California Gold: Colors. Lines. Shapes.

Greetings, Shredderz! Scott Bass’ long running California Gold Vintage Surf Auction has another set of boards for sale, which you can view here. This collection is titled “Colors. Lines. Shapes.” and as you might expect, it’s got some collectible sleds up for grabs. Here are some favorites from the collection and some overall thoughts.

If you want outrageous 70s styling, you can’t do much better than this Rainbow Surfboards single fin shaped by Mike Hynson. The airbrush was done by John Bredin and the pinlines are by none other than Peter St Pierre.

I really dig this Bill Urbany shaped Zephyr single fin. The artwork is mind blowing, on both the deck and the bottom of the board. The listing has a ton of backstory for the board, and it’s fascinating. The board was shaped for a guy named Michael West, who was one of the few black surfers in Santa Monica during the 70s, and he also did the artwork. It’s refreshing to see a piece of surf history that draws upon black culture and shows a totally different set of influences from what we’re used to seeing.

And how cool is this 70s Wave Tools Jet bottom sting? It’s got some insane details, starting with an elaborate air intake system via some PVC tubing that’s embedded into the board. You can’t go wrong with that airbrush and the enormous Wave Tools logo on the deck, either. I also prefer my boards all original, and while the sting isn’t in perfect shape, it still looks great. The current bid is at $1K, making it one of the cheaper boards in the auction.

I’m a bit surprised this all original Morey-Pope Blue Machine is currently only at $1,700. The Blue Machine, which was designed by Bob Cooper, is one of Morey-Pope’s most famous offerings. I’ve heard Dennis Ryder was one of the main production shapers for the Blue Machine, but I can’t say for sure who shaped this one.

Here are some other boards I really liked: this Skip Frye glider that belonged to Steve Pezman; Pezman’s Lance Carson board, circa 1998; a 1975 Mike Diffenderfer gun shaped for Felipe Pomar, which also came from Pezman’s stash; a Matt Moore-shaped Fireball Fish for Tom Curren; a Yater with the rare Hawaii laminate; and this beautiful Bruce Jones balsa single fin.

If you want the classic collector catnip, there’s plenty in there. Frankly, I’m a little bored by fully restored Lightning Bolt single fins and Greg Noll Miki Dora models. They’re cool, and I have nothing but respect for Randy Rarick and the other folks who are painstakingly restoring these boards, but it just doesn’t get me going. I get that people like brand names, but if you ask me, it’s hard to think that the Bolts would be worth multiples of the Hynson and the Zephyr, which to me are works of art, full stop. The more I collect boards — and I always feel guilty about buying a board and not surfing it — the more I want to focus on two things: one, boards that help inform my surfing; and two, boards that are unique and/or represent interesting history and/or craftsmanship. Anyway, that’s just my $.02, and check out the rest of the auction, as there’s enough in there for anyone who’s into collectible surfboards.

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