Makapuu Churchill Swim Fins
The Churchill Fins brand is responsible for producing some of the most best quality swim fins for the past several decades. Their flagship, iconic and classical fin is the Makapuu model.
Color: The blue and yellow fin color is the most common that stays consistent each year but on a yearly basis they try out new color combinations. Be assured though, all these colors are the same fin and quality as long as they are a Churchill Makapuu. They colors are not just for good looks, the foot pocket color is softer for your feet and the color on the blade is stiffer for a powerful thrust. When manufacturing fins, the darker the rubber is, the softer it is. So on the complete polar opposite spectrums, black is the softest and white is the hardest. White is very hard, that is why you don’t see too many white fins.
Materials: All Churchill fin models (Makapuu, Makapuu Pro and Slasher) are the same. They are made from the highest quality 100% natural gum rubber. This rubber also floats and is the most sustainable and friendly to the environment. So if you get these fins, know they don’t harm the environment and are made in a ethical and environmentally friendly way!
Features: They offer individual fins for each foot. Everything about each fins is made for your left and right foot. The foot pocket, heel strap and blade are made for your left and right foot. Each fin says either left or right to let you know so you don’t wear them wrong!
There is a drain hole at the bottom of the foot to let out rocks, seaweed and excess water. Although this is a very
helpful feature and the drain hole works well, it is the one of the few (if not only) drawback and flaw of the fin. This is the only thing we would change about the fin. In recent years an innovation of the drain hole has been placed near the toes instead of the center. Stealth fins offer this improved drain hole system, an extremely similar fin
to the Makapuu with the exception of the improved drain hole system near the toes. When the drain hole is near the toes it drain more and your toes can never get stuck in the center. On a very large wipeout your toes can get stuck on the hole. If your are not doing any extreme wave riding you don’t need to worry about it.
Power & Comfort: Maybe their best feature is how well balanced Makapuu’s are. They work so well for so many people because they appeal to most people by being so well balance and just working great. They are a medium power fin and also have great comfort. They are comfortable and not too hard on your feet yet they provide enough power for quick acceleration to get a wave or for the long paddle back out the the lineup. Few people have problems this fin being uncomfortable.
Style: Churchill Makapuu’s are known for their great style points. They have stylish colors and look great. They simply look good when you’re bodyboarding. They are well balanced when it comes to fin weight, size and maneuverability, making them great for performing tricks and maneuvers without them being clunky or getting in the way.
Price: For being one of the best fins, they are actually also very affordable. They are at the low price spectrum for fins at around 45$-50$ USD.
Conclusion: The FinBin.net team highly recommends this fin. In fact, we rated Makapuu’s as our #1 recommendation, tying with Stealth Fins for #1 place. Many of us wear Makapuu’s and love the swim fins when bodyboarding. They are great for anyone from beginners to pro’s and many many professional bodyboarders do actually where them.
Slasher Swim Fins
The Churchill Slasher model was created after as an alternative to the flagship Makapuu. It is a bit of a tamed version of the Makapuu, withs its corners more curved down and a shorter fin blade.
Color: They come in many many different colors:
Materials: They are made out of the same great material, 100% natural gum rubber and environmentally conscious. This material provides a firm but gentle fit.
Features: They offer a few same and different features that the originals.
- Pod Shape they have a more round “pod shape” look to them. This shorter and wider fin works better for dropknee but also great for prone riding. The shorter blade makes for a quicker acceleration but less powerful and enduring for those long paddles. Great for messing around in the shore break.
- Drain Hole is the same, with a circular hole in the center of the bottom foot pocket.
- Dolphin inspired shape with the fin blade arc
- Anatomically shaped specifically for your left and right foot, each pair comes with a left and right foot fin
- Heal strap bent to better fit
Power & Comfort: The power is less with the blade shorter and they are slightly more comfortable compared with the originals. Its a bit of a trade off.
Style: If it’s a Churchill it is going to be stylish! You will get style points if you wear these fins, style is objective and in the eye of the beholder but we think without a doubt that the original Makapuu’s are more stylish than these.
Price: The price is the same as the originals, around $50 USD.
Conclusion: This a great alternative and other option to all of the Makapuu based models. We recommend it to beginners in smaller waves, as an entry level product, due its less aggressive features. You can’t go wrong with either these or the originals but if you are an intermediate or advanced rider we recommend you go with the Makapuu’s.
Makapuu PRO / HUBB Swim Fins
This model came out in just the past few years. Originally, they were called the “HUBB” model, as Jeff Hubbard’s (pro bodyboarder) signature fin model. He has since come out with his own fins named Hubbard Airs. This fin is now called the Makapuu Pro. It is basically a beefed up version of the original Makapuu’s.
Color: They come in black only. Black swim fin rubber is the softest it gets out of any color so that is a nice feature.
Materials: They are the same great 100% gum rubber.
Features: Here is where this the PRO fin really separates it self from the regular Makapuu. They have every accessory you could basically get with a fin and all these features come with the fin!
- The fin blade is 10% stiffer
- Finsert pads on the top of the foot pocket to add comfort to your feet. This padding really helps to keep your feet much more comfortable by having the top of your foot against the padding (inside the foot pocket) instead of rubbing up against the rubber. You can actually see the padding, it’s at the top of the fin. It covers the entire inside top of the foot pocket but also gets rolled onto the top of the fin (where you can visually see it) to fasten it.
