'Shapeshifter' interchangeable tail shapes

Stu Nettle
Design Outline

If you read the Swellnet forums, particularly The Shaping Bay, you may have seen a thread about this - and if so, you'll have seen my initial scepticism. The 'Shapeshifter' is a standard shorty with approx. two inches lopped off the tail. On the exposed rear edge is the female end of a lock-in system, much like FCS.

The board comes with a range of tail shapes that slip into place allowing it to be ridden as a square tail, swallow, rounded pin, asymm etc etc.

My initial sceptism was due in part to the relation between fins and tail shape; if you make the board longer, say by screwing a rounded pin tail in, then the fin cluster also has to move. The video attached shows the original 'Shapeshifter' board has FCS plugs that can do that. All well and good.

But what about fitting the attachment system to new boards, or retrofitting it to old ones (plus new FCS plugs)? Initially, fin systems were popular due to an ease in travelling, not increased performance. The same argument doesn't apply here. Will people pay the extra bucks necessary for installation and tail range..?

Also, the attachment fits boards of equal tail width so there won't be that much difference in perfrormance. Yeah, there'll be some, but enough to warrant installing the sytem?

I'm sitting on the fence for this one...

Check their website out for more info.

Comments

OHV500's picture
OHV500's picture
OHV500 commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 10:04am

For all those gadget guys who have more money than sense. IMO

yocal's picture
yocal's picture
yocal commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 10:12am

Stu,
As someone who is an advocate of Asymmetrical planshapes, do you see merit in the design if only to switch symmetry on a quiver (say if you are packing for a boat trip to the ments)?

Go deeper Taylor, go deeper!

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 10:30am

No, because I never switch asymmetry, as such. I note these guys target asymmetry on whether a wave is a left or a right. I reckon that's incorrect, asymmetry should be based on the toeside rail (long rail) or the heelside rail (shorter rail) and that never changes.

Unless, of course, you're lending your board to a goofyfooter mate, but bugger that, I'm not gonna shell out just so a mate can ride my boards.

I only ride asymms in shortboards or stepups, I go back to symmetrical boards (symms?) for guns, but this system won't cover that range in size.

Terminal's picture
Terminal's picture
Terminal commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 10:36am

I think this is a great product to buy, stick in the cupboard for a decade or two and then sell to a collector. Bit like sidewinder legropes.

sandcastle's picture
sandcastle's picture
sandcastle commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 12:40pm

So you are stuck with the same tail dimensions until you decide to acquire a new 'quiver of tails'...

david 24's picture
david 24's picture
david 24 commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 1:20pm

so how does it go with concaves or vee through the tail ? a lot of swallow tails have a slight vee from the back fin , squash tails tend more to concaves . Also what about the flex shapers are going on about these days ?

macca24

indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 3:45pm

Previous and Initial thoughts before watching video are cheap gimmick just out to make a buck, and can't see how it works with different boards.

But after watching the video and trying to keep am open mind, i think it would be cool to try out, sometimes little variables can make big differences, and the product although can't see it super close up, seems solid, and not just plastic like i expected.

I rarely ride PU/PE these days, but when i did id always be fixing cracked/dinged tails, so i can see an advantage there too.

Would i buy it?...probably not, and seeing how much fins are id expect a set of tails wouldn't be cheap either.

I think i have a crush on Debra Soh.

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 3:51pm

Tail come in at $105 AUD each
There boards are $1000 AUD.

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Thursday, 3 May 2018 at 4:00pm

Dip your Memory Foam in a trash can of SLIME...Shaker Maker your glow in the dark Skeg.
Let it set 24 hrs. Stir the pool water... Treat yourself to a pack of Sea Monkeys...Cowabunga!

Skegz begging for shapeshifting boards usually transform into bodybasherz. Surfjustsurf.

regydogy's picture
regydogy's picture
regydogy commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 7:07am

cant be stuffed , another money makeing peice of plastic .lovely .more junk .

