View Full Version : What (weed / shallow water) fin for starboard formula 159?

13th September 2010, 04:34 PM
Recently bought a second hand starboard formula 159 (2005). But where I surf, the water is very shallow (and weedy) so I can't use the standard 70 cm fin.

So I am looking to buy another, shorter fin. But people told me that I can't use a (normal) fin thats 40 or 50 cm for example.

They say that if I need a shorter fin I must pick a weed fin.

Honestly don't know enough about fins to decide, so I hope someone could tell me what kind of finds (length, type, etc) I should buy.

kind regards,

John Kimball

mark h
13th September 2010, 04:48 PM
John, are you in the UK? I have a Formula weed fin

13th September 2010, 07:55 PM
Hi Mark,

I am in the Netherlands. What kind of fin is it? I don't know how much it costs to send something that size from the UK to The Netherlands...

greetings John

13th September 2010, 09:51 PM
Hi John 123,
You could use a shorter vertical fin, but it would not have the area nor the depth to give your F-159 anything like the same feel that the stock 70 cm fin does.
The 70 cm fin is longer than 1/2 the width of your board and that extra 20 cm "balances" the fact that your footstraps are set so far off center on the formula board.
If you put a 40-50 cm vertical fin on your formula board and try to run a big formula sized sail (9-0 m2-
12.0 m2) the big sail will simply overpower the fin.
If you use a 40-52 cm weed fin, with much more area, you won't get the same feel as the 70 cm, but the big sails also will not overpower the larger area of the big weed fin.
Also, sailing in shallow water (sandbars and other obstructions) the leading edge rake angle on the weed fin really helps if you get into the shallows and run the fin aground.
On the vertical 70 cm, you will come to an abrupt stop when the tip of the fin hits the sand and sticks.
Could break the fin or damage your board/finbox, or hurt yourself in a very sudden catapault type stop.
With the leading edge rake angle on a weed fin (normally 45-50 degrees back from vertical) your fin will
slide into the sand and lift the rear of the board a bit as you slowly grind to a halt.
Much slower decelleration and something that gives you some time to sheet out, get the power off the sail, and step off the board.
Much safer in really shallow water with the weed fin.
Since you say you have weeds as well, then you won't collect huge clumps of weeds on the leading
edge of the fin and have to stop and back up to get the fn clean all the time.
Hope this helps,

mark h
13th September 2010, 10:10 PM
Hey John, its a custom Formula weed fin that Wolfgang Lessacher made for me, I used it on my old F159 and F161. At my local spot, there are loads of hidden sand banks when the tide starts to go out. I used this fin for neap tides. Here's a link with a picture and details. Wolfgang does not make these any more. I have bought a few speed and slalom fins from Dutch friends, so should not be a big problem getting this to you if think it will help:) markhayford at hotmail.com


14th September 2010, 02:24 AM
Hi John 123,
If the Lessacher formula Duo Weed fin that Mark H wants to sell to you is the 40 cm Lessacher Duo Weed, it is probably the best weedfin you can get anywhere for your F-159.
You will not get the upwind angle that you would with a custom 70 cm Formula race fin, but as far as weed fins go this is (IMHO) the best possible compromise for a formula board.
Hope this helps,

14th September 2010, 02:55 AM
Hello Roger,

Thank you very much for your kind replies to my question. I must say I am very happily surprised by your willingness to answer a complete strangers question. And in such detail. Seriously, thanks.
I am e-mailing with Mark and if the fin is indeed 40 cm Im sure we'll come to a deal.

thanks again,


18th September 2010, 08:37 PM
I work a Formula Duo asymm. Weedfin. in 100% carbon. 40cm vertical deep.diagonal 56cm.Over
700cm. Deep Tuttle. www.designlessacher.com

19th September 2010, 05:03 PM

thanks for the tip! your fins are famous. I didnt really know which one to get but mark and roger helped me out and now im buying one of your fins second hand from mark. its the first fin I buy myself. (other ones always just came with my boards) so if i like it, which i am sure I will, you'll see mee around and I'll get more fins from your brand.

kind regards,


20th September 2010, 11:33 PM
The Formula Duo Weed is 8cm over the base hoicontal 23cm wide. The 36cm Duo Weed( Grasfinne) is 5cm smaller. 36 is good for 80cm boards and 9m. Only the Formula Duo Weed is 40cm vertical deep.
Duos are 24 28 32 and 36cm . For very shallow water worked I a 28cm cm Formula Weed, so
wide how the 40cm fin. For 80cm boards and 9m. 100% carbon Wolfgang

20th September 2010, 11:42 PM
Sorry! Horicental 23cm wide. Wolfgang