Global Surf Industries 7S Hook Surfboard Review

THE BOARD

GSI said :

“The 7S Hook merges some old and new surfboard design characteristics to offer a fast, yet highly functioning hybrid twin fin surfboard that will unlock a whole new approach to your surfing. This twin offers the confidence to turn without having to compromise power.

Fin placement is a key ingredient with this board. They’re positioned further back compared to most twin models on the market. This eliminates any sketchy feeling when driving through a bottom turn, improves overall backhand performance, and adds control so the board can be surfed in bigger waves.”

We said :

The 7S Hook looks ultra fun. It has a fish shape, step deck for volume and twin fins set right back on the board that should give plenty of control while still feeling loose and free – kinda like hitting the dance floor after 3 drinks. The look of board is pretty tech, given that historically 7S production was based around everyday PU shapes. It’s obvious there’s been some work done behind the scenes with regards to the board designs and their EPS program. The different logo, carbon fibre and glass matrix laminate make it look like a $1000+ board, even though it retails for $700.

Time will tell on if it lives up to the promise, but this is a sexy little nugget we were all super excited to ride. 3 Surfers had a spin and gave feedback, including Joe Hudson (worth watching), Lincoln Eather and Tim Hawken. Tim’s writing the bulk of the review, but the other guys’ input is added in throughout since board performance can be pretty subjective at the best of times. It also meant we got to test the 7S Hook in a variety of conditions, from WA reefs to QLD beaches and points.

SHAPE

The dimensions of The Hook we tested were 5’8’’ x 20 3/8’’ x 2 7/16’’ (31.30ltr volume). That’s one of the smaller sizes but it felt like a good all-round performance size without getting too boaty. It has a fuller beak and plenty of volume under the chest but pulls in quite a bit toward the tail. GSI says this pulled-in tail “promotes an easier rail-to-rail transition and allows the rail to engage and bite into the wave face when turning with more force.”

There’s a little bit of rocker to make sure you’re not nosediving for lobsters as soon as you get a wave with any bowl to it, however, compared with a regular shorty its flat, sleek and designed for maximum trim speed. Bottom wise, there’s a little vee under your front foot for stability, with a single to double concave toward the back, which gives some lift through your turns.

The glass job is something that’s exclusive to GSI and 7S Surfboards – Innegra Matrix. A little bit about that via GSI – Created in collaboration with Colan Australia, Innegra Matrix (IM) is an exciting new material that’s exclusive to GSI and the 7S board range. IM consists of 3oz bi-axial fibreglass orientated at +/- 45 degrees, an Innegra cross-net woven through the fibreglass, plus 13 unidirectional carbon strands, all of which forms a single layer of fabric that’s laminated on the bottom of the board. The deck lay-up has a quad-axial configuration of fibreglass at +/- 45 degrees & standard 4oz fibreglass at 0/90 degrees.

In a non-tech sentence, it’s a full fish shape with a few bells and whistles to make it fast and fun to turn, especially in small, wally surf. That brings us to…

Global Surf Industries 7S Hook Surfboard Review

WAVE TYPE

The Hook is mostly aimed at being a summer fun board for smaller waves up to about head high. Its sweet spot is in playful points and not too demanding beaches or reef waves. The three of us all had our best surfs in waves that were around the 2-3ft chubby rights (we’re all natural footed) where there was a nice wall running allowing you get to speed and do plenty of wraparounds and fun lip hits. Once things start to slab, it’s not your best choice of weapon – especially if you’re wanting to avoid mad swan dives over the falls.

Normally, twin fins are better on your forehand, because people tend to carve through more circular turns, rather than windscreen wipe up and down. However, the fin placement on this board does make things much more forgiving if you go the wrong way. This also means the board stays fairly controlled in overhead waves as well if you’re looking for a lively change from your regular shortboard, or the swell jumps when you’re out there. Bottom line you ‘could’ ride it up any type of surf up to about 4ft, but it’ll shine best in 2-3ft clean, chubby waves on your forehand.

PERFORMANCE

In the world of performance, there are people who breakdance and people who daggy dance. Breakdancing blows people’s minds. Daggy dancing is fun if you’re the one doing it – and can be entertaining to watch – but you aren’t making anyone’s skull explode. This board is a daggy dancer. Plenty of chances to wiggle your ass, but you’re unlikely to be pulling air flairs or windmills.

Analogy done, I can rephrase more simply by saying, The Hook is your go-to when wanting to add some not-so-serious spice to your surfs. It’s not a high-performance craft. That said, you can still whip it around and do some interesting stuff. It’s the type of board that is more for carves, wraparounds, speed floaters and fun, then sparky up/down surfing and airs.

