View Full Version : For Ian F: Drake Fins

mark h
20th September 2006, 10:32 PM
Hi Ian
My 2004 Drake 34cm fin on my S100 damaged so I'v got to get a replacement. I dont want to go down the Deb/C3 type route. Could you explain what the differences are between the Slalom Pro and the SR6B 34cm. Am I right in thinking that the Pro is better in the rough stuff and easier up wind.


21st September 2006, 09:41 AM
I'm curious of the same thing. I have a few SR6b fins and one Slalom Pro. I like them both, but I can't say I could describe how they differ.

Ian Fox
21st September 2006, 12:14 PM
Hi Mark + 02b,

First disclaimer : the fins we have now in 2007 current release are varied layups from previous years; both fins have been the focus of ongoing test and development. Please be aware that while the general trend/s are similar, the specifics do vary a little for both models according to the layup/s used /generation.

In summary : SR6b = Topend / Slalom Pro = Range.

In general, the SR6b 34 is now a stiffer, more top end oriented slalom fin, and more so with heavier riders than lighter guys - in testing at real top end/fully loaded 34 stuff, the SR6b is more often the big guys favorite in general beam blasting to slalom downwind conditions when the rider is loading solid and locked hard against the fin. The solid ride (feel) of the SR6b is less attractive in rough conditions for lighter riders. SR6b benefits from a stronger, more assertive style to make the most of it; in a straight line, it's easy to keep locked on but if the fin (board) really gets out of control (crossed up etc) it's also more challenging to get back than the S-Pro.

The Drake SlalomPro 34 is a softer fin (exactly how soft really depends on the generation/layup spec - and also the size- in this caase we're discussing 34's and similar); it's a good choice for moderate and light wind 34 slalom conditions (for most mid to big riders) ; in rougher conditions it will "feel" easier to keep hooked up initially, and especially so when the rider is lighter and/or more sensitive to trimming the board surface onto the water (rather than locked) style. but the bigger the rider (or harder the fin is loaded) the more the softer S-Pro layup requires a more sensitive back foot;

Rider style enters into it as well ; the SR6b being typically for riding more off the fin; the S-Pro more about using the board/rail/fin combo.

The SR6b "feels" about half way between the S-Pro 34 and 32 size wise in most conditions, however the SR6b doesn't "perform" a lot smaller; especially when the average board speed is kept high.

Upwind (where overall speeds are lower) the S-Pro does work pretty well in most conditions ; it's more naturally in it's groove and the softer feel can be preferable (unless nuked).

Hope that covers it, let us know if you need more info etc.

Cheers ~ Ian

BTW : as a general discussion point about the production fins :
Starboard Holland team rider Peter van Dyke set a number of personal records in La Franqui
a few days ago - using a stock Sonic 85 / 06 + totally stock Drake SR6b28 / 06.
Peak 2sGPS @ 42.9 kts and 5x10GPS av 41.0kts is not exactly hanging around.
Yes, Pete's a pretty big boy. 186cm97kg B)
You can check the whole session @

21st September 2006, 08:30 PM

I am an average guy, jumping in this discussion just because I own and ride the Drake Slalom Pro 32 (supplied as stock with my Sonic 95) and Deboichet SL2 30, 32 and 34. Can't tell anything about the SR6b.

In my experience, sailing a Sonic 95 with a powered up 6,6 (TR-2) in moderate windswell and trying to let the board go fast, feels like one is walking on the edge of a knife with the Drake Pro, and like sitting in a very comfortable sofa with the Debs. On the other hand, I reckon the Drake Pro is a much more forgiving fin in confused waters and has an overall "easy" feel in more moderate conditions, while the Debs have a more "sporty" feel and need the rider to know what he is doing. The Drake Pro also feels slightly "bigger", probably due to less sensitivity towards angle of attack. The reason why I choose the Deboichet SL2s is: tested and proven, 100% reliable performance. Now the Drake Pro layup is being modified for 2007, so who knows.
In the end, it's "horses for courses", in a very subtle way (after all, the Drake Slalom Pro design is licensed by Deboichet and similar to the SL2). What I mean is: do yourself a favour and choose what is best for you accordingly to your sailing attitude. Should you decide to go for the SL2, check Deboichet for prices: in my case they were not that far from those of the Drake Pros. Phone call them (during daytime in France!): at times, their e-mail answers are not as prompt as one may desire. And, well, yes, in my case it took 11 weeks from order to delivery; but I ordered them in Spring, when I supposed most orders are placed (and among them those from top team riders).

23rd September 2006, 09:30 PM
Hi Mark,

You might want to try one of Wolfgang Lessacher's speedfins:

Very fast and virtually impossible to spin out.