Interview – Mitch Abshere


Fins, fins, and fins.  Some people still don’t realize how important fins are on a surfboard.  Luckily we got the time to interview Captain Fin Co.’s owner/creator Mitch Abshere.  From getting knowledge from the late and great Donald Takayama and using that knowledge into his own fins, Mitch first started making fins out of his garage and from there it just took off.  Now Captain Fin Co. is sold worldwide and works with many top professional surfers like Kassia Meador, Alex Knost, Tyler Warren, the list just goes on, creating top-notch fins.  He’s bringing the ‘fun’ back into surfing. Thanks Mitch for taking the time for an interview, especially since Captain Fin Co. is growing so much. First starting from just making fins to now moving into apparel, showing a new style in surfing.

Who are you and where are you currently right now?

Mitch Abshere – at work in Oceanside CA

When did you start surfing?

About age 10

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

How did you first start becoming interested in surfing?

My body board was stolen from the beach one day. And my cousins invited me to go surfing. I loved it!

What meaning does surfing hold for you and how has it changed your life?

Surfing is a big part of my life. It’s pretty much the reason I started Captain Fin.  For the love of surfing and adventure.

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Where is your favorite surf spot?

Probably Trestles

When you were growing up surfing there weren’t many people riding traditional logs except yourself, Joel Tudor and a handful of others.  What got you into the more traditional way of longboarding?

I think it was watching old Bruce Brown movies that Donald Takayama gave me and Tom Wagner pushing me to ride old boards.

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

You have worked with the great Donald Takayama in the past.  What did you learn from him about fins?

He really showed me how the change of your fin and where place it can change the way a board works. From bad to good and good to bad.

Tell me how did Captain Fin Co. started.

It started out of my garage, taking old fins and reshaping into what I thought would make board work better. Painting them to what I thought was cool. And then it just evolved from there.

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Photo by : Brooks Sterling

Who are some of riders for Captain Fin Co. and who are your favorites to work with?

On the Fin side of riders there  are guys like Alex Knost , Kassia Meador , Dane Reynolds , Scotty Stopnik, Joel Tudor , Tanner Gudauskas  are some. One of my favorites to work with is Alex Knost , he always wants to try new types of fins. Really most of the riders like trying new types of fin designs.
For Clothing and Fins Mitch King is awesome. Young kid who surfs amazing and is a talented artist.

How can changing a fin improve the performance of a surfboard?

Having the right fin can make the performance of your board come alive.  For example if you have a modern day retro shortboard with a really wide tail try a larger fin to give you more hold. It comes down to individual feel, get out there and experiment with different shapes and sizes. You will be amazed at what it does for the performance of your board.

Photo by : Unknown

Photo by : Unknown

What message do you want to show everyone with Captain Fin Co.

That surfing or skateboarding, or really whatever it is that you’re into should be fun! Captain Fin was started to push the fun, adventure part in life and to not take yourself or surfing so serious.

What shaper do you currently work with now?

Chris Christenson . He is one of the best shapers. The amount of different type of surfboards he can shape is amazing.

Photo by : Unknown

Photo by : Unknown

Can you list some of the boards currently in your quiver and which board are you riding the most lately.

All boards are by Christenson

9’6 bonnoville

6’10 c-bucket

6’0 c-hawk

11 Chris Craft

What can we expect from you and Captain Fin Co. in the future?

We just launched our first boardshort line, which we are super excited about.  The feedback has been amazing. Our apparel line is growing every season along with accessories. On the fin side of things, we are launching an entire new line of fins this Summer which we are really excited about. More to come on this soon.

Photo by : Jack Belli

Photo by : Jack Belli

Also, will you start doing products for the female surfer?

Yes, stay tuned.


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