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Who Wants Better Fins?

Discussion in 'Research and Development' started by TECreation, Oct 19, 2017.

What are the top 3 requirements for a great swim fin?

  1. Low price

    10.7%
  2. Low ankle stress

    8.0%
  3. Low effort

    12.0%
  4. Low leg stress

    21.3%
  5. Hign top speed

    6.7%
  6. Durability

    29.3%
  7. Ability to back up

    34.7%
  8. Frog kick ability

    52.0%
  9. Power

    53.3%
  10. Maneuverability

    61.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. tridacna

    tridacna ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: New Jersey
    5,707
    2,712
    113
    I have no idea what you mean and I’m a mathematician.

    “Science doesn’t prove”?
     
  2. kelemvor

    kelemvor Big Fleshy Monster ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Largo, FL USA
    5,872
    3,071
    113
    I can't even.
     
  3. undrwater

    undrwater Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Cerritos, CA
    2,689
    1,252
    113
    Mostly off topic, but looking online it seems there may be some controversy regarding "scientific proof". Feel free to look it up. I was taught (and it made sense to me) that "science doesn't prove" (except math).

    As a more on topic follow up question: have you ever seen scientific proof of fin claims?
     
  4. cerich

    cerich ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Georgia
    6,563
    3,308
    113
    Ok..

    So when I ran EDGE/HOG I looked at and tested these fins, in the water.

    My take is pretty simple. They work. If you wanted to design an efficient fin for the recreational diver that does a flutter kick, these work quite well. I like them MUCH more than splits. I also like frog kicking much more than flutter for a variety of reasons but that aside I'm not quite brain washed enough to feel that flutter kicking isn't ok. I would prefer a good flutter over the bicycle kick too many certified divers seem to have mastered in the OW class.
    I really didn't find these fins to frog kick at all well. If somebody considers a sorta sideways flutter a modified frog kick they may believe they work for frog kicking. I don't.

    My only concern regards these fins is durability. i am not convinced that based on the samples I saw and existing techniques for molding different fin compounds that they would hold up. I do think there is another way to achieve the same effect thru mechanical engineering but it would be really expensive and the fins would cost $400 or so.

    This product shows promise for the intended market.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2017
  5. tridacna

    tridacna ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: New Jersey
    5,707
    2,712
    113
    I have absolutely no idea. But here's one I found with minimal effort. If you want to criticize it, write to the Publishing Journal.

    D.R. Pendergasti, J. Mollendorf, C. Logue, and S. Samimy. Departments of Physiology and Biophysics and Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Schools of Engineering and Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14214. "Evaluation of fins used in underwater swimming." Undersea Hyperb Med 2003. 30(1): 57-73.
     
  6. TECreation

    TECreation Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orlando FL
    96
    24
    8
    Of Course. It is in everyone's best interest that no claim go unproven. Here is the link to the testing program.
    To make it a bit easier this link is to a summary of the data collected. Two items to bear in mind here are the speeds listed are AVERAGE speeds for the entire 327' course. That includes starting from a dead stop and traveling 50' then reversing direction 5 times so these speeds cannot be directly compared to straight line speed. Also we are working on prototype 103 right now and that data is from much older versions. Some of them were not very good but the data is included so you can see that our bad fins are still as good as the competition. Of course we learned from this and have been getting better and better. You may note there is not any data for fins in the 90s. That is because those fins have been in the field on the feet of various divers. Once I have enough fins for a good group of divers I would like to repeat these tests using you folks as the divers.
     
  7. TECreation

    TECreation Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orlando FL
    96
    24
    8
    Yes. Your testing was several years ago. Thank you for your candid response. I have made substantial improvement in the materials since then and other tech divers have discovered the frog kicking technique which does work. No doubt, really powerful and easy fins can be designed, but as you stated, they would be quite expensive. I consider these the sweet spot between all these factors. Please let me reiterate that these are really originally designed for general open water divers. The goal is to allow them to swim longer with less effort and less pain. The military should have interest in these too since they have to push or drag large packs long distances. That is a place where efficiency is nearly everything. See you at DEMA.
     
  8. TECreation

    TECreation Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orlando FL
    96
    24
    8
    Interesting you found this. I have it up on my computer right now and have been working with it for the last week. Their testing is straight line and based on O2 consumption as opposed to my test which includes multiple 180 degree turns and measures total AIR consumed. This makes the results virtually impossible to compare but I am working on an estimated comparison. I do not know how much that study cost but mine cost only a couple hundred dollars outside of the time spent and the cost of making the fins. The point was to create a benchmark which can be tried by anyone at minimal cost that represents normal diving situations.

    As an update on that study. I have taken their data and reformatted it to match the data I present and there is little surprise that the curve shapes are similar. Another problem is that no fin in that test was used in any of my tests although some similar ones were.
     
  9. TECreation

    TECreation Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orlando FL
    96
    24
    8
    You gotta try them. Will you be at DEMA?
     
  10. TECreation

    TECreation Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Orlando FL
    96
    24
    8
    The current fin manufacturers apparently have no interest in scientific data. An earlier version of my fin was tested by a major manufacturer on their kicking machine and they told me it performed better than theirs but that was not sufficient to cause them to throw away their multi-million dollar investment in their current product. It is much easier for them to make them pretty and coin some fancy phrase and market the heck out of it than to prove their claims.

    I have also been a ScubaLabs tester for several years now. Their fin testing is 100% subjective. Each diver tries the fins and gives their impression of the feel. For fins that takes a couple of days. If an objective test was done, similar to my testing procedure, it would take weeks. As the testers are volunteers it would be nearly impossible to get anyone to that commitment of time.

    Some manufacturers do have something similar to the Tug-of-war test but I have purposely avoided that since it is rare that a diver has to apply full power and go nowhere. I only did that test because divers asked for it.
     

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