Vintage Channel Islands Thruster

Greetings, Shredderz! Today we’ve got a board for you straight from my own humble quiver, with photos taken by yours truly. As much as I love finding gems on Craigslist — especially if there are great photos included — one goal for the upcoming year is to feature more boards that I have seen in person. I haven’t ridden this board myself, but who knows, maybe it’ll get wet sometime in the next few months.

The Channel Islands thruster you see above measures in at 6’2″ x 19 1/2″ x 2 5/8″. It was likely shaped sometime in the Eighties. I think there’s a chance it could have been shaped in the early Nineties, but I don’t have any way of saying for sure.

This isn’t a notable board, per se, as I believe it’s just a stock Channel Islands thruster from the time period. I don’t believe it was shaped by Al Merrick, as his signature is nowhere to be found anywhere on the board. That said, I love the various logos on the board, and the graphics along the rails.

If I haven’t made it clear before, I do love me a neon palette, and this board definitely has that going on. Channel Islands — newly independent, and wholly owned by its employees and team riders — is also one of the greatest surfboard labels of all time. You see a few CI boards pop up at auction here and there, and I wouldn’t be surprised if even stock boards like this one become more popular with collectors, given the label’s rich history and popularity.

In the meantime, I’d love to see Channel Islands re-introduce some of these old school logos and graphics. I’m always down with branded glass on fins, and for my money, CI’s triple hexagon logo is one of the best ever in the history of surfing. Regardless of what Channel Islands does, though, they will forever be on the Mount Rushmore of surfboard labels, and that’s more than enough for me.

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