"Stable" best characterizes the Aussie Fish by 7S. The Aussie Fish is a modern fish designed for small to medium surf. The extra volume in the middle of the board makes paddling, catching, and riding waves easy. Combine that with a sub $400 price tag and you got the recipe for an awesome transition board. The only downside is that the extra volume makes the board feel heavy on turns. So if you're looking for a lot of performance out of your board, you may want to look elsewhere. For all those looking to get into shortboarding or looking to increase their wave count, the Aussie Fish is a great way to go.
Dimensions & Material
We tested the 6'7"H x 20 3/4"W x 2 5/8"T polyurethane/fiberglass model. The widest and thickest point in the board is at the middle which keeps the board buoyant making for easy paddling.
The bottom is a single concave with a vee at the tail. On our model, the stringer protruded a little around the middle which made for a slight double concave shape. We're not sure if this is a manufacturing defect or if all boards come like this.
The Aussie Fish has a single wing which makes for a steep drop-off going to the tail. This design gave us a little more maneuverability when our backfoot was planted on the tail.
The nose is only slightly fuller than a performance shortboard, but has much less rocker. This balance worked well, providing stability while maintaining some aggressiveness for turns and drops.
The board has very soft, down turned rails which fade to hard edges to the tail. If you could only see the rails at the middle of the board, you would think you were looking at a longboard. The rails play a big part in the stability of the Aussie Fish.
The Aussie Fish comes in 3 fin, FCS type.
The Aussie Fish paddled fast and flowed along the water relatively consistently, in other words the board didn't come to a dead stop immediately when we stopped paddling. For longboarders who transition to shortboard, losing that paddling power is hard to get used to. But the ease of paddling with the Aussie Fish helps make that switch a little easier.
Catching waves is the best part of this board. The rails and extra volume made the board stable for waves ranging from knee biters to slightly overhead. We were able to catch waves early which gave us ample time to pop-up, stabilize, and land the drop. It almost seemed like the board waited for us to pop-up and stabilize before it would make the drop. We were pleasantly surprised that this board was stable catching slightly overhead waves. These were moderate speed, walled overheads. Anything faster or hollower is beyond this board.
As you could imagine, the ride is smooth. The board tends to want to go down the line, unfortunately without interruption. If you just care about cruising, then this isn't really an issue. We found that the board has a tendency to drive its own speed after the initial drop. This was nice as you didn't need to start pumping immediately. But pumping seemed slightly inhibited, as you'll have to put a little more power to get the same drive. We found that even with pumping, the Aussie Fish didn't generate a whole lot of speed and had a hard time making fast sections. Overall in small to slightly overhead, moderate pace waves, the Aussie Fish kept us afloat and riding steady.
Now the downside. Turns and snaps are met with a lot of resistance, no matter what type of wave. The fuller rails were a contributing factor to the slow down. We had to ride a little backfoot heavy to get the most maneuverability out of the board. But for those who have only thrown around a longboard then this board will feel fast and nimble. As a transition board, the maneuverability isn't really an issue since you're just trying to get used to the shortboard feel. But as an all-arounder it's a bigger a concern.
Unfortunately because of its resistance to big turns and snaps, the Aussie Fish may not be ideal as an all-arounder. However the Aussie Fish does a great job at making you feel comfortable on a shortboard. The board is stable from paddle to kick-out. Also, the price tag won't make you feel bad if you beat it up a little. The Aussie Fish has the right ingredients for a great transition surfboard or even just a surfboard to increase your wave count.