- Heel pads are added to around the heel strap. This provided added comfort for your heel instead of it rubbing against the rubber, the heel straps are made out of a soft neoprene material. You can see these heel pads in the picture to the right.
- Fin savers are also added to help keep your fins attacked to your ankle incase your fins fall off out in the water. You can see in the picture, fin savers are attached to the heel pads and you tie them around your ankle in a bow tie when your feet are already in the fin.
Power & Comfort: These are one of the best fins on the market. They are powerful and comfortable! The blade is 10% stiffer that the regular Makapuu’s, making it about a medium-high stiffness level, but with all the added features like the finserts and heel pads these fins are extremely comfortable.
Style: They have the same awesome style as the regular Makapuu with its light weight maneuverable size and flexible rubber, as this fin comes from the same fin mold machine. The black color makes this fin look stylish and clean when riding and really adds style points when your bodyboarding.
Price: The price is reasonable but more than the regular Makapuu model because of the three added features (finsert pads, heel pads and fin savers). They run around $70 USD, so about $20 more than regular Makapuu’s, well worth it for all the extras. Those extra features would be more money if you bought them all separately so it is definitely a good deal. Very few come with all the extra features with the fin at purchase like the Makapuu PRO does.
Conclusion: By far one of the top fins out there. Great for beginners with all the extra features that are going to keep your feet comfortable and not lose your fins with the fin savers. It is basically a souped up version of the #1 fin we recommend, which is the Churchill Makapuu fin. You can’t go wrong so definitely consider picking up this fin.
MOZ Churchill fins
MOZ is Amaury Lavernhe’s signature pro model fin. The professional bodyboarder won the IBA world championship in 2010 and is an accomplished top athlete in bodyboarding. He has one of the best styles in the sport, whether its boosting a big air, carving or pulling into a huge toob. After watching him rip with these fins on, you’ll want em too!
Color: This fin comes in gray with orange blade tips and orange fin savers. The orange is a great accent color against the grey.
Materials: Churchill is consistent with materials and they use the same materials for all fin models. They only use the highest grade rubber, 100% natural gum rubber.
Features: The extra feature this fin comes with are its fin tethers. They have a tightening ball to synch the cord to your ankle. The tightening ball is actually very nice to have compared to other fin tethers out there because most do not have the ball, you have to bow tie them. The ball makes it much easier to get in and out, especially if you underwater in a drowning situation where your fins fell off, filled up with water and are holding you underwater, it is much easier to un-synch the ball vs un-tying a knot! Even if you are not in a life threading situation, they are just easier than a bow-tie or knot and will make your life easier!
Power & Comfort: This model is very comfortable and powerful. This fin is at around a medium to medium-high thrust power. Unlike the PRO, it doesn’t come with the extra comfy-making stuff like finsert pads and heel pads but its fine and comfortable, the same as the original Makapuu’s.
Style: Gray and orange is a very good looking color combo. They are the same color combination as Ben Players signature Stealth Fins, which look really stylish and clean when he shreds. Same classic Makapuu fin super style, new sick colors!
Price: They are a bit of a premium limited production model and only produced for certain countries around Reunion Island, where Amaury Lavernhe is from, so they are a bit hard to get. They run around the $70-80 USD mark and you may have to pay a bit for shipping from a different country depending on where you are.
Conclusion: Many world champion bodyboarders and bodysurfers choose to wear Churchill fins and for good reason. This fin is very similar to the original Makapuu but basically with the fin tethers that come with them and the different colors. So if you like these colors better and you would like the fin tethers with it then this is your fin. BUT Amaury Lavernhe is from Reunion Island and these fins are only available in select countries. Your bets bet is to buy online and have them shipped to you as your local surf shop won’t be carrying these bad boys.
Churchill Fins Size Chart
Below is a fin size chart for Churchill fins, use this chart to see what fin size you are based off your foots shoe size.
This chart below will help you see what shoe size you are for US shoes, this helps give you a better idea for what Churchill fin size you incase you are located internationally and not in the US.
Churchill Fins History
Churchill is one of the oldest companies that continues to manufacture fins for todays bodyboarders, bodysurfers and swimmers.
It all started when Owen Churchill designed and put a patent on this swim in 1940. He go the idea when he was in Tahiti, he saw boys in the shore with primitive and homemade swim fins where they cut out chunks of flexible rubber and used metal to attach it to their feet and they would swim around with these fins attached to their feet. He was also inspired by the dolphin shaped fin, hence the arch in the blade. He brought this idea with him back to the states. At the time with he released the first batch of fins to sell, the market was mostly skin divers that he sold to. This was before modern day bodyboarding and bodysurfing.
He was able to sell the fins and patent to pursue his love for sailing and yatching and achieved many first place prizes within the sport including the olympics. The Churchill Fins brand is currently owned by Wham-O.
He pioneered what we know today as the modern swim fin, with most fins today being based off this design and concept. Today we see many fins that are exact copies of this one and it shows that he really did get it right the first time, decades ago!