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Fanatic Shark

This is a board I have been looking at for a very, very long time.

BAD NEWS - The Shark was discontinued in 2015 !!!
                         Perhaps this will drop the price of used Sharks !!!

as usual ... that link has changed and I used the WayBack Machine to get this:

Posted by: craig (IP Logged)
Date: August 11, 2014 01:55PM
Hi Joe,

Indeed the Shark line has been replaced by the more modern Gecko shape, over a 2yr period of testing and development, we have taken all the best characteristics of the Shark and blended them into the latest Gecko 120-156+ sizes, to have the best of both worlds. So you´ll notice the new Gecko 120 is just slightly longer and narrower, than the 2013/4 Gecko, this is a trend on the other sizes like 133/146/156+ too, so Shark customers will feel at home on the Gecko´s, but also enjoy the benefits of the modern shapes.

We have had prototypes in many of our WS centres and the feedback, also on the 2013/4 Gecko´s has been overwhelmingly in favour of the Gecko concept, so it was with a lot of thought and consideration that we reduced our Freeride line to two shapes, with the Hawk and Gecko, making it easier for shops, centres and customers to choose the ideal boards?

Good sailing,

More bad news - Jeff in  Australia went from a Fanatic StingRay (which he busted) to a Shark 150 and felt Shark did NOT plane up as early/well as the Ray :-( On the other hand, Roni and Rami are loving their Shark 150 LTDs. I will make a point of doing a FULL review on the 150 LTDs next summer - with videos !!! Jeff changed his mind about the board and LOVES it now = his favourite, fastest and best in chop. As for myself in 2017 - purchased an older model (2006) Shark 145 HRS. Will report and film about it !!

I was looking at the Fanatic Viper and Shark when the Viper first came out in 2005. The Viper was of interest because I was coming off an old longboard. The Shark interested me since then because it was a great potential starting shortboard ie no centreboard. Some of my fellow windsurfers seem to consider shortboards as those used in high winds only. That is fine, however, we do live in a light wind area.

I asked our local Fanatic salesman for his wisdom on the Shark. People are always calling it a "beginner" board. his words, font size and colour ....

Most who talk shit, haven’t tried one.

All who love and rave about them, own one.

So tell me, who’s talking shit?

Wisdom enough for ya?


When I finally did purchase my first shortboard {brand new} in 2007, the Shark was a little more money. Perhaps I still should have chosen the Shark at that time due to its HRS cover {high resistance skin}. The AHD FastForward that I purchased did NOT have an extra protective coating and as such easily dented or scratched. This does not affect performance - only looks and resale value.

Here is a Fanatic Video where the Shark and Hawk are discussed and described:
That video has been removed from youtube - will try to find one similiar, butt for now here is one about the shark 2013...
Better one found - Nik Baker speaking about the different Fanatic boards and how they compare...

As you saw, there are LTD versions of the 135 and 150 litre Shark models... These are more sensitive to dings and catapaults and require expertise. For myself, an HRS covering is useful and my skills may not even be up to determining performance differences between the HRS and LTD models. The Hawk is considered to be a free-ride more performance oriented Fanatic board. Once again, are your skills up to knowing the difference ? The Shark is the get up and go board = KISS.
Keep It Simple and Standard.  or as I always say - let it RIP {and NO that is NOT rest in pieces :-) }

What I like about the Shark is it can get you started and then take you really far. There seemed to be some concern when Fanatic changed the volume and dimensions, butt Tinho Dornellas, a master instructor of Calema Florida fame, has put those ideas to rest !!
as usual - websites change :-( and thus, this is what I got from the WayBack Machine:

