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Old    Carl Philippon (kernaltao)      Join Date: Oct 2008       11-29-2008, 7:25 AM Reply   
I have an O'Brien Alias 5' that I would like to modify so that it is better for beginners. I am purchasing a new board (probably Phase 5 DD) and would rather not purchase another beginner board. My wife is a beginner, and I regularly teach others to wakesurf. Just this past summer alone, I think I had 10 new wakesurfers hooked on the sport! The biggest complaint I had about the Alias was that it was too "slippery". It doesn't hold the line that well. I really like this, but I can understand why beginners wouldn't. I was thinking of just adding a fin to each side about a third of the way from the rear. Does this seem like a good idea? Will it stabilize the board significantly? Any suggestions on fins? Any advice on drilling the holes to mount them? I don't have a router, so I was hoping to just get fins that surface mount. I will pull up the top padding, mark the drill locations (use cardboard to create a template from the fins), drill from the bottom, attach the fins, and then stick the padding back down.
Old    Jeff Walker (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       11-29-2008, 8:10 AM Reply   
It's been a while since I've messed with wakeboard fins...I believe that LF has two screws and the others have one screw and two plugs (that also screw in typically).

More fins and more depth will create more stability, but it's relative.

Most of the big 3 popout boards are injected polyu foam - fairly solid. What you want to be careful of is properly sealing the layer between the external laminate and foam. Any water in there and it will eventually delaminate.

I believe that most of the fins use a 1/4-20 screw. You can find plastic or brass tubing with a 1/4 inch ID. I have drilled a hole into the board such that the tubing fit snugly. Trimmed that tubing and slatered it up with epoxy then slide it in which seals the hole pretty well, it also creates a fairly strong area to allow you to snug up the fin.

You can do the "indentation" for the plugs on the fins by drilling just deep enough to clear the plugs (mark the bit at the proper depth with masking tape) and then fill that with a good amount of 5 minute epoxy...enough to seal, but not affect the seating of the plugs.

I would not pull the EVA pad up. You can cut through it with a razor blade and recess the screw heads so that they are out of the way. OR if you are careful with the cutting the EVA, just glue it back down over the screw heads. Use a flat head 1/4-20 screw to attach the fin and most likely it will be out of the way.

Look for some surfdog style fins in a 2+ inch depth and that will tighten the tail of that board up.

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