One of the biggest things Lincoln loved about the 7S Hook was the ability to link turns together without 3 or 4 bottom turns. It’s a board that slows you down a bit and smooths your surfing out, which most of us need. The 7S Hook provides a nice change up in your approach to surfing.

VERDICT

Given 3 people rode this, we thought we’d just insert some quotes from each rider, to get a feel for how it went for them.

Tim: “I ride a lot of twinnys, so this one threw me out initially. It doesn’t really ride like a twin. Rather than subtle weight shifts into turns, power in the middle, then subtle out, you can go full tilt all the way without too much concern. The FCS Modern Keel fins I used being way back toward the tail meant a few times I got caught on the one rail and stuffed a bunch of waves. Once I stopped nursing things though, it really became a lot of fun. There’s that tail release at the end of turns I love from a twin fin, but it’s much more forgiving if you get over excited and push super hard on bottom turns. You also get less of a flat transition between turns that you do with some twinnys. The speed in the pocket is pretty wild, it flies like a meth-soaked seagull. On the flats or through fat sections though it loses a bit of its zest, so for me it was all about keeping close to the power of the wave and only putting on the accelerator if there was a nice long section ahead. Better on walled waves than fat, sloppy ones. Epic for mad downturns, the odd roundhouse and keeping you on your toes whenever you stand up. I’d happily ride it in most 2-3ft rights as my go-to board, but any bigger (or lefts) and I’d be straight onto a shorty. Don’t get me wrong, it goes good on lefts compared to other twins, just not as good as just about any thruster. A ripper board to slot into the quiver as a fun option.”

Joe: “I loved it, the 7S Hook got me out in the water more often when the waves were small or not amazing. During the time I was riding it there was some banks around home that were picture perfect for the board. Historically I’m not a twin fin guy, been on the Simon Anderson program my whole life, but this board opened my thinking up to how much fun they can be in the right conditions. For me, it’d be a 3rd or 4th board to have in the quiver and an amazing addition around summer.”

Linc: “I’ve always been of the opinion that twin fins are some of the funnest boards you’ll ever have in your quiver, and the 7S Hook re-confirmed that for me. I rode this a few times out at 2ft Greenmount and it went insanely fast but also held it’s rail for the most part (don’t try to snap out of a cutback, I skipped out a bunch). The ability to get around sections, float with speed and generally enjoy surfing with a different approach is what had me falling in love with the 7S Hook. The extra buoyancy the volume and materials gave me allowed me to slow down my approach and take time to lengthen a carve or just visualise a turn clearer – instead of reacting after triple bottom turning and forcing a turn. Personally, I’d recommend this anyone who’s chasing something a little spicy in their quiver or who are maybe looking for something to smooth their surfing out.”

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The GSI 7S Hook is widely available globally, anywhere that stocks GSI boards are, more than likely, going to have one of these to run your hands over. Need to know the closest? Hit up their retailer page for more info.

Alternatively, you can get all Web 2.0 and buy one online direct from GSI. Do that, and chase down a pair of the FCS Modern Keel fin sets as well.

Price wise you’re looking at around $700 AUD (with free shipping), which ain’t too bad considering this is a board that won’t be your everyday stick (meaning it’ll last longer) and it’s made with Innegra Matrix glass.

LengthWidthThickVolumeFins (Recommended NOT Supplied)Approx Weight Range
(Based On Novice To Intermediate Skill Level)
5’620 1/8″2 3/8″29.20ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)70kg / 154lb or less
5’820 3/8″2 7/16″31.30ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)75kg / 165lb
5’1020 5/8″2 1/2″33.40ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)80kg / 176lb
6’020 7/8″2 9/16″35.60ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)85kg / 187lb
6’221 1/8″2 5/8″38.20ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)90kg / 1198lb
6’421 3/8″2 11/16″40.60ltrFCSII Modern Keel (Controlled feel) FCSII Power Twin (Loose Feel)95kg / 209lb +

Global Surf Industries 7S Hook Surfboard Review

If you enjoyed this review you can visit our Product Reviews page for more, including a recent run of Springsuits and Boardcovers. We’ll have more Surfboard reviews coming soon 🙂

Again, if you’re interested in buying the GSI 7S Hook hit the links below ::

Buy from GSI’s Online Store
Check GSI’s Stockist list


Images via :

GSI // Jesse Little (an IG account worth following) // And we shot some ourselves.