Up until 2009 Fanatic had one of the strongest line ups of performance/user friendly boards on the market, which bore the Shark model name. All boards in that family where very good, especially the 145 and 130.
So you might imagine that I was pretty apprehensive about the newer models that replaced my tools of the trade. So recently I got a Shark 135 which replaced the 130.  That is like replacing a Ford GT40 with something new, how could that be good news? Well lo and behold, the new 135 is BETTER. Wow I said that! Well that board simply blew me away at how nice it performs on the water, and jibing on this board is an absolute joy.  It planes without fuss, and the board instantly has a lively ride, but totally controllable. Being wider than the 130, I expected it to be more “porky� , but NO, on the contrary, it far surpassed the 130's abilities which honestly is a total surprise to me. The Shape of the deck on this board is also much better than some larger boards I have tested before. The static stability is just right, so you have a lot of confidence in tacking or just schlogging around.. Job well done Fanatic, now please keep this board for at least 10 years. It will be an Icon.
The Shark has many volumes - from 105 to 165 !! I thought it only went as far as 150. The widths are from 65 to 83 cm. At 83 cm the 165 liter board is cited as being able to handle a 10-oh sail and comes with a 52 cm fin. The more common sizes are the 120 and 135 litre models ... Even the 135 litre board with 73 cm width comes with a 48 cm fin and can handle sails up to 9-oh.

So, these are easy riding boards that can handle quite large sails. This means they are ideal for light wind areas like where I live. Sails that large on flat water with an early planing board like this just blast. How much more performance does one need ??

Two things people worry about are tighter jibes and handling chop. These are critical performance areas as well. Let me see if we can find some magazine reviews for more detailed information ...

The German Windsurf Magazine suggests that the 135 board is able to come out of turns at break neck speeds and even handles laydown jibes very well for its width.
They do suggest a smaller fin for the smaller sails and this makes total sense since the supplied 48 cm fin is more aimed an 8-oh sails and this board can go all the way down to 6-oh where fins are typically under 40 cm !! In terms of performance the magazine is saying the board should satisfy the requirements for an amateur racer as well.

When Tinho evaluated the Shark 130 LTD originally he stated," It swallows the chop. Actually, it flies over it. There is an occasional tip tap on incoming chop just to remind you of how fast you are going, but nothing like any of the bothersome clanker and raucous clatter of the competition.

The jibe is great. Tight arcs, wide arcs, no problem. The standard fin is outstanding, light, proper twist, and perfectly matched to the board's function." This is why he was so concerned when Fanatic announced changes on this board. As seen earlier he raves about the new 135 even more !!

Found an article in the windsurfingmag of May 2006 where they reviewed the Fanatic Shark 145 LTD. They felt the Shark of this size was aimed at middle to heavyweights, planed early, had a steady jibe and went well at slow speeds ie schlogging. Several Experts gave the board a perfect ten rating !!! {It is unfortunate that this magazine is no longer with us - it is already missed dearly !!!}  states The "Shark is a board especially dedicated to freeride lovers. And it is dedicated to both advanced or beginner riders, so that they will both enjoy high quality windsurfing sessions. The Shark is built on the successful pattern of the famous Eagle, but is more forgiving and tackles the waves in a gentle way so it can be used by beginner sailor without any effort or hassle. The shape is compact in features and has balanced rocker lines with a narrower tail which assure enough power for high speeds and extra maneuverability too. "

Let's see if we cannot find some videos :-)

I find it interesting that most of these videos are not of the marketing type. They are regular people going out and having simple fun. These boards are made to go out and have fun and yet still go fast !! The only negative comment I found was on the Auzzie forums where someone claimed it was too tame. From what I have seen and read, it may seem tame, butt it ain't lame :-)

The French Magazine Wind Magazine has a piece on the Shark 150 in FEB 2012. Hope there are no issues posting it here - I give them FULL credit !!! called "Liveliness in its Sweetness". I prefer to call it "lots of life in its soft ride". Soft ride is NOT a bad thing. It reminds me of when I rode in some sportier cars and found them to be too stiff and almost painful to ride. When going over chop, I prefer a softer ride over teeth chattering excitement. I will put some translation after ...

Dating from 2010, the Shark 150 has a compact shape, shorter and wider than average. The board is well made with a fin that requires no tools to mount it. The HRS construction places the Fanatic among the lightest of the group! This board is also available in LTD based on carbon Kevlar.
{Personal Note: I would have thought the HRS made the board heavier. Also, what is interesting is, the HRS boards have NO vent plug !! }

On the Water
Strap inserts straps placed back slightly on the outside of the deck on this Fanatic bring a very appreciable, driving comfort due to ergonomic feet position that perfectly matches the roundness of the rail. Globally stable, good travel speeds are still very accessible. The planing is attained smoothly while remaining very competitive.

