Why collect these old surfboards?

As I watch my new custom order, triple fly, swallow tail, twin fin, come to life I ask myself, "so why do we collect all these old surfboards?" "what is that we are chasing?"

I feel what we are really collecting are the tangible remainders of a fleeting moment in time, in culture, in art, in sport.
I dislike a cliche but I cant help but think that surfing is like an evolving ballet set against the ever changing back drop of the ocean. Collecting a revolutionary surfboard that was part of this evolution, part of this performance is like collecting one of Rudolf Nureyev high kicks from a performance of Swan Lake, or its like owning one George bests goal scoring kicks, or keeping hold of the sound of the ribbon breaking when Usain Bolt breaks a world record.

Perfect condition is only a small part of the desirability of a collectible surfboard. George greenough by his own admission was a pretty rough shaper and poor quality glasser. Yet his board shaped for Chris Brock sold for $40,000 in Hawaii recently. For owning a 70's Greenough is to own part of his dream where the spacemen told him to build a boat that looked like a car. It is to own part of the scientific revolution that produced the high aspect ratio fin. It is to own a piece of sculpture, a piece of art, a piece of culture, a piece of history.

This is why reproductions will never do. It's the difference between seeing the Sex Pistols play the 100 club in 1977 and seeing 2005 reformation tour. Even when done by the original shaper they still feel like an expensive Elvis impersonator.

photos by Dustin Humphrey from Deus Bali Blog

Tarp Surfing

Is this the most re-blogged video on the internet?
If its not it should be!

Let me know if your the only person in cyberspace to have not seen it....

Gerry Lopez 6'4"

Clément wrote-
Sorry for my english, it's not my natural language.
I'm a surfer living in Peru. One month ago, in Peru, I was lucky to find an old single surfboard with the inscription "Gerry Lopez". Passionate about surfing in the 60's & 70's (congratulations for your beautiful blog!), I wish to know more about the history of this board because always it's an amazing feeling to surf an old surfboard with his own history. I found some pictures of Gerry in Java between 1973-75 with surfboards of same type and similar decoration.
The surfboard is an 6'4. There is only one inscription on the board. It's the number 5451.
Do you have some ideas o information about the fabrication of this board (shaper, etc...) or his history ? Any information will make me happy.

I can wait to try the board in the waves of Chicama!

Wow! What a fantastic find.
This board looks a lot like the boards Gerry took to G-Land in the movie "Storm Riders" where he famously surfed the long hollow left hander alone in nothing but a pair of sky blue speedos.
I understand when Gerry split from Lightning Bolt he started his own label, Pipeline, and started shaping under his own name, still does to this day.


I pulled my unrestored, 1973, Hawaiian built, Ken Bradshaw shaped, single fin gun out of the shed today and said:
"Wow, what an amazing, beautiful board"
My wife said:
"ummmmmm........no its not"

I understand what she means, and I'm sure many of you agree with her entirely.
Let me explain.
Lightning Bolt single fins dominated the collective surfing consciousness of the 70's and filled my magazines.
Amazing beautiful magazines that featured pictures of places far away from Australia, magical places with exotic names I had no chance of going to and had only heard of in Beach Boys songs like Ha-wa-ii and Cal-i-forn-ia.
Lightning Bolt single fins may be common in the Islands and So-Cal but they don't exist in Sydney.
As far as I know, correct me if I'm wrong, Gerry Lopez has only visited Australia a handful of times when he shaped a few boards in the Bennett factory in Brookvale and surfed the maxing bommie outside White Rock near Long Reef.
Lightning Bolt single fins from the 70's are impressive.

When I was in California recently my friend asked me:
"Have you ever seen a Kangaroo in the wild?
I said "Yes"
She said "that must be amazing!"
I said:
"ummmmmm........no its not"
I had the chance to move out of Sydney for year to a spot on the south coast that had a little right hand reef break out the front and a heap of damm Kangaroos on the lawn every day. They were standing in the middle of the roundabout outside the post office in the middle of town!
Do you get where I'm coming from?

