A super fun, fast, lively surfboard that PERFORMS in small waves, this is the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine Surfboard Review…and it’s DOPE.
One of the most fun small wave machines I’ve ridden in a while, the Dope Machine loves to tear apart smaller, weaker, flatter faced waves.
Hope you dig this surfboard review of the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine!
Have a question? Wondering if the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine is the right board for you? Let’s talk about it in the comments…
+ Great shape for maximising fun & performance in smaller, weaker surf
+ A great option for a better surfer who still wants to move in small, weak conditions – OR – a novice/intermediate who wants to get onto a shorter board and access a smaller wave range
+ Nice, precise rail and tail
+ Blazing fast small-wave / summer board
– On Misfit’s site, the wave range is listed from 2-5 feet (Aussie scale) but I wouldn’t surf this board overhead unless the waves were very slow and flat faced
The Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine at 5’10” x 21 x 2 3/4 at 40L’s. I started riding the Dope Machine as a thruster with my trusty Futures EA Blakstix…and I hated it! I swapped to the new large Futures Fins HS1 Generations Series fins with matching Haydenshapes Generation Series trailers and it was magic. Just goes to show, fins can and will make or break a board!
Standard Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine dimensions and volumes may be found at the bottom of this page.
Best Wave Type
The Dope Machine is intended to allow you to throw it around in the smaller, weaker swells that we get at different times of the year when the waves aren’t as good. I thought the happy zone was between waist and head high in weaker, slower, flatter faced waves.
- Slightly pulled nose and tail versus the more Mini Simmons-esque Misfit Sinister Kid
- Wider plan shape but slightly more streamlined outline vs. other tiny wave grovelers
- Relatively flat from the center with a touch of nose / tail rocker
- Subtle, performance oriented bottom concaves
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Hey! Welcome to Benny’s Boardroom. Hope you’re well, hope you had a good New Year’s, good holidays, happy Kwanzaa, or Christmas, or whatever it is that you do.
This is the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine, and it’s pretty dope. I enjoy this board. It’s an amazing little summer board. Right now, in Sydney, the waves are pretty small, they’re pretty weak. I asked you before, if you’re from California, to tell me about how good the waves are so I may live vicariously through you. Because most of the time, at this time of year in Sydney, we get small, low period, weak wind swells, usually coming from the Northeast. That’s a pretty typical pattern that we get here over Summer.
The Dope Machine is intended to be a more radical performance, small wave board versus another Misfit model that it’s kind of loosely based off of, called the Sinister Kid. Both are collaborations with the Dead Coffin Club. The Sinister Kid was kind of like a performance Mini Simmons, so really short, wide, fat outline and kind of a roll vee and some deep concaves underneath, intended as a mellow, fun, kind of point break board.
This Dope Machine is intended to allow you to throw it around in the smaller, weaker swells that we get at different times of the year when the waves aren’t as good.
If you look through the outline of the Dope Machine, you can see that they have pulled the nose in slightly. They’ve pulled the tail in as well. Overall, the width throughout the board, even through the wide point of the board, which is about here, they’ve pulled the whole outline in a little bit, to make it a little bit more streamlined. It’s still a very wide outline.
The only time you’re going to take this out is when it’s quite small. Pulling in the width of the outline, making the nose a little bit tighter and the tail a little bit tighter, putting a little bit more rocker in there, you can see it’s got just a little bit more lift in the nose, not too much, and then it’s relatively flat from the center, and then a little bit more of a kick out of the tail. Those elements combine to make the board feel a lot more lively and easier to throw around in the smaller conditions.
The concaves are a little more subtle, which you’d expect for this type of board, with a more performance-driven outline. I think they’ve kept a little bit of the rolled vee up front, a very slight single concave, and then comes through to a more pronounced double at the back, but not as much as the Misfit Sinister Kid. Again, this is intended to be able to sit tighter in the pocket of those smaller, weaker waves, and allow you to turn it sharper. I’ve had some great surfs on this, on those days where it’s about stomach to shoulder high, weak, low period, like seven, eight second wind swells, kind of rolling waves coming through. This board just gets up and flies down the line.
Now, who do I think this would be good for? I think this would be great for somebody who is a really good surfer who wants to have a really tight, small package that isn’t going to deviate too far from what they’re normally riding.
This won’t limit the better surfer to really throw it around. It’s still a big wide, fat outline. You’re not going to be able to surf this like you can surf a high performance shortboard, but you’re not going to be able to surf a high performance shortboard in the waves that you can surf this in. That’s the trade-off.
The other person I think this would be really good for … Actually, I’m just emailing back and forth with a lovely gentleman named Antoine. Antoine’s based up at Byron, and he’s at the beginning of his surfing journey. He’s getting up to his feet, and he can get down the line. He’s surfing a JS Industries Blak Box 2, which is a fantastic board for a lot of the average, everyday conditions we enjoy around the east coast of Australia. He was looking for a board to compliment that quiver and allow him to surf down a bit. This would be perfect for that type of person: somebody who’s not really a beginner.
I wouldn’t recommend this to a beginner, just because it’s a little bit more tuned to somebody who can kind of move the board around, and who’s getting on the face of the wave, and can do basic turns at the very least. I think this type of board for Antoine, or somebody like Antoine, that’s kind of novice, intermediate, getting better and surfing a lot, this board would be perfect for you.
The rails are nice. They have a bit of width and thickness through them, but they are rolled off a bit, so again, they feel a little bit more precise. I did some turns on this board that really surprised me.