Once planing, this board is quick and fun to navigate. It navigates on the fin , very much alive on the water above. Consequently, the Fanatic goes over chop without tapping on it ; it goes over it. One does not feel anything underfoot as the Shark is alive and free, we provide effortless control as we remain in moderate wind conditions for the sail being  used.

When Aeolus panics {Greek god of the winds freaks out} ,there is a tendency to lift in the gusts which may make the ride more technical. These flights mean the pilot needs to know how to control his board in changing conditions.

The jibe excels in  sweetness, is easy to engage and is scalable if one seeks to attack or to tighten the radius of the curve. Its thin rails on the back really helps to cut its curve to turn in place ie tight curves

Highly valued for its feel on the water, its ease of riding and ergonomic comfort, the Shark provides good sensations ie FUNThis is a design evolves continually to give pleasure even to a higher level of rider ie not just for beginners. If the conditions are alive, we may see a smaller range of sail use in strong winds, forcing down a sail size quickly, which can also be an advantage.

It takes some basic skills and to be resourceful to be able to appreciate the true colours of the Shark! Once again, this board is NOT just for beginners and even suggest some skills to appreciate it.
Here is the Wind Magazine summary chart...

here is a piece from WindSport Magazine 2013 gear guide- now realize i may not have listed specs
is where Greogor posted this :-)

Unfortunately in 2015 there will be NO MORE SHARKS :-(

and here we are in SEPT 2014 and this board is for sale @ 2-rad $%^&*
god, i want it , but my boss Roni is looking at it too
will give him 2 days head start :-)
after that my AHD goes for sale !!

Roni bought the board in 2014, but does NOT use it much. Other windsurf buddy, Rami, also purchased a SHARK 150 LTD:

Unfortunately when he tried to sell it in 2016, I had already invested in the AHD SL2 132. Had I known ... Also had a chance to purchase a Shark 130 LTD for a decent price @ 2-rad. Bruno told me to grap it on-line - MANY people enquired about it. Helmut suggested against it since I already had so many boards. I looked at the 2016 sessions and decided against it due to lack of outings in the 7.0-8.5 range with planing. Would have to sell the AHD, etc , etc.
MUCH better off hoping to do a windsurf trip next year.
For my current skills (or lack thereof) this would have been the board for me
Now I will continue to struggle with the AHD SL2
which is okay too ...

In 2016 EVERYONE keeps telling me that I need an "easier", more user friendly board to get in the straps. Would have loved to do that with a SHARK 150 LTD, but ... So, In early 2017 I put a deposit on a 2006 Shark 145 HRS... Ron has purchased a Gecko 120 to replace it and absolutely LOVES the Gecko. Jeff has complained that it (his Shark 150) does NOT plane up as early as he had hoped. Zokay, I will put an 8.x sail on it and foot straps up front like in the pic... (After some time, it became Jeff's favourite board - fastest and best in chop !!!) Here is my "new board" :

Ron says it is a 2007, but images from the web seem to indicate 2006 max. Internet says the board is 263x75 cm and takes sails from 6-9. On the board it seemed to indicate 5.5-8 m². The 2005 does not seem to have the same graphics nor dimensions (260x69  and 5.5 - 8.5).  The 2007 does NOT have the same graphics as the pic above and as per internet is 263x75 and 6.0 - 9.0 m² sails. So, I will assume the board was the same between 2006 and 2007 with simply a change in graphics ... Went through my archives and found a Fanatic brochure from 2005/2006 and that is the board and the sail range is clearly marked as 6.0 - 9.0 m² and came with a 50 cm freeride fin. Found a used 52 cm fin on windsurfing.qc from bigmike - will see if I can get it for a good price - this brings the price of the board up when trying to sell it 😒 (supposed to have an OFO of 51 cm - reason for 50 cm fin coming with the board - aimed for MAX back in the day)

Some things to note, the board has NO vent screw and quite rounded rails... It is long by today's standards, but that is okay with me !! Based on previous analyses ... I used to say the ideal sail for a board was its width divided by ten, which suggests 7.5 m² for this board and would NOT surprise me in the least. Since the board originally came with a 50 cm fin, I would be inclined to believe the board was slated to handle 9 meter sails. This board came with NO fin. When I sell it, I will need to find a fin to let go with it - easier to sell that way ...

