Fin Buyer Guide
Surfboard fins come in many styles and changing your fins can drastically change how your board works. Choosing fins that will work best for you depends on your size, ability, board, and type of waves.
There are mainly three types of fin boxes. Over the years there have been other types of boxes but most of those are hard to come across now.
Single Tab Boxes
Single tab boxes use a base that inserts the entire length of the fin into the box. There is one grub screw that goes into the front of the fin to secure it in place. There are multiple companies that make single tab, but Futures is the dominant brand, so much that single tab boxes are most times called Futures instead of single tab.
Dual Tab Boxes
Dual tab boxes use a base that has two smaller tabs on the bottom of the fin that insert into the box. There are two grub screws, one for each tab, one on each side. Recently introduced is the screw less system. There are multiple companies that make dual tab, but FCS is the dominant brand, so much that dual tab boxes are most times called FCS instead of dual tab.
FCS stands for Fin Control System. Originally designed in the early 1990s, FCS is the most successful, widely used surfboard fin system in the world. The fins have two tabs or plugs that are secured to the board using set screws. FCS recently launched the FCS II keyless Fin Standard, meaning fins can be installed or removed without a key or grub screws. FCS II is also backwards compatible, meaning you can use your old dual tab FCS fins with the new FCS II system. A compatibility kit is required.
Single Fin Boxes
Single fin boxes are much larger and generally used for longboards. Most longboard fins fit into single fin boxes. There a few variants in length, but there are very few fins. Single fin boxes use a plate and screw to hold the fin in place of a sliding track in the box.
making sure the fins are secure but not TOO tight.