My Misfit Dope Machine is 5’10” x 21 x 2 3/4 at 40L’s. This is where I’d be for a small-wave summer board. It’s not quite a tiny wave groveler and I wouldn’t take this out when it’s knee-high. To me, this is a waist-high to stomach-or-chest-high affair. I wouldn’t surf it much over that either, unless the waves are flatter-faced. I think this board is, again, it picks up so much speed, it’s so fast that I think if you were surfing waves that had a little bit more punch and push, you’d want something that’s going to manage and control that speed of better waves. This board is just blazing, blazing fast.
Experience in the Surf
How does this thing ride in the water? I’ve said that I think this board excels in those weaker, slower, less powerful, wind-swell type conditions. It handles average, everyday conditions, but it doesn’t mind a nice little lined-up face as well. Some of the best waves I had on this were at a little wave just five, ten minutes up the road from me, at a little beach break, and especially in the summer, the angle of the beach gets these fantastic flatter-faced runners from those nor’east wind swells. You get these nice long lines so you can get these nice long rides out of it, and this type of board is just perfect for those conditions.
I did, I think, one of my best forehand turns ever in Sydney. For some reason, when I’m overseas, I can get to the point where I’m doing really strong forehand turns over and over and over again, but when I’m in Sydney, I don’t have much time on the wave, and I find I don’t do it as much.
One of the waves that I took, I just dropped into it and did a couple little pumps down the line, and just spun it around and the tail, that diamond tail, which I think really compliments the outline, that diamond tail allows the water to break a little bit sooner, and therefore it gives you a tremendous amount of release through turns.
I found myself in small waves that didn’t have much push, surprisingly getting a lot of speed and doing some big, big turns on my forehand. Doing a forehand turn, to me, is much harder than doing a turn on your backhand. Your backhand turn is almost the same action as your bottom turn, so it’s the most natural, to me, anyways.
This board, again, great in those types of waves. I did surf this up a bit, a few times. I surfed it up to about head-high. Again, it’s such a fast board, it picks up speed so quickly, and it is quite flat as well. To me, it likes the flatter faces. It’s not the type of board you necessarily want to have when it’s really steep and hollow and critical, even if it’s smaller and steeper and hollow and critical. Although it does handle a steeper face ok, there are better options.
I like it best when we’re talking flatter-faced, weaker waves. Perfect typical Sydney summer waves. That’s when I think the Dope Machine really excels.
I’m reminded again in writing this board just how important your fin set-up is. For this type of board, I would have thought, because I’d be surfing it in small waves, that I almost immediately would gravitate towards the Futures EA Blackstix, which are great at generating speed, and I thought they would just perfectly compliment this board. I put them in as a thruster, and I hated it. I literally hated it. I surfed it a few times, and I was getting so frustrated with the board.
Anyways, Craig, who’s a very good surfer, as you know from the show, looked at the fins, and he’s like, “Nah, those aren’t the right fins.” He’s like, “Go something bigger, go the quad, go something wider.” Normally, I wouldn’t put a quad in this type of board. I don’t know why I started with the thruster. Either way, I switched up to these brand new Haydenshapes Generation Series fins. These are the large Haydenshapes Generations, and then I’ve got the Generation quad rears at the back here.
It was literally like night and day. I went from a few surfs of being like, “I’m not riding that board again, I hated it,” to just absolutely loving it and feeling exactly what the board is intended to do, once I moved to that fin set-up. Remind yourself when you get a board for the first time: if you put a set of fins in it, and it doesn’t feel right, try surfing a couple times, and then if it really doesn’t click with you, switch the fins out. It makes such a difference.
In this case, it was a bit surprising, because I thought those fins would have been perfect for this style of board, even though they’re medium-sized, but larger fins in a wider, more surface area, outline tail, do help to get the board to do what you want it to do, which was what was lacking before. I just couldn’t get it to go where I wanted it. It just didn’t feel good.
Those are my fins of choice for the Dope Machine. I’m actually riding these now on a few different boards, and they are just magic. I daresay they’re my favorite Futures Fins ever. They’re really great. I’ll actually do something specifically on these fins, because they have some really interesting design features. Hayden (Cox) actually does design all his fins in conjunction with Futures, and he’s done some interesting things with these, so I’ll go into those a little bit later. That is my fin set-up for the Dope Machine and this was a great, great set-up.
If we go to the pros and the cons of the board, the good, the good and the not-so-good of the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine. A great, great, little, fun, fast, lively board that really performs in small waves. I emphasize performs in small waves. This board is not just a cruisy, down the line, point break board. I think you could surf this in a point break, but it’s not intended to do just that.
It’s intended to really be turned and thrown around, and it’s intended to be pushed in smaller waves. It does that extremely well. I think, again, those subtle design changes, the tighter outline, that cool diamond tail, the slightly lower rails and the slightly more subtle bottom contours all combine to make this a really great little board for those smaller, weaker waves.
The downside? I know that Misfit has on their site that you could surf this up to even five foot (Aussie scale). I can’t see myself ever surfing this board up that high. I probably wouldn’t take it above shoulder-high, unless you’re talking, like, a Manly Beach for example, that usually has really flat-faced waves even when it gets bigger. I think this could be really fun in those types of conditions, but beyond that, I wouldn’t surf this board up too much. I think this is, again, maybe head-high if it’s flat, down to about stomach-high, maybe a touch smaller.
That is the Misfit Surfboards Dope Machine surfboard review. It is a dope little ride, an awesome little board for summer. If you’re in California, or you’re in Europe, and you’re going out of your good wave season now, into a period of smaller waves, definitely check one of these out, they’re awesome. If you’re in Sydney, get one of these right now, because it is perfect for what we have right now for the east coast of Australia.
That is the review for the week, hope you’re doing well from wherever you are on the other side of the internet.
Stock Standard Dimensions & Volume
Standard Misfit Dope Machine Surfboard Dimensions & Volumes available at the Misfit Shapes:
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