In 2009 the German windsurf magazine did a report on the Shark 145 ...
They marked it as 152 liters and 9.4 kg with same dimensions as the 2006/2007. In their tests they called it the sportiest and yet the longest board of the test. "The board glides very well, is fast and runs freely over the fin..." They say it is less comfortable in chop, which surprises me with the 75 cm narrow width ...

Once I get the board here, on the water,  etc, I will do a separate post ..
For now will continue here ...
This is what Tinho Dornellas of calema sports said about the Shark 145 in 2005

Fanatic Shark 145

This board surprised me the most for how easily it planed. I put a 9.8 sail in light winds when no one was out sailing , everyone waiting for winds to build. With the conditions I had, I was expecting a fair amount of schlogging to the windline, but the minute I was on the off the shore, the board surged, wanting to plane. A smooth pump and the board was off on a plane. Frankly I did not expect this from a board that is fairly short, and having compared to boards of similar size in the Exocet, Starboard  and Tabou line.
Once on the plane, the ride is quick and the board is very maneuverable. The Jibe is OK , predictable and very accommodating to different techniques and rider input, always reliable.
The mast track is quite far back, so be careful to place it well forward of halfway.

The footstraps are placed perfectly for different rider stance and weight, as well as skill level and type of sailing to be done on this board. One thing I really like on these new fanatics is the multiple footstrap positions you are offered. Most European boards feature a footstrap width that is so extremely wide (for booties) that sailing barefoot feels like your feet are dancing around constantly. Not with these boards. You can close or widen the attachment position so your foot is either super snug or comfortably loose.

The overall looks of the board are very appealing with a polished and very harmonious outline. I don't usually pay attention to this (other than wincing at some butt ugly noses on some boards out there..) But the fact that the board behaves so well in rough conditions has me looking closer at what the nice outline is doing.
This is the same I found on the Eagle boards.

The Fin supplied is of very good quality and performance, and very light for its size.

I highly recommend this board for those looking for a board in this category, especially if you deal with choppy or wavy conditions. This board deals with rough conditions with total ease.

Heavier weight guys in the 100 kg category should love this board for its high wind abilities. It has the volume for underpowered sailing and it does not become too big when it blows.
This is also the board for light weights and women that seek that first high performance board to advance their skills such as using footstraps carve jibing, and planing.

Sails 9.8 ? 6.0

For 9.8-8.5 sails:
T= 145 cm
FO4, RO2

Intermediate sailing
T = 145 cm
FI 3
RI 2
Stronger winds, sails 8.0 -7.0
T= 142-140 cm
3/6/06 Lately I have tested the LTD with a Meanline B 46 cm and the board became an excellent jibing board. Nice surprise!!!

i even found a website that says the 2007 Shark 145 was good for 5-10 m² sails :

that is a bit much
with a 50 cm fin coming with the board, 10 m² is for sure the max sail size
would guess it is like my AHD FF 160/79 - best for 6-8 meter sails
Ron used 6.5 @ 135 cm mark in 16-20 winds, but is much lighter
Tinho warned to put bigger sails at 145 cm mark

Here is the sticker from a later year: 6.5 - 9.5 !!

As you can see, my interest in the Fanatic Shark is more/bigger than ever. I am trying to determine the history of the board - when it came about until its retirement from the fleet in 2015....

Somewhere around 1993 there was a Fanatic Ultra Shark 291. I used to have a Fanatic Ultra CAT from around that time and so, imagine that was standard name for the boards of that time. This board, the Ultra Shark seemed to be VERY well liked. It was 125 liters and 291x59 cm with a trim box that took 30-44 cm fins. With those fins and board size/shape, it makes sense that it was slated for sails 5.0 to 7.5 meters...

It seems somewhere around 1995 there was a newer version of only 118 liters (286x55 cm) and was known as the Fanatic Mega Shark 286. It was considered "high strung" compared to the 291.