Älskarhavet's picture
Älskarhavet's picture
Älskarhavet commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 7:43am

It may actually be the beginning of the future in boards. Maybe in the future we won't need a quiver at all just one board with a shitload of extra parts.
The innovators and naive with heaps of cash will surely give it a go. Maybe even the early adopters.
Not for me though, I'm with trueblue, surfjustsurf. (if that's what you meant!)

Mango Carafino's picture
Mango Carafino's picture
Mango Carafino commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 9:31am

I think this is a very clever innovation, the longevity of the design in the board is yet to be seen. How well it will be accepted is yet to be seen. However, the fact that someone is thinking out of the box is leaps and bounds for innovation. Good Luck.

MickS's picture
MickS's picture
MickS commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 9:42am

Anyone who's moved a fin a quarter of an inch knows the difference small things make. I think if you were into knowing/feeling how all these discreet design variables affect a board while keeping volume, curves and general length exactly the same, it's a great exercise if you have the luxury of the spare cash and the curiosity to try. Which many don't. Beautifully made too. At least he's having a crack.

MickS

sharkman's picture
sharkman's picture
sharkman commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 8:53am

I would guarantee that people would buy the shapeshifter if KS put them on his Sci-Fi Gamma OmniSlater designs , but please don't ruin the Hype r , party by bringing up moving your fins 1/4 of an inch,which would have more technical affect than strapping on a shapeshifter ....could be used for dildo's maybe , interchangeable vibrating heads!

x

crg's picture
crg's picture
crg commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 12:58pm

Imagine if interchangeable parts for tails, widths, rockers, concaves, vees etc became commonplace. A central axis or mid point which parts joined into and allowed you to create the perfect board for each surf. Each part made from sustainable, recycled or reusable materials. Say two central axis - one a normal short board and one a step up that breakdown and can be transported in a standard suitcase with no excess baggage fees.
Just some thoughts and possibilities...

dangerouskook2000's picture
dangerouskook2000's picture
dangerouskook2000 commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 12:08pm

....and for groms on buses and trains

channel-bottom's picture
channel-bottom's picture
channel-bottom commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 4:54pm

Top 5 influences on performance of a surfboard (in no particular order)

Bottom contour
Volume
Plan shape (excluding tail shape)
Foil
Fin size/shape

I think you would have to be an elite surfer to be able to get any performance benefit out of this.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 5:20pm

Len Dibben developed detachable flyers in the 70's, I've seen an example of them.
Agree with post above.

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Friday, 4 May 2018 at 5:50pm

(1:05-1:10) Headless Martian's 7 fin UFO! verses Specsaver's Shapeshifter! (1:15-1:30)
Fits really well sorry that was backwards right. With Fin Key dig out any tail rot. Keep at it!
Can see why SoCal strain is kept under wraps...Lucky bastards.

dangerouskook2000's picture
dangerouskook2000's picture
dangerouskook2000 commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 12:09pm

This wouldn't work for me because I only like round tails. I like the idea of moving the fins tho.

tubeshooter's picture
tubeshooter's picture
tubeshooter commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 12:34pm

I imagine there would be a great deal of stress around the plugs for surfers who are heavy on the backfoot, given the pressures and forces applied to that part of a board. It seems to me to just be creating a weak point .

lost's picture
lost's picture
lost commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 5:10pm

Split boards in snowboarding have evolved to the point where they are half decent to ride but you would never chose one if you where not hiking somewhere.

knB

eddiewouldgo's picture
eddiewouldgo's picture
eddiewouldgo commented Saturday, 5 May 2018 at 6:27pm

How about changeable noses? You could have beaks; extra sharp beaks or rounded beaks,, different types of blunt or sharper nose . Experiment to see if it makes a difference or not !!! Even an interchangeable rubber nose cone???

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Sunday, 6 May 2018 at 10:03pm

My nose is outta joint.... Great for long deep front side carves.
Doctor says No breathe = No bash. Pics of old me down at the Slab..Cold it was!

Up Side! Qld Health is sponsoring trubluebasher to surf Jacko's retro nose quiver.
Say! Is that Bubbles moonwalk'n the greenroom? Shh! Keeping my nose out of it !