With the increased popularity of twin fin wave boards last year, many manufacturers were left wondering where the future of single fin wave boards might lie. Despite offering a twin fin range of their own, Fanatic are a brand who still believe in the all-round virtues of a single fin wave board.
We tested and (really liked) last years NewWave, so its interesting to see that Fanatic have not only kept the single fin NewWave in their range this year, but actually redesigned the whole range as well. The changes are aimed at improving the control and ease of use of the board.
Last years board was a rocket ship in a straight line. If you have a twin fin range for manoeuvrability and wave riding, then it makes sense to have the single fin more biased towards jumping and straight line performance.
We are pleased to report that this years board is still extremely fast. It has quite a low nose and feels relatively narrow in the tail, so the ride is quite lively, particularly when you head broad off the wind. Underfoot, it doesn’t ride off the fin and tail quite as much as the other single fins, more off the middle of the board.
Less experienced and heavier riders will find that it performs a little better than the twin fin in a straight line, with more bottom end performance.
80kg riders will find sail sizes of around 4.0- 5.3m to work best with this board. Single fins generally tend to work best with a slightly bigger sail range than a twin due to better low end performance, but a little less control at the top end.
So how is it on the wave? Well, pretty good actually. It bottom turns nicely, with plenty of grip and security. It maintains speed reasonably well and has quite a smooth sensation through the turn, even in chop. The bigger the wave, the more you welcome that extra security and grip in the bottom turn.
In cross-on riding conditions, the NewWave is very good, limited not so much by its own performance, but more by the limitations of single fins in general. It’s not as snappy off the top as the twin fins and advanced riders wont be able to break the tail out with the same control, but less experienced riders may prefer the less sensitive riding style a single fin can offer.
In side-shore riding conditions, the NewWave is again very good and limited only by the restrictions of single fins. This is particularly noticeable in the carving top turn, where twins are able to turn so much tighter and more easily. The upside is a little more security and predictability, particularly through the bottom turn.
The NewWave is best described as an intermediate/advanced wave board for those who don’t want a multi-fin. It won’t turn quite as tight as multi-fin particularly off the top, but offers a bit more forgiveness and bottom end performance to those who require it.