One of the hottest products for 2005 is the Liquid Force Fish wakeboard. It's a similar idea to the Liquid Force Squirt that came out years ago, but is definitely an improved design. So how does it ride?
The 2005 Liquid Force Fish comes in three sizes, a 125 cm, a 129 cm, and a 133 cm. For this test we rode the 133 cm version, so we'll speak specifically to it's dimensions. The Fish is a board that is designed to be rode at a length about 10 cm shorter than your normal wakeboard. Since I normally ride a 142-144 cm board, the 133 cm was the right board choice for me.
The Fish makes up for it's lack of length in width. The 133 cm is a huge 46.3 cm wide which translates to 18.1 inches. It's got 2.4 inches of rocker which is pretty sizeable for a short board.
The Fish is short and fat. What's the point? Well, the short length provides for a board that is easier to spin and rotate through the air with less swing weight. It's also quicker to control and more responsive. To make up for the short length, the width provides for a huge amount of pop and surface area to land on.
The downside of the width usually is a hard landing. To combat this, the Fish has a big double V concave hull which breaks the water on the landings, and provides for very quick edge to edge response.
The edges are rounded to a sharp point, which adds to the board's responsiveness.
The Fish has two molded-in fins on the edges, and then has two removeable fins on the interior at each end. We tested the board without the interior fins on it, meaning it was a bit more loose for our ride.
I'm partial to boards with a white background color, so I was naturally drawn to the graphics on the Fish. The art on it is tribal in nature, and I think the green and blue colors work well for a board called "Fish".
The bottom graphic is mainly black with similar tribal graphics, so the board has a nice consistent theme.
The Fish is a ton of fun. The board is very responsive and definitely does not feel as short as it really is.
The pop is tremendous, and the concave V hull does do a nice job of softening up the landings.
The one thing to note is that after cutting out wide the board is pretty loose in the water, and if you edge in toeside without getting it on edge it will feel a bit out of control and loose. I was riding it without the optional interior fins which would obviously give it better tracking. However, the looseness problem was solved as soon as you crank into that edge, because it really holds well.
The Bottom Line
The Fish is a great board. It probably is not suited or necessary for beginners, but is something that intermediate and up riders should definitely try. Some people have said it's ride is different enough so that it would be a second board that you could get to ride, but I think it's good enough that it could definitely be your primary board.
You'll get great pop and a ton of response, and the negatives normally associated with a short length are solved well with the design.
You can see the entire Liquid Force team ripping on the Fish in their new team video Relentless as well.