Lance Collins Single Fin for Jack’s Surfboards: Before they Were Famous

One of my favorite things is stumbling upon rare and unusual creations from the early stages of various shapers’ careers. I love the moments that reveal obscure collaborations, whether it was Shawn Stussy’s stint at Russell Surfboards; some of Dick Brewer’s creations for lesser-known brands, like Inter-Island Surf Shop and The Greek; or Barry Kanaiaupuni’s gorgeous boards for Surf Line Hawaii. Today’s post features a Lance Collins single fin shaped for Huntington Beach staple Jack’s Surfboards, rather than the Wave Tools brand that took the eighties by storm.

The board above is currently for sale on Craigslist in the Los Angeles area. Pics are via the Craigslist posting, which you can find here. The seller of the board is a well-known collector who sells some very cool gems that often have cool Southern California roots. For example, I wrote an earlier post about a 1970s Wave Tools Lance Collins single fin that was also posted by the same seller. His boards are often very reasonably priced as well. The Lance Collins surfboard for Jack’s above is being listed at $275, which seems quite far to me.

The board bears a clear Lance Collins signature, as you can see in the photo to the top left. The “Shape by Lance” followed by a fish is visible on a number of Lance’s hand shaped boards. The Jack’s Surfboards logo, pictured at top right, is a bit unusual. Stoked-n-Board’s entry for Jack’s Surfboards has a few different variants of this logo and typeface, which it dates to the 1970s.

What’s interesting about this board is that it appears to have been shaped while Wave Tools was up and running. Wave Tools’ website says the brand was established in 1969. Meanwhile, the Lance Collins single fin featured in this post was clearly shaped sometime during the 1970s. I’m not sure what to make of this. Did Lance simply shape some boards for Jack’s in-house brand to supplement his income on the side? Given that Jack’s Surfboards is primarily a retail business, it makes more sense why Lance would shape boards under both Jack’s label and his own Wave Tools brand, but it’s still a little unusual to me.

The Lance Collins single fin featured above has some beautiful touches. I love the pinlines on the deck and along the rails. The original fin is a great touch, too: check out the eye bolt and the early leash attached! More importantly, the board looks like it’s in great condition, especially for something that is likely forty years old. If you’re a fan of Wave Tools, Lance Collins, or just beautiful surfboards from the 1970s, check out the Craigslist post here.

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