It looks like a new wave of technology is about to hit the surf scene.
Roy Stuart, a New Zealand-based surfboard maker, has become one of the first in the world to create a 3D printed surfboard fin.
For two decades, Stuart has specialized in creating high-quality, handcrafted surfboards, and has a reputation for creating some of the best surfboards in the world. His latest creation, the Warp Drive BLEF foiled surfboard fin, is in line with this reputation. It is 3D printed and is lightweight, durable, and versatile – all vitally important qualities for a surfboard fin.
According to 3Ders, Stuart, who is well-known for the surfboards he makes, says that he took inspiration from the humpback whale to design the surfboard fin, which features a hollow center and surface tubercles, or BLEF (bumpy leading edge foil) – which he designed to mimic the skin of a humpback.
Stuart took his fin design concept to the specialists at Palmer Design and Manufacturing in Tauranga, New Zealand. They helped Stuart to create a computer-aided design, and then printed the fin; first in ABS filament and then in polycarbonate. The entire project took about two months to complete.
The fins are available in a range of vibrant colors and range in size from 6.5 to 9 inches, and are suitable for surfboards with standard fin boxes. They are priced at $82 to $164.