Float Tube Fins

Discussion in 'Float tubing' started by Nashinator, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. Nashinator

    Nashinator Well-Known Member

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    Just got my first float tube and I need fins. I've scoured the forum but still have some basic questions:

    1. I will be wearing stockingfoot waders. I already have wading boots but don't know if I will need them. Do the fins go directly over the neoprene stocking foot or over wading boots? And if over the stocking foot, should I be wearing an additional "dive sock"?

    2. Many recommend expensive Force Fins. How do you determine sizing? Do you just order online based off their sizing chart? Is there a shop in SD that carries the fins?

    3. Force Fins come in a bungee and nylon heel strap style. What would be best?

    4. Are there any knockoff fins out there that offer great performance at a discount? I don't want to skimp but $200+ makes me cringe

    5. Do fins attach securely or should I be tethering them?

    Much appreciated!
     
  2. CraigSmith

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    You should have some type of boot or bootie over your wader feet to protect the feet. Otherwise the fins and fin strap will chafe the foot and cause it to wear out faster.

    There used to be several float tube booties on the market. These were neoprene booties lighter than standard wading shoes. Unfortunately these are no longer on the market. I asked the owner of one of the companies that made them why they were discontinued. He said they did not sell well enough. Cabelas still sells a lightweight neoprene wading shoe I think. Its the closest I found. It has a felt sole so it is a bit more bulky than the old float tube booties, but it is still less bulky than a wading boot. You can also look for divers booties that are big enough to fit over your wader feet. There are some neoprene socks out there that you can put over your wader feet too.

    I have been using force fins since 1997. I have an original non adjustable pair (the strap only adjusts - this is called the "Original Force Fin") and a pair that is adjustable (now called the "Float Tube Force Fin") to different boot or bootie sizes. I have had that adjustable pair for 10 years and keep the original pair I bought in 1997 as a loaner. With the cost spread out over 10-20 years the lifetime cost of the fins is pretty low though the initial outlay might be considered steep by some. I have tried many other pairs of fins both before and after I started using Force Fins and for me the Force Fines are better than anything else. Their design puts less stress on my knees and ankles. They work well for maneuvering tubes and pontoons and work well for speed. Some fins, like longer diver's fins, may be better for some when kicking long distances.

    With the standard Force Fin that cannot be adjusted for boot or bootie size you need to get a fairly large sized fin. I wear a size 8 street shoe. With wader feet and then some float tube booties the XL Force Fin is just barely large enough.

    I believe the nylon strap is better (more durable) than the bungee, which is used on their lightweight models. But I haven't actually used the bungee type. The fins listed on the Force Fin website in the Fishing category only have the nylon strap.

    The Float Tube Force Fin has neutral buoyancy so it will not sink if it comes off. My original adjustable Force Fin sinks like a rock. So does my Original Force Fin. So I use tethers. You can but the official Force Fin tethers but I made my own with some web straps and buckles from REI.
     
  3. kobra

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    You should wear something over the stocking foot waders to protect them from punctures. I wear the cheap velcro tennis shoes from wally world and slide them into my fins. But i have the adjustable ones wit the bungee strap. Dive boots should work just fine.
    There used to be a dive shop in Oceanside that carried force fins. Try a pair on over your dive boots to see what size you need. Every once in a while you see them used for sale fairly cheap. Might try ebay as well as Craigs list. I seriously recomend the leashes. I got mine from bass pro shop a long time ago and they were about 6 or 7 bucks.
     
  4. Nashinator

    Nashinator Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your replies. Very helpful.
     
  5. fisheromen

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  6. diegofish

    diegofish Well-Known Member

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    I have a pair I can give you if you like. Look up my post about fins. I used these fins for 2 years and still work great.
     
  7. Nashinator

    Nashinator Well-Known Member

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    Really @diegofish!? I don't have a Mustang but maybe I can trade something.

    Went through Amazon to order 2.5mm neoprene dive booties in size 13-14 to wear over my wader stocking feet. Hope they fit - I'm 12 street shoe, 13 wading boot. Think your fins will work?
     
  8. diegofish

    diegofish Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't matter if you don't have a Mustang. lol
    They might. They're lrg if that helps
     
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