Two decades have passed since FCS introduced the original dual plug system. We're now excited to announce the upcoming release of a revolutionary new system by FCS known as FCS II. The new system was designed from a detailed brief to ensure significant improvements to the functionality and the performance of the product both in and out of the water.
The final stage of development prior to the release of FCS II included an extensive testing phase that would span over 12 months. During this time our global surf team including Mick Fanning, Julian Wilson, Gabriel Medina and Nick Rozsa put the new system through its paces in both practice and competition. The video above was shot during the 2012 Hawaii season.
You'll notice our team riders with a new white plug installed in their boards and fins branded with the II prototype symbol; these are in fact prototypes of the new FCS II system and fins. The final version of FCS II has since been refined and is scheduled for release towards the middle 2013. We should also mention we've developed an entirely new fin range to compliment the new FCS II system, also scheduled for release in 2013. Keep checking our website for updates on the new FCS Essential Series fin range.
We invite you to peruse the images below for some insights into the development of new FCS II system. Once it hits the market we think you'll agree it was worth the wait…
20 Years of Research
The original dual plug system evolved over 20 years to become the world standard in detachable fin systems. The challenge for the project was to build on the success of the original fin system and drawing from our rich history, reinvent a product that would shape the future of surfing.
Design concepts had to not only meet extreme performance targets, but also be simple to use and not require the use of a tool to remove the fin. The leading concepts were based around a leverage point on the front tab of the fin, and included a mechanism that locked the back tab of the fin in place. Another challenge was to make the system backward compatible to accept fins from the original dual plug system.
The chosen mechanical concept was fine-tuned. Elements of design, engineering and material selection came together to create a mechanism that provided longevity in a highly corrosive environment, and most importantly had the required retention force on the fin to rival the original grub screw system.
A prototype was manufactured for both field and lab testing. Two hundred surfboards were equipped with the system and tested by the world's best surfers. The response was extremely positive, proving the system in the water and providing valuable performance insights. Simulated repetition testing proved the mechanism, and impact and strain testing highlighted some areas for improvement. These would prove to become the next set of project challenges.