Somewhere around 2003/2004/2005 there were the square nosed Sharks 129 and 142.  The 129 and 142 were also available in LTD versions... What happened between 1995 and 2003 ?? In 1996 they/Fanatic seemed to have the Snake, BEE, Fly, CAT, Falcon, Hawk and Class-X (NO Shark ??) Also found references to an Ultra Gecko around 1995 ?? So, they brought the name back around 2015??

In 2005/6/7 there were the Sharks 135, 145 and 160 with LTD versions of the 135 and 145. These boards already had the rounded noses...

In 2008 the sizes were changed to 130/145/160 still with the two smaller sizes available in LTD.

In 2010 they must have realized the Shark was a popular freeride board and put some Eagle influence on their shapes and came out with 100/115/125/135/150/165 sizes. It was still the 135 and 150 that were available in LTD.

From 2011 until 2014 Fanatic dropped the number of Sharks down to 105/115/125/135/150/165.

I am very curious to know which was the best seller, most liked, etc ...
On youtube one still sees videos posted of the Shark 291 which was pre-2000 !!
NOT bad for a freeride board
Will the Gecko do as well ??

Have to put a decent Shark 145 video here... Found one - Hatteras with that board and an Ezzy 9.5 !!

These videos disappearing or going "PRIVATE" is REALLY frustrating $%^&*(
Here is a video in 2022 of myself on my Fanatic Shark 145 in gusty SW 15-45 kph winds with my Gaastra GTX free-race 8.5 m² sail: 

In early 2017 I tried to put a hold on a fin @ 2-rad and deal it down from $150. It ended up getting sold  before I could sell my True Ames SB 58 cm weed fin. Was hoping to get $150 for that fin and then purchased the one @ 2-rad. Bruno did NOT warn me and it was sold ... 
Lesson learned. Instead purchased a Curtis 47 cm slalom fin and had it sent to my brother-out-law in NY. This cost me closer to $100 CDN. Can't wait to try it ... The fin AND the board ... but we just got more snow on 01APR2017...

Here we are in 2022 now and I have not posted any videos of myself on this board. I guess ideally it will be with a 7-oh in decent medium winds like 30-50kph :-) In June of 2022 I purchased some more GoPro mounts and am now just waiting for some wind - after recovering from covid-19 !!


  1. Thanks for all the work on this surfing blog.
    I'm learning a lot from it, although it is keeping me from doing my work :)
    Ron (Netherlands)

  2. I'm wondering which board you think is more appropriate for a first board for someone like me who is a 190 lb beginner able to sail in light conditions with the daggerboard mostly up and has mastered the basics, the viper 75 (160 ltrs) or the shark 165L? do I really need the daggerboard on the 75? my conditions are the more or less same as yours as I'm in Toronto :) I would prefer the shark as I will outgrow it much slower, no?

    1. Actually , at your weight and ability, I see NO reason to not go for a Shark 150. At 78 cm wide, it is still wide enough for learning and not too wide to handle light chop. With a 50 cm fin , you can use an 8 or 9-oh sail no problem. The Shark has a bigger fin and you can use it it light to mid winds - - anywhere from 14 knots to about 20 with light chop. I am still dreaming of a Shark HRS 135 , but i am not sure you are ready for that size yet. GOOD LUCK - had my last outing on the water for 2013 yesterday :-)

    2. It's warming up! 2014 season starting soon eh?

    3. Checked further south and access to water is there. Locally need to wait a little bit and get my longboard out of storage.

  3. Hi, this is a really nice post ... and blog ... do you mind if I reblog your post?
    I have newer version of shark 120 and I agree, it is a really good board. Easy to sail, it can go fast. A bit heavy compared to carbons but great allrounder ...

    1. Oh yeah ... my blog is
      so you can check that I'll not reblog at some inapropriate place :-)

    2. if it is on the internet - it is available for copy :-)
      when possible, one refers back to the source
      i have on occasion forgotten to do that with photos
      now i try harder to credit the "owner"
      so, YES, please use the information and refer back to here :-)

  4. Looks like a really nice board.


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