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WW Fiberblades upside-down?

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
It can take a long time to get an up-to-date response or contact with relevant users.


We pee deep. Ew!
Sep 24, 2002
I just got some #4 blades and they have a pronounced bias in their shape that bends the blade away from the scalped surface. I held this up against a Millennium comp blade and the amount of angular compensation is about equal -- it's just that the comp blade has a kink where the blade meets the footpocket and the WW's compensation is a gradual curve over the length of the blade.

Has anyone tried mounting the WW blades upside-down (i.e., with the scalped side pointing up if you were standing there on land wearing the blades like giant clown shoes)? I think that this upside-down mounting might make up for some of the gripes that people have about the blades being crummy for surface swimming etc., but I haven't tested this theory in the water yet.
Force Fins have a similar shape, bending up instead of down, and they suck for surface swimming.

It would be easy enough to try.

Can't make that comparison, Jon. Since Forcefins suck for any kind of swimming ;).

Curious...I've gone over it in my head a few times, but can't decide what the outcome would be. I think that the reason strait, stiff blades yield poor surface performance is because the blade likes to lay flat. So when you kick downward, the fin wants to enter the water evenly (crappy figure 2) = more resistance. However, if the blade is soft, it's flexibility would yield more bending = less resistance - as some of the folks with soft Matrix/WW fins have testified.

I can get away with a stiff blade for good surface swimming because of the angle to the footpocket (crappy figure 1). The angle makes it easier for the fins to break the surface. Imagine pushing a board into the water. It is easier to push down if you angle the board. It also concentrates the thrust in one direction.

So what will the "clownshoe" fin do (crappy figure 3)? I suppose it all depends on the stiffness. It the fin is soft, I would suspect that you could get some pretty good thrust, since the fin is storing even more energy in its shape. The question is, will the fin be soft enough (or the kick hard enough) to allow the fin to take advantage of that energy.

It should be noted that I guessed on figure 3, as to how the fin would be positioned. Fig 1 and 2, I speak from experience.

One last thought. If this modification does yield better surface swimming, you'll still have to consider the technique adjustment that will be needed for the 'up and down' stuff. You're forekick would be your primary thrust, instead of the more common back-kick. Bicycling would be worthless (well, not very efficient anyway).

Please let us know how this pans out, Mike. Looking forward to your report.

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Ok, will test this weekend. Just to clarify, I have attached a figure.

I think that most folks mount the blades such that , if you are swimming along horizontally, facing downwards, the scalped side will be facing skyward. Anyone swimming below you would see the shiny side of the blade w/ the WW logo etc.

I'm proposing fliping the blade the other way, so that the shiny side faces up. Since the blade curves that way, the up-stroke will dig in a little harder and the down-stroke will be a little softer. In addition, the curvature of the blade will provide angular compensation that is similar to the conventional "angled" blades (e.g. millennium, special fin pro etc.)


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Nice image, Mike.

I was dead wrong on my #3 figure. Those waterways fit in a way that I did not foresee :eek: .

So it would look more like this???


edit: errr, wait a minute. Are your second and third pictures labeled correctly. I thought it was the other way around :confused: (2->3 ; 3->2)
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Sorry for the confusion. You are right that I am being inconsistent in my use of the term "up". This is what happens when Attention Deficit Disorder encounters a situational term like "up". Terms like left, right, east and west suffer similar mistreatment when I attempt to use them.

In the figure, I'm picturing the diver standing on land, looking at his feet. I'm proposing that, as he's looking down, he should see the scalped side of the blade, rather than the shiny side w/ the stickers and logos. Basically, this is the opposite of what is shown in the photo posted by Skindiver here: http://forums.deeperblue.net/showthread.php?threadid=36879&perpage=15&pagenumber=4

The bending effect is very pronounced in the #4 blades, probably due to tension that is released in the surface when one side is scalped away (thus causing the blade to bend towards the "un-scalped", shiny surface).

I think that I'll just do the test and report the results with photographs of the blades.
Looks like the water-way to go

Mounted as shown in the attached photo, the blade works nicely on the surface. Even with the relatively stiff #4 blade, the forward kick is nice and soft and the back-kick digs in nicely. My hams even got sore since they are not accustomed to working that hard.


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and here's a shot that shows the compensation that the curve provides:


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