfboard increases with more depth but generally makes it harder to turn as well.

The shorter the depth, the more slide the board will have. 3-4 inch depth is normally standard on tri-fins.

The base is often referred to the length of the fin where it joins your board.

Increasing length adds forward drive, but can make it harder to turn.

The less length there is in the base of the fin, the shorter the turning arc will be.

Shortboard tri-fins usually have a 3.5-4.5 inch base.

Rake, also know as sweep, can be seen as the amount of the fin outline that is curved backwards.

It is the angle created between the back of the fin base and the offset of the tip of the fin.

The rake prominently affects the turning ability of the board.

The smaller the rake angle is (i.e. the greater the offset), the better the drive but less manoeuvrable the board will be.

The larger the rake angle is (i.e. the less the offset), the tighter the board will be able to turn.

Fins with little flex are more responsive and will have more speed and direct drive.

Fins with flex are more forgiving and easier to use.

Ideally a fin would have a stiffer base for drive and more flexible tip for release.

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Email Enquiries:

We will always endeavour to reply to your e-mail as quickly and as thoroughly as possible.

To ensure that the correct department receives your e-mail please contact:

Email Enquiries:

Order / General - info@powerkiteshop.com

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Alternatively you can enter your contact details and enquiry into the form below:

Contact Information

Telephone Enquiries - 0121 544 9514:

Our staff can answer most of the questions you may have.

If they do not know they will find out and get back to you as soon as possible.

To ensure that the correct department receives your e-mail please contact:

Our trained staff are available at the following times.

Monday-Friday: 10.00am to 6.00pm

TELEPHONE NUMBER: +44 (0) 121 544 9514

If you are calling from abroad, you can call the number below:
Landline Phone Number: +44 (0) 121 544 9514

All other times including weekends we're available via the help lines but we may be out flying!

If we are unavailable you can usually leave a message for a later response.

Powerkiteshop / Postal / Returns Address:

You can visit the shop, send any enquiry / cheque payments via post or return any item to the address below:

Studio 2 - 4
Euro Business Park
Summerton Road
West Midlands
B69 2EL
United Kingdom

Items must be returned with a returns form enclosed by Recorded delivery and clearly marked for the attention of the Mail Order Dept.

Our trained staff are available at the following times.

We will not accept responsibility for lost parcels, or postal charges incurred when returning goods and we do have the right to refuse an exchange or refund, if we consider the goods have not been treated in accordance with the instructions provided with them.

Videos, DVD's will only be exchanged if faulty.

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