A Simon Shapes Hi-Phi PhishThe bottom of a Simon Shapes Hi-Phi Phish

When in doubt, reroute.

The Hi-Phi Phish is another new model we’ve been working on with the ever-so-talented John Simon. It started as an idea to make an ultra-high performance shortboard/fish hybrid with good waves in mind. The outline is loosely based off of a 6’2” fish from Rich Pavel that mysteriously made its way to The Heavens and eventually under my feet (which is a whole other story for another time). While the 6’2” Pavel is magic, I (Phil) wanted something a little smaller that could be pushed a bit harder but still maintain enough fishy flow and glide. What we came up with was a 5’8” x 19 ¼” x 2 3/8”, and rather than taking a page out of the classic fish book of bottom contours, we decided to modernize things with an inverted Vee bottom for some immediate lift and projection.  

Originally the board was set-up as a twin, with a really unique fin placement we borrowed from the magic Pavel. While the board looked insane, and we were 100% confident it would go even better than it looked, the first few surfs proved otherwise. Large keels felt way too stiff and smaller more upright twins lacked drive and control. This left us pretty stumped: all elements were there, but it simply wasn’t the magic we had hoped for. The only thing that was “off” on the whole board was the super inset and straight Pavel fin placement. That’s when I remembered something Mick Mackie told me about the very first flextail fish he had made for himself. It ended up having 4 different sets of fins glassed on, cut off, and a new set glassed on before he nailed the perfect template and placement. So we asked ourselves as we’ve done so many times before, “What would Mick do?” The answer was obvious. We routed out the twin fin boxes, filled them with foam, and routed in new boxes... but this time we decided a quad set-up was more suited for the board. From the very first surf with new fin placement, and the addition of two more fins, the board was absolutely magic! The speed and flow I felt was there, it had tons of control, and the perfect amount of release. I’ve ridden it in everything from thumping NJ Toobs to the most perfect of Mexican points, and the board just goes. We’ve now worked out the kinks and thought it would be way too selfish to keep this magic to ourselves. So a new model in John’s lineup was born and dubbed the Hi-Phi Phish.

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