Stringerless Aussie Transition Era Boards

Gordon Woods

Greetings, Shredderz! Lately I’ve been geeking out on a very particular set of surfboards: stringerless Australian boards crafted during the late 60s, during the height of the Transition Era. This all started, as many of my surfboard obsessions do, by seeing various posts on the Vintage Surfboard Collectors Facebook group. Anecdotally, I’d say the group skews Aussie, and as a result, there’s a bunch of fascinating content, especially if, like me, you’re unfamiliar with the ins and outs of Australian surf history. I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit that most of my interest in Aussie Transition Era boards is because they just happen to look cool. But in my defense, if you’re going to choose a group of boards based on looks alone, you could do a lot worse than these gems! I’ve heard from more than a few people that a lot of these Transition Era boards, regardless of their country of origin, don’t surf all that well. Even if many of these designs are somewhat outdated today, they are still a necessary part of the evolution of surfboard design. Finally, there’s something amazing about the Transition Era and the fact so many advancements and changes were made within the span of a few short years. Anyway, onto the sticks!

In my humble opinion this is one of the cooler Aussie Transition Era boards I have ever seen. The fabric inlay on this thing is absolutely mental. The board is in impeccable shape, too. I love so many of the logos from this era. The Gordon Woods logo is very reminiscent of a Gordon & Smith logo from around the same time, even down to the colors. The board belongs to an anonymous collector, who was kind enough to let me run the photos you see here.

This is a Kenn Surfboards The Dreamer Model, which is a v bottom board released in 1968, from what I’m told. The Kenn board looks to me more like a classic v bottom, with the dramatic vee towards the back half of the board, and the blocky, triangular tail shape. Thanks to @starkuus for sending over pics of this beaut.

Last but not least here’s a gorgeous Sam Egan (father to 90s / 2000s leadfoot Luke) stick. Don’t know the dims or the details — I just know it’s super clean and rad to look at. There’s just something about the unbroken lines of these stringerless boards that quickens the pulse. The double logos are a killer touch, too.

One day I’ll do something more thoughtful and longer form on this incredible era of Australian board building, but in the meantime I hope you enjoyed this random dump of cool pictures.

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