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True Ames

Reviews, Surf, Surf Reviews

Fin Review: Christian Wach Canvas Fin

July 26, 2012

It’s a big bastard. Ten and a quarter inches tall and seven inches across. A fin that allows for a lot of upright rotation. Designed by Christian Wach from Canvas Surfboards, this True Ames fin is sorta like a late seventies mullet – all business up front and a party in the back. I put it on my 9’6″ Becker UFO, a board that I really haven’t been riding, but has been the basis for most, if not all, of our Finterviews. So I stuck it on the stern and paddled out to find a few peelers.

It was easy. Up and around. Worked real well. It’s hard to tell you how different it is, how it helps, or whether it would work better than what’s currently at the back of your board. All I can say is that I like it. Better than that big Greenough I’ve gone with for awhile. Which is saying something. So if you’re up for it, for something a bit bigger, something that comes with character, check out Christian Wach’s Canvas Fin.

– Justin Coffey

Justin Coffey is known to enjoy small waves, strong drinks, motorcycles and misbehaving. He’s also the guy that runs Peanut Butter Coast.

Reviews, Surf, Surf Reviews

Fin Review: George Greenough 4-C

May 17, 2012

According to True Ames, George Greenough took cues from the pattern of human evolution when designing the 4C and “found it adaptive to become less wild and more upright.” The 4C, a 9.5″ fiberglass fin, shares Greenough 4A’s flex, but has less rake and a much smaller base. It’s upright posture allows “midlength eggs and logs to make lower-radius, looser turns.” I attached it to 9’6″ Harbour Banana Model, a board that came equipped with an upright-ish, 9.5″ fin made by the Fibre Glas Fin Co. But for some reason, I found the 4C to feel a bit short. On an eight foot egg, or perhaps a board with a bit less tail rocker, the 4C would work well. But the Banana needed something stronger. Whiskey not wine.

Down the face the 4C felt fine, but the bottom turns were sloppy. Loose. Once I pulled into the pocket the 4C required me to stay toward the back of the board, trimming from the tail. It just seemed too short. Take a few steps forward and the Banana lost it’s balance. All over the place up front. I became frustrated. Certain it was the fins fault. But alas, it was just the wrong tool attached to a long stick.

I’d recommend the 4C to someone with a shorter board. Someone looking to make fast, loose turns, but maintain some stability down the line. I would not, however, suggest you affix the 4C to something you’re accustom to making big, slow, calculated bottom turns on. Just wasn’t what I wanted

– Justin Coffey

If you have a shorter stick and would like to test out the 4C yourself, click here

Justin Coffey is known to enjoy small waves, strong drinks, motorcycles and misbehaving. He’s also the guy that runs Peanut Butter Coast.

Reviews, Surf, Surf Reviews

Fin Review: George Greenough Stage 4-A

April 7, 2012

Georgh Greenough's 4a longboard fin by true ames is killerRecently, in part because I have a short attention span, but also because I was asked to, I’ve had the pleasure of testing a few different fins on my 9’6″ Becker UFO – a board with a lot of rocker and “just a tad of nose concave for a smooth rail to rail transition.” It’s my twin stick. A surfboard I don’t care too much about, but seem to surf more often than not. I’ve tried pivot fins, performance fins, a 2+1 setup and even a small seven-inch single. But now, thanks to some extensive research (and a few recommendations), I think I’ve found a fin that’ll do everything I desire.

According to Wikipedia, George Greenough is “an innovative surfer and cinematographer from Santa Barbara, California.” Known by many as the father of the modern surfboard fin, Greenough altered the design from a wide-based keel to a more powerful and efficient dolphin fin design. The 4-A, one of Greenough’s earliest iterations, has a narrow, flexible tip that enhances maneuverability and a flared base for increased stability and drive. The 4-A I interviewed was 9.75″ and worked well on the end of my Becker. It held tight, allowing me to pivot late and pull high into the pocket.

Georgh Greenough's 4a longboard fin by true ames is killer
On a board that I find rather unstable, especially up front, the 4-A is extremely steady, allowing me to take a few quick trips to the nose. Bottoms turns were big. It did not rotate as well as the 9″ Future I recently reviewed, but once you had that big bastard pointed down the line, the 4-A didn’t disappoint. Perfect for point breaks, the 9.75″ 4-A was long enough to generate a tremendous amount of hold on a board with quite a bit of tail rocker. And it’s fast. Fiberglass instead of flimsy plastic, the 4-A worked well on slow rolling swells and ugly overhead waves.

Georgh Greenough's 4a longboard fin by true ames is killer
If you’re looking for a fin that does everything alright, I’d recommend the Greenough 4-A. It’s not great at any one thing; noseriding, fast on the face, snappy bottom turns, cutbacks, whatever, but it’s good at almost everything. And good is, well, good. So if you have a stick that’s in need of something new, something that will enhance the overall appeal of an otherwise outdated design, like a late 90’s longboard, I’d recommend a 4-A.

– Justin Coffey

You can pick up your own Greenough 4-A here.

Justin Coffey is known to enjoy small waves, strong drinks, motorcycles and misbehaving. He’s also the guy that runs Peanut Butter Coast.

Retro Stoke Harvester

It’s our Birthday and we’ve got some NEW DIGS!

February 24, 2012

Welcome to the NEW Stoke Harvester! We brought the blog back… you’re reading it right now! New blog content will include product reviews, featured musicians and artists, and a monthly write-up on some random object that we have scored from Goodwill. If you’re creative and would like you and/or your work to be featured, shoot us an email !

You may have noticed things look a little different… Jasmine cleaned up the joint… I’m messy but thanks to her you can now see the floor… apparently its white.

Along with a new design, we have also added a few products…

Since 1979, Chuck Ames has been developing some of the highest quality fiberglass fins on the market. True Ames templates and foils helped guide a young Tommy Curren to the very first American World Title. Along with Curren… True Ames has worked with some of the biggest and stylish names in the surf industry- Al Merrick, George Greenough, and the Cambell Brothers… the list goes on. At the moment, we have True Ames‘ full lineup of SUP fins available on the site. The rest of their collection will be made available within the coming weeks.

Joining True Ames, and rounding out the fin section of the site, is Rainbow Fin Company. In 1968 a handful of Santa Cruz surfers started shaping fins to meet the demands of the surf industry. Four decades later, RFC is still a family run company, and continues to shape killer fins for surf, SUP, wind & kite. At the moment, we have Rainbow’s full lineup of Long board and SUP fins… short board setups coming soon.

Next up, Tahoe Long boards… rider owned and operated since 1997. The kids over at Tahoe were bombing hills before it was cool. The crew was nice enough to send us a GIANT pile of their sweet stickers. Hit us up… we like to share and have an extra book of Betty White 45 cent stamps burning a hole in our desk.

Last but certainly not least, we are very proud to introduce the Progress Project. Noah over at TPP has created something unique. He reclaims advertising billboards and turns them into one of a kind board bags! Since its creation, the Progress Project has been committed to lowering the carbon footprint by “Up-Cycling” materials taken from the landfill. We have 6 bags currently being fashioned by the Progress Project… my Dewey Webber is going to have a fancy new sleeping bag within the next couple of weeks! ;)

Over the next month we will continue tweaking the site. Our boy Keith Adams has been hard at work upgrading the PNW Surf report. It will remain 100% flash-free and mobile friendly. Maybe when Oswald gets back from picking up cat food, he can help us put together an iPhone app. ;)

Stoke Harvester continues to evolve. We are very thankful for all of the support you have given us over the last year. If you have a comment or suggestion, we would love to hear from you.

-Shawn & Jasmine