Which Fin Setup is Best for My ISUP?
The Fin Set Up is a crucial feature on your Stand-Up Paddleboard. The most common set up is the Tri Fin. This fin set up consists of a standard longboard fin box center and two side bite fins. The side bite fins are typically toed in at the leading edge and placed ahead of the center box and close to the rail. This placement is great for surfing but in recreational paddling outside the surf zone it is unnecessary as it creates drag and reduces glide between paddle strokes. The best side bite placement for paddling outside the surf zone is parallel to the board center line. This allows for great tracking with added board glide. We choose to leave off our ISUPs to allow investment into features more desirable to the paddler.
The Single Fin set up is the other most common option. The single fin set up is most commonly seen on Touring/Flatwater boards. The reason being it is the most efficient. The most common fin size being 9”-10” long. The fin size is very important here as a fin that is too short can result in sideways drift when the wind picks up a bit.
Remember, if you are not intending to surf, shop for a board with a single fin. River SUPs do offer Tri Fin set ups with short fins for navigation of shallow rivers but outside of this application a Tri Fin set up is unnecessary for entry level surfing.