We like to be the experts on all things bodyboarding here at The Bodyboard-Depot and there is no better way to increase your knowledge than to actually go bodyboarding… A LOT. Yesterday we took out the new Viper Delta Fins designed by 9-time world champion Mike Stewart for a test surf. We’d spoken to Mike about the fins when he visited with Tom Rigby at the end of 2013. His analysis of the fin was thorough and logical, which seems to be the way that he designs all his products. He continues to be a revolutionary in every aspect of the sport. Comfort Very similar to the fit of the Stealth 2 swim fin. I take a size 8 shoe and wore a 3mm fin sock and the Medium Large size was perfect for me. No cramps, no nipping at the side of my foot, the heel strap felt comfortable and didn’t feel as though it was going to come off. I usually use Gyroll Fin Strings but didn’t yesterday and they didn’t feel as though they were loose or liable to be knocked off during a duck dive. Power Very rigid rails and a stiff blade offered good power; I paddled across to Towan beach through the mouth of Newquay harbour, which is a 500-metre paddle. They worked perfectly through the long paddle, didn’t ache and had good thrust. I didn’t have to change my natural kicking action and didn’t feel a positive or negative affect of the ‘sharp cut’ blade. When catching waves the short, burst, acceleration and thrust was good. I usually use Freedom fins and these were totally comparable to their speed. I would be hard pushed to choose which of the two different fins was faster. Control When I trim down the line it’s important for me that the fins don’t feel heavy and I can easily reduce drag by lifting them out of the water or dip them to stall or give me control. They worked perfectly for both purposes. Aesthetics I generally don’t like black fins, I prefer a decent amount of colour on my fins in order to spot them in the water if I lose them and I generally think that they look better in photo’s (yep, that’s a consideration of mine!). The fin is almost totally black but with some yellow detail down the edge. This looks cool. The embossed logo serves the purpose and is clean and well stamped unlike many of the fins on the market. Drainage/Grip When running our coaching holidays to Morocco I work on a lot of pebbly beaches so have become a little obsessed with drainage holes. The Delta has the best-designed drainage holes on the market. The double holes at the end of the foot pocket on the bottom of the fin. I also spend a lot of time sliding around on reefs in Indo and Ireland, while walking out to reef breaks or climbing across rocks. The attention to detail with the grip on the bottom of the fin will generally help to keep your footing on the reef/rock, thumbs up to this. Conclusion Having worked on many fin guides during my employment for ThreeSixty Magazine I have tried every fin on the market and there are a few pigs out there. There are also 3 or 4 fins that I would use with out blinking an eye as I know that they can perform. The Viper Delta falls in to this category; it’s one of, if not the, best that I’ve used. With the price being £39.98 the value is incredible. I would mark these fins 5/5. Grab yours here. I guarantee they will sell out. Rob Barber, Owner, Bodyboard-Depot Still not convinced? Then check out this video of Viper team rider and wonder kid Tanner McDaniel wearing the Viper Deltas and absolutely ripping.
- May 10, 2014