Here’s a great example of the maddeningly subtle differences between a hand shaped board and a “close but no cigar” example.
Hynson Surfboards, the namesake of “Endless Summer” star Mike Hynson, is currently selling two boards on Craigslist with small but meaningful differences.
The first board can be found here. It’s the Coke bottle tinted board above with the red fin and the triple stringer. If you look closely at the signature on the board, it says “Designed and Hand Shaped by Mike Hynson.” This is the real deal – a board completely hand made by a famous California shaper.
The second board you can see here. It’s also a longboard with a triple stringer and boasts the red fin design that has become something of a hallmark of Hynson’s boards. However, note that the stringer only has a Mike Hynson signature and an ohm signal. This board is not a handshape. It was machine cut, and while the outline is designed by Hynson, it wasn’t crafted start to finish by the man himself.
This is made clear in the pricing of the boards, too. The handshape is going for $2500, and the other board is a lot cheaper at $1500.
While it’s clear that a board signed “Designed and Hand Shaped by Mike Hynson” is the real deal, some questions remain about boards that simply have Mike’s signature and then an ohm insignia. In an earlier post I wrote about a Hynson, I also linked to an older Hynson single fin being sold at Surfy Surfy. The single fin at Surfy Surfy doesn’t have the “Designed and Hand Shaped” signature, but who knows, it still could be a genuine shape. More than anything else, I think this is a good example of pointing out how hard it can be to divine the exact origins of a surfboard, even with seemingly clear evidence.