Rudder for a Mako6 surfski

Last week I did something dumb and busted the rudder on my surfski, so I need to find myself a new one.

I know that many people who paddle the Fenn Mako6 have changed out their rudders to a bigger one that can handle rough conditions better. If any of you are reading this, do you still have your old one laying around? Can I buy it off of you? (I am on Oahu.)

I will probably end up having someone build a new larger one for me around the shaft of my old one, but am looking for the quickest way to fix my boat so that I can get back on the water.


Submitted by rachel on Wed, 03/10/2010 - 11:44am

OK... Brian Bills is going to make me a new rudder. Next question: For those of you who changed rudders, which seems to be the best template? Is the Epic mold the way to go? Another one?

#1 Wed, 03/10/2010 - 2:15pm


The best thing you could have done for the boat is lose that stock rudder .. Those things are horrible !!!

I do not know Brian other than from reading on this forum ...

Does he mold (copys) other foils and then sells them ??? ... Is that how you got "Epic mold" ???

The old style Trapezoidal Epic rudders were nothing great. Not to mention the aluminum shaft that corroded in place or the hollow, don't-set-it-down-too-hard-or-it-will-bend, genius spec-ed one.

The new elliptical one is pretty nice if thats the one you mean. I would go for that.


#2 Wed, 03/10/2010 - 5:58pm

Brian's work is foiled fiber glass. Bring him your trashed one and he'll draw a template if he doesn't have it already. I know he likes seeing how the post angle relates to the hull. I'm almost certain my verbage is wrong, in any case be prepared to bring your boat out to Velzyland. Ask Guy Pere, Doug Lock, Brian Rocheleau, Mike Judd, Dale Hope, Todd Bradley, etc. It's worth the $100.00.

#3 Wed, 03/10/2010 - 9:38pm

Hi Guys,
Anybody have his number ??

100 is a great price. Especially if he fits it up to the hull right. Those Fenn rudders are really subpar and do not do justice to the nice hull shapes. Twisted, bents, crooked etc... no two are alike. Hard to believe people settle for these things. Sorry, pet peeve.


#4 Wed, 03/10/2010 - 10:58pm

Hey Rachel,
Yep, I had a custom rudder on my old Mako6 - made a huge difference to the handling of the ski.
(My Mako Elite came with the same shape stock rudder and I have installed a custom rudder on it too.)

The shape is elliptical with a proper airfoil section - much fatter than the flat Fenn rudder. The size is a little smaller than the Epic surf rudder (as fitted to the V10 and V12) but is similar in shape.

Rob Mousley

#5 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 12:50am

Eh Rob,

Cruising the Outrigger forum ??? Welcome over ...

Anyone reading this check out Robs baby lots of great info and videos of the 'other' side.


#6 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 9:28am

It's about time the surfski paddlers catch up with outrigger paddlers and go rudderless.

#7 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 10:50am

Rudderless surfski division on the Big Island .... "win" everytime : ) : )


#8 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 10:56am

Yes, its a pleasure seeing Rob on here - done a great job with the site, the equipment reviews, race coverage, athlete profiles etc and between your site and Keizo's OCpaddler, theres a great wealth of information to be shared within the paddling and kayaking community!
I should add, Rambo's videos of races from various places been a nice addition to the mix!
Getting back to the original topic - thanks Rachel for sharing the info on Brian Bills! Need to get a new rudder as well!

#9 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 11:00am

Whether surfski or OC-1, it is just practical to have extra rudders available during low tide season. Especially when it gets dark fast, and you no can "look so good." Worse though when you not only bust your rudder, but also scrape up your hull too. Auwe!!

#10 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 11:08am

Thanks for all the feedback everyone!

I found Brian Bills phone number with a google search, so you could too. It is 638-7653. I still have my old shaft with part of the old rudder still on it. I am planning on bringing him the shaft on Saturday. From what I understand he already has a mold that he used for (at least) one of the other guys paddling Fenns here.

Speaking of paddling rudderless... the funny thing is, I broke my rudder right before starting a technique session and didn't realize how bad it was until I got out of the water. I paddled for about an hour in flat water, but windy conditions, with only about a 3-inch piece of the rudder left. Amazingly, I only spun out once or twice.

I am looking forward to a new custom rudder! :)

#11 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 2:09pm

Now I understand: $100.00 for a custom rudder means I furnish the shaft? Right? If I don't furnish the shaft, then how much more I got to pay?

#12 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 8:43pm

Bring a new shaft that you know is to size or bring your existing one. Brian Bills is strictly North Shore fiberglass action.

#13 Thu, 03/11/2010 - 8:59pm

I met with Brian today. He can make a shaft for you too. You just need to know the size. Give him a call.

#14 Sat, 03/13/2010 - 11:56pm

Oops, BC Rudderz goes high tech. Its been awhile since I ordered one.

#15 Sun, 03/14/2010 - 6:08am

sam from nac makes rudders and he does a very good job he makes a variety of them and he can mail you them if needed his info is

#16 Sun, 03/14/2010 - 3:54pm

Surfski without a rudder? C'mon...

Even the Tahitians don't paddle the surfski without rudder. Without the ama you simply could not control a ski in any kind of bumps, would just spin out if you dropped into a bump. Nor can you use a wing blade to steer the boat. It would simply be foolish.

Brian made me a custom rudder for my Mako XT. Went big (11" length), but it was not straight, it was slightly swept back. Worked way better than the little rudder that came stock with that boat.

#17 Tue, 04/20/2010 - 9:51am

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