Mick Mock's Surf Auction of Vintage Surfboards & Memorabilia

Saturday, September 26th, 2010
Public viewing of lots from 3pm to 5pm
includes registration

Sunday, September 26th, 2010
Public viewing of lots 9am to 10am
includes registration

Auction commences 10.30am sharp.
Harbord Diggers Club
Cnr of Evans st and the Drive Harbord
Sydney NSW Australia.

Mick will not be listing on the Internet or taking Internet bids.
He is strictly old school.

Wilmington Mono Hull Part 2.

Rohan wrote-
This board of Cheynes (image also from Swaylocks) is the most interesting and beautiful looking shape I think I've ever seen from this era - shaped by Terry Fitzgerald supposedly.

Anonymous wrote-
As I recall... Cheyne "drafted" various shapers to shape "hulls" for the "winged keel"; he seemed to fully believe in the fin and its concept but was open to "other" interpretations of surfboards. This one is obviously a Linden, and I believe that Terry Fitz may have done some as well. I know that a Florida shaper (I'm sorry- I forgot his name) made some good ones too. Check the "boat" nose super soft rails up front, and the razor sharp rail-line at the tail, the funny thing is... if you tried to "make" it look like a surfboard "should" (relatively) the board didn't work, but if you stuck with the concept above... it is/can be a pretty fun board to ride. NOT recommended for "kelpy" environments as the fin is rake-less. I like to think of it as a "single-fin fish", a thick,wide,short board designed to "skate" on smallish/powerless waves. Remember the pro tour wasn't always going to the "dream spots" it does these days. Cheyne had guts to break away, to try such a wild concept (if you doubt it worked- check the Bells finals results against Tom Carroll) while pressing for a world title.

Much respect.

Gary wrote-
Here's a hot buttered zap with a slightly ridged keel in good
condition I spotted at the Bondi single fin meet last november. Could
be original though couldn't tell


Today is the day that Marty McFly arrives from 1985 after hitting 88mph in the pimped out Delorean.

I wish he had a freshly shaped twin fin on the roof racks for me.

It seems I've HOAXED.
Marty actually travels to 2015, after briefly setting the date at 2010.
Its 5 more years till we get hover boards.

Wilmington mono hull.

Rohan kindly sent me a link from Swaylocks surfboard design forum on the board Cheyne Horan was riding at the 83 OP Pro Wilmington (not Atlantic City).

This explains away a few mysteries as to why there were no McCoy logos on Cheyne rainbow serpent boards and why the nose of the board look like a boat.

Local Pick Up Only

This lovley original 5'8" McCoy Laser Zap is on ebay at the moment.
Local pick up only.
4000km, 2 days and 1 hour non stop driving A to B.

Oh well, I better go pack the car........

Shawn Stussy's 1977 Hawaiian quiver.

Shawn writes on his blog-
This is my winter quiver for Kauai around 77-78 I think... These are all boards I built at the Brotherhood while working there throughout the seventies... I remember fanning them out in Bruce Cosbey's front yard in Kilauea and taking this shot... This era was really a great time on Kauai as I remember it, even I could get a wave or two out at the bay in those days... SS

1986- Op Pro Huntington Beach

We cant look back at the OP Pro's of the 80's without a nod to the infamous 86 riots.
I have found these anonymous amateur snap shot pics on different photo sharing sites.
I love the 110 cartridge camera look and feel. The washed out colours, poor exposure and terrible cropping.
The riots were a blessing because people have held onto lots of shots from that August Saturday that feature the styles, chaos and tangible tension and excitement of the day.
Check the RX7 , 911, International Scout, Jeep Cherokee, VW Carmen Ghia, frosted eyeshadow, frilly high cut bikinis, Tom Carroll, Tom Curren, Glen Winton, Occy on the podium, Ian Cains, Christian Hossi, sleeveless muscle tees, pink plastic visor, pink shorts, checker board cap and cops running on the beach.