Plastic Fantastic Surfboards: Groovy Surfboard Brand of Yesteryear

Plastic Fantastic Surfboards is a groovy surfboard label that came to prominence in the 70s. I’ve always loved the name, which was apparently taken from the Jefferson Airplane song “Plastic Fantastic Lover.” Despite my better instincts, I love the logo, which screams 1970s. Some might say it’s not in a good way, kind of like those weird avocado-colored washing machines you’ll see every now and then, but hey, at least it’s distinctive.

Two Plastic Fantastic Surfboards are up for sale on Craigslist. The first one (pictured above with no color and the blue pinlines) is located in Providence, Rhode Island, and you can see that listing here. The poster claims the board was made in the early 70s and it comes with an original fin. Dims are 5′6″ x 21″ x 3″. I can’t tell if it’s just the pictures, but the tail definitely suggests the board was made sometime in the 70s, so I tend to agree with the date on this. The board is apparently water tight and it’s listed at $350 – not a bad price in my book.

The second board (yellow deck with red bottom, and blue flower logo) is located in Atlantic Beach, Florida. You can find that listing here. No dims are given, and the board is significantly steeper at $550. It has some dings that need to be repaired, and I would really like to see better pics of the tail as well as the fin that comes with the board.

The one problem with Plastic Fantastic, and with so many other great surfboard brands, is that it can be tough to figure out how “authentic” a board is (or what “authentic” even means in this case.) Two wonderful resources for learning more about PF boards are Stoked-n-Board’s entry here, and this great Swaylocks thread.

You can find the Craigslist postings here and here.

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5 comments

  1. Barry Williams says:

    Thanks for this page and the links. I have my dad’s 1968 Plastic Fantastic. We lived in HB and he picked it up at the shop on Main Street. It has a strange decal that I’ve never seen on another board. It’s the standard logo but just the text. Since it was a custom board, it may have been my dad’s idea to trim the artwork out of the decal. Oh, and it’s a 8’0″ gun he surfed at Rincon and Redondo Breakwater. Anyway, thanks.

  2. Allen Haase says:

    U bought my 1st board 6’8″ plastic fantastic pin tail from The Frog House in 1971 lots of memories

  3. ROBERT HIGHSMITH says:

    plasctic fantastic suefboards was owned by bob highsmith on the shop on pacific coast highway 1972 til 1994 they shipped to over 50 dealers all over the country they had great shapeers terry martin- jim waide – robert august it was a local home grown from the islands that got it started by danny -jack and jeff hakman

    • Henry Knapp says:

      Thanks for all the info! Had no idea Terry Martin used to shape for Plastic Fantastic.

    • Gordon Quigg says:

      I met a girl out surfing Tongg’s at Diamond Head in about 1971, and she was riding an interesting short board. We were both about 14. In those days people tried each other’s boards a lot, so she let me try her plastic fantastic, and I was blown away at the extreme performance capabilities that her board had. I was a top competitive surfer for my age group, and I knew what I was experiencing. Who ever shaped that board was one of the best shapers on earth of that time period. It was about 6’6″x19″x2-1/2″ almost a very elliptical outline and a round pintail, with very low semi hard rails throughout, a super smooth arc to the rocker, a single fin, purple bottom and rails, pink inset for deck, PF logos top and bottom about 1/3rd down from nose. The girl’s name was Cindy Keiter (her dad was the famous news caster in Hawaii, Les Keiter. I think she got the board from Freddy Schwartz who owned the Surfline Hawaii Surfboard retail outlet. Fred may have been the first shop to carry Plastic Fantastic in Hawaii.